In Memorial: Richard V. McDougall

Richard “Mac” V. McDougall, 91, passed away Sunday, January 14, 2018, in Lexington. Mac moved to Kentucky in 1962 and was the founding director of the UK College of Health Sciences (CHS) Physical Therapy (PT) program in the mid 1960s. In 1965, he became the first chair of the Department of Physical Therapy in the College of Allied Health Professions, serving until 1982.

Tony English, the current  CHS PT division director and associate professor, said, "As the founding director of the UK Physical Therapy program, Mac McDougall set a firm foundation for excellence in physical therapy education and professional action.  He has mentored students and physical therapy practitioners alike in the importance of high quality patient care as well as participation in the professional association.  A great example of a professional role model, Mac lived his life with a love for his profession and his family."

Barbara Sanders, PT '72, said, "With each one of (my professional) adventures, Mac was there to provide support and encourage my continued engagement with the profession as well as the professional organization. I have been in physical therapy education as a tribute and response to Mac and those faculty members I had in class. My only sadness is that I have not been in the state for the past 30 years to continue to have interactions with Mac who was instrumental early in my career.“

While at the University of Kentucky, he acted as a consultant to the Division of Licensure and Regulation for the Kentucky Cabinet for Human Resources, University of Louisville PT program, and the Jefferson and Somerset Community College physical therapist assistant programs. His accomplishments would continue, serving two consecutive terms as president of the Kentucky Chapter of the American PT Association from 1975-1978, receiving the Outstanding Physical Therapist Award (APTA) during his final year. In 1980, Mac received the Lucy Blair Service Award (APTA), becoming Chairman of the Kentucky State Board of PT just one year later. 1986 would prove to be yet another year of accomplishments in physical therapy education, as Mac would serve on the task force to establish the Federation of State Boards of PT. His dedication and commitment to physical therapy was unparalleled.

He has been and will continue to be honored for his great strides through the McDougall Endowed Student Scholarship, McDougall Distinguished Alumni Lecture Series, the Richard McDougall Alumni Professorship, the Richard “Mac” McDougall Long Term Service Award (FSBPT), the Richard McDougall Fledgling Award (KPTA). 

If you would like to contribute to the McDougall Endowed Student Scholarship Award, please go here and after selecting donate, please type McDougall in the box for additional instructions about donation.