APTA is proud to honor Michael T. Cibulka with the Catherine Worthingham Fellow award.
Michael T. Cibulka,
PT, DPT, MHS, OCS, has made valuable contributions to professional literature,
significantly impacting the scope and practice of physical therapy. Colleagues
have described Cibulka as a "gifted researcher," "passionately inquisitive
scholar," and an ambassador for the profession.
Presently associate professor at Maryville University and
president/owner of Jefferson County Rehabilitation & Sports Clinic in
Festus, MO, Cibulka previously held positions at St Louis Sports Medicine
Clinic, Washington University, the Visiting Nurse Association, and St Joseph’s
As a leader in the areas of hip and sacroiliac joint, Cibulka
has published extensively in a variety of publications, including the Journal of Orthopedics and Sports Physical
Therapy, Manual Therapy, and Physical Therapy. His research has
spanned the gamut from shoulder rehabilitation to hip dysfunction and its
relationship to low-back pain, sacroiliac joint dysfunction, and patellofemoral
dysfunction. During his years in practice, Cibulka has been committed to
delivering care consistent with best evidence and using diagnostic value in his
everyday practice as a clinical research opportunity. He is a fierce proponent
and advocate of physical therapists as the practitioner of choice for
neuromusculoskeletal disorders and conditions.
An APTA member since 1978, Cibulka has served the
association in a multitude of roles, including president of the Orthopaedic
Section and president of the Journal of
Orthopaedic Sports Physical Therapy. He was a member of the first Committee
on Clinical Residency Credentialing and the APTA Awards Committee, and served
on the Committee on Licensure Examinations, as well as chair of the Orthopaedic
Specialty Council. On the local level, Cibulka has served as president and
delegate, chaired the Missouri Chapter's Political Action Committee, and in several
roles within the Eastern (St Louis) District. In 2008, Cibulka was awarded the
Richard W. Bowling-Richard E. Erhard Award for Outstanding Clinical Practice
from APTA's Orthopaedic Section, is a two-time recipient of the Jack Walker
Award given by APTA for the best published clinical article in 1990 and 2004,
and was honored with the Missouri Outstanding Service Award for Service to the
Profession by the Missouri Chapter in 2002. Cibulka earned a DPT from
Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions, MHS from
Washington University in St. Louis, and BS in physical therapy from the
University of Missouri.
The movie "The Emperors Club" provides some remarkable
aphorisms. The first, "The End Depends Upon the Beginning," reminds me to thank
my mother and father, who taught me right from wrong and what really is
important in life.To my teachers at Mizzou, Gerry Browning, Marilyn Sanford,
Jim Martin, and Carmen Abbott, and those at Washington University for teaching
me how to become a caregiver. Steve Rose, who taught me the meaning of another
aphorism, "that great ambition without contribution is without significance."
Dick Erhard, my clinical mentor, who challenged me to be forever inquisitive.
Tony Delitto and David Sinacore, lifelong friends who have always kept me
grounded. Chuck Gulas, who took a gamble hiring me. Michelle Unterberg and the
Maryville faculty, and to loyal friends Pam Duffy, Annette Iglarsh, and Jim
Dunleavy. Finally, my wife Amy, and sons Jeff and Matt,
thank you for letting me do what I love to do!