Recognizing GCED Leadership

The success of TOTA and GCED rests with our colleagues who serve the membership, volunteering numerous hours to keep you informed of healthcare changes impacting our practice, creating educational and networking opportunities, and delivering benefits to support your professional development and growth.

This month, we are recognizing Jodi Jung for her numerous years of leadership and service to TOTA.

Jodi JungWhat is your OT history? Where did you go to school? How many years have you practiced? What is/are your current practice area/s?

I graduated from UTMB and have been in practice for more than 30 years. I decided to pursue a therapy degree after my older brother was injured in an industrial accident and became an above elbow amputee while I was in high school. I attended Outpatient OT with him and became interested in OT. I took the under grad requirements for both OT and PT but after touring UTMB, I met an OT and saw all of the creative adaptive devices they had made and finalized my decision that OT is what I wanted to do. After graduation, I started out in pediatrics, providing OT services to birth to three, I then worked in the school systems for several years before transitioning to hospital and outpatient areas. I love this field because of the opportunity and flexibility to work in various settings and with various age groups. I am currently the Director of Rehabilitation Services at Memorial Hermann Southeast Hospital and the Director of Inpatient Rehabilitation at Memorial Southeast Hospital, which is a part of the TIRR Rehab Network.

Why do you serve as a Virtual Meeting Satellite Leader for the GCED members and colleagues?

I previously attended the Gulf Coast East District meetings with my coworkers and we would travel from the Clear Lake area to Shriner’s or to Galveston for the meetings. Sophie Rydin asked me if I would be interested in running the Virtual Meetings at Memorial Southeast Hospital. I agreed, if she would help me with getting set up, which she did. That was in 2010. Our wonderful OT community has grown so much from then until now. I look forward to seeing so many of the same OTs and COTAs from the community from various areas of practice every month. We have grown to be a small family of therapists, who support each other. We have recently had many more OTA students attend, and it is nice to have their fresh perspectives on current OT topics.

What professional or association issues, needs, concerns energize you and why?

I am very energized by participating on the Advisory Board for a new OTA program at San Jacinto College South. We discussed and set many of the pre-requisites and requirements for their initial program set up. This was very exciting. I have been asked to share professional experiences with the OTA students for this school and I feel honored to share my ideas and experiences.

Which OT practitioner/s do you admire and why?

One of the OTs who provided much support and direction for me early in my career was Paula Fiedler. Paula worked her way from a COTA to an OTR and always challenged me to look beyond what was obvious when I wasn’t sure what else to try in my treatments. It was comforting to know I could turn to her for professional advice without feeling like I was incompetent. Building those bonds of friendship among the profession are important for all therapists. Paula is retired now but we still keep in touch. There are so many OTs who have inspired me and continue to make me proud to be in this profession through the work they do. The compassion and love that these OTs show to their patients through the work that they do as an OT is amazing!

What are your current areas of interest or study?

I am currently working on my Master’s degree In Management and Leadership, hoping to complete my Capstone later this semester. These classes have helped me with my current administrative position and business applications. I love listening to the varied speakers during our monthly GCED meetings and always learn something new.

Any thoughts or comments you want to share with our members?

One of the things that keeps me grounded is remembering the “Why" I chose to be in this profession. I believe it is a calling from a higher power and that I am on the right track. I am also reminded of Mother Teresa’s work and her quote, “I do not do great things, only small things with great love”.

Jodi, thank you for your leadership and service to the TOTA members and colleagues!