About Rizing Tide

Rizing Tide provides annual scholarships to empower a new generation of BIPOC leaders in the Physical Therapy profession. We partner with PT and PTA students, PT residents, and industry leaders to advance diversity and inclusiveness in the physical therapy workforce and inspire better—and more accessible—patient care.

Our Founder's Story

I am the daughter of immigrants. My father was a naturalized citizen from Austria and my mother was born in Hawaii (before it was a state) to parents who immigrated from Japan. I’ve always been incredibly proud of my ethnic background, and I’m in awe of the sacrifices that my parents made to accomplish their own personal goals. I have cherished the many lessons they shared with me—including the value of work ethic, ingenuity, and education—and those values have shaped my professional life and leadership principles.

I became a Physical Therapist and specialized in outpatient orthopedics and sports medicine because I love helping people. After practicing for 15 years (and accomplishing most of my career goals,) I transitioned away from patient care to build a software company because I realized that doing so would enable me to help more patients, more peers, and my profession as a whole. As I built WebPT, I watched the values from my upbringing and personal experiences spring to life in our company culture. That culture has been celebrated (and it’s even won some awards!), validating the importance of infusing diversity and inclusion into Rizing Tide.

Heidi Jannenga

WebPT’s success has provided me with an opportunity to once again pay it forward. I created a foundation in late 2019 and named it Rizing Tide, not yet knowing what cause I wanted to support. I found clarity in the summer of 2020 after watching the uprisings in response to the murder of George Floyd and reading the negative—and frankly appalling—responses to my personal articles about the need for more diversity in the PT workforce. Based on my life experiences, I truly believe that with a racially and ethnically diverse workforce, everyone in the PT industry (including providers, patients, vendors, and the profession as a whole) wins. That environment doesn’t exist today and I want to change that. In creating Rizing Tide, my goal is to make a meaningful, generational impact on this amazing profession that has given so much to me.

Our Values

We love to dream big—but we believe how we choose to accomplish our goals is just as important as our goals themselves! That’s why we strive to infuse our core values into everything that we do.

Community:

Rize together.

We firmly believe that no PT should have to go it alone, and we value strong community ties. That’s why we’re offering a helping hand to future therapists—and why we help our scholarship recipients foster career-long relationships with their PT peers.

Equity:

Make waves.

We envision a future where everyone has a fair shot at becoming a PT—and every patient has access to a provider who they feel represents them. But to get there, we’ll have to challenge the status quo and be the change we want to see in the world.

Inclusiveness:

Embrace our differences.

Everyone has the right to feel valued and respected—no matter who they are or where they come from. We’re better for our differences, and we value supportive cultures that foster a sense of belonging.

Investment:

Look forward.

When we invest in our students, we’re investing in the future of the PT profession. By supporting students now, we believe that we can create a brighter future for all of us.

Partnerships:

Build bridges, not walls.

We want to change the PT profession for the better—but we need some help to do it. By joining forces with PT students, clinic leaders, and eventually educational institutions, we can close the diversity gap—together.

Transparency:

Clear the waters.

We value transparency and integrity, and we commit to being an open-door operation. We’ll show you exactly how we’re working to achieve our mission—including how we award scholarships.

Commitment:

Put PTs first.

We are passionately enthusiastic about physical therapy, and we believe that nurturing diversity, equity, and inclusion in the PT profession—from student recruitment to clinic leadership promotions—will strengthen the industry tenfold.