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AT of the Year Bios

​Paul A. Peterson MA, LAT, ATC
Paul Peterson has been an athletic trainer for Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) since 2000. 10 years at Potomac Falls High School in Sterling and the past 10 years at Woodgrove High School in Purcellville. He has also been the head athletic trainer at Hampden-Sydney College from 1993-1995 and an assistant athletic trainer at Georgetown University from 1995-2000. He received his bachelor’s degree in athletic training from Ithaca College in 1989 and his master’s degree in sports medicine from The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill in 1992. Paul serves as a preceptor for Shenandoah University’s Masters Athletic Training Program, a mentor for new LCPS athletic trainers, and has been recently named the VATA’s Shenandoah Region Representative. Paul has also helped Woodgrove High School earn the NATA Safe Sports School 1st team award for 2014-2017 and 2018-2021.  Return to AT of the Year page.



Caroline Wesley Siler MS, ATC
Caroline Wesley returned to her alma mater in the fall of 2015 as an assistant athletic trainer covering men's basketball, cheer, men's lacrosse, and men's soccer. She became the acting director of athletic training services on Jan. 1, 2018 and took that title on a permanent basis the following summer. Wesley served four years as assistant athletic trainer at Franklin College in Franklin, Ind., where she worked with the men’s and women’s soccer, men’s basketball, and softball teams. Originally from Baltimore, Wesley attended Lynchburg, where she received her undergraduate degree in athletic training. While at Lynchburg, she was a four-year starter on the Hornets women’s basketball team, earning Old Dominion Athletic Conference all-league honors multiple times. She was inducted into the Lynchburg Athletics Hall of Fame in October 2019. Wesley received her master’s degree in athletic training from Indiana University. She worked with the football, cheerleading, softball and women's water polo while at IU. Wesley also was the assistant athletic trainer at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta, Ga.  Return to AT of the Year page.


Emily I. Evans, EdD, LAT, ATC
Dr. Evans received her BS in Kinesiology from the University of Minnesota while completing her athletic training internship requirements. Evans worked for two years as an Assistant Athletic Trainer for Lynchburg College (now the University of Lynchburg) prior to earning her MS degree in Athletic Training from Indiana University. While serving as the Head Athletic Trainer at Cardinal Stritch University in Milwaukee, WI, she began teaching CPR, first aid, and activity classes. After two years in Milwaukee, her love of teaching brought her back to Lynchburg College where teaching opportunities were more abundant. Evans began teaching basic athletic training and health-related courses, but in time was teaching more advanced athletic training and exercise physiology classes. 

Evans remained a clinical athletic trainer and assistant professor of athletic training for 16 years, when in the fall of 2015 she became a full-time faculty member and the Coordinator of Clinical Education for Athletic Training. During this time, Lynchburg College was transitioning to the Master’s degree in Athletic Training and Evans was instrumental in the accreditation process. She has prior certifications in Emergency Medical Technician and Massage Therapy which have provided her with practical knowledge and plenty of stories to help teach her students. Currently, she instructs for the Athletic Training and Exercise Physiology programs at the University of Lynchburg. She is also a faculty member of the American Heart Association and teaches the CPR/First Aid instructor course for athletic training students each year. Evans volunteers as the Education Coordinator of the Lynchburg Lifesaving Crew, a non-profit organization committed to providing emergency response training for the community. In December of 2018, Evans completed her doctorate in Leadership Studies researching CPR instructors’ abilities to assess CPR skills compared to feedback manikins. While her expertise is emergency care, she has other interests that include preceptor development, environmentally friendly athletic training practices, and therapy animal use in athletics. She has three wonderful rescue dogs and enjoys kayaking, hiking, baking, reading, and music.


Susan Saliba, PhD, ATC, PT
Susan Saliba is a professor and co-director of the Exercise and Sports Injury (EaSIL) for musculoskeletal injury research. She has 18 years of clinical experience as both a physical therapist and athletic trainer. She currently teaches courses in the Masters’ of Science in Athletic Training (MSAT) Curriculum, and is the Director of the Undergraduate Major in Kinesiology. Her research focus is developing efficacy and effectiveness of therapeutic interventions during rehabilitation of musculoskeletal injuries. Recent projects include electrical stimulation, blood flow restriction therapy, and biofeedback to improve functional outcomes. She has a joint appointment in Orthopedic Surgery and collaborates with the School of Medicine and School of Engineering and Applied Sciences on clinically relevant research trials. Dr. Saliba has been recognized by the National Athletic Trainers’ Association for service and is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association.  Return to AT of the Year page.

Dr. Julie Cavallario

Dr. Julie Cavallario currently serves as the director of the Professional Athletic Training Program in the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at Old Dominion University. She received her Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from SUNY Cortland in 2003, and her Master of Education in Athletic Training from Old Dominion University in 2005. She returned to receive her Ph.D. in Human Movement Science from Old Dominion University in 2015. Her primary research area of interest is in effective clinical education practices in professional athletic training education, and she currently serves on the editorial board for both the Journal of Athletic Training and the Athletic Training Education Journal. Dr. Cavallario worked clinically for 10 years, primarily with collegiate-level men's lacrosse, prior to receiving her doctoral degree and becoming a full-time educator.  She is also a former staff member of the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). She resides in Virginia Beach, VA with her husband and two sons.



Brad Jones, M.Ed, LAT, ATC

Brad Jones serves as the Head Athletic Trainer at Woodberry Forest School, an all boys boarding school in Madison Co. and has been in this position since 2013.  Mr. Jones was formerly a graduate assistant at Goucher College where he primarily worked with the Men’s and Women’s Soccer teams, Women’s Basketball and Men’s Lacrosse teams. While at Goucher, he received his Master’s of Education degree in Athletic Program Leadership and Administration. He received his Bachelor's of Science degree in Athletic Training at Lynchburg College, now the University of Lynchburg. Mr. Jones serves as a preceptor for the University of Lynchburg MSAT program by providing a clinical site during overnight camps in the summer and has been the driving force behind helping Woodberry Forest School earn the NATA Safe Sports School 1st Team award for 2017-2020 and 2021-2024. Mr. Jones is an American Red Cross First Aid/EAP/CPR Instructor, an Impact Trained Athletic Trainer and he also serves on the VATA Secondary School Committee. In his free time, Mr. Jones runs a small woodworking business and enjoys spending time with his beautiful family.


Ryan McCann, PhD, LAT, ATC, CSCS

Dr. Ryan McCann serves as an assistant professor in the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at Old Dominion University. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from Northern Kentucky University in 2008, his Master of Science in Education in Athletic Training from Old Dominion University in 2010, and his Doctorate in Rehabilitation Sciences from the University of Kentucky in 2017. Dr. McCann's research interests include clinical determinants of injuries in athletes and neuromuscular alterations following lower extremity injuries.


Jacob Resch, PhD, LAT, ATC

Dr. Jacob Resch is an associate professor within the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Virginia where he conducts research on current and novel clinical measures of concussion and teaches within the graduate Athletic Training and Sports Medicine programs. Dr. Resch is also member of the executive steering committee of the University of Virginia‘s Brain Injury and Sport Concussion Institute and is the Marketing Committee Co-Chair for the World Federation of Athletic Training and Therapy Dr. Resch has published his research in a variety of journals and has presented his findings at national and international meetings. Dr. Resch has received external funding from the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency, the Department and Defense, as well as industry contracts to support his research.


Brice Snyder, MSAT, LAT, ATC, OTC

Brice is an Athletic Trainer working in a private physician owned practice in Virginia Beach, VA. He has been working in the clinical setting for the last 5 years following completion of The Steadman Clinic AT residency/fellowship program. He serves as the Third Party Reimbursement Chair for the VATA. He is very active in pursuing reimbursement for services for the Athletic Training membership of Virginia.


Patricia Aronson, PhD, LAT, LPTA, ATC

Dr. Aronson is a Professor of Athletic Training at the University of Lynchburg. During her many years at Lynchburg, she has served as the Head Athletic Trainer, Clinical Education Coordinator, and Faculty Athletic Representative. She has been a certified Athletic Trainer for 40 years and spent the first five years of her career working as an athletic trainer at Northwestern University. Dr. Aronson earned her PhD in Kinesiology at the University of Virginia in 2005 and a Masters of Education at UVA in 1982. She earned an Associates degree in the Physical Therapy Assistant Program from the College of Health Science and has practiced as a licensed PTA for 25 years. Currently Dr. Aronson has served the profession as the chair of the NATA LGBTQ+ Advisory Committee, as the Director of District III (Mid-Atlantic Athletic Trainers Association) and a member of the NATA Board of Directors and the President of the VATA. She also reviews manuscripts for the Journal of Athletic Training and assists students in different programs on research projects. Dr. Aronson has received many awards for her service and work in education as service to the AT profession. These awards include induction into the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, Mid-Atlantic Athletic Trainers' Association, and Virginia Athletic Trainers' Association Halls of Fame. She also received the NATA's Gail Weldon Award of Excellence for her work as a mentor in AT.  Return to AT of the Year page.


Devon Serrano, DAT, LAT, ATC, NREMT

Dr. Devon Serrano is the Director of Sports Medicine at Sweet Briar College. Since 2016, she has been responsible for the care of the College's eight NCAA Division III teams and two competitive equestrian teams. Originally from New York, she holds a Doctorate in Athletic Training from Indiana State University. She is currently a research collaborator with the Equestrian Athlete Initiative at the University of Kentucky and is the co-founder of the Society of Equestrian Athletic Trainers. Dr. Serrano published the first return-to-ride concussion management protocol for equestrian athletes and is currently managing its implementation at other NCAA institutions. In addition to her clinical and research responsibilities, Dr. Serrano has served as a member of the VATA Public Relations committee from January 2017 to June 2019 when she took over as the chair of the Young Professionals Committee. In January 2022, she will take over as the Central Region Representative for the VATA.

Jessica Kotelnicki, MEd, LAT, ATC, CSCS, PES

Jessica Kotelnicki has been the athletic trainer at James Wood High School in Winchester, VA since 2005.  She earned her undergraduate degree in Sports Medicine from The University of Virginia in 2004 and her Master of Education degree from the University of Virginia in 2005.  She is currently pursuing her Doctor of Education degree at Shenandoah University with an emphasis in administrative leadership.In addition to devoting her career to the safety and well-being of student-athletes, Jess has dedicated much of her career to educating the next generation of athletic trainers as an instructor, preceptor, and lab assistant in Shenandoah University's MSAT program and as a mentor for students in Shenandoah University's undergraduate Exercise Science program.  Jess was awarded the 2022 VATA Vito Periello Secondary School Athletic Trainer of the Year Award due to her knowledge, leadership, and dedication to her personal growth while also contributing to the growth of future professionals.  Jess also serves on the VATA's Annual Meeting Committee.


John Goetschius, PhD, LAT, ATC

Dr. John Goetschius is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate Athletic Training Program at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA and the current Chair of the VATA Research Committee. He received his PhD in kinesiology and post-professional master’s degree in athletic training from University of Virginia, and his bachelor’s degree in athletic training from the University of Vermont. His research is focused on mitigating the short and long-term negative consequences of lower-extremity joint injuries through the study of neuromuscular impairments, impairment-based interventions, and predisposing factors associated with injury. Recent projects include examining the relationship between early sport specialization and long-term joint health and the use of blood flow restriction to enhance adaptations to traditional therapeutic exercises. Dr. Goetschius’ research has been published in peer-reviewed journals, presented at professional conferences, and received award and press recognition, and he is most proud of his collaborative research projects with athletic training students. Return to AT of the Year page.

Paul Peterson
Caroline Wesley
Emily Evans
Susan Saliba
Julie Cavalario
Brad Jones
Ryan McCann
Jacob Resch
Brice Snyde
Pat Aronson
J Kotelnicki
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