Dr. Pamela Ritzline, Dean of School of Behavioral and Health Sciences, to Retire

Dr. Pamela Ritzline, Dean of Walsh University's School of Behavioral and Health Sciences, has announced her retirement at the conclusion of the current academic year. Dr. Ritzline has been at the helm of the School since its inception in 2016, playing a pivotal role in its growth and success. Dr. Judy Kreye, Dean of the Byers School of Nursing, will also serve as Interim Dean of the School of Behavioral and Health Sciences for one year while the University considers options moving forward.

“Dr. Ritzline has been an invaluable force during her tenure, shaping the school's growth and success since its establishment in 2016,” said Dr. Mike Dunphy, Vice President for Academic Affairs. “We extend our deepest gratitude for her dedicated service, her distinguished career and impactful leadership at both Walsh University and as a leader of physical therapy education nationally.”

Dr. Ritzline holds a Master's degree in Physical Therapy from the University of Indianapolis, Krannert School of Physical Therapy, and an Ed.D. from Indiana University. With a remarkable career spanning over 9 years as the Division Chair of Health Sciences and nearly 8 years as the Dean of the School of Behavioral and Health Sciences, her contributions have been invaluable to Walsh University.

Under Dr. Ritzline's guidance, Walsh University established the School of Behavioral and Health Sciences, offering a range of undergraduate majors and minors and strong graduate programs in physical therapy, occupational therapy, counseling and human development and soon, exercise physiology. The School has been instrumental in providing students with critical skills to serve regional healthcare providers and their clients. Before joining Walsh University, Dr. Ritzline served as the Director of Post-professional Programs at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, where she taught in the entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy program and provided leadership in various capacities. Throughout her academic tenure, Dr. Ritzline has held multiple academic roles, including program director, interim dean, interim associate dean, and full-time tenured faculty member. She completed the Academic Leadership Institute at Penn State University, showcasing her commitment to educational excellence.

Dr. Ritzline's impact extends beyond Walsh University, as she has served as a team leader for onsite reaffirmation of accreditation visits for CAPTE and conducted site visits for programs seeking candidacy from CAPTE. She also served as a CAPTE Commissioner for 8 years (4 years on the PT Panel included 2 years as Chair of the Panel; and 4 years on the Central Panel including Vice Chair and Chair of the entire CAPTE Commission).  Her dedication to the field of physical therapy education is evident through her involvement in professional organizations, including serving as Chief Delegate for the Tennessee Physical Therapy Association.  Delegate and President of the Indiana Physical Therapy Association.  She received the prestigious Frances C. Ekstam Award in 2005 from the Indiana Chapter, American Physical Therapy Association.  Given in recognition of outstanding contributions to physical therapy. In recognition of her outstanding service, Dr. Ritzline was awarded the APTA Lucy Blair Service Award in April 2018.  Most recently, Dr. Ritzline was awarded the Mary Jane Harris Award for Distinguished Service from CAPTE in 2023.

Dr. Ritzline's legacy at Walsh University and her impact on physical therapy education will be celebrated throughout the remainder of the academic year. The University expresses its deepest gratitude for her dedicated service and wishes her a fulfilling and joyful retirement.