The Pulmonary Pathology Society was established in 1995 under the leadership of Dr. William Travis then Chair of the Pulmonary and Mediastinal Pathology Division of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Washington, D.C. in collaboration with several other internationally renowned lung pathologists including Drs. Thomas Colby of Scottsdale, Arizona, Samuel Hammar of Bremerton, Washington, Bruce Mackay of Houston, Texas, Helmut Popper of Graz, Austria, and Osamu Matsubara of Tokorozawa, Japan. An organizing event was held at the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology (USCAP) 84th Annual Meeting, Toronto, Ontario, March, 1995. The USCAP played a vital role in the establishment of the PPS and recognized the PPS as a Companion Society in 1995. The PPS has held an USCAP Companion Meeting on Saturday evening each year at the USCAP Annual Meeting, preceded by a meeting of the Council (formerly Board of Trustees) and followed by a Business Meeting.
Dr. Thomas Colby was elected the first President of the PPS, beginning his term in 1995, and the first Companion Meeting was held at the USCAP 85th Annual Meeting, in Washington, D.C., March, 1996. The first administration from 1995 to 1998 consisted of Drs. Thomas Colby (President), Samuel Hammar (Vice President), Bruce Mackay (Treasurer), William Travis (Secretary), Victor Roggli (Program Committee Chair), Jeffrey Myers (Awards Committee Chair) and a Board of Trustees consisting of Darryl Carter, Fred Askin, Bryan Corrin and Yukio Shimosato. Subsequent Presidents were Sam Hammar (1998-2000), Victor Roggli (2000-2002), Bill Travis (2002-2004), Henry Tazelaar (2004-2006), Philip Cagle (2006-2008), Donald Guinee (2008-2011), Elisabeth Brambilla (2011-2013) and Kevin Leslie (2013-2015).
Election of new Officers and Councilors (formerly Trustees) and change of administration occurred at the annual Business Meetings following the USCAP Companion Meetings. At the Board of Trustees Meeting on February 28, 1998, it was determined that the installation of new Officers and Trustees would occur at the end of the annual Business Meeting. Initially the PPS provided an award for the best abstract presentation on a topic in pulmonary pathology by a trainee at the USCAP Annual Meeting. In 1998, a trainee travel award was added. On February 28, 1998, the PPS with Victor Roggli as Program Committee Chair held its USCAP Companion Meeting as a joint Companion Meeting with the Papanicolaou Society. On the recommendation of Dr. William Travis, the principal office of the PPS Corporation was located with Foundation for the Advancement of Education in the Sciences (FAES) in Bethesda and a contract was signed with FAES in 1998. By-laws of the PPS were approved in 1999 sanctioning this arrangement.
The PPS had its first official presence at the International Academy of Pathology Congress in 1998 when Drs. Elisabeth Brambilla, Victor Roggli, William Travis, Philip Hasleton and Adi Gazdar chaired PPS sessions at the IAP Congress in Nice, France. The PPS has subsequently organized pulmonary pathology sessions or participated with others in the organization of pulmonary pathology sessions at every IAP Congress since.
The first PPS Newsletter was written and printed by then-Secretary Henry Tazelaar in February, 1999. The first stand-alone PPS Biennial Meeting was organized by then-President Samuel Hammar and was held at the Grove Park Inn, Asheville, North Carolina, on August 26-28, 1999. Subsequent Biennial Meetings were held in Seattle, Washington, in 2001 (President Victor Roggli) and in Snowmass, Colorado (President William Travis) in 2003. The first PPS Biennial Meeting held outside of North America was at Annecy, France (President Henry Tazelaar) in 2005. The Biennial Meeting was held in Santa Fe, New Mexico (President Philip Cagle) in 2007, in Portland, Oregon (President Donald Guinee) in 2009, in New York, New York (President Donald Guinee) in 2011, in Grenoble, France (President Elisabeth Brambilla) in 2013 and in San Francisco (President Kevin Leslie) in 2015.
In 2003, the PPS added the Lifetime Achievement Award to its awards. The first recepient in 2003 was Dr. Victor J. Ferrans. Subsequent recepients were Drs. James Hogg (2004), S. Donald Greenberg (2005), Anna-Louise Katzenstein (2006), Raymond Yesner (2007), Bryan Corrin (2008), David Dail (2009), Philip Hasleton (2011), Osama Matsubara (2013) and Andrew Churg (2015).
The PPS experimented with outside oversight by becoming a Guest Society and then Division of the American Society for Investigative Pathology (ASIP) from 2004 to 2009. Strong differences in financial and administrative perceptions led the ASIP to propose incorporating the PPS into an ASIP Interest Group in 2009. On October 7, 2009, under President Dr. Donald Guinee, the PPS members voted by a 95% majority to instead once again become an independent society with jurisdiction over its own governance and finances. This change in status commenced January 1, 2010 with incorporation in the state of Arizona through the efforts of Treasurer Kevin Leslie. New bylaws were proposed by the PPS bylaws committee, chaired by Dr. Kevin Leslie, and adopted by vote of the membership. Dr. Guinee continued to serve as President until 2011, making him the longest serving President in PPS history. As part of the creation of the newly independent PPS, Dr. Guinee also became webmaster for the new PPS website, a position which he holds to this day.
Per the new by-laws, election of officers is by electronic vote with instillation of the new administration at the Biennial Meeting. Dr. Elisabeth Brambilla served as President from 2011 to 2013. She was the first woman and the first non-US citizen to serve as President of the PPS. Dr. Kevin Leslie served as President from 2013 to 2015. By the time of Dr. Leslie’s tenure, the PPS was financially robust and grew in membership and financial strength under Dr. Leslie. The PPS had begun collaborations with the College of American Pathologists (CAP) in 2007 and during Dr. Leslie’s tenure the PPS became an Allied Society of the CAP while continuing its close relationship and annual meeting with USCAP. Dr. Leslie directed the most successful PPS Biennial Meeting yet in San Francisco in June, 2015. Dr. Timothy Allen assumed the Presidency in 2015.