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Pam Chiles

Physical Therapist

After 30 years at Rainbows, Pam Chiles still loves to learn new things from her co-workers, families and even a pandemic. “I love my job,” said Pam. “I like that I am able to learn from my co-workers with different disciplines so that I can treat the whole child, not just their motor skills. I also love interacting with children.”

Even the challenges presented by a pandemic have not dimmed Pam’s love for her job. “Covid has changed everything,” said Pam. “Pre-Covid I was driving around northwest Sedgwick County and seeing children in their home settings. During Telehealth, I have had children give me kisses and hugs through the screen. One little girl tried to put pretend make up on me through the screen.”

Pam has a Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy from Wichita State University. “My first job was at a hospital in Salina,” she said. “I did half time general acute care and half time pediatrics. The hospital had a contract with the local school district. I thought it was a great way to find out if I would like pediatrics, and of course it helped define the rest of my career.”

“I’ve also worked at the Institute of Logopedics, and Wesley Medical Center,” she said. “In 1996 I went to work at Wesley for 2 years but missed working with parents in the home. I think more Physical Therapy can happen when you are out of the clinic than in it.”

“Pam is a dedicated therapist, advocating for her families and taking on extra visits because she wants to be sure that her families have access to the best resources available,” said Alexia Foster, Sedgwick County Infant/Toddler Services Coordinator. “And then Pam is right beside those same families, cheering for them as their children make progress.”

Her favorite part of her job? “The faces of the parents when they see their child walk for the first time,” said Pam. It’s always my favorite memory!”

Pam was the leader in establishing a Hydrotherapy program at the West Branch YMCA in 1999. “The YMCA has been generous in donating their pools and our program is now in 3 of its branches,” said Pam. “I have served as an advisory board member at the Northwest YMCA since it opened. Our YMCAs have the highest quality and attendance as any in the nation.”

Never one to sit still, Pam and her partner Kip, another avid cyclist, like to take bike rides. “I enjoy walking my dog, Mollie, and I am a huge foodie,” she said. “I love all kinds of food like Thai, Mexican, sushi, etc. I also love to travel. I have a group of girlfriends that I have known since junior high school. We have traveled all over the USA including Hawaii.”

Pam has 3 wonderful boys that she is very proud of. Her oldest, Alex is also a Physical Therapist and works with adults in the home setting. He is married to Caitlin and they just had Pam’s first grandchild, Nolan. “He is adorable…and I am not biased,” she said. Her middle son, Colin is living in Portland, Oregon and was working for the MODA center which housed the Portland Trailblazers until Covid. He is married to Elle and they enjoy the mild climate and beauty of the northwest.

“My youngest son works in Account Services at Cox Communications,” said Pam. “Currently due to Covid, we are co-workers as we are both working from home. I like to tease him that we meet at the “water cooler” during breaks and he just rolls his eyes. (maybe he doesn’t know what a water cooler is).”

 

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