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2020 Board Elections
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The Polls Are Open!

We are excited to introduce candidates for four positions on the NYSOTA Executive Board: Vice President, Treasurer, and two Trustees. You can learn more about each candidate by reading his or her personal statement and CV below. Candidates are listed by position, and then alphabetically.

Click here to cast your vote by June 30th. Successful candidates will take office on July 1, 2020 and serve for two years.

  

Candidates for Vice President

David Melchionne-Martinez, MA, COTA/L (Incumbent)
am writing to express my desire to run for the position of Vice President of the New York State Occupational Therapy Association for the term of July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2022. I have been serving as the interim VP for several months and would like to continue to build upon the momentum that I have established. I have spearheaded NYSOTA’s Regional Communities initiative, and would love the opportunity to bring it to full fruition. Regional Communities have been designed to create 10 distinct geographic locales throughout the state so that NYSOTA can best meet the needs of our membership. These communities will give NYSOTA a better understanding of the unique needs of each area of our state, so that we can tailor CE and social experiences that better fit the needs of those regions. I truly believe that celebrating diversity, including geographic diversity, is what makes New York so great, and that’s what makes this initiative so close to my heart and something I want to take into the future as VP of NYSOTA.

I bring a unique perspective to the board as someone working in this field as both a clinician and an educator. In addition, I am a theatre practitioner who brings a diverse set of skills that would benefit NYSOTA in the areas of public speaking, event design, and innovative initiatives. I have worked, lived, and studied in various locations around our great state for my entire life, and as a result I bring a perspective that is broad and encompasses many regions of NYSOTA’s membership. I have been a COTA on many interdisciplinary teams, and have worked per diem, through an agency, and as an 1199 union COTA as well as union delegate. I understand the challenges that face the many different types of OT practitioners throughout our state, and will continue to advocate for the fair treatment of all in my NYSOTA family.

My vision for the position of VP is one of progress. I want to emphasize occupational therapy’s need for diverse, innovative, and new practice areas that will help move our profession into the future. New York is the birthplace of occupational therapy, and so it is only fitting that it be the place of its rebirth. I want to help lead the practitioners of our state to take the ashes of this pandemic and grow fresh perspectives on the profession that we all love so deeply.
For David Melchionne-Martinez's resume, click here.

 

Sharon Sedlak, OTR/L
I, 
Sharon Sedlak submit this letter of intent to run for the position of Vice President of the New York State Occupational Therapy Association for the July 1, 2020 – June 20, 2022 term. I am confident in taking the next step to expand my leadership skills and involvement with our great organization.

I am an Occupational Therapist with over twenty-eight (28) years’ experience and I was also an Occupational Therapy Assistant for six (6) years. As such, it is my desire to give back to the field of occupational therapy and pay it forward to the next generation of occupational therapy practitioners.

My clinical background includes a variety of settings with the adult and pediatric population. As a clinician I supervised many OT and OTA students for both level I and level II field work experiences. In addition to my clinical practice, I also have thirteen (13) years’ experience as an instructor in an occupational therapy assistant program. Throughout my career I have held various leadership positions, which include Occupational therapy coordinator in a school, Rehabilitation supervisor for a home care agency and Associate Director/Academic Fieldwork Coordinator for an OTA program. In addition, I recently held the position as the Metropolitan Occupational Therapy Education Council of NY and NJ (MOTEC).

Enclosed please find my resume for your review. I look forward for the chance to take part and assist NYSOTA to the best of my abilities.
For Sharon Sedlak's resume, click here.


Candidates for Treasurer

Donna Frazier, MA, OTR (Incumbent)
I am interested in running for a second term as your Treasurer for NYSOTA. I would be honored and privileged to continue to work with the Board, and for the membership of this organization as we move forward with a new vision.

We have been experiencing unprecedented times in our profession recently, and I am proud to be working with a group of people that are actively engaged in making dramatic shifts to help all the members of the profession.

I have been an OT clinician since 1993, first as a COTA, then an OTR since 1998. I have a passion for the profession and a strong sense of being a part of our professional organization. I have been an active member of NYSOTA since being a student, and have served in many roles on the board.

I will continue to work hard with the board for the benefit of all NY Occupational Therapy members. I appreciate your support. We are stronger together. Thank you.
For Donna Frazier's resume, click here.

   

Candidates for Trustee

There are two Trustee positions open. Please select two candidates on your ballot.

Camille Crayton-Muir, OTR/L
My name is Camille Crayton and I would like to run for the position of Trustee on the NYSOTA board. My interest in NYSOTA began during my first Albany Day as a student. Being a firsthand participant in educating officials in what occupational therapy is and how we are changing the world, lit a spark in me. I wanted to do more. With the help of my research group and NYSOTA’s support, we analyzed NYSOTA, their membership numbers, and their impact. As we discovered absences in numbers, we based our graduate research on ways to increase membership in the student population. Through our research (a survey), we received overwhelming feedback from students, expressing various ways to make membership more appealing. Our focus on students was to better understand our peers, as well as to build a foundation of potential NYSOTA leaders. These results were presented to the board in an effort to expand their influence and participation amongst the student population. Along with our research, we have done additional presentations at the NYSOTA conferences.

Since graduation in May 2019, I have passed the NBCOT exam and begun my career as a pediatric occupational therapist to preschoolers ages 3-5. Thus far, I have been able to experience the wonders of creating a difference in the lives of the population I serve. I yearn to take this experience and cast the net wider than my local audience. How can I help spark change statewide and educate parents, policy makers and other healthcare workers, and make them understand the necessity of occupational therapy? With my experience professionally, as well as, my graduate research, I have gained an understanding of where there are challenges in the influence of occupational therapy despite the impact we have in rehabilitation, education, mental health and all other areas we serve. As New York hosts the most occupational therapy programs nationwide, we as a community have a due diligence to make our presence more known, and more defined.

I would love to run as Trustee to bring fresh ideas, energize the Association and help continue bridging the gap between students, and professionals. I also have a desire to learn how to be a better leader, educator and OT by sitting with those who are more experienced in these areas. I believe we all have something to learn and something to teach. Please consider me for this role. Thank you for your time and consideration.
For Camille Crayton-Muir's resume, click here.

 

Beverly Horowitz, PhD, LMSW, OTR/L, FAOTA, FGSA
I have been a long time member and supporter of the New York State Occupational Therapy Association (NYSOTA) since graduating from Columbia University’s Program in Occupational Therapy in 1975. The occupational therapy profession is markedly different since that time. Today’s practitioners have increased opportunities across practice settings, and there is greater public awareness of the importance of occupational therapy to improve health, function, and participation in life activities. Today’s practitioners are also more aware of the importance of public policy, legislation, and advocacy to serve our clients and advocate for our profession.

My career spans practice in rehabilitation, gerontology, home health care, community practice, academia, and research. These experiences provide me with diverse examples of the benefits of occupational therapy to enable individuals and communities build and utilize their strengths to maximize occupational participation. In today’s health and economic emergency they reinforce my understanding of NYSOTA’s importance as our voice to advocate for our profession, clients, and communities.  NYSOTA has a history of successfully addressing practitioners’ needs exemplified by its Approved Provider Program for NYS Continuing Competency Hours, and strong advocacy for legislation and policy to support practitioners’ abilities to serve clients, (such as in early intervention, school-based practice, direct access, and insurance reform).

I seek your support to utilize my expertise and passion for occupational therapy to help strengthen NYSOTA for all New York State practitioners. I look forward to using my knowledge and skills to work with the Board and all members to increase membership, assist with continuing education programming, and participate in advocacy for occupational therapy across settings: from early intervention and school-based programs to health and community programs, all especially needed today.
For Beverly Horowitz's CV, click here.

    

Vijay Muni, MS, OTR
I would first like to express my thanks to NYSOTA for providing leadership opportunities for new practitioners such as myself. I would like to respectfully nominate myself for a Trustee position on the NYSOTA board.

I have been very passionate about networking, educating, advocating, and supporting NYSOTA, as evidenced by my volunteer involvement with NYSOTA over the last few years.

I believe, as an entry-level clinician, I can bring a fresh perspective to this position, continue to advocate, and support our profession through NYSOTA. I have also volunteered for NYSOTPAC in various capacities. One unique experience was with my involvement with Advocacy Day, which involved reaching out to occupational therapy programs. Through my involvement, I was able to bring other OT/OTA programs in NYS to sponsor and support our profession. As a result of my efforts, I was able to achieve my goal of recruiting OTs and students in my school and fieldwork to join NYSOTA.

As a student at York College, I have demonstrated exemplary leadership skills by going above and beyond in my coursework and my clinical experiences. On my personal social media page, I posted useful content and promoted outreach to students and practitioners. This unique skill has prepared me for the Trustee position where I will have to carry out similar duties that will require partnership, collaboration, and servicing on various task forces.

When I was a student, I strived to lead students during my tenure as Vice President of the York Students Occupational Therapy Association (YSOTA). I believe in the importance of joining the state's OT membership. A goal of mine is to continue to advocate for that throughout the rest of my professional career. I am confident that I would be able to carry out the roles and duties to the highest integrity and passion through the skills I have gained through my Vice President Role.

A potential position on the NYSOTA board will allow me to continue to build critical skills needed as a practitioner. Leadership is a core component of occupational therapy, and I believe I have the determination, passion, and forethought to continue to rebuild and strengthen NYSOTA in this role. I have attached my resume for your review.
For Vijay Muni's resume, click here.

   

Linda Rini, MS, OTR/L
Please accept my application for NYSOTA Board Trustee for the term commencing July 1, 2020.

I have been a full time practicing OT clinician since 2003, during which time I have worked with various populations, from geriatrics to pediatrics. I have worked full time for the Wantagh School District since 2006, treating primarily special education students from K – 12. Additionally, I currently have the pleasure of working as an adjunct associate professor for the New York Institute of Technology MS/OT program.

My interest in serving on the NYSOTA board stems from my desire to promote occupational therapy and bring together OTs from all regions of New York state to learn, share, and grow professionally for the benefit of our profession and the clients we serve.

In addition to my clinical experience, my qualifications to serve on the Board of Trustees include a history of service in volunteer positions of leadership, both inside and outside the profession, giving me the awareness of what such positions entail in terms of time, energy, and interaction with various stakeholders.

I have been a NYSOTA member for as long as I have practiced OT, and during that time I have participated in many NYSOTA events, including CE courses, CE days, involvement in regional activities (LI district, at the time), conference attendance, and conference presentations (poster and short course).

In closing, I am prepared for the challenges and rewards of serving on the NYSOTA Board of Trustees. Attached you will find my CV. Thank you for your consideration.
For Linda Rini's CV, click here.

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