Pamela Duffy, P.T., Ph.D., FAPTA, is grateful for many things – the lessons of service she learned from her parents, the many faculty mentors she’s had and the opportunities she has now to teach and advise students. The associate professor of public health, health care administration and global health recently demonstrated her gratitude for those opportunities by naming DMU as a beneficiary of her retirement plan. Her gift will provide unrestricted support to the University.
“When I think of all the important work our students will do, I want to support that. I want to help further the mission of the University,” she says. “I’m so grateful for the meaningful work DMU allows me to do.”
Dr. Duffy became involved at DMU as a member of an advisory panel for creating its physical therapy program. A member of seemingly countless committees of the College of Health Sciences and the University, she also has served the physical therapy profession in roles including vice speaker of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) House of Delegates and as two-term president of the Iowa Physical Therapy Association. Among her achievements were efforts that resulted in state legislation that allows patients direct access to evaluation and treatment by physical therapists and that created licensure for physical therapist assistants in Iowa.
Dr. Duffy has served numerous community organizations as well, including the Free Clinics of Iowa Board of Directors, the Polk County Continuum of Care to End Homelessness and the Polk County Medical Reserve Corp. In 2019, she joined a research project that is analyzing if and how the Count the Kicks® mobile app affects birth outcomes among women who use it.
In 2014, Dr. Duffy was honored by the APTA as a Catherine Worthingham Fellow, the highest honor of association membership.
Like her DMU colleagues, she currently is focused on keeping in touch with students and keeping them on track in their degree programs.
“I love teaching, because I’m always learning, too, as we explore all the complexities of public health. It keeps me engaged,” she says. “I enjoy helping students understand the importance of public health policy and advocacy, and I look forward to having those discussions with students.”
A member of the DMU Employee Campaign Committee, Dr. Duffy also understands the importance of investing in the University financially. Her recent commitment to DMU through her retirement plan is a gift to this year’s Employee Campaign and the Purple & Proud Campaign.
“I would encourage other faculty and staff to consider this option. It didn’t occur to me that this could be a vehicle for making a difference at DMU, but the information the development staff provided showed me it was the right fit,” she says. “It was a very no-pressure process and a chance to be informed of this opportunity, which I really appreciated.
“I’m at a time of my life I want to leave a legacy,” she adds. “In these days of not knowing what the future holds, this is a good time in my life to make this commitment to the DMU Fund.”