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Reflections On a Challenging Week

Author: Andrew Rosen, Executive Director

Hello Ataxia Community:

As I sit at my desk on this Friday afternoon, I am amazed that it was less than one week ago that NAF, on the strong and wise counsel of our Medical and Research Advisory Board (MRAB), made the difficult decision to cancel this week’s conferences in Denver due to concerns about Coronavirus. 

Please know that this decision was not taken lightly – there were emergency meetings of both our MRAB and the Executive Committee of NAF’s Board of Directors, frantic writing of email, text, and website communications to get the cancellation announcement out, and lots of soul searching about whether we were making the right decision or not. While NAF staff were here in the office starting to handle all the questions and figuring out a myriad of cancellation details, a “SWAT team” of us flew to Denver to work with the hotel and commiserate with a small group of researchers from around the world who, unfortunately, hadn’t been able to get off of their planes quickly enough once the cancellation notice was sent. What a gracious group they are!

Needless to say, it has been a trying week for all of us. But here’s what I am so struck by today…this community, this AMAZING COMMUNITY of Ataxians, has lifted us up this week. Your comments on Facebook, your emails, your appreciation for how disappointed we all are…you have made the long hours this week so worthwhile. We know we made the right decision, and you’ve affirmed it. From the bottom of my heart, and I know NAF’s staff, Board, and MRAB share my sentiment, thank you! It’s because of you and your support that this week is ending on a positive note. And we are more committed than ever to providing you all support and continuing our focus on helping to accelerate the development of Ataxia treatments.

See you all in Chicago next March for AAC 2021!


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