Physical Therapy Faculty and Staff

Contact Physical Therapy Department

Our Leadership


Heads Up

Leslie Ayres, PT, DPT

Board Certified Specialist in Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Physical Therapy

Assistant Professor, Director of Clinical Education



Dr. Ayres is a graduate of Angelo State University physical therapy school in 2008 and received her DPT from Hardin-Simmons University in 2012. She has 12 years of clinical experience practicing at Texas Health Resources Fort Worth where she developed her passion for cardiac and pulmonary care in the acute setting. She is a graduate of Brigham and Women’s Cardiovascular and Pulmonary residency program located in Boston, MA and a DPT Board Certified Specialist in Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Physical Therapy. Dr. Ayres’ research interests include Generation Z students’ learning preferences and developing teaching strategies for Generation Z students. She currently serves as course director for cardiovascular and pulmonary content, integumentary physical therapy, and rural and underserved populations.

Heads Up

Mindy Brummett, PT, DPT

Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Orthopedic Physical Therapy

Assistant Professor, Director of Academic Education



Dr. Mindy Brummett is course director for Applied Anatomy and Kinesiology, Exercise Physiology, Evidence Based Practice, and Therapeutic Interventions II courses. She also assists in the Musculoskeletal content. Dr. Brummett graduated from The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in 2009. She obtained her Orthopedic Clinical Specialist from the APTA in 2013. She has treated in an outpatient orthopedic setting for 12 years. Currently, Dr.  Brummett is pursuing her Doctor of Science degree from Texas Tech University. Research interests are accuracy of information used in social media content and concussion management. 

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Myles Quiben, PT, PhD, DPT, MS

Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Geriatric Physical Therapy
Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Neurologic Physical Therapy

Program Chair and Professor
Associate Dean, School of Health Professions



Dr. Quiben serves as the interim chair of the department and as director of the clinical medicine series, cardiopulmonary physical therapy, and CAPSTONE courses. Dr. Quiben is a dual board-certified clinical specialist in Neurologic and Geriatric Physical Therapy (NCS, GCS), through the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties, and is a Fellow of the APTA Education Leadership Institute, the National Academies of Practice, and the Texas Physical Therapy Association’s Leadership Program. She obtained her Ph.D. in Physical Therapy and post-professional Doctor of Physical Therapy from the University of Central Arkansas, Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy from the University of the Philippines, and MS in Clinical Investigation from the University of Texas Health Science Center, as part of her postdoctoral training in geriatric research.
An active member in many APTA components, Dr. Quiben’s current scholarly activities include geriatric outcome measures, movement systems, simulation, and interprofessional education, and therapeutic interventions for neurological populations.

Our Faculty


Jehad Alzyoud

Jehad Alzyoud, PT, PhD

Assistant Professor



Dr. Alzyoud received his Bachelors degree in Physical Therapy in 2005 from the Hashemite University in Jordan, his Masters degree in Physical Therapy from New York Institute of Technology in 2007, and his Ph.D. in Physical Therapy (with emphasis on neurology and neurological rehabilitation) from Texas Woman’s University in 2017. Dr. Alzyoud has a diverse clinical experience with more than 15 years working at extended rehab as well as acute care facilities across different countries and different states. Dr. Alzyoud’s research interests are largely directed towards understanding human balance, particularly learning how sitting balance impairment following neuromuscular injuries influences the recovery process and activity participation. His ultimate research goal is to assist people with neuromuscular disorders in developing new strategies to maximize their participation in functional activities and minimize the risk of fall. Dr. Alzyoud serves as director of Clinical Reasoning I, Neuromuscular I & II, and Movement control courses.

 Lee Atkins 1

Lee Atkins, PT, PhD

Assistant Professor



Dr. Atkins received his Bachelors degree in Exercise and Sport Science from Texas Tech University, his Masters degree in Physical Therapy from Angelo State University, and his Ph.D. in Rehabilitation Science (clinical biomechanics emphasis) from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. Additionally, he received advanced clinical training in functional lower quarter biomechanics at the Movement Performance Institute in Los Angeles, CA. Dr. Atkins’ research is aimed at understanding biomechanical factors associated with knee dysfunction. In particular, he is interested in identifying kinematic, kinetic, and muscle activation abnormalities associated with patellofemoral pain.  Currently Dr. Atkins serves as director or co-director of the Applied Exercise Physiology, Gait, Prosthetics, and Orthotics, and Clinical Medicine courses. Additionally, he assists with teaching the Biomechanics, Anatomy, and Orthopaedics courses.

Carling Butler Unt Health Science Center Hsc Heads Up October 2021

Carling Butler, PT, DPT, MSCI

Board-Certified Orthopaedic Clinical Specialist

Assistant Professor



Dr. Butler graduated from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, MO with dual Doctor of Physical Therapy and Master of Science in Clinical Investigation degrees. She is passionate about blending her expertise in the management of both musculoskeletal and cardiopulmonary conditions. Dr. Butler will begin directing evidence-based practice and clinical medicine coursework. Prior to joining the team at UNTHSC, she worked in acute and critical care at UT Southwestern Medical Center, outpatient orthopedic and geriatrics at a private practice in Dallas, and was an Adjunct Faculty member at Baylor University for four years. Her research interests include early mobilization and higher-intensity exercise interventions in the acute care setting; the overmedicalization of common musculoskeletal conditions; cardiovascular disease prevention and wellness promotion efforts in community settings; burnout and resilience in health care professionals and students.

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Howe Liu, PT, PhD, MS, MD

Adjunct Professor



Dr. Hao (Howe) Liu received his MS (Neuroanatomy) and MD degrees in China, PhD (Anatomy) and MPT degrees from the University of Mississippi Medical Center. He joined the Physical Therapy Program at the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC) in January 2010 from the University of Central Arkansas. As a Professor of Physical Therapy at the UNTHSC, he teaches, as the course coordinator, Functional Anatomy, Neuroanatomy, and Evidence-Based Practice (II). In addition, he taught EBP I, III, and IV, as well as Pharmacology in Physical Therapy, Interprofessional Education (IPE) at UNTHSC. Also he taught Gross Anatomy, Neuroscience, Research Design, Applied Histology, Pathology, & Physiology, Differential Diagnosis, Cardiopulmonary Rehab, and International Study (Alternative Medicine) of Physical Therapy when he was in the University of Central Arkansas.

Charles Nichols Web

Charles Nichols, PT, DPT,  MEd, ScD

Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Orthopedic Physical Therapy

Assistant Professor



Charles Nichols, PT, DPT, Sc.D. is an Assistant Professor for the Department of Physical Therapy. Dr. Nichols is the course director of the Musculoskeletal classes and Imaging class of the Physical Therapy program.

He is a Board Certified Orthopaedic Clinical Specialist (OCS) by the APTA, and a Certified Orthopedic Manual Therapist (COMT) by Evidence in Motion and the International Academy of Orthopaedic Medicine-US along with a certification in Functional Dry Needling. 

Degrees: Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy from Texas Tech University, Master of Education from the University of Texas at Tyler, Doctor of Physical Therapy from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, and Doctor of Science degree from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. 

Dr. Nichols is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association and the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists. 

Research interests include orthopedic examination, nutrition, and tissue mechanics/anatomy. 

Our Staff

Shelly Smith Web

Shelley Smith
Assistant to the Chair


         Tikeya Calhoun 1

Tikeya Calhoun
Academic Program Coordinator