Timothy Op’t Holt, EdD, RRT, FAARC
University of South Alabama
Member Since: 1977
Elections Committee Questions:
What AARC or Chartered Affiliate offices/positions have you held where you feel you made a significant contribution to our profession? What is the contribution and how will you apply it to your new position, if elected?
As a Board of Directors’ member-at-large, I served on the strategic plan workgroup that suggested ways to advance the knowledge base and educational preparation of respiratory therapists to ensure competent patient care and to foster patient safety initiatives. Among the contributions of the committee were to work on sample articulation agreements between programs offering associate degrees so their students could advance into baccalaureate programs; to promote the baccalaureate as the minimum degree for entry into the profession; and to promote the policy that any new program after a certain time must be at the baccalaureate or master’s level – now the Association’s policy. I also developed a survey of employers’ opinions about employees with degrees beyond the AS. This work will continue in the future and I can help to provide consistency with President Walsh’s goals.
What experience would you bring to the AARC to accomplish the goals set out by President Walsh?
Among President Walsh’s goals are to advance educational requirements and to encourage the development of the Advanced Practice Respiratory Therapist (APRT). I’ve been a baccalaureate educator for 36 years and have advocated for the transition of the minimum entry level to the BS level. My activity on the BOD for the past two years has been to support President Salvatore’s agenda to make this a reality and implementation has moved to CoARC. Strong support by those on the Association board will make this goal a reality. The APRT also needs strong support in the BOD if we are to achieve the goal of providing a respiratory therapist mid-level provider. I hope to continue working with the board to provide this support.
What ideas do you have to attract non-members to join the AARC?
The AARC has an excellent message to the profession and it has been successful in advocating for RTs and the profession. The AARC is the voice of the RT community. So the problem is not with the message or goals of the profession, but rather with getting that message out to the non-member. The Association needs to determine how to reach out to non-members. State licensure boards and the NBRC maintain extensive databases of credentialed RTs, many of whom are non-members and perhaps some method of communicating with non-members through these entities could be found. This may be the most deliberate means of making this communication. It seems that once the non-member is aware of the goals and accomplishments of the AARC on behalf of all RTs, the non-member would feel compelled to support the AARC. Who else will speak for them as we work tirelessly to promote our role?
What do you see is your role in being a member of the AARC Board of Directors and what specific issues facing the profession now would you see as something you’d like the AARC BOD to work on?
My role in being a member of the BOD is to actively participate, both during meetings and between them. My work on the strategic education task force and revision of the aerosol guide for patients are examples. The issues facing the profession that I’m most passionate about are our educational level and the promotion of the APRT. These are issues the board is actively pursuing. I would like to continue working on behalf of the membership to achieve these goals.
I’ve been an AARC member since 1977. I’m in my first term as a BOD member. I can be away as needed to fulfill my BOD responsibilities. I am always available for communication. I have read the Association’s mission and policies. I’m a good communicator. I’ve been on numerous boards as a member and officer and have chaired many meetings. I project a professional image. I’ve been the president of the Alabama Society for Respiratory Care and the Association of Asthma Educators.
As a member of the NBRC board of trustees, I was involved in many projects, including the transition to computer testing. I led strategic planning for the Alabama Society for Respiratory Care and the Association of Asthma Educators. I was Education Section chair and chaired the section program committee several years.