Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Committee

Chair: Rachel Herron (she/her), PT, DPT
Additional Members:
  • Robert Cheng (he/him), PT, DPT, OCS, COMT
  • Matt Currier (he/him), PT, DPT, OCS
  • Marissa Garvin (she/her), PT, DPT
  • Rachel Jarvie (she/her), PT, DPT, Chair of King County Student Outreach Committee, Vice Chair of King County District Committee
  • Kenny Li (he/him), PT, DPT
  • Kristin Ringstad (she/her), PT DPT
  • Shawn M Rundell (she/her), PT, DPT, PCS
  • Jenna Segraves (she/her), PT, DPT, NCS, CLT
  • Lesley Weinberg (she/her), PT, DPT, GCS, APTA WA Professional Enhancement Panel Director
  • Bernadette Williams-York (she/her), PT, DSc, GCS, Director and Associate Professor for the Division of Physical Therapy Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, at the University of Washington School of Medicine


Our Mission
The APTA Washington (WA) Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) Special Committee aims to foster a diverse network of physical therapy professionals, who passionately collaborate to dismantle systemic injustices, address health disparities, and support the needs of minority physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, students, patients, and community members. 

This DEIB Special Committee was established in June 2020 to accomplish the following goals:
  • Improve cultural responsiveness of Washington PTs, PTAs, and students.
  • Improve the physical therapy profession’s engagement with minority and underserved communities.
  • Improve the involvement of underrepresented minorities at all levels of the profession.


We strive to serve minority physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, students, patients, and community members. Our committee aligns with the following minority statuses established by The American Council of Academic Physical Therapy:
  • Racial, ethnic and cultural minorities
  • Sexual orientation and gender identity minorities
  • Nationality and immigrant status minorities
  • Individuals living with disabilities 


Transparency is important. Our Committee is in its third year of development! Our committee works to:
Maintain a social media presence to:
  • Raise awareness about the intersections between social justice issues, health inequities and physical therapy.
  • Provide networking opportunities for Washington State minority physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, students and allies.
Create and share resources that individuals can use to:
  • Facilitate access to DEI materials and empower all community members to improve their cultural responsiveness.
  • Create educational opportunities for the PT community on determinants of health/health injustices and how to combat them.
Engage with Washington state middle schools and high schools to:
  • Raise community awareness about the physical therapy profession.
  • Inspire and empower minority students to pursue the physical therapy profession.
Participate at the APTA WA Annual Conference to:
  • Raise awareness about the intersections between social justice issues, health inequities and physical therapy.
  • Grow our committee.
  • Share DEIB resources amongst colleagues.


Launched Sharing Stories Video Series. An interview series that invites people to Listen, Think, and Act.

Engaged with Washington State High School & Middle School Students. With the specific leadership of Rachel Jarvie, PT, DPT, and other Washington State Physical Therapy Professionals.
  • Topics of our presentations: What is Physical Therapy? Things to consider about our profession and next steps in order to join our profession.
  • October/November 2021 - completed presentations at Bellevue HS, Shoreline HS, Inglemoor HS, Interlake HS, Mercer Island HS
  • January 2022 - hosted a Pre-PT Q&A Panel at the University of Washington
  • March 2022 - completed presentations at Newport HS, Interlake HS, Mattson MS, Cedar Heights MS, Franklin HS, Rainier HS.
  • July 2022 - The University of Washington DPT program hosted a Women’s Center Field Trip event where students and staff helped share the PT profession by instructing middle school and high school students through an ankle sprain evaluation and treatment. The University of Washington Women's Center is a mentorship program. To learn more about what they do visit this website.
  • August 2022 - Interview about PT with Healthcare Industry Leadership Table (HILT). To learn more about HILT and similar volunteer opportunities, visit this website. 
  • If you are interested in participating in future student outreach initiatives, please sign up here. If you have questions about getting involved or are looking for guidance on how to create a similar program outside of King County, please email Rachel Jarvie, PT, DPT.

Hosted a 90 minute Injury Prevention Webinar in April of 2022, with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
(NAACP), that included topics on:
  • Headache Prevention by Calli Jackson, PT, DPT, OCS, COMT
  • Back Pain Prevention by Robert Cheng, PT, DPT, OCS, COMT
  • Fall Prevention by Patti Noritake, PT, PhD, DPT
  • Preventing Functional Decline by Saying Yes to Life by Bernadette Williams-York, PT, DSc
Collaborated with the University of Washington's Women's Center and the University of Washington's DPT Program to

Participated in the 2021 APTA Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill-
 spoke with the following offices about important issues our profession is facing including medicare cuts, diversity efforts, student loans, telehealth, and health disparities:
  • Representative Kim Schrier
  • Senator Patty Murray
  • Senator Maria Cantwell
  • Representative Adam Smith


  • To release another Sharing Stories video.
  • To engage with students at four or more Washington State middle schools or high schools.
  • Participate in the 2023 APTA WA Annual Conference.
  • Offer feedback to Washington State Board of Physical Therapy regarding health equity continuing education requirements.


We are humbly doing our best to accomplish our mission for the betterment of our community. Our Committee highly values the input of our Washington State PTs, PTAs, students and community members. We also enjoy collaborating with folks from other states, who are actively engaging in DEIB efforts. Please contact us via email with any questions, suggestions, or concerns.

Interested in getting involved with future NAACP future community outreach opportunities? Visit this website.


Interested in some recent DEI discussions at the national level of our profession? Click on the following links to access the recorded APTA live DEI Panel Discussions:


We would like to thank the Cultural Minority Affairs committee, of the APTA Oregon Chapter, for their assistance in the development of our committee!