Proposed Section Name Change

Prepared by the Name Change Task Force


Both at the 2020 Annual Conference Business meeting and in an article in the November 2020 Impact issue, the PPS Board has been sharing the results of the Name Change Task Force.

How do we both honor the proud heritage of our pioneers and make our Section more welcoming and relevant to the next generation of physical therapists in business? That is the charge given to this talented Task Force. This white paper shares how they arrived at the proposed section name of APTA Business: A Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. Thanks for caring enough to share your thoughtful comments on this proposal as I look forward to continuing this conversation…together.


The purpose of this white paper is to explain the process for the proposed section name change as performed by the Name Change Task Force; identify the rationale for seeking a section name change; present supporting data/viewpoints; and analyze the effects on the section via SWOT.


APTA Business: A Section of the American Physical Therapy Association


Bill Pfister

Chair: Bill Pfister, PT, DPT, CEO of RET Physical Therapy, current Board Director, previous Impact Assistant Editor

Jennifer Lesko

Jennifer Lesko, PT, DPT, Director at Therapeutic Associates, current Board Director

Tom DiAngelis

Tom DiAngelis, PT, DPT, COO RET Physical Therapy, previous President of PPS, Dicus Award Winner 2017

Patrick Graham

Patrick Graham, PT, MBA, President/COO Human Performance and Rehabilitation Centers, Graham Sessions founder, Dicus Award Winner 2014

Theresa Marko

Theresa Marko, PT, DPT, President Marko Physical Therapy, APTA Public Policy and Advocacy Committee Member, PPS Government Affairs Committee member

Kristen Wilson

Kristen Wilson, PT, DPT, Co-Owner Action Potential Physical Therapy, Impact Editor


Upon review of previous name change attempts and in conjunction with a review of current membership data, the task force identified four main rationale for considering a section name change including to:

  1. Create a more inclusive name that not only includes the traditional private practice owner, but broadens the reach for membership to non-owners involved in the business of physical therapy, or physical therapists in other business models beyond traditional private practice. Some examples include: staff members in practices looking to grow in their leadership role; early career PTs investigating ownership; physical therapists exploring new ventures such as podcasting or wellness classes; students interested in business or entrepreneurship; and physical therapists providing consulting and business services to other practice owners.
  2. Provide an opportunity for change to refocus section objectives and act as catalyst for other section initiatives.
  3. Identify the section more clearly to legislators and outside industry partners. A more direct section name enhances our ability to communicate to these outside stakeholders that we are not only health providers, but business owners.
  4. Align with APTA branding initiative to create a unified brand (see other APTA section names for reference; all other sections/chapters are APTA “Section/Chapter Name”) For example:
    • APTA Geriatrics
    • APTA Alabama
    • APTA Academy of Education


  • Board created a task force, led by Bill Pfister, to explore options
  • Task force met over the course of several months to determine and implement a process which included:
    • Reviewing the history of past name change initiatives
    • Creating a survey and sending to all members and some non-members
    • Vetting and discussing possible names
    • Exploring current APTA brand changes affecting other sections and chapters
  • Board approved proposed name change
  • Bill Pfister presented proposed name to membership at Annual Conference Business meeting 2020
  • White paper publication in Impact and on Section website
  • Open for comment by membership March 1-April 12
  • Review of comments and revisions implemented
  • Potential webinar for further explanation/discussion, as necessary
  • Membership vote: Planned for Annual Conference 2021
targeted section personas
current demographics
survey results

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