April 2015 • Vol. 4, Issue 2


Editor’s note: The first Member Making News features President-Elect Barry Southers, M.Ed., R.T. (R)(MR).
He was interviewed briefly and his replies follow as well as a link to his professional biography.

Barry Southers, M.Ed., R.T. (R)(MR)
SMRT President-Elect
SMRT Member since 2008


What attracted you to working with Magnetic Resonance?

When I started working in Radiography, I knew MRI was an up and coming imaging modality. MRI had, and still has, the ability to image the body like no other modality, and I wanted to be a part of that. I began working in MRI in 1996 in Louisville, and at the time, MRI was still a relatively early field. We had imaging sequences that were regularly over 8 minutes in length! To see the progress and advancements the field has made over the past two decades is remarkable. I feel very fortunate to be given the chance to work in this field.

When did you first learn about the SMRT?

I first learned of the SMRT, and ISMRM, in the early to mid 2000’s. I was working at a MR research lab conducting functional MR and MR spectroscopy experiments. A lot of the researchers at the lab were regular attendees to the ISMRM Annual Meeting, and I began to research this organization. I was pleasantly surprised to learn of the SMRT! After a couple years I submitted an abstract and was fortunate to earn an award, be invited to the SMRT Annual Meeting to present my work, and the rest is history. I have been a loyal member since.

How did you become so active within the SMRT?

After I won an abstract award and presented my work, I was then asked to be a guest speaker at the following SMRT Annual Meeting. I met many of the SMRT leaders, especially Ashok Saraswat (previous SMRT Policy Board member), and really admired the work they did in running an international MR organization. I was nominated for the Policy Board in 2008 but did not get elected, and then in 2009 I was nominated again. Fortunately, I was elected to the Policy Board and thoroughly enjoyed my time in the Policy Board. As President-Elect, I truly feel honored to have been placed in a position such as this, and will do all I can to perform the job as well as so many other previous SMRT Presidents have. The SMRT truly is a great organization and I am proud to be a member.

Tell what made you decide to complete the advanced education you have pursued.

Back in college before I even went into Radiography, I always knew I wanted to further my education someday, so rather than enroll in a hospital-based Radiography program, I chose to enter the Radiography program at the University of Kentucky. After graduation, I was driven to complete my Bachelor’s Degree, with aspirations of eventually becoming an anatomy teacher. Once I did this, I found a program at the University of Cincinnati where I could earn my Master’s Degree in Medical Education. It was a perfect fit, since I wanted to get into teaching for several years, and completing this degree would set me up to do so. In 2009, I began working in the Advanced Medical Imaging Technology program at the University of Cincinnati, teaching as a Visiting Professor in the MRI curriculum. After earning my M.Ed, I moved to a permanent position in the program and have been instructing MRI students since. It is a wonderful opportunity to instruct students on MRI physics, anatomy, physiology, and pathology, and to be a part of educating the future of our profession.

Who was most influential in your MR career so far?

I think one of the most influential people would be Bill Faulkner. Several years ago, I went to a MR registry review course in Las Vegas run by Bill Faulkner and absolutely loved the way he presented the material. It seemed effortless, yet I knew a lot of preparation was necessary to conduct a MR registry review course. Aside from teaching in a professional, collegiate setting, I also have always been interested in presenting at medical imaging conferences and seminars, and Bill gave me the spark to hone my presentation skills and try to begin speaking at conferences. To date, I have now presented over 60 times at conferences around the world, and owe Bill Faulkner a big “thank you” for that.

Where would you like to see the SMRT efforts extended for your year as President?

We are working on a lot of exciting, new opportunities and projects at the SMRT, but one effort I would love to see would be to build our membership, as well as educational opportunities, to Asia, Africa, and South America. We have members in these places, yet I would love to increase our member numbers in these areas. As mentioned, I would also love to increase educational opportunities in these areas as well. It is wonderful that the ISMRM and SMRT Annual Meetings are being held in Asia (Singapore) in 2016, but I hope this is only the tip of the iceberg. There are so many incredible MR professionals worldwide, and in these areas especially, so increasing our exposure in these areas would be a huge step in improving the already stellar work being done there.

Barry Southers

Click here to read Barry's Bio



E-Signals is a publication by the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine for the benefit of the SMRT membership and those individuals and organizations that support the educational programs and professional advancement of the SMRT and its members. This publication is the compilation of the leadership of the SMRT and the contributions of the staff in the ISMRM Central Office.