In 1980 the Quality Assurance Roundtable was formed by Kathryn Bono, Robert Fishbeck, Richard Siconolfi and Fred Snyder. These individuals met the year before with an idea to bring together Quality Assurance Professionals in response to US FDA’s Good Laboratory Practice regulation and US EPA’s recall of pesticide registrations studies. The first QA Roundtable was held in Hunt Valley, Maryland in the fall of 1980. Fifty-four, soon to be, Quality Assurance Professional assembled to discuss and exchange information on the regulation and the recall. Only one person per company was allowed to attend. This principle was enacted to ensure the widest participation. Due to the nature of these new regulations and recall no government representatives were invited. However, in 1983 at the Houston QA Roundtable government representation emerged and that event led to the successful meeting. Government participation continues to this present day where their involvement ensures a successful annual meeting.
The QA Roundtable held five consecutive annual meetings at various venues around the United States. At all of these meetings, international representation was a key part to establish a credible organization.
Late in 1983 QA Roundtable leadership voted to incorporate and form as a professional organization. The last QA Roundtable was held in Boston in the fall of 1984. At this meeting the participants voted to incorporate and elected a slated of officers to guide the organization, which became known as the Society of Quality Assurance.
Those participants approved the By-Laws and Articles of Incorporation and elected Ann Smith as the Founding President, and Fred Snyder as President plus a slate of the officers, directors and elected committees. Mr. Snyder took the stage at the close of the1984 QA Roundtable meeting and laid out the ground work for this new Society of Quality Assurance. Mr. Snyder secured financial support from his company until SQA generated enough funds to be self sufficient. Within in a year SQA had an active Board of Directors, elected committees and 70 Quality Assurance Professionals were approved for membership.
SQA has vibrant leadership and elected twenty-nine Presidents that have served the society. Our membership continues to grow and now SQA has over two-thousand-one-hundred sixty members.
Benson, Barry. W. and Pomerleau O’Brien, Patricia. "Looking Back-A History of Progress: Society of Quality Assurance." Quality Assurance Good Practice, Regulation, and Law v.3 no. 1 (1994 March) p. 110-116
Personal Notes from Richie Siconolfi, 2014