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Editor's Message

Editorial Committee Keeps PDA Letter Strong

As we enter 2019, I would like to express my gratitude to the volunteer members of the PDA Letter Editorial Committee (PLEC). Their hard work throughout the year ensures that the Letter remains relevant to the needs of PDA members.

PDA formed the all-volunteer PLEC a dozen years ago to allow PDA members input into the content of the PDA Letter. PLEC has grown from the six-members of the inaugural committee to 16 members today. Our goal is to include a variety of backgrounds on the PLEC with representatives from suppliers, large pharma, small pharma, consultants, manufacturing, quality, QC testing, sterile processing and contract manufacturing organizations. This way the Letter can hit all points of interest within our diverse industry. To ensure the Letter’s content aligns with PDA’s strategic science and regulatory output, one member of each PDA Advisory Board—Science, Biopharmaceutical, and Regulatory and Quality—also liaises with the Editorial Committee; this was an important addition to the PDA Letter process.

What does the PLEC do, you ask? For starters, PLEC members primarily participate in the article-review process. While not a formal peer review, we ask them to rate articles based on how interesting the topic is to the community at large and to judge if anything written runs counter to industry best practice and regulations. These 16 subject-matter experts also read through the articles and, if warranted, point out areas that require additional clarification and/or information.

The PLEC also has two subcommittees to help with specific aspects of the Letter. One subcommittee reviews our cover art and infographics for accuracy and relevancy. The last thing we want is to depict someone gowned incorrectly! The other subcommittee identifies relevant topics and experts to interview for our popular “On the Issue” videos.

PLEC also helps the Letter staff set the future direction of the publication, including editorial themes. Each quarter, the committee discusses ideas for Letter content and coverage via teleconference. We also meet face-to-face at the PDA Annual Meeting. PLEC helps keep the Letter fresh and innovative. In fact, their input has been invaluable. When we revamped the PDA Letter website in 2015, I think they were more excited than I was to use the test site!

So, I want to thank the following Committee members who are now ending their terms: Sharon Ayd, Claire Fritz Briglia, Christine Bui, Andrew Dick, Valeria Frigerio-Regazzoni, Christopher Hanff, Maik Jornitz, Stephan Krause and Mina Mitry. Your contributions to the PDA Letter have helped keep it a strong membership benefit.

And I welcome the following new Committee members to the team: Marcia Baroni, Brian Hawkins, Zena Kaufman, Gwendolyn Lohr, Aaron Mertens, Frank Matos, Ajay Pazhayattil, Cecilia Turoff and Kelly Waldron. I look forward to working with all of you in the coming year.

If this all sounds like fun to you, I encourage you to think about applying to join the PDA Letter Editorial Committee. It may be early but, if you think you might be interested in joining in 2020, please let me know.