ALATA  ALATA eBlast News
October 17, 2017

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In This Issue:
   2017 ALATA Secretary, Treasurer and Non Officer Position #2 Run-off Election

2017 ALATA Secretary, Treasurer and Non Officer Position #2 Run-off Election


Candidate Bios for Secretary

Darrell Jon Gililland, Jr., EdD, LAT, ATC

Darrell Jon GillilandDr. DJ Gililland is currently the Director of Clinical Education for the Master of Athletic Training program at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. Gililland moved to Alabama from Abilene, Texas after serving as an athletic trainer and educator at Hardin-Simmons University for 13 years. During his tenure at HSU, DJ served as an Assistant AT, Head AT, and Clinical Education Coordinator. Prior to his appointments at HSU, Gililland was the first full-time Head Athletic Trainer and Clinical Director of Sports Medicine at Missouri Baptist University, in Saint Louis, Missouri, and served as a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer at Northwest Missouri State University. Dr. Gililland received the NATA Athletic Trainer Service Award in 2014 and was the recipient of the SWATA Bobby Gunn Unsung Hero Award in 2012.

“The ALATA Secretary is central in providing effective communication to the executive committee and the membership regarding the business of the association as well as disseminating information from SEATA and the NATA. My goals are to enhance communication efforts with the membership, increase awareness in athletic training advocacy, and cultivate new and existing relationships with various stakeholders. Service to the profession is critical for the success of the organization, I believe my previous experience in service and leadership is valuable as I seek election as ALATA secretary."

Dr. Gililland has been a member of the NATA for 21 years and is passionate about service and leadership. He has been actively involved in leadership within the profession of athletic training dating back to his time as a student at Hardin-Simmons University when he served as the President of the NATA-District VI (SWATA) Student Athletic Trainers’ Association. During Gililland’s tenure in NATA-District V (MAATA) he served as the director of the Missouri Athletic Trainers’ Association Website (1999-2002) and was a member of the NATA-Web Advisory Group (1999-2002). As a member of the Web Advisory Group, he worked alongside other state and district website directors to create a network of volunteers dedicated to promoting the profession of athletic training in the world of technology. 

His desire to serve and lead continued with his return to SWATA where he served as the district website director (2005-2015) and chaired the SWATA Communications Committee (2011-2015).  While chair of the Communication Committee, Gililland worked closely with the SWATA District Secretary and Chair of the Public Relations committee to ensure valuable information was disseminated to the membership in a timely and effective manner. This team approach to communication set a precedence within the NATA and was used as a model for other districts, including the strong social media presence developed under his leadership.

A native of White Deer, Texas, Dr. Gililland graduated from Hardin-Simmons University in 1998 with a Bachelor of Behavioral Science degree.  He completed a Master of Science in Education degree in 2000 from Northwest Missouri State University, in Maryville, Missouri and in 2015 earned a Doctor of Education degree from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. Gililland and his family value selfless service and volunteer within their community and church. He is married to the former Andrea Daniel of San Antonio, Texas. The Gililland’s reside in Hoover, Alabama and have a four-year-old daughter, Taylor.

Naeka A. Patterson, MS, ATC, LAT

Naeka A. PattersonNaeka “Nikki” Patterson is starting her seventh year serving as an employee of Huntsville Hospital Sports Center.  As a Huntsville Hospital employee, she provides care to the athletes of Hazel Green High School, and has served as a Lead Team Athletic Trainer for the past three years.

Prior to being hired full time at Huntsville Hospital, Nikki was the Head Athletic Trainer for the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff where she developed the athletic department’s first Sports Medicine Policy and Procedure Manual for the school’s NCAA recertification process.

Before her stint in Pine Bluff, Nikki served as a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer at Alabama A&M University\Huntsville Hospital where she also completed her Masters of Science coursework in Nutrition.  While at AAMU Nikki worked with the volleyball, football, and men’s basketball teams, and served as the Interim Athletic Trainer for the Tennessee Valley Hammers.

She also has had experience working as an Intern Athletic Trainer at Liberty University, Morgan State University, Coastal Carolina University, and University of Texas at El Paso working with a variety of sports and athletes.

A native of Sicklerville, New Jersey, Nikki graduated from Liberty University with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Athletic Training in 2004, and has been an NATA member for the past thirteen years.

Jessie L. Zucnick, MS, ATC

Jessie ZucnickJessie is entering her ninth year as Head Athletic Trainer at Alabama A&M University after being promoted to the position in May 2009, but her fourteenth year overall with the program.  Jessie travels with the softball team as well as oversees the overall direction of the program and supervises Assistant Athletic Trainers, Graduate Assistants, Interns, and Student Athletic Trainers.

Zucnick-Kimbugwe graduated from Stetson University in May 2003 with a B.S. in Athletic Training and a minor in Russian Studies.  In May 2007 she received her M.S. in Rehabilitation Counseling from Alabama A&M University. 

Jessie is a NATABOC certified athletic trainer and a member of the NATA and SEATA organizations.  She is also licensed in the state of Alabama.  For all her dedication to the A&M Sports Medicine Department Jessie was awarded the 2007 Employee of the Year award by Huntsville Hospital Sports Center.  She received the ALATA Collegiate Athletic Trainer of the Year award for 2012-13.  For the 2013-14 school year she received the SAAC Athletic Trainer of the year award, the Employee of the Year for Athletics award, and the Huntsville Hospital Sports Center Employee of the year award.

Jessie is married to Brian Kimbugwe and they have one child, SarahAnn Kimbugwe .

Candidate Bios for Treasurer

Preston Carlson, MS ATC

Preston CarlsonPreston Carlson, MS ATC was awarded a Bachelor’s of Science in Physical Education with an emphasis in Athletic Training from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah in 2002.  In 2002 Preston accepted a Graduate Assistant Athletic Trainer position with the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and received a Master of Science in Health and Human Performance in 2004.

Preston began his career after graduating from UTC by working for rural physical therapy clinics providing outreach athletic training services to local high schools in Jackson and Dekalb counties in northeast Alabama.  Preston has worked for Huntsville Hospital since November 2010 and currently provides athletic training coverage for Scottsboro High School and Junior High in Scottsboro, AL.

Preston enjoys talking about Athletic Training and has given presentations to local area nurses and athletic trainers on subjects including Athletic Training in a Rural Setting, Elbow Injury Examination, Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome, Shoulder Special Tests, Achilles Tendinopathy, Orthopedic Injuries in the School Setting, and Work-Life Integration.

Preston resides in Scottsboro, AL with his wife Sarah and their five children.

Matthew Gardiner, ATC

Matthew GardinerI am Matthew Gardiner, ATC and I'm running and asking for your vote for the Treasurer position in ALATA.  I grew up in Kansas and attended Fort Hays State University where I graduated in 2009 in athletic training.  I came to Alabama seven years ago.  I am currently working for ATI Physical Therapy where I am outreached to Briarwood Christian School.  I met my wife Stephanie here in Alabama and have been married a little over a year now. I recently was diagnosed with appendix cancer and went through chemo therapy last year and have been clean since.  Going through the treatments and this experience has taught me a lot about life and how I want to use this gift to help others as much as I can.  That includes taking a more active role in our state association.  Taking on the role of the Treasurer is a way I can give back to this profession and make a mark on it.  I look forward to having the opportunity to represent my fellow athletic trainers in Alabama and working with the other ALATA Executive Council members to make this profession as strong as we can get it.  I look forward to your support in this election.

Candidate Bios for Non-Officer Position #2

Daniel Clark

Daniel Clark is currently a lead team athletic trainer for Huntsville Hospital Sports Center in Huntsville, AL.  As a Huntsville Hospital employee, he provides care to James Clemens High School and Polaris.  He’s served as a lead team athletic trainer since October 2016.  In 2014, he was voted as Newcomer of the Year, and in 2015 he was voted as Large School Athletic Trainer of the Year.  He completed his undergraduate degree in 2011 at Troy University with a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training.  In 2013, he earned his Master of Science degree in Health and Human Performance from the University of North Alabama.  He has been NATA member since 2010.  He and his wife, Laura, have one son Hayden (19 months).


Daniel Lindsey

Daniel Lindsey currently serves as an Assistant Athletic Trainer for Birmingham-Southern College. He began serving as a member of the ALATA College, University, and Military Committee during the spring of 2016.

Daniel, a native of Opelika, AL, is a 2011 graduate of Troy University with a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training. Upon graduation, Daniel went on to serve has a graduate assistant and intern athletic trainer with The University of Alabama at Birmingham, while pursuing his Masters in Exercise Physiology. During his three years at UAB, Daniel had the pleasure of working with football, track & field, and women’s tennis. He has also had the pleasure of volunteering and serving as an athletic trainer for the 20th Maccabiah Games in Israel and the 2013 Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl in Carson, CA.


Voting Information and Ballot

Leah Taylor, Alabama Board of Athletic Trainers Executive Secretary, will be presiding over these elections.  Please  vote online at OR print this ballot and mail so that is received by November 17, 2017 to: Ms. Leah Taylor, Executive Secretary Alabama Board of Athletic Trainers PO Box 243011 Montgomery, Alabama  36124. Only certified/licensed athletic trainer or licensed athletic trainer members of ALATA are eligible to vote.  Voting begins October 18, 2017 and closes November 17, 2017 at 11 PM CDT; if mailed, the ballot must be received by November 17, 2017.