Lisa Donegan Shoaf, PT, DPT, PhD (Staunton, VA)
Being an APTA member is something that has been important to me throughout my 33-year career as a physical therapist.
I have felt the responsibility to participate and give back to my community as far back as high school, so it felt natural to join APTA and give back to the profession. Service is an important part of my life, including participation in various professional activities. Through state and national activities, I have made so many friends and had so many opportunities for growth.
It has been my pleasure to be a part of APTA's House of Delegates every year since 1997, and through that process I have experienced firsthand how our profession continues to evolve and grow. It is exciting to be a part of a group of physical therapists discussing the future of our profession and know that my voice was heard on topics such as the APTA vision, the branding of our profession, the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice, and many other important policies that shape who we are as physical therapists.
When we adopted the brand of "Move Forward" it resonated with me in many ways. We help our patients and clients move forward with increased function and abilities, but we can also help the profession itself move forward as we educate students, patients, consumers, and each other about the value of physical therapy.
Now as we embark on our new vision for the profession, to "transform society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience," I am excited again about where we are going and the impact we will make as a profession to move forward this important vision and reach out to society as a whole to improve the quality of life for those around us.
How exciting is that?! Who wouldn't want to be part of that process?
Being an APTA member and actively participating in the profession at the state and national levels allows me to be part of the process, shape our future, and witness the change that takes place.
I can't imagine it any other way!
Lisa Donegan Shoaf, PT, DPT, PhD, is the program director at a developing physical therapy program at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Virginia. She has served as a faculty member in physical therapy education for 22 years and practiced in outpatient orthopedics for spine dysfunction and sports medicine, with a niche practice in performing arts medicine. She has continued to practice actively during her time as a faculty member.
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