The Honorable Phil Murphy
National Governors Association
444 North Capitol Street
Suite 267
Washington, DC 20001

Dear Chairman Murphy,

The Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy is a member organization comprising the jurisdictional boards that regulate physical therapy in the United States, Washington DC, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. As the membership organization for the state physical therapy regulatory boards, we believe timely appointments to vacant positions are important and it is imperative to consider diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging as Governors make appointments to state boards.

We shared these thoughts with your predecessor, and we have also recently updated our Model Practice Act, a template for state boards' Practice Acts, to reflect this guidance. In Article 2, Board of Physical Therapy 2.01, the following statement was added: “The Governor shall, to the greatest extent possible, appoint individuals to achieve diversity on the board.”

We know that many Governors are implementing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging initiatives in their states. As part of those efforts, we encourage all Governors to review their guidelines for making appointments to regulatory boards so that state boards are more representative of the consumers they serve and protect, rather than the professionals that they are charged to regulate.

Appointments to state regulatory boards should consider a wide range of factors including age, class, ethnicity, gender, health, physical and mental ability, race, sexual orientation, religion, physical size, education level, and geographical location to ensure broad representation for the citizens of the state.

Additionally, filling vacant seats on state regulatory boards should continue to be a priority and be coupled with outreach to the community to ensure that members of the public, and the regulated professions, are aware of opportunities to serve. Appointments should be done in an open and transparent manner that encourages and enables individuals to serve in these vital roles.