The Retired Players Association (RPA) is proud and honored to have assembled such a prestigious Board of Directors, all of whom are 100% committed to our mission, goals and objectives. Each has shown exemplary charitable service both professionally and within their local communities. We are expecting big things from them and we know they will deliver!!
In 1964, Mr. Eller, a consensus All-America with the University of Minnesota, was a first-round draft pick of both the National Football League’s Minnesota Vikings and the Buffalo Bills of the then-rival American Football League. A 6-6, 247-pound defensive stalwart, Eller opted to stay in a familiar environment and signed with the Vikings. For the next 15 years through 1978, he was a fixture in one of pro football’s most effective defensive alignments. He finished his career with one final season with the Seattle Seahawks in 1979, having played in 225 regular season games.
During Eller’s career, the Vikings enjoyed great success on the field. Starting in 1968, Eller’s fifth campaign, Minnesota won 10 NFL/NFC Central Division titles in the next 11 seasons. The Vikings won the 1969 NFL championship and NFC crowns in 1973, 1974, and 1976 and played in four Super Bowls.
A major factor in this long string of successes was a ferocious defensive line often referred to as "The Purple People Eaters.” Eller was the left end of a line that included Jim Marshall at the opposite end and Hall of Famer Alan Page and Gary Larsen at the tackles. Extremely quick and mobile for his size, Carl was an excellent defender against the run and superb as a pass rusher. In one three-string season from 1975 to 1977, he recorded 44 sacks, according to unofficial statistics (sacks did not become an official NFL statistic until 1982). He also was effective in blocking kicks and, during his career he recovered 23 opponents’ fumbles, the third best mark in NFL annals at the time of his retirement. It was Eller who caused the now infamous fumble that led to teammate Jim Marshall’s wrong-way run for a safety in 1964 in a game against the San Francisco 49ers.
Mr. Eller went on to become one of the most honored defensive players of his time. He became a regular his rookie season and was named first- or second-team All-Pro every year from 1967 through 1973. He was All-NFL or All-NFC 1968 through 1973 and then All-NFC again in 1975. In 1971, he won the George Halas Award as the NFL’s leading defensive player and was selected to play in six Pro Bowls (1969-1972, 1974, and 1975).
DR. PATRICIO REYES, MD
Dr. Patricio F. Reyes is a board certified and highly regarded neurologist and neuropathologist. He is currently Program Director of the Center for Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease at HealthPartners Specialty Center and Attending Neurologist and Neuropathologist of Regions Hospital in St. Paul, MN.
His previous positions include Director of the Alzheimer’s disease and Cognitive Disorders Program at Barrow Neurological Institute – St. Joseph Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, AZ, and Professor of Neurology, Pathology and Psychiatry and Director of the Center for Aging, Alzheimer’s disease and Neurodegenerative Disorders at Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, NE and Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia.
Dr. Reyes was one of the first to establish rapid autopsy brain banking in the United States and the first to build Alzheimer’s disease and Dementia Centers in Texas, Pennsylvania and Nebraska. He and his associates described the smell changes in Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders and was the principal investigator of numerous clinical trials that led to the FDA approval of new drugs for Alzheimer’s disease. Similar olfactory deficits may exist in individuals with concussion and brain trauma.
Most importantly, Dr. Reyes has been the advocate for identifying as well as improving the health care needs of all ethnic groups and high-risk populations. He was a volunteer physician for Golden Gloves, and board member, 2009 distinguished educator of the year, and education committee chair of the American Association of Professional Ringside Physicians. He has worked extensively with the Retired Players Association to improve health care for retired NFL players as well as improving health care awareness for the boxing profession in his native Philippines.
His accomplishments as a teacher, clinician, scientist and community leader have been affirmed by his selection as “Best Doctors of American in 2003-2004, Scientist of the 21st Century, the Republican Party’s Ronald Reagan Gold Medal recipient in 2004, Physician of the Year for 2005, 2007 Arizona’s Asian American Association for Community Service and Physician of the Day by the Arizona House of Representatives. In 2009, he was named Top Doctor, in Who’s Who Global Medical Directory. He is a member of several medical and scientific organizations. He is currently involved in assessing the medical, cognitive, neurologic and neuropathologic aspects of sports and non sport related traumatic brain injury symptoms with the hope of developing newer and more effective treatment.
DR. JACK M. BERT, MD Dr. Jack Bert is a board certified and highly regarded orthopedic surgeon. Dr. Bert is currently an adjunct Clinical Professor at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine and a physician at Minnesota Bone & Joint Specialists, Ltd. in MN. Dr. Bert is also the Past President of the Arthroscopy Association of North America. He is member of the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons and has published over 70 articles and 10 book chapters on orthopedic surgery related issues. Specialties: Knee Surgery, Arthroscopic Surgery, Sports Medicine, Knee, Hip, and Shoulder, Total Joint Replacement, Hip and Knee
Undergraduate Degree: Northwestern University, Evanston, IL
Medical Degree: Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
Residency: Orthopedics, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
Memberships: - American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons - Arthroscopic Association of North America
DR. LAURA ALBERTON, MD Started Practice: 2000 Joined Scripps Clinic Medical Group: 2000 Teaching Roles: - Instructor, San Diego Sports and Arthroscopy Fellowship - Clinical Faculty, University of California, San Diego Professional Societies: - Arthroscopy Association of North America - American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons - California Orthopedic Association Research Focus: - Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) outcomes - Post-operative pain
The RPA is a Minnesota nonprofit corporation that has received recognition of federal tax-exempt status as a public charity under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions made to the RPA are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.