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Mary Ellen Vore, PT, MSCS

Interim Chair

Mary Ellen Vore holds a Master of Science degree in physical therapy from D’Youville College, Buffalo, NY and a Bachelor of Science degree in physical education from Brockport College, Brockport, NY. She is a PhD candidate in physical therapy at NOVA Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL. She has experience as a clinical practitioner in the areas of orthopedic, acute care, prevention and wellness. She is also a Multiple Sclerosis Certified Specialist.

Her current research interests are in fitness/wellness programs and balance retraining of individuals with Multiple Sclerosis. Ms. Vore has served in various leadership roles at the district and chapter level of New York Physical Therapy Association and as a NYS delegate for the APTA House of Delegates.


Andrew BartletAndrew Bartlett, PT, PhD, MPA

Assistant Professor
Andrew S. Bartlett graduated from Utica College of Syracuse University in Physical Therapy in 1997. Prior to achieving his Physical Therapy degree Dr. Bartlett obtained a BS in Therapeutic Recreation and a Masters in Public Administration, and PhD in Physical Therapy from Nova Southeastern University. In addition to teaching full time within Nazareth's Physical Therapy Department, Andrew practices part time at Visiting Nurse Services, a home health agency.  Current interests are in the areas of management of diabetes, prevention, and telehealth.

Dr. Bartlett is current District Chair of the Finger Lakes District of the NYPTA and has been a delegate to the Delegate Assembly on several occasions.  He is also Physical Therapy Club Advisor, and in this role has facilitated student involvement in many local service activities, such as the Rochester River Challenge and the Nazareth PT 5K for the American Diabetes Association.


Connie Chau

Connie Chau, PT, MS, PhD

Professor of Physical Therapy
Dr. Connie Chau's main research interest is motor control with an emphasis on neurophysiology and neuropharmacology. She received her undergraduate and graduate training from McGill University where she earned a BS in physical therapy and an MS in rehabilitation science. She pursued her doctoral training in the Physiology Department, Center for Neurological Science, University of Montreal, Canada. Dr. Chau also undertook further training as a postdoctoral fellow to better understand the changes of receptors in the spinal cord after injury using autoradiographical techniques.

She has a keen interest in fundamental scientific research and the application of this research to humans. Her research goals are to conduct human studies based on findings from animal research and to develop potential treatment strategies in the rehabilitation of patients with neurological deficits. Dr. Chau is actively conducting studies of locomotion in both pediatric and adult populations using the Gaitrite analysis system. She will present her latest results on locomotion in children with autism at the upcoming Neuroscience meeting in November, 2008.

She has also completed a pilot study investigating the combined effects of Physical Therapy and interactive treadmill training on the recovery of locomotion in chronic stroke patients. Currently, she is investigating the effects of body weight supported-treadmill training on chronic stroke patients. Dr. Chau has published articles in Journal of Neurophysiology, Progress in Brain research and Journal in Physiology. She has also co-authored book chapters on recovery of locomotion and spinal cord plasticity.


Elizabeth Clark, PT, DPT, NCS

Clinical Assistant Professor/Director of Clinical Education

Dr. Clark is the Director of Clinical Education and Clinical Assistant Professor at Nazareth College. Prior to this appointment, she was a full time clinician for Unity Health System, in Rochester, NY. Her almost nine year history with Unity afforded her the opportunity to achieve her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Upstate Medical University in 2006, her board certification in Neurology in 2008, and assist in the successful credentialing of the Residency in Neurologic Physical Therapy program at Unity Health in 2011. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Biology at SUNY Geneseo in 1999, and graduated from SUNY Upstate Medical University Magna cum laude with both a Bachelor of Science in Health Science and a Masters in Physical Therapy in 2002.

Dr. Clark’s primary areas of interest in clinical practice, teaching, and research include neurologic physical therapy, specifically traumatic brain injury, stroke, vestibular rehabilitation and health systems administration.  She has also been an important member of the PT team related to physical therapy education in India.


Jennifer CollinsJennifer Collins, PT, MPA, EdD


Professor, Department of Health Science and Physical Therapy Dr. Jennifer Collins has a bachelor's degree in physical therapy from Russell Sage College (1978), a master's degree in public administration from the State University of New York at Brockport (1989), a certificate in gerontology from St. John Fisher College and a doctoral degree in higher education from the University of Rochester (2001). She has more than thirty five years of experience as a physical therapist with twenty years in physical therapist education. Her areas of interest for teaching are psychosocial aspects of disability, professional and interprofessional issues, qualitative research, management, and education. Her research interests are primarily qualitative in the areas of PT education, professionalism and professional development, and home health care. She has a keen interest in developing and expanding physical therapist education programs globally. Active in professional activities at the local, state, and national level and is currently Vice-President of the New York State Physical Therapy Association (NYPTA) serving as a member of the Executive Committee. An APTA Trainer for its Clinical Instructor and Credentialing and Advanced Clinical Instructor Courses. Item writer for the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy. Dr. Collins has presented several research studies at national meetings in higher education and physical therapy, as well as at 2007 World Congress of Physical Therapy (WCPT) in Vancouver, BC.


Michelle Donahue PT, DPT, PCS

Clinical Assistant Professor/Director of Clinical Education

Dr. Donahue received her Bachelor of Science in Health Science with a minor in Gerontology and Master of Science in Physical Therapy from Nazareth College.  She completed her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree at Shenandoah University. Dr. Donahue completed Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND) Fellowship at Golisano Children’s Hospital at the University of Rochester and is an ABPTS certified pediatric specialist.

Dr. Donahue's clinical experience is in pediatrics and developmental disabilities from birth -21 years of age in the Early Intervention, Preschool, and School-Based settings.  She has serviced on evaluation and assistive technology teams.  Dr. Donahue has presented at conferences on a variety of pediatric topics such as: community-based recreational activities, reflex integration, assistive technology, and pediatric evaluation techniques. She has coordinated and consulted with numerous community-based recreational programs for children with special health care needs.


Staffan Elgelid, PT, PhD, GCFP, RYT500

Associate Professor
Staffan Elgelid has been a Physical Therapist for 20+ years. A native of Sweden and graduate of the University of Central Arkansas, Staffan has worked in a wide variety of settings, including owning his own clinics, and has presented at conferences on a wide variety of topics such as Guided Imagery, Healthy Aging, Mentoring, Awareness, Core Strengthening, Feldenkrais, both in the US and in Europe, and has produced DVDs on core strengthening.

Dr Elgelid is a Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner and Comprehensive Yoga Therapist. He is a former editor of the International Feldenkrais Federation research journal and a former board member of the North American Feldenkrais Guild. Dr Elgelid is still actively seeing clients that are interested in The Feldenkrais Method or Yoga Therapy. Dr Elgelid is an Advisory Board member of the International Association of Yoga Therapists.

Dr. Elgelid teaches in areas such as Soft Tissue Techniques, Health Promotion and Wellness, and a wide array of clinical courses.  In addition, Dr. Elgelid is on the faculty at YogaLife Institute in Devon, PA.


Michael Huson, PT, DPT, OCS

Clinical Assistant Professor

Dr. Huson received a Bachelor of Science in Clinical Science and Master of Science in Physical Therapy from Ithaca College. He completed his transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy at A.T. Still University in Mesa, AZ.  He is a board certified Orthopedic Clinic Specialist (OCS) by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties.  His prior academic experience includes adjunct work in the Ithaca College Physical Therapy department where his concentration was in orthopedics and evidence-based practice.

Dr. Huson's past and current research interests include the applicability of video gait and running analysis to clinical practice.  He has presented prior research at the American Society of Biomechanics and the NYPTA Finger Lakes District meeting.

Dr. Huson is the owner of Huson Physical Therapy in Geneva, NY.  He has over 13 years of experience concentrated in outpatient orthopedics.  He is currently the Treasurer of the Physical Therapy Alliance of Upstate New York (PTAUNY).


Marcia Miller-Spoto, PT, DC, OCS


Dr. Miller Spoto received a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from Daemen College in Amherst, New York and a Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College in Davenport, Iowa. She is certified as an orthopedic specialist (OCS) by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties. Dr. Miller has over 30 years of clinical experience, with a practice focus in orthopedic conditions of the spine and osteoarthritis. She teaches in the areas of musculoskeletal management and differential diagnosis. Her research interests include physical therapy diagnosis, as well as low back pain and osteoarthritis management. She is the owner and president of STAR Physical Therapy in Fairport, NY, and has been active in promoting the interests of private practice in the Greater Rochester area. She is an insurance specialist for the New York Physical Therapy Association (NYPTA), and currently works with local insurers including Excellus and MVP to improve the delivery of musculoskeletal care. She is also a member of the NYPTA Advisory Payment Panel. Dr. Miller is a founding member and current Vice President of the Physical Therapy Alliance of Upstate New York (PTAUNY).

 J. J. Mowder-Tinney, PT, PhD, NCS, C/NDT, CSRS

Associate Professor

Dr. Mowder-Tinney received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Colorado, Boulder and her Master of Science in Physical Therapy from University of Miami in Florida. She completed her doctorate in physical therapy at NOVA Southeastern University. She has over 20 years experience in a multitude of clinical settings with the majority of experience with people with neuromuscular deficits.  She is certified as a clinical specialist in Neurologic Physical Therapy by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS).  She also has extensive training and is certified in Neuro-Developmental Treatment (NDT), and received her Certified Stroke Rehabilitation Specialist (CSRS) from the American Stroke Association.  She teaches the Neuromuscular series that incorporates the onsite pro-bono clinic.  In addition, she teaches an advanced neuromuscular elective.  Dr. Mowder-Tinney’s research interests include balance and falls assessment, neurological interventions, and clinical reasoning skills.  She has served on many professional committees related specifically to neurology and spinal cord injury rehabilitation as well as on the NYPTA program committee wound care, and adaptive seating.  She conducts nationwide seminars on the Treatment of Patients with Neurological deficits, Spinal cord injuries, Balance Challenges and Parkinson’s Disease.


Sue Rinere O'Brien, PT, PhD, NCS

 Assistant Professor

Dr. Sue O’Brien has a bachelor’s degree in PT from the State University of New York at Buffalo, a masters degree from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science (now known as the University of the Sciences) in neurologic physical therapy, a PhD from the University of Rochester in Health Practice Research.  She completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Rochester in Health Services Research.

Her research interests include the timing, dose, and outcomes of multidisciplinary rehabilitation interventions for inpatient rehabilitation units/hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. She has used large Medicare datasets to understand the association between rehabilitation interventions and outcomes across diagnoses, and specifically for stroke. She has also investigated multidisciplinary teamwork in inpatient rehabilitation units/hospitals. She has begun to publish her work in peer-reviewed journals such as Physical Therapy. Her research at Nazareth will include investigations of the clients which access the clinics for the services they receive and the outcomes derived from such interventions. She hopes to explain the contribution Nazareth’s clinics make to the greater Rochester area, and to possibly describe the relationship between physical therapy interventions and chronic disease or dysfunction.

Dr. O’Brien has over 26 years of clinical experience in 3 cities. She has practiced in acute care, inpatient rehabilitation, homecare, and outpatient care providing her experience across the continuum of care, and an appreciation of the complexities within the healthcare system. She is a peer-reviewer for the Physical Therapy Journal of Policy, Administration, and Leadership, Disability and Rehabilitation and the American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. She is a member of the Research Subcommittee for the Health Policy and Administration Section of the APTA.


Dana Olzenak, PT, DPT

 Instructor, Program Director

Dana Olzenak is currently a doctoral candidate in Epidemiology at the University of Rochester.  Her dissertation research examines the association of motor skill proficiency and activity preparation in school aged children with autism spectrum disorder.  She received her Master of Science degree in Physical Therapy from D'Youville College (1998) and completed her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree at Drexel University (2006).  In addition, she earned her Master of Business Administration degree from Clarkson University (2002) with a focus in human resource management.  Dr. Olzenak has practiced as a physical therapist in a variety of settings, most recently in the area of outpatient pediatrics and Early Intervention serving children 0 - 3 years of age.  Prior to initiating her PhD in 2010, she held the position of Director of Clinical Education for Clarkson University's Doctor of Physical Therapy Program and taught in the areas of pediatrics and business administration.  Dr. Olzenak's research interests include pediatric health disparities and physical activity, participation and quality of life in children with disabilities.


Andrew Opett, PT, DPT, OCS

Clinical Assistant Professor

Andrew Opett received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from SUNY Geneseo (1996), a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Sciences from Nazareth College (2000), and a Master of Science degree in Physical Therapy from Nazareth College (2001).  He completed his Doctor of Physical Therapy degree at SUNY Upstate Medical University in August 2012.  Dr. Opett teaches course content in Human Gross Anatomy, Pathophysiology, Differential Diagnosis and Pharmacology, and laboratory sections for Musculoskeletal Management. He also continues to practice outpatient orthopedic physical therapy part time in the Rochester area.  He is board certified as a clinical specialist in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS), and as a certified kinesiotaping practitioner by the Kinesiotaping Association of America.  Dr. Opett serves as the chair of the Ethics Committee and a member of the Awards Committee for the New York State Physical Therapy Association.  He has also served as a delegate from the Finger Lakes Chapter for the last 8 years to the NYPTA at the annual Delegate Assembly.  He was also honored as the recipient of the Nazareth College G.O.L.D. Award (Graduate of the Last Decade) in 2010.


Linda Riek, PT, DPT, PhD

Assistant Professor

Dr. Riek received a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from Ithaca College in Ithaca, NY and her clinical doctorate from A.T. Still University in Mesa, AZ.  She has over 20 years of clinical experience with a focus in neurological rehabilitation and geriatrics. A former adjunct faculty member at Ithaca College, Dr. Riek worked as a co-investigator and research associate on several federally funded projects in the Movement Analysis Laboratory from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation Quality of Life, Spinal Cord Research Foundation, and National Institute of Health.  She received her doctoral degree from the University of Rochester, Rochester, NY in 2011 in the Health Practice Research Program. Her dissertation work focused on a biomechanical analysis of shoulder health during circuit resistance training for individuals with paraplegia. Dr. Riek has published in peer-reviewed journals including Spinal Cord and Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. She has presented at national conferences including the American Society of Biomechanics in Providence, RI (2010) and the APTA Combined Sections meetings in San Diego, CA, New Orleans, LA, and Chicago, IL (2010-2013). 






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