Luci Bennett, PT, MOMT, OCS
Luci Bennett graduated from Texas Women’s University in 1989 with a BS in physical therapy. She has since dedicated her career to outpatient orthopedic physical therapy.
In 1997, Luci completed a two-year residency program and received a Masters of Manuel Therapy (MOMT) though the Ola Grimsby Institute.
In 2003, Luci was certified as an orthopedic specialist through the American Physical Therapy Association (OCS) and renewed this certification in 2012.
Her practice has focused on utilizing her manual therapy skills with an emphasis in treatment of the spine. Her goal is to continue developing her manual skills and exercise techniques in order to help patients resolve their dysfunction and pain.
Her commitment to holistic care and patient education lead to the development of her web site known as Back Pain Explained which provides the best, most up-to-date and current information regarding the biomechanics and current treatment approaches that proven most effective in resolving back and neck pain.
The link to the website: www.backpainexplained.info
Els Brady, PT, MOMT, CMP
(Midtown and South Clinic)
Els was born in Belgium and received her physical therapy degree from Antwerp, Belgium in 1989. Els moved to Alaska in 1990 and worked for five years at Providence Alaska Medical and Extended Care Center. Other work experiences have included home health care and outpatient orthopedics at Alpine Physical Therapy. Els completed a Master's of Orthopedic Manual Therapy in 1997 from the Ola Grimsby Institute and also became a Certified Mulligan Practitioner the following year. For more information about the Mulligan treatment approach click here.
Els participated in the Discovery Physio Series in Vancouver, B.C., learning the Integrated Systems Model (ISM) to be able to better treat patients with the full-body approach.
You can learn more about this approach by clicking here.
As of June 2015, Els became full body certified in the Fascial Distortion Model.
Staci Deschamps Griffin, DPT
Staci graduated with a B.S. in Ecology from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA in 2002. She returned home to Alaska and worked in a variety of jobs in the environmental field. After a few different injuries, physical therapy treatments, and changes in the economy, Staci was inspired to become a physical therapist. In April, 2015 she graduated with a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences from their San Diego campus. Staci’s interests are in manual therapy and patient education. She is excited to continue expanding her treatment approaches including myofascial release, Strain Counterstrain.
In 2017 Staci received her Certification in Advanced Dry Needling (CMTPT).
Staci enjoys exploring Alaska’s wild lands with her husband via hiking, skiing, rafting, and mushroom hunting. She also loves traveling throughout the world experiencing new landscapes and cultures.
Hal Egbert, PT, OCS
Hal is a 1971 graduate of the University of Washington. He served over 21 years in the U.S.Public Health Service initially at the National Institutes of Health; followed by the Seattle USPHS Hospital in Seattle and lastly at the Alaska Native Health Hospital until 1992. He has practiced in private clinics since and founded United Physical Therapy in 1997. He enjoys all areas of orthopedic physical therapy and recently was re-certified in 2012 as Orthopedic Clinical Specialist.
Hal has over 40 years of Physical Therapy and Managerial experience and enjoys sharing hisknowledge with other professionals.
Katie Ronsse Libby, PT, DPT, COMT (South Clinic)
Katie was born in Bethel, Alaska and earned her B.S. in Biology in 2004 from the University of Denver while concurrently competing as a member of the NCAA D1 Championship winning ski team. Following a post-collegiate career in cross-country ski racing and coaching, Katie attended University of Utah’s Doctorate of Physical Therapy Program and graduated in 2014. For her doctoral project, she focused on manual treatment for the Temporomandibular Joint, which is a special interest in addition to sports medicine and pediatric orthopedics. Katie became certified in Trigger Point Dry Needling in 2016, a Certified Orthopedic Manual Therapist in 2018, and is currently working toward becoming a Certified Mulligan Practitioner. She is an active member of the Alaska Physical Therapy Association and the Orthopedic Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. Katie aims to provide tools for clients to be independent and sustain gains in the long term.
When Katie is not in the clinic, she enjoys self-propelled travel in wild places. She also enjoys returning to Bristol Bay each summer to fish in the family commercial fishing operation.
Dennis Poirier, PT, MManipther, OCS
Board Certified Orthopedic Specialist 1984 graduate University of Washington Physical Therapy program.
1998 Masters of Manipulative Therapy from Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia.
One year post graduate manual therapy residency program with emphasis on spine treatment.
Member of the American Physical Therapy Association, Orthopedic section.
Member of the Amercian Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists.
John Polonowski, PT
John was born and raised in Rockford, Michigan. While attending Marquette University 1995-2001, John was a four year letter winner and all conference USA honor roll on the basketball team. He earned a Bachelor of Art with a degree in psychology and a Master of Physical Therapy. John has worked in many outpatient orthopedic clinics around the country as a travel physical therapist. His travels first brought him to Alaska in 2005. He completed a one-year manual therapy residency with the Ola Grimsby Institute in 2006. John enjoys treating general orthopedic injuries and has a special interest in the shoulder complex. In his free time, John can be found skiing the steep and deep or fly fishing around the great state of Alaska.
John completed the written and practical examination with distinction for Fellowship training in orthopedic manual therapy through the Ola Grimsby Institute in January of 2015.
Congratulations to John Polonowski for being awarded Fellowship status to the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists (www.aaompt.org). Fellowship status in this organization is the highest level of manual therapy recognition in the US. Through the Ola Grimsby Institute, John completed the rigorous study for his Residency training in 2006 and completed his year of Fellowship study in 2014, being recognized in Louisville, KY in October of this year. This is a reflection of John’s exceptional commitment to improving his clinical mastery, a core value of United Physical Therapy. The Fellowship year included classroom hours perfecting manual techniques, clinical decision making, exercise prescription, and 150 hours of mentorship study under instructors. John has 2 small children and quickly acknowledges the incredible support from his wife in his academic and career endeavors. Great work John!
Barbara Smith, PT, CHT
Barbara received a B.S. in physical therapy from Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1978. She began practicing in Anchorage in 1979. Barbara has obtained specialization as a Certified Hand Therapist. She has extensive experience with fabrication of custom splints and treatment programs for tendon and ligament injuries, fractures, carpal tunnel syndrome and arthritis.
Anne Blount, DPT
Anne received her undergraduate degree in marine biology from Jacksonville University in Florida in 1989. She worked as a marine biologist and animal behaviorist for many years before deciding to begin a second career as a physical therapist. Anne graduated with high honors from the University of St. Augustine in 2005, receiving a doctor of Physical Therapy. She moved to Alaska and worked for Active Alaskan PT, an out patient orthopedic clinic in Seward, before settling in Anchorage and accepting a position with United Physical Therapy. Anne completed a manual therapy residency program with the Ola Grimsby Institute to continue her education in manual therapy of the spine and extremities. Anne has completed training in Vancouver, Canada, using the Integrated Systems Model, a "whole body" approach to evaluating and treating patients.
Anne completed the written and practical examination with distinction for Fellowship training in orthopedic manual therapy through the Ola Grimsby Institute in January of 2015.
In 2017 Anne received her Certification in Advanced Dry Needling (CMTPT).
Erin Danielson, PT, DPT, OCS, COMT
Erin received her undergraduate degree in Health Promotion from the University of Northern Iowa. She then graduated from Creighton University in Omaha receiving a Doctorate of Physical Therapy, followed by a residency in Orthopedics also at Creighton. She moved to Alaska and has worked in Anchorage since 2011. She is excited to accept a position with United Physical Therapy. Erin became a Certified Orthopedic Manual Therapist through the International Academy of Orthopedic Medicine for both the spine and extremities. She is also trained through the Vodder school for Manual Lymphatic Drainage. She is working towards her next certification in Trigger Point Dry Needling.
She enjoys working with a wide variety patients, specializing in orthopedic spine conditions, movement and gait analysis, lymphedema disorders, neurological conditions including Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson's Disease, as well as post-concussion and vestibular conditions. Her passion is making a difference in people's lives; an advocate for her patients and the physical therapy profession. Outside of work she enjoys recreating in the Alaska outdoors all year round.
Kelsey Granley, DPT
Kelsey attended Eastern Washington University where she received her BS in Biology in 2007. In 2011 she graduated from Western University of Health Sciences with a Doctorate in Physical Therapy. In 2012 she became certified in Dry Needling from the Spinal Manipulation and Dry Needling Institute. With this training she has specialized into treating chronic pain and other diagnoses. Her favorite people to work with are those that suffer from headache and back pain. Currently she is working on her spinal manipulation certification. She recently moved to Alaska in October 2015 to work at United PT and for a new adventure. Kelsey grew up with horses and cars in Northwest Montana. She had an affinity for horses and her brothers had an affinity for motors and racing cars. As a result her hobbies include anything outdoors including horseback riding, fishing, hunting, and hiking.
Alec Kay, MSPT, DMT, OCS, ATC, FAAOMPT
Alec initially began his career working in sports medicine at the University of California, Davis as an undergraduate where he received a Bachelors of Science in Exercise Physiology and was Certified as an Athletic Trainer in 1988. He was also a four year letterman in basketball as an undergraduate. He continues to enjoy working with athletes as his interest in sports medicine continues. Alec was awarded a Masters of Science in Physical Therapy from the University of the Pacific in 1990. He attended a 6 month full time residency in Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF) in Vallejo, CA, after working for several years in acute care and neurological rehabilitation. His additional post-graduate studies included completion of a Master of Orthopedic Manual Therapy in 1997 and a Doctor of Manual Therapy degree in 2000, with a dissertation on the lumbar spine. After completion of his DMT, Alec was appointed to the faculty of the Ola Grimsby Institute Post-Professional Consortium and is currently teaching advanced techniques in manual orthopedic physical therapy locally and in other states, as well as presenting as an invited speaker. Alec has an operational use of the spanish language. He is board certified as an Orthopedic Clinical Specialist.
Alec was trained and certified as a ChiRunning instructor in 2006. These classes teach energy efficiency and injury prevention. These classes are taught periodically throughout the year. If you are interested in learning more about Chi Running, please visit their web site at www.chirunning.com.
Alec became part owner of United Physical Therapy in 2001 and now serves as President.
Leah Ruggirello, PT, DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT
Leah is born and raised near Chicago, Illinois. She graduated with degrees in Exercise Science and Psychology from North Central College in Naperville, IL and then went on to receive her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree at the University of Illinois in Chicago in 2010. Since that time, she has achieved her Orthopedic Clinical Specialist certification through the American Physical Therapy Association and has completed a Fellowship of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She also has training in Vestibular Rehabilitation and is certified in Dry Needling and is excited to contribute these skill sets to the United team. She enjoys exploring trails and playing the piano, and hopes to one day eventually catch an Alaskan salmon!
Lori Sivitz, PT
Lori Sivitz is a 1989 graduate of the University of Florida. She moved to Anchorage in 1992 and has worked in various Orthopedic settings through 2000. After taking time with her family, Lori returned to practice joining UPT in May of 2005. Concurrently, Lori is a Birth Assistant at Geneva Woods Birth Center and enjoys working with women's health issues including pregnancy, post partum and pelvic floor dysfunction. In 2011 Lori participated in the Discover Physio series (Integrated Systems Model) in Vancouver, Canada
Bryan Templeman, DPT, ATC
Bryan received his bachelor’s degree in kinesiology from Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA in 1992. He gained his Certification in athletic training and worked with the sport medicine program as an athletic trainer at Westmont College for 6 years. He returned to school and earned a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Samuel Merritt University in 2008. Following graduation he completed a 6-month postgraduate residency in Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation at Kaiser Vallejo hospital. Bryan worked at UC Berkeley California where he split time working at an outpatient physical therapy clinic in the student health center and working in the training room as a member of Cal’s sports medicine staff. He recently has moved to Anchorage, and is currently enrolled in Ola Grimsby ‘s post-doctoral program in manual therapy.
Bryan works locally with some sports organizations now in Anchorage providing sports medicine support.
Bryan completed the written and practical examination with distinction for Fellowship training in orthopedic manual therapy through the Ola Grimsby Institute in January of 2015.
In 2017 Bryan received his Certification in Advanced Dry Needling (CMTPT).
Jo Young, PT, DPT, CMP
After an initial career as a wildlife biologist, Jo returned to school and received a degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Montana in 1996. Since graduating, she has practiced primarily in outpatient orthopedic settings in Anchorage and enjoys working with the general orthopedic as well as sports injuries. She has extensive experience rehabilitating knees. In 2002, she completed a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree through the Ola Grimsby Institute. For her dissertation, she applied an eccentric exercise protocol to rehabilitate athletes with patellar tendonitis. Jo is a certified Mulligan practitioner. She also recently completed professional training using the Integrated Systems Model, a "whole body" approach to evaluating and treating patients. In 2017 Jo received her Certification in Advanced Dry Needling (CMTPT).
United PT is a local therapist owned outpatient rehabilitation company providing a full range of services for clients with orthopedic, work related injuries, sport injuries, hand and various neuromuscular and neurological conditions.
Our goal is to help people of all ages and abilities achieve and continue to improve their optimal function. Our vision is to create a friendly, individualized environment in which the patient enjoys being an active participant in the rehabilitation process.
At all three of our locations we offer dedicated and trained professionals who enjoy working with their patients. Through communication and clinical examination our therapists will work with you and your doctor to develop a customized treatment plan tailored to suit your particular limitations and lifestyle.