Gilbert R. Nelmes, RPA-C

Physician Assistant/Administrator
Capitol Hill Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, PLLC 
Washington, DC

Class of 1971 
Induction: 2013


Gilbert R. NelmesMr. Nelmes began his medical career as a Hospital Corpsman after graduating from the Navy’s Hospital Corp School at Great Lakes, Illinois in 1965.  Upon completion of his training he was stationed at the United States Naval Academy. He was transferred to the USS Coral Sea in May of 1966.  He served as a Hospital Corpsman and Surgical Team stationed in the Gulf of Tonkin, Vietnam for nine months.  Mr. Nelmes completed his active duty service at the United States Marine Corp Base Camp Pendleton in August 1967 and his Reserve commitment in August 1970 while completing his studies at the Duke PA Program. Mr. Nelmes arrived at Duke University Medical Center in September of 1967. He was hired to work under the direction of Dr. Roscoe Robinson, Chairman, Department of Nephrology working in in Dialysis Unit, Hypertensive Clinic and the Renal Transplant Program. He was admitted to the PA Program in 1968 and graduated in August of 1971.

After graduating from the Duke P.A. Program, Mr. Nelmes accepted a position in the offices of Dr. Robert Johnson and Norman Wright, Family Practitioners in Coshocton, Ohio.  Mr. Nelmes was the first P.A. in the State of Ohio.   He was appointed the Ohio State Medical Association and the Ohio Academy of Family Practice Ad Hoc Committees to study the profession.  He testified before the Ohio House of Representatives and the State Medical Board.  Mr. Nelmes was the founder of the First Crisis Hotline for Drug Abuse and Mental Health in the Coshocton County. He accepted a Governor’s Appointment to a six-county board of directors that oversaw the funding and programs for mental health, drug abuse, and mental retardation.

From 1973 to 1974, Mr. Nelmes was chosen to participate in a pilot post-graduate P.A. training program at George Washington University. After completing a one-year internship, he returned to Coshocton, Ohio. There, he served as the State Organizer of the Ohio Academy of Physician Assistants and was elected as the first President and sat on the Board of Directors. He recognized the lack of medical care in a rural town and co-developed a rural health clinic, which operated until his departure in 1980.

Mr. Nelmes relocated to the Washington Metropolitan area upon being elected Secretary of the American Academy of Physician Assistants in 1979. He was also elected to the Educational Research Foundation, which is now the Physician Assistant Foundation, where he served as Vice President from 1981 to 1984.

Mr. Nelmes’ faculty appointments have included Cuyahoga Community College/Cleveland Clinic Physician Assistant Program, Kettering College Physician Assistant Program, George Washington University Physician Assistant Program, Florida Atlantic University Nurse Practitioner Program, Visiting Instructor and Instructor National Rehabilitation Hospital PM&R Residency Program.

Mr. Nelmes continues to work as a Clinical Physician Assistant/Administrator at Capitol Hill Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, PLLC in Washington, D.C.