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APTA National - Reference Committee 2022

Signup Deadline: 08-16-2021
Starts: 01-01-2022
Ends: 01-01-2023


APTA is seeking one physical therapist member to serve on APTA’s Reference Committee for a three-year term, beginning Jan. 2022. The Reference Committee receives and correlates motions and resolutions to be presented to the House of Delegates and provides year-round consultation, guidance, and direction on motion development.  
Terms of Appointees 
The individual appointed to this committee shall serve a three year term, beginning Jan. 1, 2022.  


Members of this committee shall be appointed from among those persons who, by reason of experience and knowledge: 

  • Can help oversee the process of moving an idea from a motion concept to an articulated and well-researched motion that is ready to come before the House 
  • Can conduct effective interactions, discussions, and other communication with motion makers, delegates, and other Reference Committee members 

Please note: Reference Committee members are to remain unbiased as they provide advice and counsel on matters to be presented to the House of Delegates and, therefore, may not simultaneously serve as a delegate during their time on the committee. 

The following skills have been cited by past Reference Committee members as helpful to their success on the committee: 

  • Good communication, tact, and diplomacy skills 
  • Able to actively listen and negotiate impartially 
  • Able to recognize when a narrow concern does or does not have broader national implications 
  • A working knowledge of parliamentary procedure and Roberts Rules 
  • Experience as a delegate to the House of Delegates 
  • Experience in governance at the component or national level 
  • Ability to guide people through a process from start to finish 
  • Ability to support a safe environment for idea sharing when meeting and communicating with delegates 
  • Discretion 
  • An understanding of the APTA vision 
  • Firsthand experience in moving a motion from concept to adoption 
  • Understanding of the entire motion development process 



The Reference Committee was created by appointment of the Board of Directors as a working committee of the House of Delegates in 1967. This committee was made a permanent committee of the House of Delegates by vote of the House of Delegates in July 1968 and incorporated into the APTA Bylaws in 1970. 


Article X, Section 2, B. Reference Committee 

(1)  This Committee shall consist of at least 3 Physical Therapist members appointed by the officers of the House of Delegates. The Speaker of the House of Delegates shall serve as an ex-officio member. 

(2)  Members shall serve 3year terms with at least one member being appointed each year. 



As stated in the Standing Rules of the American Physical Therapy Association: 


  1. The committee shall receive and correlate motions and resolutions to be presented to the House of Delegates and shall identify motions which fall outside the object or functions of the Association. The committee shall provide advice and counsel regarding form, wording, and method of presentation of matters to be presented to the House. 
  1. All main motions and resolutions, except for procedural motions presented for action by the House of Delegates, shall be referred to the Reference Committee unless this rule is suspended in any particular case by a majority vote of the House of Delegates. 
  1. The committee will review main motions that are submitted by the established deadline and in the manner prescribed in the standing rule titled Main Motion Criteria. 
  1. Appointed members of the committee shall be seated in the House of Delegates and shall reply to inquiries directed to the committee by the Speaker of the House. 
  1. On a regular basis the committee will review the Association bylaws and standing rules and, as it deems appropriate, propose to the Board of Directors that it bring amendments to the House of Delegates for consideration. 


All main motions submitted by the established deadline shall meet the following criteria. 

It is the responsibility of the maker of the motion to: 

(1)  Provide a statement of the intended outcome of the motion. 

(2)  Demonstrate that the motion’s subject is national in scope or importance. 

(3)  Provide pertinent background information, in collaboration with the APTA Board of Directors or staff including (a) a description of previous House, Board, or staff activity relating to the subject and (b) an identification of the stakeholders affected by the motion. 

(4)  When possible, demonstrate that the motion concept has been disseminated to delegates of other delegations prior to the deadline for submission of main motions. 

(5)  Provide a description of the potential fiscal impact of adopting and implementing the motion. 

The Reference Committee determines how criteria have been met. If it is determined that the criteria are not adequately met, the motion shall be placed at the end of the agenda of the House of Delegates and shall not be considered unless a majority of the delegates vote, without debate, to consider the motion. The Reference Committee shall develop and make available to the delegates guidance designed to help delegates satisfy the foregoing criteria. 

In addition to the responsibilities described in the standing rules, the committee may make suggestions for content revisions to motion language. Committee members shall be available to the Board of Directors and to delegates throughout the course of the year to provide consultation, guidance, and direction on motion concept development and Reference Committee procedures. 

All APTA appointed groups will conduct their work in the context of 1) APTA’s mission and vision, and 2) the potential for their work to have implications related to physical therapist assistants, women, diversity, and risk management.  




Volunteers Needed:

1 (1 open slot)

Experience Required:

More than 10 years volunteer experience


Cheryl Robinson