I deeply appreciate the honor of being asked to give the George Armstrong Lecture. I am especially appreciative since I am neither a physician nor a medical scientist, although it has been pointed out in some quarters that for many years it has appeared to the American Medical Association that I may have been practicing medicine without a license. Moreover, I am additionally honored to be among those who have previously been selected to give this lecture, since three colleagues with whom I have worked over the years in a common effort to improve health and medical care for children are in the group.
I come to my professional interests with a strong cultural background that emphasized the importance of the family and the joy of having children in the family. This emphasis was reinforced by my early experience as a staff member of the Social Security Board (1935-1956) when