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Leadership Academy


The future of excellence in academic physical therapy is intimately tied to having a plentiful pool of leaders who have conscientiously and deliberately prepared themselves to provide superior leadership.

ACAPT's Leadership Academy is designed to support the following ACAPT strategic initiatives:

  • Identify and cultivate the resources to achieve excellence in academic physical therapy;
  • Support and position physical therapy programs to adapt to changing higher education environments and to lead innovation in academic physical therapy; and
  • Develop a leadership and/or teaching fellowship program. (This initiative is intended to supplement the Education Leadership Institute, which ACAPT is also committed to supporting.)

Check out Leadership Academy (ALA) recorded webinars here.

The Leadership Academy also created the Leadership Compass© , the only online leadership development tool designed specifically for physical therapy administrators, academic and clinical faculty, and students.

ACAPT Leadership Compass©

The Leadership Academy is comprised of the groups shown below:

Leadership Oversight Committee


Responsible to the ACAPT Board of Directors for the overall planning and implementation of the strategic initiatives noted above. The primary intent is to increase leadership skills for ACAPT's stakeholders and recognize the role of leadership in healthcare and secondarily, the development of leadership in students.  

  • Janet Bezner, PT, DPT, PhD, FAPTA, Professor, Texas State University
  • Tony English, PT, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Kentucky
  • Nannette Hyland, PT, PhD, Associate Professor, Mercy College
  • Stephanie Kelly, PT, PhD, Professor, University of Indianapolis
  • Barbara Tschoepe, PT, DPT, PhD, Professor, University of Vermont
  • Lisa van Hoose, PT, MPH, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Central Arkansas
  • Thomas Werner, PT, MA, PhD, Associate Professor, University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences

The Leadership Oversight Committee oversees the subcommittees below, which provide leadership training and resources for physical therapy administrators, faculty, and students as a member benefit at low or no cost that are contemporary, visionary, open and inclusive to encourage participation.

Resource Development Subcommittee


  • Identify available leadership resources for the ACAPT Leadership Academy (ALA) Compass, including but not limited to, websites, publications, people, workshops, and programs.
  • Identify a source, fee, and usefulness rating of each resource that can be shared with stakeholders.
  • Perform ongoing review and monitoring of resources and update as needed. 
  • Denise Gaffigan Bender, Chair
  • Heidi Johnson Eigsti
  • Sara Voorhees
  • Suzanne M. Giuffre
  • Thomas P. Werner, Leadership Academy Liaison

Student Leadership Development Subcommittee


  • Identify ways to target students with leadership activities and work with students to identify academic roles as career paths and encourage students to consider PhD programs.
  • Identify other possibilities and plans to incorporate leadership development for students at the national level. 
  • Carrie Clark Hawkins, Chair
  • Daniel Dale
  • Lori Bordenave
  • Skye Donovan
  • Jennifer Green-Wilson
  • Scott McAfee
  • Darren Joffee
  • Lauren Petrisin
  • Nannette Hyland, Leadership Academy Liaison

If you are interested in joining this group, please email ala@acapt.org.

Leadership Summit Planning Subcommittee


Design a series of Leadership Development Summits to empower faculty and program leadership to create vision, plan for change, develop resources to support new initiatives, and effect promotion and growth in the academy.

  • Paula Smith, Chair
  • Julia Chevan
  • Marcia Himes
  • Michelle Mulhall
  • Yasser Salem
  • Janette Scardillo
  • Tony English, Leadership Academy Liaison

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