PPS Membership Elects New Leadership


The Private Practice Section (PPS) elections were held at the Annual Conference in Chicago and the membership has elected Dr. Sandra Norby, PT, DPT, as the Section’s new president for a three-year term.

“I am honored to be elected by my peers to serve this vibrant Section and grateful for the vote of confidence in my leadership. Speaking on behalf of the Board of Directors, we look forward to continuing the important ongoing initiatives and developing new strategies that will positively impact our Section’s membership,” said President Norby.

The Section also elected Angela Wilson Pennisi, PT, MS, as Vice President and William (Bill) Pfister, PT, MPT, as a Director. Outgoing Board member Jeff Ostrowski, PT, was appointed to fill the one-year vacancy in the Treasurer position due to Pennisi’s election to Vice President. Karen Litzy, PT, DPT, was elected to the Nominating Committee.


Making a Difference

Thomas DiAngelis, PT, DPT | 2017 Robert G. Dicus Award Winner

Thank you, Mr. President. Terry, they say that friends are people who know all about you but like you anyway. Thank you for being a friend. It is truly an honor to have you present me with this distinguished award.

I would like to thank the awards committee for considering me for this award and the PPS [Private Practice Section] board of directors for approving the committee’s recommendation. I would also like to thank a dear friend, colleague, and mentor, Peter Towne, for initiating the process—thank you, Peter. And to those who wrote letters of support, although I have spoken to you all personally, I want to again express my appreciation. When I received the packet that included the letters you all had written supporting me, they brought tears to my eyes. To think that you, all extraordinary individuals and leaders that I have the utmost respect for, wrote letters on my behalf. I can’t thank all of you enough.

Nominating Committee Slate of Candidates for 2017 Elections

Notice of Nomination

The Nominating Committee recommends the following slate for the Board’s consideration for the PPS 2017 Election.

Posted for your consideration is the slate of candidates unanimously selected and approved by the Nominating Committee for the PPS 2017 Election. After a careful review we believe the individuals slated possess the background, talent, and character needed to achieve the goals established in the Strategic Plan and to carry out the mission of the Section.

What We Do Is Ministry

David Qualls, PT | 2016 Robert G. Dicus Award Winner

Terry, thank you for your kind words.

I am really touched and thankful for your friendship. I don’t think I recognize that person you spoke about. Thank you all very much for such a warm welcome. It is an honor to stand here today knowing those who have received this award before me. Fortunately, I knew and still know most of the previous recipients. That elevates this honor even more. However, if you thought that the Colonel was here, I am sorry to disappoint you, but maybe we can get some fried chicken at the reception. Also, I will tell you ahead of time that you will not hear any quotes from Lincoln or Churchill but you may hear from Boudreaux or Thibodeaux. I also appreciate your confidence as you allow me to compete with this small debate that is happening across town tonight. We will be more positive here, for sure.

PPS Announces 2016 Awards

PPS is pleased to present the recipients of the Section’s 2016 awards. Awards Committee Chair Drew Bossen, PT, MBA along with committee members Patrick Graham, PT, MBA; Curt DeWeese, PT; Kelly McFarland, PT, DPT; Carl DeRosa, PT, DPT, PhD, FAPTA; and Andrew Clarke, PT, presented this slate of award recommendations to the PPS Board of Directors. Please join the Private Practice Section in congratulating our award recipients at the opening keynote session and reception Wednesday evening, October 19th in Las Vegas.

2016 Robert G. Dicus Award


David Qualls, PT

Owner, Qualls & Co

The Private Practice Section’s (PPS) Board of Directors is very pleased to announce that the 2016 Robert G. Dicus Award winner is David Qualls, PT. For the last four decades, David has exemplified the highest level of servant leadership, in both his professional and personal communities. As a PT, he has been actively involved in advocacy of this profession at the state and national levels through his ongoing participation in both the Louisiana Physical Therapy Association and the APTA. David has served in various capacities with both organizations, including as president and chief delegate of the LPTA and as a member of the PPS Board of Directors. He has indeed mastered the art of balancing patient care while advocating and protecting our profession.

Moreover, his role as a servant leader has extended beyond the bounds of our professional arena and into David’s own personal community. If you know David, you are aware that his community involvement lights up his face; it is simply an extension of all that he sees as his responsibility to give back from what he calls his treasure trove of experiences. He inspires others by his quiet demeanor, steadfast faith in his abilities and those of others, and a sense of humor that keeps everyone reminded that life is good.

Indeed, David is the definition of a “Southern Gentleman.” Yet, he is also a sharp and cunning PT who has stood firm in representing both the profession and our patients. In light of his many years of humble leadership and his continued advocacy of our profession, it is an honor of this organization to bestow the 2016 Robert G. Dicus Award to David Qualls.

Jayne L. Snyder Practice Award


Daniel Rootenberg, PT, DPT, CSCS

President, SPEAR Physical Therapy Centers of New York City

The Private Practice Section’s (PPS) Board of Directors is very happy to announce Daniel Rootenberg, PT, DPT, CSCS, and SPEAR Physical Therapy Centers of New York City as the recipient of the 2016 Jayne L. Snyder Practice Award. SPEAR PT has made a uniquely positive impact on the profession of physical therapy. They have elevated the reputation and exposure of the private practice physical therapist on a state, regional, and national level. SPEAR was the first physical therapy private practice to ring the bell at the New York Stock Exchange when on May 4, 2016, during small business week, they were featured live on MSNBC. This nationally covered event put private PT practice in the spotlight.

In addition to leadership, SPEAR PT also has a very intense clinical focus and is a leader in the field. In 2013, Columbia University presented SPEAR with the Leadership in Clinical Education award. SPEAR prides itself on their clinical mentoring program, as well as their monthly manual therapy workshops. These group sessions allow therapists to hone their clinical skills through a collaborative learning approach, with an emphasis on striving toward growth and clinical excellence.

Every team member at SPEAR lives and breathes their SPEAR-IT values and strives to provide a personalized experience with clinical excellence and 5-star customer service. As a group, they have been able to impact the lives of over 10,000 New Yorkers this year across their 9 Manhattan locations. Since its founding in 1999 by Dan Rootenberg and David Endres, SPEAR Physical Therapy has become one of the faster growing outpatient physical therapy providers in New York City. Our collective congratulations to Dan and the entire team at Spear PT.

Friend of Private Practice Award


James C. Hall

Owner and General Manager, Rehab Management Services, LLC

The PPS Board of Directors is pleased to honor James Hall of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, as the recipient of the section’s 2016 Friend of Private Practice Award. Jim truly exemplifies advocacy and support of private practice across this country. Though an accountant by trade, Jim has supported our collective mission and vision for years. Jim first started contributing to the PT community on a national level through frequent postings on PT Manager.com, a website that began in 1998 and continues to be considered a “go to” resource for private practitioners. Through this contribution he began to develop relationships with clinicians, business owners, and other experts in the national physical therapy private practice arena. Jim’s contributions include serving on the PPS payment policy committee from 2012 until present. He is also the payment policy committee liaison to the PPS administrator counsel.

This past spring, Jim joined the Iowa delegation at the APTA Government Affairs Forum in Washington, D.C., advocating for our causes to members of Congress. Despite the fact that Jim is not a physical therapist, he passionately advocates for the profession as though he is. His dedication to our profession has been demonstrated time and time again by the countless hours spent working to improve our future as private practice business owners. If you know Jim, you also know that he does this not to advance himself or his business but rather he does this because of the passion that he has for our profession.

On behalf of our profession, thank you for your contribution.

Service Award


Jim Morgan

Owner/President, Let’s Meet, Inc

The PPS Board of Directors is pleased to present the 2016 Board Service Award to Jim Morgan. This award was established by the PPS Board of Directors to honor an individual who has made extraordinary contributions above and beyond the duties of their position. Jim’s service to the section over the past 15 years as our conference planner and director exemplifies the intent of this award.

As the Owner/President of Let’s Meet, Inc., Jim and his Let’s Meet family are a staple of the PPS Annual Conference and have provided the foresight and leadership to make the meeting not only the best meeting in physical therapy but one of the finest professional meetings in the country. Under Jim’s stewardship, attendance at the PPS annual conference has grown 225%. He has endured three different PPS presidents and worked with multiple program chairs, driving us to always provide the best possible product. What comes off as a polished final product is largely due to Jim’s tireless behind-the-scenes manipulations. Jim’s professional expertise is unequaled, but it is his humor, compassion, and love for the section that makes him extraordinary.

Jim’s career has spanned many fields—none of which included being a physical therapist—but over the years the knowledge he has gained about issues that face the successful physical therapist in private practice that have been useful in his own entrepreneurial career. Having worked with PPS is one of his proudest engagements. Jim is grateful to have had the opportunity to work with the very talented and dedicated PPS members and staff whose commitment to the section has shaped PPS and who continue to strive to make PPS viable and set the standard for all physical therapists, especially those in private practice. The Private Practice Section is honored to have Jim as our friend and colleague.

Copyright © 2018, Private Practice Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. All Rights Reserved.