Jim Turk MS, ATC
I am humbled and honored to have been nominated as a candidate for the position of Secretary of the RMATA. As I have reflected on my qualifications and my desire as it relates to this position, and the responsibilities it entails, my level of excitement at the prospect of serving our great Association and our noble profession in this role has continued to grow.
As you review the duties of the Association Secretary, found in our Bylaws, you see duties identified that task this role as the one who will “distribute”, “facilitate”, and “maintain” various pieces of information related to the Association. In evaluating those specific individual tasks, you arrive at the heart of the role of Secretary; the task of communication. Not simple communication, but rather effective communication. Superficially, communication could be viewed as a simple transactional exchange of information. Effective communication goes far beyond that exchange. Effective communication does not occur when information is simply sent and/or received. Rather, it occurs when that information is clearly and successfully sent, received, and most importantly understood by both the sender and the receiver.
In addition to being the Association communicator, the Secretary is one of several “votes at the table” in the board room. As such, that person needs to be keenly aware that their individual vote is a vote cast on behalf of the 2000+ members who have empowered that person to cast that vote. As you are aware, our profession is at a crossroads both in terms of the educational process and in terms of the practice of Athletic Training. Change is an exciting and potentially scary process all at the same time. Our Association needs to thoughtfully position itself and, as such, its membership to benefit from the changes taking place in our profession. That is no small task when you consider the diverse makeup of our membership and the even more diverse perspectives on those changes. As such, if there is effective communication between the membership and their board of directors, the Association can have a fighting chance at accomplishing that task.
I have been an Athletic Trainer for 17 years, a member of this Association for the last 12 of those years, and an AT educator for the last 11 of those years. I currently serve as the Program Director of the Professional AT program at the University of Northern Colorado. In reflecting back on my career thus far, I have found that my experiences as both a practicing Athletic Trainer and as an educator have positioned me in such a way as to have a strong sense of understanding of the intersecting needs and concerns of both of those aspects of our profession. I have a sound understanding and appreciation for the history of our profession and this great Association, having been mentored by some, and having engaged with many of the pillars of our profession in personal and professional dialogues. I am also in tune with the hopes and aspirations of our young professionals and students as I spend a large portion of my day with them. Through those experiences, I can see issues from both perspectives and can then help the Association make informed decisions that will meet the whole Association’s needs and not simply those of a single subset of the Association.
I have had the opportunity to Chair the RMATA Annual Clinical Symposium Programming Subcommittee for the past six years, and in doing so, have been a part of planning, developing and delivering six (in my humble opinion) high quality symposia. In doing so, I have been afforded a chance to see the inner workings of the Association and the board room. I am excited for the opportunity to play a larger role in the discussions and to help continue to advance the Association along its current trajectory. I am excited to have yet another opportunity to play my part in giving back to the profession that I truly love!
Thank you for your consideration.
Jim Turk, MS, ATC