2021 AOPA National Assembly Recap

The 2021 AOPA National Assembly was hosted in the heart of Boston, Massachusetts and brought a lot of excitement for the first large in person gathering since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Though this show was little different from those in the past, O&P Professionals had the opportunity to check out the newest products and advancements on the market, partake in a variety of educational sessions, and celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Thranhardt award.

See below for some highlights from this years show.


At this years show, attendees had the opportunity to stop by the Cascade booth and enter for a change to win some “Extra Credit.” After a lot of entries, the lucky grand prize winner was Silvio Martinez, CPO from Mahnke’s Orthotics & Prosthetics! Thank you to everyone who participated!


Below you will find a selection of products that sparked a lot of interest from attendees at the show:

WillowWood META™ Shock

  • Low build height/high deflection
  • Carbon fiber
  • Lightweight
  • Split keel
  • PDAC Approved: L5987

Cypress Adaptive Vista Ankle™

  • Single axis ankle joint
  • Designed for elevated vacuum suspension
  • Barb located inside proximal tube clamp
  • Includes distal female pyramid adapter
  • L5781, L5974

Aspen® OA Knee+

  • Two-point hinge adjustment for even pressure distribution
  • Low profile design
  • One step closure
  • Universal sizing
  • L1843


25th Annual Howard R. Thranhardt Award

To celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Thranhardt Award, AOPA welcomed former winners to help honor the occasion and present the 2021 awards to the following individuals:

  • Andreas Hahn, PhD“The Effect of Microprocessor Controlled Exo-Prosthetic Knees on Limited Community Ambulators: Systemic Review and Meta-Analysis.”
  • Chrysta Irolla, MS, MSPO, CPO and Emily Nelson, MSE, MSOP, CP“Treatment Parameters for the UCSF Pectus Carinatum Orthosis: A Pilot Study.”

AOPA Lifetime Achievement Award

  • Brad Ruhl, former CEO Managing Director for Ottobock North America received this honorary award. Ruhl commented during this acceptance that he was “grateful for having a chance to help people who needed a little help along the way.” Ruhl retired in June after spending 33 years at Ottobock.

Student Awards

  • Edwin and Kathryn Arbogast Award – Gila Baer from Shirley Ryan AbilityLab
  • Otto and Lucille Becker Award – Jessica Sider from the University of Pittsburgh

We are grateful that we were able to have engaging and productive conversations with our peers, colleuges, and friends at this years show. Thank you for your continued support and we will see you next year in San Antonio, TX for the 2022 AOPA National Assembly!

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