Sports Medicine Outreach

OrthoArkansas Athletic Trainers

Traci Byrd, LAT, ATC, CSCS
Director of Marketing and Sports Medicine Outreach
(501) 786-2878

Traci Byrd, LAT, ATC, CSCS

It wasn't a sports injury but the opportunity to attend a workshop for student athletic trainers that confirmed Traci's decision about her life's work.

"In high school, my head coach asked me to attend a student athletic trainer workshop," Traci says.  "I knew then that the combination of sports and medicine was what I wanted to do.  Athletic training is the perfect job for me."

After high school, Traci attended Arkansas State University, receiving her Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training.  Following a 16 year tenure as the Head Athletic Trainer at Central Arkansas Christian Schools, Traci assumed the position of Director of Marketing and Sports Medicine Outreach with OrthoArkansas.

"The interaction with my athletes on a daily basis is my favorite part of being an athletic trainer.  I enjoy following an injury from the time it occurs to the moment the athlete returns to participation.  Also, being a friend and mentor to high school athletes is a rewarding aspect of the job."

Among Traci's leisure time activities are golfing and spending time with family and friends.

Kathy Burl, MS, ATC, LAT
(501) 416-2597
Sheridan School District

Kathy Burl, MS, ATC, LAT

Kathy’s interest in athletic training developed during her time as a high school coach as her curiosity peaked as to how a body heals following a sports injury. 

“I have always enjoyed helping people in general so finding a role where I could stay involved with athletics and influence young students in the process was a perfect fit,” she says.  “I love to share what I do with students and have had the pleasure of cultivating an interest in athletic training in high school students some of which have gone on to college and then become a colleague – I love to teach sports medicine!”

Kathy received a Bachelor of Science in Education with an emphasis in Health, PE and Recreation and Dance from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.  In addition, she received a Master of Science in Education with an emphasis in Adaptive PE from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and Master of Science in Sports Medicine with an emphasis in Athletic Training from the United States Sports Academy.

Kathy works closely with the Arkansas Athletic Trainers Association developing guidelines, regulations and laws that govern the profession.  She is also a member of the National Athletic Trainers Association and the Southwest Athletic Trainers Association.  Currently she serves on the AATA Executive Board as Delegate at Large and on the Governor appointed Arkansas Athletic Trainers Licensing Board.  Kathy has been an athletic trainer since 1995 and was honored in 1997 as Athletic Trainer of the year in recognition of saving the life of a young athlete with a cervical spine injury. 

In her spare time, Kathy enjoys camping and spending time with family, especially her two grandchildren.  She and her husband Greg reside on a 20 acre homestead and share a special love for all things outdoors.

Kallie Johnson, LAT, ATC
(870) 613-0870
Lonoke School District

Alex Guin

As a huge sports fan, Kallie has a passion for helping athletes achieve their goals – whether that be a scholarship or playing in a championship. “I have an interest in sports in general, but I enjoy the fact that I never know what injuries I might see. It keeps me on my toes!”

She loves the relationships that athletic trainers are able to build with coaches, administrators, parents and the athletes. Kallie finds great reward in being a help to the athletes, school and community.

Kallie earned her Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training and worked with the Arkansas State football team during her undergrad. Additionally, she worked at Lyon College alongside their athletic teams.

“My parents have always pushed me to be successful in whatever I do. Especially in my life passions, such as Athletic Training.” Kallie enjoys working out and being outdoors. In her free time, you may find her crafting, shopping, hunting, mudding, or hanging out with friends. She also enjoys volunteering at her home church and has supported Camp Aldersgate as well as the United Way in Batesville, AR.

Whitney Sullivan, LAT, ATC
(870) 582-4201
Baptist Prep Academy

Whitney Sullivan, ATC

Whitney took a different route to becoming an athletic trainer than those who play sports, are injured, go to therapy, and find their life's profession. A friend from her hometown introduced her to the field.

"When I entered the introductory class at the University of Central Arkansas, I wasn't entirely sure what I was getting into. Nevertheless, I quickly fell in love with the idea of working amidst the athletic population. I realized that I loved studying anatomy and performing injury evaluations. The rest is history."

Working with the athletes at Benton High School, Whitney says she gains satisfaction in educating them on injury prevention and the process of moving them back to the field of play. In doing so, she says she often uses her background in anatomy and physical therapy.

Whitney received a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from UCA in 2008 and became board certified and licensed shortly thereafter. She is a member of the Arkansas Athletic Trainers' Association and the National Athletic Trainers' Association.

In her leisure time, Whitney enjoys reading, softball, ultimate Frisbee, hiking and "anything that keeps me active."

Aaron Crouch, LAT, ATC
Bauxite High School

Jessica Wilson, LAT, ATC
Harmony Grove High School

Dylan Thompson, LAT, ATC
Maumelle High School

Brandon Sitz, MS, ATC, LAT
Bryant High School

Heather Jolly, MBA, ATC, LAT
Bryant High School

Zankhana Patel, MS, ATC, LAT
Robinson High School

What is a Certified Athletic Trainer (ATC)?

Every year thousands of students participate in interscholastic athletics. Unfortunately, many of them also suffer injuries as a result of their participation.

A certified athletic trainer (ATC) is an educated and skilled allied healthcare professional specializing in athletic injuries, specifically in the following domains:

  • Prevention of athletic injuries
  • Recognition, evaluation, and immediate care of athletic injuries
  • Rehabilitation and reconditioning of athletic injuries
  • Healthcare administration
  • Professional development

In an effort to treat injuries more effectively, certified athletic trainers work as part of a complete health care team that consists of a licensed physician, other healthcare professionals, athletic administrators, coaches, and parents.

Athletic trainers are certified by the National Athletic Trainers Association Board of Certification (NATABOC). They must earn a degree from an accredited athletic training curriculum and pass a three part test administered by the BOC. They are also required to stay current in the advancements in athletic training by obtaining continuing education credits.