Speakers

Amira Tawashy MOT, MSc, Canada

Amira Tawashy MOT, MSc is an occupational therapist. She is a member of the Dalhousie University Wheelchair Research Team and works on the Neurosurgical Unit at the Nova Scotia Health Authority in Halifax, Nova Scotia and as a Clinical Tutor in the School of Occupational Therapy at Dalhousie University. She has volunteered extensively at the Spinal Injuries Rehabilitation Centre in Nepal for the past 3 years and has worked with the Walkabout Foundation in both Uganda and Nepal, providing wheelchairs to patients in under-resourced settings.

Cher Smith, BScOT, MSc, Canada

Cher is an occupational therapist who is the Seating and Mobility Coordinator for the Central Zone of Nova Scotia Health Authority and an adjunct professor in the School of Occupational Therapy at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. She has been involved in clinical practice, education and research related to wheelchairs for over 20 years. Her interests span topics from global wheelchair provision to provincial policy and from single skill component training for individuals to capacity training of health professions on mass. She has been awarded honours such as the Annual Scholar presentation for the Canadian Occupational Therapy Foundation and the Phil Mundy Award for her work in Canadian seating and mobility. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America. She provides education nationally and internationally.

Kendra Betz, MSPT ATP

Kendra Betz has worked for the VA since 1993 specializing in Spinal Cord Injury rehabilitation, assistive technology and adaptive sports. She is currently the Prosthetics Clinical Coordinator for the Prosthetic & Sensory Aids Service, VA Central Office. She served as the Director of Training for a Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) Education Foundation grant surrounding upper limb preservation following SCI. In 2008, Kendra was inducted into the National Spinal Cord Injury Association Hall of Fame with recognition for her work with Veterans and military personnel with SCI.

Lee Kirby, MD, FRCPC - Canada

Dr. Lee Kirby focuses on the wheelchair safety and efficiency and also on providing training to improve movility of people with spinal cord injury, amputation and paralysis related to cerebrovascular accidents and other physical conditions which make it difficult to walk. Dr Kirby, together with his colleagues, has developed a program to teach patients how to safely use the wheelchair to overcome obstacles. This program has been translated into French and has been already implemented in different countries.

Mark Schmeler, PhD, OTR/L, ATP - USA

Mark is an ocupational therapist, an Assistive Technology Professional and an assistant professor at Pittsburgh University. He has got more tan 25 years of experience on wheelchairs. He is the International Seating Simposium Director when it takes place in the US. His main interest in on Functional Results.

Sharon Sutherland Pratt, Physical Therapist - USA

Sharon Sutherland (Pratt) owns Seating Solutions, LLC, which offers great variety of clinical rehabilitation services as well as clinical education on complex rehabilitation, positioning and movility.
Sharon has been specializing on seating, positioning and movility during the last 26 years. She offers medical advice to customers, doctors and manufacturers around the world and she has given more than 800 speeches on positioning and movility.