For only the 11th time in the past 45 years, the ACA Council on Sports Injuries and Physical Fitness joined with members and colleagues last fall to name the latest inductee into its Hall of Fame (HOF). Two days of educational sessions, social events and poster presentations were recently highlighted by the induction of Ira A. Shapiro, DC, who received the HOF distinction during the organization’s 2017 Annual Sports Symposium held in Denver.
The ACA Sports Council (ACASC) was founded in 1972 to advance the treatment, prevention, rehabilitation and education of sports injuries. Today, association members can be found in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In 1991, the ACASC launched the HOF to laud the outstanding lifetime service of members who contributed significantly to the profession while exhibiting impeccable character, offering exemplary care to athletes and teaching at the highest levels.
“This nation is filled with many dedicated, talented and skilled sports chiropractors,” says John Danchik, DC, who was named to the ACASC HOF in 1996. “Each year, a selection committee consisting of peers and HOF members is faced with a number of very difficult choices. Only a handful of candidates make it to the top rung. From there, it has to be a unanimous decision. Everyone has to be in agreement. Absolutely no dissent. That’s because there is no higher recognition in our profession.”
“Through the hard work and unrivalled commitment of our doctors, sports chiropractic has become essential to the treatment and prevention of sports injuries worldwide,” says Tom Hyde, DC, who was inducted into the HOF in 2001. “Our representatives can be found attending to the needs of athletes competing in nearly every major sports event. This participation was driven by the athletes themselves, who thoroughly understand the value of our services and the ways we can help them perform to the best of their abilities.”
According to Carly Zuehlke, DC, ACA Sports Council president, the ACA Hall of Fame was launched to recognize the accomplishments of sports chiropractors who have epitomized every level of chiropractic achievement. In its inaugural year, the HOF honored the careers of Drs. Augustine Shultz, Robert Reed, Leonard Schroeder, John Nash, Joe Santiago and Eryl Painter, who is generally recognized as Babe Ruth’s chiropractor. Over the past 25 years, they have been joined by Drs. Danchik, Hyde, Phil Santiago, Robin Hunter and, most recently, Shapiro.
“The HOF is the highest honor we can bestow on a ACASC member,” explains Dr. Zuehlke. “In many ways, Dr. Shapiro set the stage for the next generation of sports chiropractors. Throughout his career, he has never failed to answer the call with dedication, passion and persistence. The best interests of his colleagues, profession and patients have always come first.”
Dr. Shapiro is the first two-time member of the U.S. Olympic Team medical staff, having worked with American athletes participating in the 2004 Summer games in Athens, Greece, and the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino, Italy.
Throughout his career, Dr. Shapiro has also served as an attending physician at numerous international and national championship events. This ranged from the Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico, and World Games in Cali, Columbia, to the National Finals Rodeo, Gatorade Ironman Triathlon World Championship, U.S. Figure Skating Championship and Pro Bowlers Association (PBA) Masters. He is also a former recipient of the ACA Sports Council Chiropractor of the Year Award.
“This honor is truly special and moving,” explains Dr. Shapiro. “There are so many hard-working, conscientious and talented doctors serving this field. Even to be considered is a special achievement. I have spent the past 35 years dedicated to the well-being of everyone who trusted me with their care. My goal is to spend the remainder of my life as an ambassador of the profession, our services and the competitive advantages we offer to athletes of every type, no matter if they are competing on the world stage or working out in the local gym.”
Photo Caption: ACA Sports Council HOF members (from left): Drs. Phil Santiago, Tom Hyde, Robin Hunter, John Nash, Ira Shapiro, and John Danchik at the 2017 Hall of Fame Gala in Denver.