Why Am I running for the AASPT Vice President?
This February I was nominated and encouraged by some of my closest and most respected peers to run for Vice President of the American Academy of Sports Physical Therapy. It was with great pride that I accepted this nomination and support from some of the great past presidents and executive board members of the AASPT that have mentored me throughout my career. I am humbled that such great Sports Physical Therapists like Tim Tyler, Kevin Wilk, Mike Voight, Lindsey Becker, Barb Hoogenboom and Tab Blackburn, to name a few, trust me to help lead our Academy into the next chapter.
I also want to thank president elect candidate, Mike Reinold for his unwavering support of my nomination. Mike and I share very similar early career mentorship experiences through the Academy and that is one of the main pillars of our vision of the Academy. We want to refine and build upon current mentorship programs and offer the opportunities to those early career professionals that Mike and I had in our early Academy years. In 2002, I attended my first Academy business meeting and was immediately captivated by the camaraderie, passion, and commitment to Sports Physical Therapy. I knew from that moment this organization was for me. The authors of the journal articles I spent my extra time reading were now in this room and I was going to be a part of it. Like any other young professional, I was in awe at the possibility of mentorship in that room and the opportunity to learn professionally from the leaders in our field.
Professionally, I joke that I still hold my first PT job out of school…but it is true! Following a clinical rotation as a student, I started my first job at the Nicholas Institute of Sports Medicine and Athletic Trauma (NISMAT) at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan. The level of knowledge and experience I gained as a research clinician would set the stage for a career I could only have imagined. After 8 years I left my full-time post at NISMAT to open my own private practice so that could bring the big city experience to a small-town location. Fifteen years later my wife and I operate a 5 therapist sports based out-patient clinic where we can continue our clinical research with the support of the Nicholas Institute of Sports Medicine and Athletic Trauma.
My professional success could not have been possible without my relationships and friendships with the members of the AASPT. The guidance and mentorship from the members through the years have helped me to see that my career is not just about me and what I can do, it is more about how we can serve to make our profession better. My greatest honor being a member of the Academy has been the ability to serve the academy in many capacities over the past 15 years. I have had the opportunity to serve as the Shoulder SIG Chairman for 6 years, the Vice Section Program Chair for 6 years and my current position as Section Program Chair for the Academy. It was a great honor when my hard work and dedication to this Academy through service was recognized in 2015 when I was awarded the Outstanding Service Award by our peers.
We Need To Answer the “Why?” Question
Like I mentioned earlier, Mike Reinold and I have discussed at length, over the years our visions of where this Academy can go. It is easy for Mike and I to see the “why” to being a member of the Academy. We have reaped the benefits and taken advantage of the opportunities that were presented to us, so it is crystal clear. We want to answer your question “why should I become a member?” We understand your clinical concerns, your desire to work in sports physical therapy and your need to get more involved, we were there, and communication is key.
The core of my platform is focused on our early career professionals; you are the future of Sports Physical Therapy. First, we need to continue to develop the mentorship for you, not only within the Academy, but within your career as a developing Sports Physical Therapist. You need the guidance, pathway, and keys to successfully navigate this specialized field. Secondly, only 14% of our AASPT membership is Board Certified. I believe if we can mentor you through the requirements, evaluate the financial commitment and create a more streamlined process from the Academy’s side, we can offer our members, especially the young career professionals, another avenue to be a specialized Sports clinician.
Why Vote for Me?
My entire career I have been a clinician, researcher, mentor, and educator. Tomorrow I have 25 patients on my schedule between 8am and 7pm that I will share with my 3rd year Rutgers physical therapy student. At lunch time my student and I will be looking at some of the data we collected on study participants last week. From 7pm to 8pm I will be working with two high school pitchers on an arm care program in preparation for the up coming season. Blending these aspects of clinician, researcher, mentor and educator truly offer a glimpse of what it is to be a sports physical therapist. It is not an easy glamorous job, and neither is working on an executive board. The blending of these aspects allows me to see our profession through different lenses, while still operating a post-pandemic private practice.
Every Vote Counts
These board elections are always very close, and Mike and I need your support. You have our word if you vote for me for Vice President and Mike Reinold for President-elect that we will be working together, with you, to continue to make this the strongest Academy in the APTA.
Voting begins on April 1st!