Interview With CLSI Volunteer, Paula Ladwig, MS, MT(ASCP)
We spoke with long-time CLSI volunteer Paula Ladwig, MS, MT(ASCP) about her experience volunteering with CLSI.
How long have you been a CLSI volunteer?
I have been volunteering with CLSI since maybe 2009; over 10 years now.
In what capacity or capacities did you serve as a volunteer?
At the beginning I volunteered on some DDCs for the method evaluation documents. I think my first was a revision for EP17 and my second was for a new document—EP19. I had a couple of great mentors that came out of these early experiences that suggested that I join the EP Expert Panel, which I did in 2018 as a Vice-Chair. Currently I’m chairing the Expert Panel. I’ve been involved in some great DDCs for revisions over the years, but also have been able to be involved in some very innovative projects, such as the original EP19 document and Method Navigator, which will hopefully be coming out this year.
What made you want to become a CLSI volunteer?
I’m not sure what was the inspiration besides wanting to be a part and having a say in setting standards for test method validation and verification. But I can say that being able to collaborate with such a variety of wonderful individuals from all over the world is what keeps me involved.
Do you recall how you first heard about CLSI?
No. I wish I did. I do now try and recommend volunteering to those I work with.
What has been the most valuable experience for you personally as a CLSI volunteer?
That’s a hard question. I’ve had some great experiences. Maybe more so is the valuable lesson in the difference a great mentor can make. Rex Astles has been a wonderful mentor over the years. I want to be that for others.
What’s the most important piece of information you could give someone who’s interested in becoming a volunteer?
Don’t feel like you don’t have something to offer. Get involved. That is the first step. Your life will be richer for it. There is so much to gain from the experience; new colleagues, different perspectives, and teamwork experience just to name a few.
What advice would you give to a new volunteer that would enable them to make the most of their experience with CLSI?
Don’t be afraid to speak up. I think we always assume that others may know more, or we might look foolish. But we also forget that we have a perspective too.
Learn more about how you can get involved with volunteering at CLSI here.