Several members of Palmer College’s West Campus Student American Chiropractic Association (SACA) recently ventured to Washington, D.C., where they teamed up with other chiropractic students and doctors to visit with elected officials and lobby on behalf of the profession at the American Chiropractic Association’s (ACA) 2013 National Chiropractic Legislative Conference (NCLC).
The NCLC is the profession's premier legislative event, which brings hundreds of students and D.C.s to Capitol Hill. This year’s conference was noteworthy for several reasons, including: commemoration of the ACA’s 50th anniversary; expansion of chiropractic’s voice by partnering with the Chiropractic Summit (which engaged an additional 40 chiropractic organizations); and, for the first time, the NCLC general session was streamed live, providing a web-based connection for other members of the profession to “attend” the presentation.
SACA representatives from the West Campus included: Baljinder Gill, SACA National Vice Chair; Ciara Cappo, West SACA president; Erica Heppe, West SACA vice president; Linda Rodriquez, West SACA secretary; and West SACA members Meg Spicer and Prabhyjot Gill.
The West Campus SACA delegation met with representatives for Senate and House officials from California, Hawaii and Washington. At the 50th anniversary celebration, West delegates enjoyed the opportunity to be seated with such chiropractic luminaries as Dr. Sherri Lashomb (ACA Sports Council president), Dan Zimmerman (NCMIC president), and Dr. Louis Sportelli, who was honored with the Humanitarian of the Year award.
West Campus SACA President Ciara Cappo chaired and organized the Women’s Forum, which is part of the SACA-specific program that takes place in conjunction with the NCLC, and is open to any SACA member who wishes to attend. This year’s Forum panelists included: Dr. Sherri Lashomb, ACA Sports Council president; Dr. Christine Goertz (of the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research) and 2012 ACA Chiropractor of the Year; Dr. Karen Konarski Hart, 2013 ACA Delegate of the Year; and Dr. Cindy Howard, Board-certified chiropractic internist.
Once again, NCLC delegates from all three Palmer campuses enjoyed the opportunity to meet and interact at a special dinner that preceded the evening’s social event, the “SACA’s Got Talent” competition. Linda Rodriquez was the West Campus’s representative, delivering an inspiring and dynamic poetry recitation.
“I’m incredibly proud of all the West Campus students who attended this year’s NCLC,” said Cappo. “We all had an awesome time on Capitol Hill, lobbying for the profession. Our delegates embraced the conference, and put their entire focus on chiropractic and the NCLC. I anticipate some great West Campus leaders emerging from this experience, both on-campus as well as the national level.”
“I continue to be amazed and impressed by the degree of commitment, energy and enthusiasm that the officers and members of our student associations demonstrate year after year, because it reveals the pride and passion they have for their chosen profession,” said Dr. Bill Meeker, West Campus president, who also attended this year’s NCLC.
“This type of energy and involvement is vital to the future of the profession. Student participation in events such as the NCLC at the national level, or the CCA Leg Day at the state level, fosters a sense of awareness and understanding that carries over when they graduate, which is why you often also see many engaged Palmer alumni at these events to advocate on behalf of the many patients they serve.”