Vice President — Internal
Director, Respiratory and Sleep Services
Member Since: 1986
Elections Committee Questions:
Within your role, and if given the opportunity, how would you incorporate and promote diversity, equity, and inclusion to uphold, update, and uplift the AARC as an organization, all AARC affiliates, and all AARC members?
Before successfully implementing change we must have a clear understanding of our current state compared with our desired future state. We will need to gather information about the current organizational culture regarding diversity and inclusion. Surveying our membership would shed light on current demographics and members’ perception of the AARC in relation to promoting and appreciating diversity within our organization. Only then can we identify underrepresented areas and focus our efforts on developing policies, improving practices, and setting specific goals to create and support diversity and inclusion. The AARC could engage state affiliates by promoting training and events to bring awareness of diversity and inclusion, and by educating their boards on barriers to diversity such as unconscious bias, affiliate culture, and even political affiliation. Ongoing re-survey would be necessary to evaluate initiatives that were trialed or implemented and inform future initiatives.
What ideas would you present to increase AARC membership?
Convince potential members that AARC membership adds value to their practice. Retain existing members by keeping them happy. An annual membership survey gathers feedback on current programs and obtains input on programs/initiatives that members perceive as valuable. Discounts for early or multi-year renewals for current membership may increase retention. A nationwide membership drive that encourages friendly competition between state affiliates using recognition and rewards for the states who generate the most new members. States could hold “meet & greets” for non-members and do some recruiting for the AARC as well as for affiliate volunteers. Replicate this at the individual level by providing recognition, through a tracking monitor on AARConnect possibly, for the member who convinced the most new members to join. Offer a referral bonus or a discount on conference registration to current members who bring a non-member with them convince them to join while at the conference.
Promoting the profession is considered one of the greatest opportunities, what are your ideas to help realize this opportunity?
Promotion involves using our voices to take advantage of every opportunity to communicate the unique skills and services we bring to the table. If every RT was visible and vocal we could awaken the public to our vital contributions and bring about a change in their image of RTs as valued members of the healthcare team. RTs can promote the profession through social media platforms and communicate key messages about our research, our efforts to provide care that is more effective, successes in rehab, education, and so many other topics. Therapists can promote the profession at work by sharing their expertise and demonstrating professionalism on organizational work groups. RTs can contact outside groups to offer their services as an expert educational speaker. They can offer to be interviewed on a local morning talk show, put together a video about what RTs do, blog about RT, do a podcast. Just get out there and speak up!