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College of Health Professions Distinguished Alumnus Award

2018 Award Recipient

Michael E. Kordecki, DPT ’03, PT ’86

Michael KordeckiMichael E. Kordecki, DPT, PT, has dedicated his career to advancing the field of physical therapy through high-quality patient care and mentorship, while revolutionizing the effective medical management of cervical spine injuries on the football field for athletes from high school age through the NFL. Dr. Kordecki graduated from the University of Illinois. Following his graduation from Rosalind Franklin University, he served as the team physical therapist and athletic trainer for the Chicago Bears.

Dr. Kordecki is the founder and owner of Praxis Physical Therapy and Human Performance in Vernon Hills and has an outstanding record of service in the fields of orthopaedic/sports physical therapy and emergency management of cervical spine injuries.

A sought-after lecturer, he has given more than 90 presentations on prevention and recovery from sports injuries. He is a powerful voice and example for the profession on a national level.

Recognizing the need for equipment innovation to reduce potential injury, Dr. Kordecki invented the RipKord shoulder pad removal system that has enabled the safe removal of shoulder pads from injured players on the playing field. The system has been used by football teams of all levels, including the NFL, since 2011.

Throughout his career, Dr. Kordecki has extensively participated in continuing education. His presentations at numerous professional conferences, involvement in national committees and task forces, and research on emergency management of the cervical spine have served to educate and update physical therapists, physicians, athletic trainers and emergency medical technicians on current best practices.

Dr. Kordecki is board certified in Clinical Sports Medicine by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) and the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS). He is certified as an athletic trainer by the National Athletic Trainer Association (NATA). Dr. Kordecki was awarded Rosalind Franklin University's Department of Physical Therapy Alumnus of the Year Award in 2015.

Dr. Kordecki and his wife, Diane, live in Vernon Hills.