RESNA creates 'Hall of Fellows'
ATLANTA - A new "Hall of Fellows" honoring rehab engineering and assistive technology professionals for their dedication to the field and to RESNA took center stage at the organization's annual conference at the Hyatt Regency here June 22-26.
At the entrance to the exhibit hall, RESNA set up posters of fellows dating back to 1982, the first year the award was given. The posters included photos and information on why the fellows chose assistive technology as their field of choice.
"The whole idea was, we name fellows each year, and we have wonderful things to say about these people, but after we give them their awards, their stories are lost," said Jerry Weisman, who sits on RESNA's board of directors. "We wanted to retain those stories and pass them down to new members."
RESNA named William Peterson and David Law as fellows at this year's conference. The organization honored Peterson for his help transforming the Rehabilitation Engineering and Research Center at the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research into a "coherent set of projects empowering principal investigators to innovate," according to a RESNA release. It honored Law, a rehab engineer at Woodrow Wilson Rehab Center, for his "legendary" contributions to the field, including being the first in the nation to conceptualize a "mobile rehab engineering shop."
Fellows are nominated by members, reviewed and recommended by an awards committee and chosen by the board of directors.
More than 800 professionals attended this year's conference, and more than 50 companies were there to exhibit, according to Marybeth Leongini, RESNA's director of communications and membership services.