Mover & Shaker of the Month: Dr. Cindy Potter

 

By: Paula Green

          Dr. Cindy Potter of Wexford was recently honored with the Pennsylvania PhDr. Potterysical Therapy Association’s Humanitarian Award.   She received this recognition for her humanitarian efforts in aiding those in impoverished regions of the world.

         Her first experience with the underprivileged began over a decade ago.  “I went on a People-to-People trip with other physical therapists to China in 2000, which got me thinking about and interested in global issues.  My husband, Dr. Robert Potter, is a family physician with Genesis Medical Associates; one of his medical assistants recruited him to go on a trip to Honduras through the First Presbyterian Church of Bakerstown.  He was enthusiastic about the trip, and the following year, my son Randy, then 15, and I also went along,” said Dr. Potter.

       “We have been going back annually to the same town in Honduras since then.  The trip is a multifaceted mission.  We provide medical, dental, nursing, physical therapy and optometry care.  We also provide water filters, school uniforms and food for needy families.  This experience led me to seek out other opportunities where I could fully utilize my physical therapy skills,” Dr. Potter said.

        Since 2006, Dr. Potter has served on 12 medical mission trips.  In addition to Honduras, she has medically assisted residents in Ukraine, Guatemala, Peru and Belize.

        “I have been on seven trips to Honduras with two different organizations.  I have visited Sumy, Ukraine, with Wheels for the World doing wheelchair fittings.  I’ve also been to Odessa, Ukraine, with Universal Aid for Children working with various orphanages there and helping to train their staff.”

         “I went to Trujillo, Peru, and conducted a two-day conference on treatments of cerebral palsy and I worked for a week in homes with people with special needs.  When I was in Guatemala, I worked with Health Volunteers Overseas teaching therapists and physical therapy students,” Dr. Potter said.

         “All expenses are paid by the volunteers, and we are always seeking donations, both financial and donations of medical supplies.”

          Dr.  Potter was raised in Butler and graduated from Butler High School.  She earned her B.S. in Biology and English Writing from Allegheny College in Meadville.  She obtained her M.S. Health Related Professions – Physical Therapy from the University of Pittsburgh.  She received her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Slippery Rock University, where she also served as an associate professor of the Graduate School of Physical Therapy there.

          Dr. Potter and her husband have three children Julie (29), Brandon (27), and Randy (21).