When he's not attempting to sail around the world, Stanley Paris, PT, PhD, FAPTA, FAAOMPT, is busy making a world of difference—this time, by donating $500,000 to the Foundation for Physical Therapy (Foundation). The donation, made with his wife Catherine Patla, was matched by Laureate Education Inc to bring the total Foundation contribution to $1 million.
The gifts, announced during the Foundation’s 35th Anniversary Gala in Charlotte, North Carolina, were made to help kickstart the next wave of research to transform the physical therapy profession, and are targeted to support research on the long-term outcomes of physical therapy.
"As a profession, our skills in restoring, maintaining and enhancing the physical functioning of the individual are not adequately recognized and integrated into treatment options," stated Paris in a Foundation news release (.pdf). "I believe our gifts will contribute to research and analysis of data in health care outcomes that demonstrate the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of physical therapy as a treatment option, compared with medical and surgical care, in such areas as hip, knee, and spinal complaints."
During his career, Paris has been involved in research, clinical practice, and teaching. He has published more than 40 articles in physical therapy, medical, and osteopathic journals, as well as a book, The Spinal Lesion. He is the recipient of several honors and awards, including the World Confederation for Physical Therapy’s (WCPT) 2011 Mildred Elson Award, WCPT’s top honor in physical therapy.
Paris is also an avid sailor, and late last year put his skill in service of the Foundation by attempting to sail around the world solo to raise awareness and funds for physical therapy research. Ultimately, equipment failures forced Paris to cut the trip short, but his adventures helped to highlight the aims of the Foundation. Paris recently announced that he will be making a second attempt in November.
Laureate Education Inc is a global higher education provider for health sciences and is a new owner of the University of St Augustine for Health Sciences, which was founded by Paris.
"We are extremely pleased to accept these 2 generous gifts," said Foundation Board of Trustees President William G. Boissonnault, PT, DPT, DHSc, FAPTA, FAAOMPT. "Once again, Stanley has shown himself to be a true friend of the Foundation. He continues to go above and beyond in helping to support our mission. These funds will be critical in our efforts to advance evidenced-based literature, the key to helping physical therapists improve the quality of life for so many Americans."
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