Alfred (AL) Kaye originally from Aberdeen, MD attended Pfeiffer University graduating with a degree in Health and Physical Education with a minor in Mathematics in greater Misenheimer, NC in 1978. He was active with FCA as a double collegiate athlete in soccer and golf. He was inducted in 2012 Pfeiffer Athletic Hall of Fame for his 1975 soccer team with many NAIA honors in the Carolinas Conference. He attended graduate school at UNC-Chapel Hill where he studied under Doug Sessoms, Lee Meyer, and Tom Stein gaining a MS in Recreation Administration with an emphasis in therapeutic recreation. While in Chapel Hill, he worked at NC Memorial Hospital under Glen VanAndel and met many influential colleagues like Ray West and Wayne Pollock.. His philosophy and drive for the profession was shaped with his education and experience from UNC as he moved onto Knoxville, TN and the Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center.
Al learned quickly that all it takes to be involved in the profession was to step forward and volunteer. He went to the STRS meeting representing Martha Peters from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and became a founding member of the Board as STRS met at the Minneapolis NRPA Convention. He supported and participated in developing the SRTS as it is known today to be a leader in providing education for recreational therapists in the southeast as a board member for 35 years. Al is a founding member of ATRA and has participated in NCTRC governance. He continues to assist NCTRC in the past chair advisory group.
Al created a program for individuals with physical challenges known as the Patricia Neal Innovative Recreation Cooperative in 1994 to teach life skills through recreational opportunities. He based the program upon initial research and outcomes based on the IRC philosophy. The IRC achieved numerous awards to include: Knoxville Healthcare Heroes Award, DSUSA Jim Withers Award, Knoxville ADA Award, the Covenant Health Everest Award for Excellence and the Knoxville Urban Development Equity Award. The IRC helps to bridge the clinical hospital setting to community life as his patients transition from rehabilitation to the real world. Overall Al works on a daily basis as a practitioner in the physical rehab setting, provides education through research, presentations, and publications. The Al Kaye Poster Session is a reminder that research is the foundation from which we work to demonstrate excellence as a recreational therapist.