Aimee Brunelle, athletic trainer at Colonie Central High School works to keep student-athletes safe, specializing in the assessment, management, prevention, and rehabilitation of athletic injuries. Outside of her work at Colonie, Brunelle also serves as the governmental affairs co-chair for the New York State Athletics Trainers’ Association (NYSATA) advocating for legislation to support fellow athletic trainers.
Assemblywoman Michaelle Solages recently recognized Brunelle for both her work in the field at Colonie and her advocacy efforts with NYSATA.
Although in New York State athletic trainers require certification, they are not licensed. Brunelle, alongside her fellow colleagues, have been advocating since 2013 for legislation to update both the outdated scope of practice and required licensure for athletic trainers.
“The lack of a mandatory licensure in New York State allows for anyone to claim they are an athletic trainer and provide athletic training services, even if they haven’t completed the necessary work to become credentialed,” said Brunelle. “Adoption of this bill will protect the public and ensure that all practicing athletic trainers have met strict licensing requirements.”
Brunelle met with Assemblywoman Solages in the spring and received a letter and certificate from her shortly after the visit.
“Your tireless efforts in injury prevention, diagnosis and rehabilitation play a critical role in ensuring that our athletes stay healthy, safe, and able to compete at the highest levels,” she wrote.
If successful, the legislation would update the current law, passed in 1992, reflecting the enhanced level of education and clinical training for athletic trainers. “This legislation passed the Senate nearly unanimously last year, so we hope it will move through the Senate again with relative ease,” said Brunelle. “We continue to work in the Capitol, educating all members in both the Senate and Assembly about the importance of licensure.”
In addition to Brunelle’s work at Colonie and NYSATA, Brunelle was just elected by a majority vote as National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) District Two treasurer. She will serve a four-year term in this role.
“We are very fortunate to have an Athletic Trainer with the experience and expertise as Aimee,” said athletic director Bill Roemer. “In addition to always providing the best care for our students here at Colonie, her dedication to the field and statewide advocacy efforts help to improve conditions for athletes throughout the state.”