The Evolution of a Profession: The First 75 Years of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, 1942-2017

One of our association history books, The Evolution of a Profession chronicles growth and change in podiatric surgery and in the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS). Services Included:

  • Close coordination with organizational archivist
  • Oral history consulting
  • Tight integration of professional history and organizational evolution
  • Notes, index, and appendices providing statistical and biographical information


As it reached its 75th anniversary and the culmination of an ambitious archiving project undertaken by one of its members, the directors of ACFAS wished to tell the story of the professional association. ACFAS Executive Director Chris Mahaffey hoped to document the association’s decades-long effort to provide better support to its members and better care to their patients. Above all, Mahaffey hoped for an account that would draw upon the past to provide guidance to current and subsequent generations of leaders.


One of Ken’s first tasks was to master the digital archive created by ACFAS archivist Dr. Jerome S. Noll. This included hundreds of pages of documents, journals, reports, and photographs. Ken then did his own research and conducted telephone and in-person oral history interviews with current and former ACFAS leaders. The practice of foot surgery, professional publication, certification, and accreditation can be complex subjects. But Ken kept his account lively by underscoring the importance of the goals sought by ACFAS and the contributions of particular individuals over the years. The story also included episodes of conflict which Ken handled with a “lessons learned” perspective, respecting both sides in the disputes.

Ken had to learn the nuances of the evolution of the professional association for himself. He was, therefore, uniquely capable to convey in history books for general readers why the efforts undertaken by generations of medical specialists to advance their profession were worthy and important. “Ken Durr is a marvel,” concluded Chris Mahaffey. “An amazing writer, he “gets” organizational politics. Reader after reader of our finished book said, verbatim, “You know, it was actually a very interesting read!” Could there be a higher compliment?”

Project Specifications

  • 7″ x 10″
  • 192 pages
  • Case bound with cloth cover and full color dust jacket
  • Black and white photos of leadership
  • Notes, Index, Appendices