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The NBOME Honors Dennis J. Dowling, DO, MA with John E. Thornburg, DO, PhD, National Faculty Leadership Award

June 10, 2024

PHILADELPHIA— The National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME), an independent, nonprofit organization that provides competency assessments for osteopathic medical licensure and related health care professions, honored Dennis J. Dowling, DO, MA, with the John E. Thornburg, DO, PhD, National Faculty Leadership Award at its recent Board of Directors meeting on June 7.

Dowling began his tenure with the NBOME in the 1990s as an item writer. In 1998, he was recruited by current President and CEO John R. Gimpel, DO, MEd, to join the NBOME Task Force on Performance Assessment–a team focused on exploring development of an osteopathically distinctive clinical skills examination for licensure, which would become COMLEX-USA Level 2-PE.

For 17 years Dowling served as the director for OMM assessment for COMLEX-USA Level 2-PE, from 2004 to 2021. He also developed the rubric and training protocols for physician examiners who evaluate performance of osteopathic manipulative treatment. During that time, he assisted in numerous other National Faculty leadership roles, including as chair of the Point of Care Knowledge, Education, and Testing Task Force and as a consultant for osteopathic principles and practice integration for the launch of COMAT clinical examinations.

Since 2020, he has remained involved in NBOME clinical skills assessment as a member of the Special Commission on Osteopathic Medical Licensure Assessment and currently is the consulting coordinator for the Core Competency Capstone for DOs (C3DO) pilot and chair of the C3DO Task Force.

Dowling is director of osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM) in the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Residency Program at Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow, NY. He is a graduate and former chair of OMM at New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine (NYIT-COM).

He is currently the secretary-treasurer of the American Academy of Osteopathy (AAO) and has also served on the AAO Board of Governors and is a past president of that organization.

Dowling developed a specific type of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) called the PINS technique, and is a prolific author, illustrator, and presenter on OMT. He was also the 2015 recipient of the AT Still Medallion of Honor given by the AAO for outstanding accomplishments in osteopathic medicine.

The Thornburg Award is bestowed periodically to National Faculty leadership members who have distinguished themselves by their longstanding contributions to examination development, committee work, or related activities. It is named for longtime National Faculty Chair John E. Thornburg, DO, PhD, who has diligently served the NBOME in numerous capacities for five decades, and continues to serve today.

About the NBOME:
The NBOME is an independent, non-governmental, nonprofit assessment organization committed to protecting the public by providing the means to assess competencies for osteopathic medicine and related health care professions. NBOME’s COMLEX-USA examination series is a requirement for graduation from colleges of osteopathic medicine and provides the pathway to licensure for osteopathic physicians in the United States and numerous international jurisdictions.

Renee Cree, MA
Director for Communications