Kathleen A. Curtis, PT, PhD has served as Professor and Dean of the College of Health Sciences at University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) since 2007. She has also held an appointment as the Charles H. and Shirley T. Leavell Chair in Health Sciences since 2008. Dr. Curtis brings extensive leadership experience in clinical, education, research, and higher education administration roles in the health and rehabilitation sciences.
Prior to the current appointments, her academic background includes appointments at Mount Saint Mary’s College, the University of Southern California, the University of Miami School of Medicine, and California State University, Fresno, where she was honored in 2005 with the university President’s Award of Excellence. In 2010, she was honored with the Public Citizen of the Year Award by the National Association of Social Work, Upper Rio Grande chapter. She has held clinical appointments at Tufts-New England Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts; Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in San Jose, California; and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California.
Over the past two decades, Dr. Curtis has been a principal investigator or project coordinator on over 25 funded projects and participated as a co-investigator and collaborator on many additional initiatives, totaling over $17 million. Her experience includes roles in both federally and privately funded programs. Dr. Curtis has published extensively, including three textbooks and numerous journal articles in the health-related research literature, as well as regional reports and briefs documenting health and social disparities. She is internationally recognized as a leader in the prevention of secondary disability among individuals with spinal cord injury.
Dr. Curtis was an active volunteer in sports for athletes with disabilities for several decades, serving either on the medical staff or as an international official at four of the last five Paralympic Games. She received a Fulbright program award in 1993 to develop sports medicine services for athletes with disabilities in conjunction with the University of Jordan, Irbid National University and the Jordan Sports Federation for the Handicapped in Amman, Jordan. She also co-founded and chaired a special interest group in the American Physical Therapy Association for care of athletes with disabilities.
Curtis received her Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy from Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts; her Master’s Degree in Health Science from San Jose State University; and her PhD in Education from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Peggy DeCelle Newman, PT, MHR has practiced as a physical therapist for more than 30 years in a variety of settings, including acute care, outpatient orthopaedics, institutional long-term care, and home health. Additionally, she has managed allied health professionals in all of these settings. Peggy’s teaching experience began as Academic Coordinator of Clinical Education (ACCE) at the University of Oklahoma from 1988 through 1993. She then served as the PTA Program Director at Oklahoma City Community College (OCCC) for eleven years from 1995 to 2006. After leaving OCCC, she practiced clinically for a year, returning to the University of Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Sciences faculty in 2007 as the Director of Clinical Education and Assistant Professor. Peggy returned to OCCC and PTA education in January 2013.
Peggy has served the Oklahoma Physical Therapy Association in many roles including Chapter President and Chief Delegate. She completed two consecutive terms as Chief Delegate in 2012. She was selected as a 2010 APTA Lucy Blair Service Award recipient. She was elected in June 2013 to the APTA Nominating Committee (NC) and appointed as the NC Liaison to the APTA Leadership Development Committee in 2014. She was appointed to the Oversight Panel for the Analysis of Practice for the PT and PTA licensure Examination by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy 2005 to 2007. She was appointed by the Federation as a Core Member Continued Competency Certification Reviewer in 2011 and subsequently invited/appointed to serve as a “Final Reviewer” for the Continued Competency Certification in 2012.
Peggy has presented locally and nationally on topics including “Vision 2020,” "Using Support Personnel Effectively," "The Guide to PT Practice: An Introduction," "Ethical and Legal Problems for Rehabilitation Therapists: Ethical and Legal Responsibilities in Today's Health Care Environment," “Let’s Talk Ethics,” “Clinical Practice Questions Explored,” and “Moral Courage in a Culture of Moral Distress.” She presented “Enhancing the PT—PTA Partnership” at the APTA Annual Conference in Boston in June 2010 and “The Teachable Moment—Explicitly Modeling Clinical Reasoning Skills in Clinical Education” at APTA Section for Education Educational Leadership Conference in Kansas City in October 2014.
Peggy is a contributing author to Geriatrics for the PTA by Jennifer Bottomley, PhD (SLACK, 2010) and Physical Therapist Assistant’s Examination Chapter 8 “Standards of Care.” She authored an article in Perspectives Magazine, “Build Strong Teams.”