APTA State Leg Award 2012 lowDave Morris and Emmett Parker receive awards from APTA.The American Physical Therapy Association gave awards to a UAB faculty member and an alumnus during the group’s State Policy and Payment Forum in Alexandria, Va.

David Morris, PT, Ph.D., assistant chair in the UAB Department of Physical Therapy, was awarded the 2012 APTA State Legislative Commitment Award by the APTA Board of Directors. He was recognized for his many years of service supporting the Alabama chapter’s legislative efforts on a variety of issues including infringement challenges, referral for profit and last year’s direct access campaign.

Emmett Parker, PT, MS, ATC received the 2012 APTA State Legislative Leadership Award for his leadership on the passage of legislation that made Alabama the 47 state with direct access to physical therapy. Parker, owner of Accelerated Physical Therapy, Inc., is a 1995 graduate of the UAB PT program.

Respiratory Therapist Tadashia CooperRecent Respiratory Therapy graduate Tadashia (Jabril) Cooper (Class of 2012) presented an abstract at the American Association for Respiratory Care International Congress in New Orleans in November. This Open Forum session involved a poster presentation based on the abstract followed by a podium summary with Q & A.

Sam Serley Senior CLASS finalistSam Serley, a senior in the Health Care Management program and a middle blocker for the UAB volleyball team, is one of only 10 volleyball players from around the country to be named as finalists for the Senior CLASS Award. The award recognizes athletes who excel in community, classroom, character and competition.


Jordan Smith UAB Physician Assistant student Jordan Smith was named as the 2012 winner of the American Association of Surgical Physician Assistants Susan and Tom Lusty Memorial Scholarship. The $1,000 scholarship is awarded yearly to a student in an accredited PA program.

RonaldWyattRonald M. Wyatt, M.D., MSHA, has been named the medical director in the Division of Healthcare Improvement at The Joint Commission, an independent, not-for-profit organization that accredits and certifies nearly 20,000 health care organizations and programs in the U.S.  In his role, Wyatt will promote quality improvement and patient safety to internal and external audiences, work to influence public policy and legislation for patient safety improvements and serves as the lead patient safety information and education resources within The Joint Commission.

Drex DeFordChief Information Officer Drex DeFord announced he is leaving Seattle Children’s Hospital next month to take over the same role at Boston-based Steward Health Care. DeFord is a 1997 graduate of the Master of Science in Health Informatics program in the Department of Health Services Administration.

Steward is a 10-hospital system and one of the 32 Pioneer Accountable Care Organizations as designated by the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation.

Read more about DeFord’s move on FierceHealthIT.

Kay Clements, MA, RHIA, Robert Garrie, MPA, RHIA, and Midge Ray, MSN, MEd, RN, all associate professors in the Health Information Management program in the Department of Health Services Administration, have been reapproved by the American Health Information Management Association as coding system trainers. The three faculty members trained to become proficient in the two parts of the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Edition, Clinical Modification/Procedure Coding System or otherwise known as ICD-10-CM/PCS.

jessicahartlineJessica Hartline has been chosen to become the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging’s student representative. She is the first UAB undergraduate to be selected to represent all nuclear medicine students in the national organization.

Michelle CardelMichelle Cardel, a doctoral student in nutrition sciences, has been chosen as a finalist in the Ethan Sims Young Investigator Award. Out of 900 abstracts submitted, Cardel was named as one of the top five finalists.

Cardel received high scores for her abstract, “Greater consumption of polyunsaturated fatty acids are related to increased lean mass and decreased total and visceral adiposity in a racially diverse sample of children.”  Her mentor was José Fernandez, Ph.D., associate professor and vice chair for education for the Department of Nutrition Sciences. She will present her oral abstract during The Obesity Society’s Thirtieth Annual Scientific Meeting on September 23, 2012 in San Antonio, Texas.