News Releases

American Osteopathic Association installs Ronald Burns, DO, FACOFP, as 123rd President

Family medicine physician focused on strengthening partnerships with affiliates

By AOA Media Team


CHICAGO—July 29, 2019—Ronald Burns, DO, FACOFP, a family medicine physician from Orlando, Florida, was installed Saturday as president of the American Osteopathic Association.

Dr. Burns assumed the presidency before an estimated 500 osteopathic physicians (DOs) at the American Osteopathic Association’s annual business meeting in Chicago. The organization represents the professional interests of the nation’s more than 145,000 DOs and osteopathic medical students.

“My goal is to ensure the AOA is ready to meet the current and future needs of its ever-growing body of constituents,” said Dr. Burns. “By necessity, that means having strong collaborative relationships with AOA’s affiliate organizations.”

In 2018, the profession added more than 6,500 new osteopathic medical school graduates, bringing the total number of DOs in the U.S. to 114,425. If the upward trend continues, DOs are projected to represent more than 20% of all practicing physicians by 2030.

Dr. Burns is a board-certified family medicine physician, with a private practice in Orlando, Florida. He has represented the state of Florida in the AOA House of Delegates for the past 19 years. He has also been a member of the Florida Osteopathic Medical Association for over 29 years and served as its president from 2004-2005.

A graduate of Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, Dr. Burns completed his residency at Florida Hospital East Orlando. In 2018, the Ohio Alumni Association Board of Directors presented Dr. Burns with the Medal of Merit for achieving distinction in his field.

Also Saturday, delegates named AOA Trustee Thomas Ely, DO, president-elect of the AOA. Dr. Ely is a board-certified family medicine physician and former Chief Medical Officer of Gateway Medical Center in Clarksville, Tennessee. His term as president will begin in July 2020.

About the AOA
The American Osteopathic Association (AOA) represents more than 145,000 osteopathic physicians (DOs) and osteopathic medical students; promotes public health; encourages scientific research; serves as the primary certifying body for DOs; and is the accrediting agency for osteopathic medical schools.

To learn more about DOs and the osteopathic philosophy of medicine, visit

About the AOA House of Delegates
The AOA’s House of Delegates, comprised of more than 500 delegates representing osteopathic state medical associations, specialty societies, interns, residents and students from throughout the country, meets annually in July to set organizational policies for the American Osteopathic Association and elect its officers.

Media Contact:
Jeff Brennan, Media Relations Manager
(312) 202-8161 |