Rebecca Moellmer, DPM, Associate Professor of podiatric medicine, surgery and biomechanics for WesternU's College of Podiatric Medicine was recently elected president of the California Podiatric Medical Association (CPMA). Dr. Moellmer talks with a patient, who has a Lisfranc injury and observes second-year resident Jeffrey Demian, DPM ’15, as he evaluates the patient. (Jeff Malet, WesternU)

Rebecca Moellmer, DPM, Associate Professor of Podiatric Medicine, Surgery and Biomechanics for WesternU’s College of Podiatric Medicine, was recently elected president of the California Podiatric Medical Association (CPMA). Dr. Moellmer talks with a patient, who has a Lisfranc injury, and observes second-year resident Jeffrey Demian, DPM ’15, as he evaluates the patient. (Jeff Malet, WesternU)

Western University of Health Sciences College of Podiatric Medicine Assistant Professor Rebecca Moellmer, DPM, is serving as the 2016-17 president of the California Podiatric Medical Association.

The California Podiatric Medical Association (CPMA) is a professional organization advocating for the public health of the people of California, doctors of podiatric medicine (DPMs), their patients, and the specialty of podiatric medicine.

“Dr. Moellmer’s service will allow her to grow in leadership, and this will allow her to be an example for our students, to inform and inspire them to be future leaders,” said College of Podiatric Medicine Dean Lawrence Harkless, DPM. “This will allow us to be on the forefront of development and implementation of appropriate changes within our profession.”

During her term, which began in June, Dr. Moellmer will work to develop an Insurance Resource Center where practitioners can upload explanation of benefits information from insurers to combat discrimination. She also will collaborate with other disciplines on strengthening health care legislation and mentoring the next generation of podiatric medicine leaders.

The Insurance Resource Center will help ensure that podiatrists are paid fairly for the work they perform, regardless of where they practice in the state. Moellmer also wants to continue the work of the Physicians & Surgeons task force. With everyone at the table from the start, she hopes to craft legislation that draws no opposition.

Moellmer has also tapped into a vital resource – new graduates, and those who have recently completed their residencies.

“This year I’ve appointed residents to participate in almost every CPMA committee, so they will start learning from successful mentors in each committee. The residents have new ideas,” Moellmer said.

Moellmer first became involved in CPMA after finishing her podiatric sports medicine fellowship at Irvine Multi-Specialty Surgical Care. She attended a few meetings of the CPMA’s Inland chapter in 2006, and quickly became vice president.

Becoming involved in professional organizations at the local and national levels is important, she said. “There’s more strength in numbers. We speak on behalf of patients and our specialty. Nobody else can do it as well.”