A Tribute to 2 Leaders of the Profession
APTA recently lost 2 truly remarkable leaders. And although these are losses not only for APTA but for the entire profession of physical therapy, their contributions to the profession and beyond will serve as lasting tributes.
Jayne Snyder, PT, DPT, FAPTA
Jayne Snyder, PT, DPT, MA, FAPTA died on October 5 of pancreatic cancer.
Jane was an active APTA member since 1969. She served APTA as vice president, on the Board of Directors, and as president of the Foundation for Physical Therapy. In 2004, she received APTA's Federal Government Affairs Leadership Award for her efforts at the federal level to preserve and promote the profession of physical therapy.
Jayne owned and operated Snyder Physical Therapy in Lincoln, Nebraska. She was elected a councilwoman on the City Council of Lincoln in May 2009. She also served as a member of the Lincoln-Lancaster County Board of Health. Jayne served in a consulting role for President Clinton's Economic Package and the Democratic National Committee's Retreat on Health Care Reform.
She began her career in the Lincoln public school system as a physical education and health teacher. Past posts include co-owner of Total Fitness Consultants and director of rehabilitation for Tabitha Inc, both in Lincoln, as well as physical therapist at the University of Nebraska Athletic Department and assistant professor for the university's Division of Physical Therapy Education. A lifetime runner, Jayne completed 50 marathons in 27 separate states.
Her advocacy efforts included the development of the Clinical Research Network and support for the APTA Hooked on Evidence campaign. She worked for health policy reform at multiple levels, including significant contributions to the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice.
Jane Walter Venzke, PT, EdD, FAPTA
Jane Walter Venzke, PT, EdD, FAPTA, passed away on October 8 after a long illness.
Jane was a long time APTA member, serving on state, regional, and national levels including president of the New Hampshire chapter, president of the Section for Education, Board of Directors, and vice president.
Jane attended the University of Connecticut where she received her degree in physical therapy. She was the administrative director of physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech pathology at Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital for 12 years before obtaining her MEd degree and becoming the associate director of the Arthritis Center at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. After earning her EdD degree, she moved to the University of Alabama at Birmingham where she continued her research in rheumatology. In 1993 she became the director of the physical therapy program at Wayne State University in Detroit.
Wishing to fulfill her dream of bringing a physical therapy education program to New Hampshire, Jane returned to New Hampshire to become dean of science and director of the physical therapy program at Notre Dame College in Manchester. After upgrading and revamping the science programs, she went on to become Dean of Health Sciences and established programs in physical therapy and physician assistant studies. When Notre Dame closed, Franklin Pierce University acquired the physical therapy program. Jane ultimately joined the university as associate dean of graduate studies and director of the physical therapy program.
Jane became the dean of Franklin Pierce's College of Graduate and Professional Studies in 2007 where she launched the first doctoral programs at the university and added several new master's level programs.
In 1981 she was appointed by President Reagan to the White House Conference on Aging and to membership of the National Arthritis Advisory Board. She credited these 2 national appointments to her introduction to the politics of public policy.
Leadership Beyond the Association
APTA will miss both of these remarkable leaders. But what I found particularly revealing was that both shared their leadership skills and sense of responsibility far beyond APTA.
Jayne served on her city council and on the county board of health, and as a national consultant on health care policy. Jane served on 2 national presidentially appointed organizations. Both were active in working to shape public policy.
Both were intimately involved in research-Jayne in her role with the Foundation for Physical Therapy and Jane having written a remarkable collection of research articles, presented numerous poster and podium presentations, and written many book chapters, manuals, and monographs. Although the research efforts of both of these remarkable women will be visible within the profession of physical therapy, the lasting benefits will be experienced by countless patients and clients worldwide.
Although APTA honored both with its highest honor-having named them Catherine Worthingham Fellows-the highest honor that those in the profession can bestow upon them is to emulate their models of dedication, purpose, and leadership.