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Our Program is a results-oriented approach to solving distinct problems

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Our Team


Barbara Springer

PT, PhD, OCS
Executive Director

Barb is our in-house physical therapy expert and never misses an opportunity to try and get us in the gym or on a bike. She has over 30 years of rehabilitation experience, with nearly 25 years of it spent in the US Army, to include working as the White House Physical Therapist. Spending time with her family and working with military service members and Veterans are her passions.

Barbara Springer

PT, PhD, OCS
Executive Director

Barb is our in-house physical therapy expert and never misses an opportunity to try and get us in the gym or on a bike. She served over 24 years in the U.S. Army and retired out of the Office of The Surgeon General where she was the Director of Rehabilitation and Reintegration for the Army. She recommended policy and instituted Army-wide standards of care for rehabilitation and transition of wounded, ill and injured Soldiers.

Before assuming this position, Dr. Springer was Chief, Integrated Physical Therapy (PT) Service where she served as a leader to both Walter Reed Army Medical Center and the National Naval Medical Center in the Washington, DC Metro area. In this role, she ensured world-class rehabilitative care to thousands of wounded service members returning from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts.

Janet Papazis

PT, DPT
Chief Operating Officer

Janet is an Army Veteran and former paratrooper, the daughter of a retired Army Soldier and the spouse of a retired Army Soldier. She is also a physical therapist, enjoys outside activities, and spending time with family. She is inspired daily by the professors and students working with QL Plus and the Veterans and first responders we serve.

Janet Papazis

PT, DPT
Chief Operating Officer

Janet is an Army Veteran and former paratrooper, the daughter of a retired Army Soldier and the spouse of a retired Army Soldier. She is also a physical therapist, enjoys outside activities, and spending time with family. She is inspired daily by the professors and students working with QL Plus and the Veterans and first responders we serve.

Catherine Harkins

Director of Finance and Administration

Gulf War Veteran, Catherine comes to QL+ with over 12 years of Finance / Treasury Management experience.  She is constantly seeking ways to improve processes and loves to get rid of red tape. Catherine enjoys practicing Bikram yoga to keep herself mentally and physically fit.

Catherine Harkins

Director of Finance and Administration

Gulf War Veteran, Catherine comes to QL+ with over 12 years of Finance / Treasury Management experience.  She is constantly seeking ways to improve processes and loves to get rid of red tape. Catherine enjoys practicing Bikram yoga to keep herself mentally and physically fit.

Amber Humphrey

Chief Communications Officer

Amber is fully aware that the freedom she enjoys is the result of a lot of sacrifices from brave people. Working for QL+ is a way to say, “thank you” to those that have given so much. She likes to cycle, run, and practice yoga and enjoys social media so much that both of her dogs have their own Instagram accounts. Amber is a licensed attorney and loves bad lawyer jokes.

Amber Humphrey

Chief Communications Officer

Amber is fully aware that the freedom she enjoys is the result of a lot of sacrifices from brave people. Working for QL+ is a way to say, “thank you” to those that have given so much. She likes to cycle, run, and practice yoga and enjoys social media so much that both of her dogs have their own Instagram accounts. Amber is a licensed attorney and loves bad lawyer jokes.

Scott Huyvaert

Program Manager
Rocky Mountain Region

Scott served as a healthcare specialist in the United States Army where he found a true passion for working with the wounded veteran community. While on active duty, Scott helped create and develop outreach programs focused on the rehabilitation of our nations wounded service members and their families. His background in combat medicine, project management and healthcare administration compliment his love of all things outdoors, all while being able to support others in need. When he’s not developing future projects, you will find him spending time with his wife, daughters and beloved hunting dogs or watching the Chicago Blackhawks.

Scott Huyvaert

Program Manager
Rocky Mountain Region

Scott served as a healthcare specialist in the United States Army where he found a true passion for working with the wounded veteran community. While on active duty, Scott helped create and develop outreach programs focused on the rehabilitation of our nations wounded service members and their families. His background in combat medicine, project management and healthcare administration compliment his love of all things outdoors, all while being able to support others in need. When he’s not developing future projects, you will find him spending time with his wife, daughters and beloved hunting dogs or watching the Chicago Blackhawks.

Annemarie Orr, OTD, OTR/L

Program Manager SDSU

Annemarie is as an occupational therapist and has worked for the military specializing in combat casualty care for the last ten years. She has experienced first-hand the positive impact that QL + has had on her patients’ quality of life through the development of creative rehabilitative solutions. Annemarie enjoys being able to work with the QL + team to cultivate a meaningful educational experience and lasting relationship between our servicemembers and engineering students.

Annemarie Orr, OTD, OTR/L

Program Manager SDSU

Annemarie is as an occupational therapist and has worked for the military specializing in combat casualty care for the last ten years. She has experienced first-hand the positive impact that QL + has had on her patients’ quality of life through the development of creative rehabilitative solutions. Annemarie enjoys being able to work with the QL + team to cultivate a meaningful educational experience and lasting relationship between our servicemembers and engineering students.

Edith Campbell

Cal Poly Program Manager

Edith is thrilled to be a part of the QL+ team and to experience first-hand the positive impacts the various projects have on all those involved. She comes from a technical background and has over 20 years of experience managing large and diverse projects. Edith loves adventure travel, outdoor activities, and all things “dog”.

Edith Campbell

Cal Poly Program Manager

Edith is thrilled to be a part of the QL+ team and to experience first-hand the positive impacts the various projects have on all those involved. She comes from a technical background and has over 20 years of experience managing large and diverse projects. Edith loves adventure travel, outdoor activities, and all things “dog”.

Board Of Directors


Officers

Mr. Michael Southworth, Treasurer
General Manager of Verint Systems

Directors

Maj. Gen. Anders "Andy" Aadland, USA (Ret.)
Castlelink LLC


Dawn Halfaker
Halfaker and Associates


Taylor Morris


James Schenck
President/CEO, PenFed Credit Union, and CEO, PenFed Foundation


Richard Holm
Retired CIA
Director Emeritus
Serving from 2009-2019


Advisory Council

The QL+ Advisory Council (Council) is established to provide advice and recommendations to the QL+ Board of Directors (Board) and to be ambassadors for the QL+ mission.


Vice Adm. Michael (Mike) Loose
USN (Ret.)

Jim McDonnell
Former Sheriff, Los Angeles County, CA

Lt. Gen. Michael (Mike) Shields
USA (Ret.), Consultant

QL+ Laboratories

Cal Poly

Originally conceived and funded by The Quality of Life Plus Program in 2008, the QL+ Lab at Cal Poly is an integral part of Cal Poly’s engineering program and provides an industrial grade facility where students can collectively focus their creative and intellectual horsepower on solving some of the most difficult challenges facing our nation’s patriots. Since its inception, Cal Poly student teams have completed over 100 engineering challenges, improving the lives of many of our severely injured veterans.

Mines

In 2018, the "Quality of Life Plus Rehabilitation Design Lab" was unveiled at Colorado School of Mines. This lab houses equipment for measurement, prototyping, and fabrication of innovative custom devices. It is used exclusively for QL+ students to develop adaptive equipment to solve mobility challenges posed by veterans and first responders with disabilities, leading to an elevated quality of life and independence. The QL+ Lab furthers Mines’ mission to enhance its leadership as a world-class institution focused on education, services, and solutions, especially in its areas of expertise in engineering.

What We Do

About Challengers

QL+ recruits veterans, active duty military, first responders, law enforcement officers, and intelligence officers with life-altering injuries from across the USA. QL+ works one-on-one with these patriots to understand the lifestyle limitations they endure as a result of their injuries. These men and women become "Challengers" in the QL+ Program. Leveraging our expertise in engineering, physical therapy, and program management, QL+ identifies specific obstacles, in their lives that can be eased or overcome through the development of a custom assistive device or prosthetic modification.

QL+ presents these projects or “Challenges” to our partner universities. Once accepted, QL+ connects the Challenger directly with the student team working his or her Challenge. Throughout the academic year, QL+ mentors, monitors, and supports this unique collaboration between the Challenger and student team. At the conclusion of the academic year, the student team formally presents the completed assistive device or modified hardware to the Challenger for use in their daily life.

About University Partners

QL+ students from multiple engineering disciplines work under the guidance of experienced faculty members to design and develop innovations that improve the quality of life of those who have served our country. Currently, over 200 students from our QL+ university partners are actively creating solutions for our QL+ Challenges.

Why Support Us?

QL+ partners and donors share our commitment to improving the lives of active duty military, veterans, first responders, and public servants and providing students with opportunites to engage with and learn from our nation's patriots. Together, we promote and support advances and innovation in engineering, science and technology to benefit those with injuries or disabilities. This unique program benefits our patriots by recognizing a need for a custom assistive device and benefits our students by providing them with hands-on-learning opportunities.