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BOC Volunteer Spotlight – Chris Ashton, MS, LAT, ATC

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Chris Ashton, MS, LAT, ATC is currently an Athletic Trainer (AT) director-elect on the BOC Board of Directors. In this feature, Ashton describes his volunteer experience on a task force, committee and eventually being appointed to the BOC board. Ashton is currently the concussion program coordinator at Twin Cities Orthopedics.

Describe in detail the progression of your BOC volunteer work highlighting positions and work that led to your current board position.

My journey into volunteerism in athletic training began with working on a task force to pass Concussion Legislation in Minnesota. The experience pushed me to run for Minnesota Athletic Trainers’ Association vice president where the focus was on continuing education and this increased my work with the BOC. Working in the role of a BOC Approved Provider gave me a deeper understanding and interest in the BOC and made me want to get involved.

I initially applied for an AT director position on the BOC Board of Directors years ago. I was not nominated but was offered the opportunity to serve as a committee member with the Professional Practice and Discipline (PP&D) Committee. My experience on the PP&D Committee further strengthened my desire to help shape the future of AT credentialing and highlighted the important role of the BOC in public protection. After serving on the PP&D Committee since 2018, I applied for the AT director position on the BOC board in the summer of 2021, interviewed and was appointed.

How do you see your BOC volunteer work helping to shape the future of the BOC and the athletic training profession?

Serving on the PP&D Committee highlighted the important role the BOC plays in serving the public and providing public protection.

What motivated you from your personal life/experience to be involved as a BOC volunteer? What has it added to your career?

Honestly, my motivation is driven by my passion for being an AT and wanting to ensure ATs can serve patients amongst the interdisciplinary care team across all health care settings.

What is the best or most rewarding part about volunteering with the BOC?

The most rewarding part is truly feeling that I am giving back to the profession that has been extremely rewarding for me for the past twenty years. It is also extremely rewarding to have the opportunity to shape the future of the BOC.

How has your experience volunteering at the BOC influenced you?

My experience volunteering with the BOC has allowed me to become a better listener and more collaborative partner in both my professional and personal life. It is important to hear different viewpoints based on the different experiences of the volunteers with whom I have been able to serve.

What advice would you give to an AT looking to get involved as a BOC volunteer?

It is very easy to start! Find an area you are passionate about and a level of engagement you are comfortable with. You can start simply by doing surveys or volunteering on a task force. If you gain enjoyment and satisfaction, as I expect you would, volunteer for a committee or apply for a position such as a board role!

What is your greatest achievement as an AT?

My greatest achievement is being part of the team that developed the Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center & Brand, Training HAUS. Training HAUS is unique in the way care is provided collaboratively across many disciplines including sports performance coaches, sports dietitians, massage therapists, chiropractors, biomechanists, physical therapists and ATs. With a focus across many disciplines, Training HAUS is an excellent model for how to provide collaborative care for patients ensuring the best outcomes.

This article was originally published in the 2022 summer "Cert Update" newsletter.

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