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ALEXANDRIA, VA, September 26, 2017 — The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) is pleased to announce that Katherine (Katy) Beh Neas will join the team as executive vice president of public affairs for the association. She will begin October 10, 2017.
Neas comes to APTA from Easterseals, an organization with 74 affiliates in 48 states that provides direct services, including physical therapy, to children and adults with disabilities and their families.
She served for 22 years in the Easterseals Office of Public Affairs, where she led their federal and state government relations and government contracts activities. A graduate of Georgetown University, she began her career in public affairs on Capitol Hill as an intern for Iowa Senator Tom Harkin. As a staff member on the Senate Subcommittee on Disability Policy, Neas worked on the development and enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
For many years Neas has served as an at-large member or officer of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), and she chaired the coalition from 2013 to 2017. She also chaired CCD's education task force for nearly 20 years. Perhaps most notably, she worked to shape the language of the 1997 reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, ensuring the rights for all children to attend school and to have access to the general curriculum regardless of the nature of their disabilities. Neas comes to APTA with a proven track record of success on Capitol Hill and the vast network of contacts and relationships that come with such extensive time in the political arena.
In her capacity as executive vice president and a member of the executive team, Neas will oversee APTA's advocacy, payment, and strategic communications activities. She and her team will work to advance efforts to increase recognition, coverage, and payment for the physical therapy profession.
"Health care is rapidly evolving as the US transitions from a fee-for-service model to a more patient-oriented, value-based delivery system," said APTA President Sharon L. Dunn, PT, PhD. "Now more than ever it is critical that we continue to lead the charge to appropriately shape the delivery of health services. We are thrilled to have Katy join us. Her extensive background in policy, health care, and advocacy for persons with disabilities is well aligned with APTA's mission, and she will be a strong asset to the team as we move forward."
APTA's guiding vision is "transforming society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience." To that end, the organization and the profession it represents advocate for patients, clients, and consumers—as both individuals and populations—in practice, education, and research settings to manage and promote change, adopt best practice standards and approaches, and ensure that systems are built to be consumer-centered.
The American Physical Therapy Association represents more than 100,000 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and students of physical therapy nationwide. Visit MoveForwardPT.com to learn more about the types of conditions physical therapists treat, and find a physical therapist in your area.