As we prepare for WMS 2024, which will take place in Prague in October, we have made three new appointments to help lead our activities. 

Nicol Voermans has been appointed Pre-Congress Teaching Course Chair (PCTC), with Jorge Bevilacqua appointed Deputy Chair. The Prize Committee also has a new chair, Marco Savarese. 

The PCTC leadership was selected following a competitive process launched at the 2023 Congress in Charleston, South Carolina. Current Chair, Benedikt Schoser, announced he would be standing down after WMS 2024 and invited applicants who would be willing to work alongside him this year and take over from WMS 2025. 

The image includes profile headshots of Nicol Voermans and Jorge Bevilacqua. Nicol is on the left. She is wearing a white lab coat and is smiling at the camera. She is indoors and the background is blurred. The image on the right is of Jorge Bevilacqua. He is also wearing a white lab coat and looking at the camera. The photo has been taken outdoors and there are trees in the background.The Executive Board reviewed applications and selected Nicol and Jorge for the wealth of experience they bring to the PCTC, not just of the neuromuscular field, but of teaching and inspiring future generations of clinicians and researchers. 

Nicol is an experienced masters and PhD student supervisor at the Radboud University Medical Center. She is the chair of the scientific masters internship at her hospital, the teacher on inherited neuromuscular disorders in the national training for neurologists in the Netherlands and has been a teacher in the Myology Summer School and TREAT-NMD Masterclasses. She also participates in the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee of the WMS.


Jorge has more than 30 years of teaching experience in different medical subjects, and particularly, in the last 18 years in neuromuscular diseases. He also participates in the Education, Myology Development Across the World and Featured Cases Committees of the WMS.

On deciding to apply for the post, Nicol said: “I have been involved with the WMS activities for more than a decade and greatly appreciate the WMS contribution to teaching, the openness of the WMS to new members, and the acknowledgement and encouragement of new talents. I am looking forward to contributing to that as coordinator for the teaching course.”

And Jorge added: “I love the atmosphere at WMS Congresses. Colleagues from all over the world are eager to learn and exchange experiences to better help their patients with the very same problems. To me, it is an invaluable opportunity to share and learn and give back a little of everything I have collected through the years, with a different perspective from Latin America. 

“The PCTC enables participants to acquire the basic guidelines of fundamental and applied myology, lay the foundation for the study of the discipline, resolve fundamental doubts, and allow the experience of international opinion leaders to be shared with local experts to the place where the Congress is held.

“I simply hope to be able to provide continuity, perhaps contributing with novel teaching approaches, to facilitate the understanding of myology for the participants.”

Prize Committee Chair

As well as the PCTC leadership, we have a new Prize Committee Chair after Johann Böhm’s three-year term expired. 

The image is a headshot of Marco Savarese. Marco is wearing a light blue shirt, open at the collar and heavy rimmed glasses. He has a ginger beard and mustache.Marco Savarese, who works at the Folkhälsan Research Center at the University of Helsinki will take the helm for the next three years, ending his tenure ahead of hosting the 2027 Congress in Helsinki.

On his appointment, Marco said: “I am sincerely honoured by the trust the Society has placed in me to chair the Prize Committee. The WMS meetings have seen an increasing number of participants in the last few years. Young members in particular show great enthusiasm while carrying out great science.

“I am terribly excited to work with the other conscientious committee members and to reward the excellent research carried out by fellow myologists.

“I was awarded the Young Myologist of the Year prize (now the Emerging Myologist prize) in Copenhagen in 2019. I felt very honoured by the prize and by all the nice words I received from many colleagues.

“The prize definitely boosted my motivation to continue my research activity in the field of myology and made me feel like my research was making a difference.

“It also helped me to connect with more colleagues, expanding my professional network and helping build my professional credibility.

“I will be so happy to award worthy young colleagues working hard on their research projects. I am sure that for all of them, our prizes will be a strong stimulus to keep on carrying out great science.”

Our congratulations to Nicol, Jorge and Marco. 

Published on 8 February 2024.


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