2022 Outstanding Alumni Awardees

by Michele Berhorst  •  March 29, 2022

We are pleased to announce the 2022 honorees of the Program in Occupational Therapy's Outstanding Alumni Award. The awards recognize alumni for their individual achievements in or contributions to the field of occupational therapy in research, education, leadership, professional development, community participation, diversity, equity and inclusion, and/or by supporting the Program. The awards will be presented at the 14th Annual OT Scholarship Day on April 29.

Dory Sabata, OTD, OTR/L, FAOTA

Dory Sabata, Class of 2002, is a clinical associate professor and chair of the Department of Occupational Therapy Education at the University of Kansas (KU) Medical Center, School of Health Professions. She is recognized for her role as a leader in the profession, her contributions to professional education and her clinical expertise in community-based practice and aging in place for older adults.

Sabata has taught and mentored students in the entry-level and post-professional occupational therapy programs at KU as well as in the therapeutic science doctoral program. She served as a fieldwork educator in cancer care and community-based wellness programs and as faculty preceptor in an geriatric interprofessional teaching clinic. In 2015, she became a fellow of the American Occupational Therapy Foundation for her significant contributions to leadership, interprofessional collaboration and community-based practice. She was appointed department chair in 2020 and works tirelessly to maintain academic excellence, grow research and scholarship, and serve the greater community.

In addition to her academic career, Sabata has been an advocate for community participation in all individuals, with a focus on older adults, home modifications and assessment. She has taught numerous workshops, serves on education and planning committees, and developed programming for the American Stroke Foundation She has been widely published in peer-reviewed journals, authored several book chapters and presents at conferences to promote the health and well-being of older adults.

For her commitment to education, professional development and the community participation of older adults, we are pleased to present the 2022 Outstanding Alumni Award to Dory Sabata.

Gary Solomon, MBA, MSOT, OTR/L, CHT

Gary Solomon, Class of 1993, has worked as a clinician, educator and leader for nearly 30 years. He is being recognized for his dedication to the hand therapy profession, leadership in national organizations, commitment to educating occupational therapy students and his sustained support of the Program in Occupational Therapy.

Solomon’s passion for hand therapy spans the length of his career. Since receiving his certification, he has supported the field by serving in key leadership roles for the American Society of Hand Therapists, including as president from 2016-2017, and as a board member of the American Association for Hand Surgery from 2018-2021. He is currently the vice chair of the American Hand Therapy Foundation and a board member on the Hand Therapy Certification Commission, Inc., as well as a member of the exam committee. He often presents at national symposiums and conferences, and he teaches orthotic fabrication courses throughout the country. He is a published author of several book chapters.

Solomon is the director of therapy at Chicago Metro Hand Therapy, LLC, where he has managed therapy operations for a physician-owned upper extremity rehabilitation practice for 20 years. In addition to his full caseload, he supervises Level II Fieldwork students and helps them succeed in their career goals.

He has been a sustained supporter of the Program in Occupational Therapy, contributing to the Annual Fund for three decades. His investment has enriched the profession by making a Washington University education affordable to future generations of occupational therapy students.

For his commitment to clinical practice, occupational therapy education and annual support of the Program, we are pleased to present the 2022 Outstanding Alumni Award to Gary Solomon.

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