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Hall of Fame

2017 Hall of Fame

David Pawlowski, MEd, LAT, ATC

David Pawlowski

 

David Pawlowski has been an athletic trainer in Virginia since 1986 and an active participant in the VATA since 1993 when he assumed his first role as President Elect. Dave has spent the past three years on the Government Affairs Committee, where countless hours have been spent working with other athletic trainers to advance the profession. He co-founded the VATA annual meeting in 1994 and has been committee chair for all but 2 years from 1994-2016. He led the charge for regulation within the state in regards to certification and licensure, making it possible for athletic trainers to use Epi-pens and administer oxygen.

David has also been a member of the Athletic Training Advisory Board from its inception in 2002 to 2011, including chairman from 2006-2011. He has been involved with the executive committee of the VATA as a Region 2 representative from 1993-1994, President Elect from 1994-1995, and President of the VATA from 1996-1998.  As president of the VATA, he was a part of the initial MAATA Presidents' Council and part of the group that pushed for the NATA to collect dues on behalf of the districts and states.  In 2001, he worked with the executive committee on the hiring of our first lobbyist.  Over the years, Dave has energized and motivated athletic trainers across the state and we can thank Dave for helping shape the profession as we know it within Virginia.

In addition to all his work with the VATA and his contributions at the state government level, Dave has worked as a volunteer with the USOC, various Team USA events, and has been a part of the Special Olympics for 26 years.  He currently works with the Special Olympics Virginia as the Vice-President for Programming and as an athletic trainer, including coordinating medical coverage for World and USA games, policy development and fundraising activities.

One nominee said it best: "I cannot identify any other individual who has contributed more to our legislative efforts leading to the high level of regulation of athletic training in the Commonwealth of Virginia than Dave Pawlowski." 

2016 Hall of Fame

Douglas Gregory, MD, FAAP

Dr. Gregory received his undergraduate degree from The University of Richmond.  He continued his education with a medical degree from the Medical College of Virginia, graduating with honors.  Following his graduation, he did a Pediatric Residency at the Navy Regional Medical Center in Portsmouth and a fellowship in Developmental Pediatrics at UNC-Chapel Hill.  He has worked at Lakeview Medical Center since 1995 and has served as Medical Director since 2012.  He has served as the team physician at Western Branch High School in Chesapeake since 1984.  

Dr. Gregory is Board Certified by the American Board of Pediatrics.  He was awarded honorary membership by the NATA in 2006, and in 2009 received the Schaffer’s Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics for his commitment to the development of primary care sports medicine.  He lectures nationally on pediatric sports medicine issues, and has served on committees for the AAP, NATA, MAATA, CAATE, VATA and BOC.

Dr. Gregory has practiced in the state of Virginia for 33 years.  For other healthcare providers, he serves as a diplomat, role model and advocate for the athletic training profession.  His tireless work ethic, dedication to his patients and colleagues, and leadership have allowed him to make significant and lasting advances in the profession of athletic training.  As one of his colleagues stated, “His leadership and guidance has elevated the athletic training profession to unprecedented levels, not only in the Commonwealth of Virginia but nationally."


2015 Hall of Fame

Martyn Bradley, MS, LAT, ATC

Old Dominion University

Associate Athletic Director for Sports Medicine and Athletic Training

Dennis Spurrier, MS, LAT, ATC

Virginia Sports Medicine and Physical Therapy

Director Sports Medicine Coordinator

Special Olympics of Virginia

Director of Medical Services


2014 Hall of Fame

Brent Arnold

Brent Arnold

Dr. Arnold received a B.S. in Health and Safety (Athletic Training) from Indiana University - Bloomington, an M.S. in Exercise and Sport Science from the University of Arizona, and a Ph.D. in Sports Medicine from the University of Virginia. He has held faculty appointments at West Virginia University, the University of Virginia, and Virginia Commonwealth University.  He currently serves as a Professor and Chair of the Department of Health Sciences at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. 

Arnold served the VATA in a multitude of capacities from 1996-2011, ranging from the Legislative Committee, Chair of the Constitution and Bylaws Committee, President-Elect, and President.  He is a past recipient of the VATA’s Researcher of the Year Award in 2011.  Additional accolades include a 2008 induction into the inaugural class as a Fellow of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association.  He currently serves the NATA as Chair of the Fellows committee. 

Arnold’s service and impact on the profession goes well beyond the state level.  He formerly served as a member of the Mid-Atlantic Athletic Trainers’ Association Executive Council, is a former member of the Journal of Athletic Training’s editorial board, and currently serves as an editorial board member for the Journal of Sport Rehabilitation.  He has published and presented numerous times at both the national and international levels, and has been a mentor to countless Master’s degree and PhD candidates over the years.  

Mitch Callis

Mitch Callis

As a recommendation letter stated, “As a sports medicine physician when I envision what an ATC should be like, I envision Mitch Callis.” It is with great pleasure that we welcome Mitch Callis into the Hall of Fame. 

Currently in his 29th year of athletic training service and practice in the state of Virginia, Mitch has worked tirelessly at both the community and state levels to advance the profession.  Mitch served as the Head Athletic Trainer and as an Assistant Athletic Director at Norfolk State University for 26 years.  He was instrumental in developing NSU’s sports medicine program along with serving as a mentor to numerous students from both Norfolk State and Old Dominion University.

During his tenure at Norfolk State, Mitch soon realized that many of the CIAA conference schools were understaffed or did not have any athletic training services.  As a result, he arranged for ATC coverage for all CIAA championship events in all sports.  In his continued commitment to CIAA institutions, Mitch was instrumental in the formation of the CIAA Athletic Trainers’ Association that has strengthened the input by the conference’s athletic trainers. 

Mitch is currently employed by the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters as the manager of Athletic Training services and community outreach liaison, and oversees more than a dozen ATCs in the greater Norfolk area providing services to athletic events.   He also co-authored the Chesapeake Public Schools Sports Concussion Policy. 

His commitment to the VATA includes serving as the Region 4 representative and he also has an appointment to the Governor’s Advisory Board on Athletic Training.  


2013 Hall of Fame

Nancy Burke
We are pleased to welcome Nancy Burke into the VATA Hall of Fame. Following graduation from James Madison University in 1973, Ms. Burke began her career as an athletic trainer in the secondary school setting. After a brief hiatus to earn a Master of Science Degree from Eastern Kentucky University, she resumed her career in the secondary schools and would remain in that setting over the next 30 years. During that tenure in northern Virginia, she was instrumental in School Board regulation to place an ATC in every high school in Fairfax County.

In time, Ms. Burke's expertise in sports medicine expanded to the national and international stage. She served as the Head Athletic Trainer for World Cup Sabre Fencing in 1992 and 1994, the Site Medical Director for Atlanta Olympic Games in 1996, and the Head Athletic Trainer for the World Figure Skating Championships in 2003. Along with her clinical service, Nancy served as Chair for the US Lacrosse Sports Science & Safety Committee and the US Womens Lacrosse Association Safety Committee, work which led to the mandate of protective eyewear, and the safety impact standard for goalkeepers helmets and mens helmets.

Following retirement from the secondary school setting in 2005, Ms. Burke took her skill set to the Fairfax Co. Police Department where she is now recognized as a pioneer in the emerging practice setting. She is the Founder and Executive Director of the Public Safety Athletic Training Society, and also serves on district and national committees including the Council on Revenue, and Clinical and Emerging Practices committees.

Ms. Burke has received numerous accolades and awards for her work in the AT profession. She has been acknowledged as the first female member of District III, received the Outstanding Service Award from VA HS League, and in 2004 was honored by the NATA as a Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer. The Sports Medicine facility at South Lakes High School has been named in her honor.

Tom Jones
Tom Jones leadership abilities and dedication to the profession of athletic training have set him apart over the years. Mr. Jones graduated from Hampden-Sydney College in 1960 with a bachelors degree in biology. He then continued his education at the Medical College of Virginia in 1966 with a degree in physical therapy. In 1968 he received a masters degree in sports medicine from the University of Virginia.

His dedication to student-athletes has been evident over his many years of service. From 1966 to 1970, Mr. Jones served as the athletic trainer at Wilson Memorial High School, graduate assistant athletic trainer at the University of Virginia, and an assistant athletic trainer at the University of Georgia. In 1970, he made the move to Lexington, Virginia and found his home. He served as the head athletic trainer and associate professor of physical education at Washington and Lee University from 1970 until his retirement in 2002.

Mr. Jones has been the model of professionalism during his athletic training career. He has served a variety of roles within the VATA, including chair of the education committee, secretary, vice president, and president. He was also the chair for the NATA Scholarship Committee for a number of years. His greatest achievement in his own words has been starting the VATA scholarship program. He has been a speaker at the local, district and national level for a variety of professional conferences as well as within the community. In 1982, he was the recipient of the Award of Merit by the American Red Cross for selfless and humane action and over the years has volunteered in a variety of ways within his community. He was the recipient of the NATA 25 year award and in 1996 received the NATA Service Award.

Mr. Jones dedication to the VATA and athletic training has been exemplary and long lasting. Over his 36 years in the athletic training profession, he has been a model professionally and a mentor to many.


2012 Hall of Fame

Pat Aronson
We are pleased to welcome Dr Pat Aronson into the VATA Hall of Fame. Dr Aronson is currently a Professor and the Clinical Coordinator in the Athletic Training Education Program at Lynchburg College in Lynchburg, VA. She previously served there as the Head Athletic Trainer for 11 years and has also served as an adjunct professor at UVA. She has been a Certified Athletic Trainer and VATA member for over 30 years. Pat currently serves as the District III Secretary. In the past she has held positions nationally, regionally, and locally including VATA President. She has also been quite active on the Women in Athletic Training Committee and once oversaw a project on the compilation of the historical role of women in District III.

Dr Aronson played on the Womens Basketball team and completed her undergraduate work at Canisius College in New York. The following year she earned a masters degree in Sports Medicine from the University of Virginia. She later completed a Physical Therapy Assistant Program and then earned her PhD in Athletic Training from UVA. Pats research interest has been knee stability; specifically with the MCL and ligament stiffness.

One of her students had the following to say about Dr Aronson, she is thoughtful, assertive, and organized. She has shaped me personally and professionally in more ways than I am able to describe. One of her co-workers said, Pat has cared for generations of athletes, giving each the attention needed to recover from injury and has educated generations of students, making each student feel special.

Dr Aronson has nominated countless colleagues for NATA awards and honors. She herself has twice been recognized by the National Athletic Training Association - in 1998 with the NATA Athletic Training Service Award and then in 2004 with the NATA Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award.

Herb Amato
Thoughtful researcher, dedicated educator, compassionate mentor, tireless servant. These were some of the words used by an esteemed colleague to describe one of our Hall of Fame recipients. And I think we can all agree that Dr. Herb Amato is deserving of each of these descriptions. Many of us in this room would not be where we are right now without Herbs guiding hand and encouraging words.

Dr. Herb Amato is currently the Associate Dean of University Studies at James Madison University. Before taking this position in 2006, Dr. Amato served as the Program Director at JMU for 18 years. Dr. Amato has been a tireless advocate for hundreds to athletic training students throughout the years. His sincere desire to assist student for professional success allowed him to build an athletic training program at JMU with a national reputation and establish a strong foundation for graduate to find employment in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

His desire to have students succeed contributed toward cofounding ACES, an educational consulting and certification exam preparation program. Through this program, countless students throughout the nation have been helped to reach their goal of becoming an athletic trainer. He has served on countless committees from the national level down to the state level. From 1990 to 1994, Dr. Amato served on VATAs executive council and most recently he served as a member of CAATEs Executive Director Search Committee. He has had numerous publications and presentations, from national, regional and state conferences to peer-reviewed journals and classroom textbooks.

Dr. Amatos talents have not gone unrecognized. In 2003, he was awarded to NATA Sayers Bud Miller Distinguished Educator Award. In 2008, James Madison University recognized him with the All Together One Award and in 2010 he was given the 1st Year, 2nd Mile Award. This award is given to a member of the JMU community who has made an extraordinary contribution to the success of student orientation.

His serving heart is also self-evident in the way he contributes to his community. Dr. Amato continues to serve as a volunteer athletic trainer and also volunteers at his church and serves on the Health Advisory Board for Harrisonburg City Public Schools. Throughout all of these engagements and responsibilities, it is undeniable that his first priority is his family.


VATA Hall of Fame Members