The Robert Bowie Society was started by John C. Willis, DC as a tribute to Dr. Robert Bowie, one of the first chiropractors in the state of Virginia. Members of the Robert Bowie Society ("The Society") have made contributions of $1,000 yearly to CPAC.
Dr. Bowie was raised in southwest Virginia. He graduated from Palmer School of Chiropractic in 1927 and started his practice in Galax, Virginia in 1928. He soon met a major obstacle: a letter from seven medical doctors informing him that the law required any practicing doctor to be a graduate of an approved medical college and licensed by the state of Virginia. They suggested he leave town immediately. When he continued to practice, he was arrested, fined $30 and ordered to leave town immediately. He appealed the conviction and continued to practice. He was arrested again, fined $500, and given 90 days in jail. Dr Bowie appealed that decision and with the testimony of his numerous patients, the jury found him "not guilty" in thirty minutes. Six of the medical doctors ultimately became his friends and patients.
In 1943, Dr. Bowie was elected to the Virginia General Assembly. He was instrumental in obtaining Chiropractic licensure in Virginia and was the first Doctor of Chiropractic to serve on the Virginia Board of Medicine.
The Society was created to recognize the CPAC donor who does more than his or her share -- and to motivate the rest of us to do the same. Society members receive no acclaim and do not ask for any -- just Like Dr. Bowie. Dr. Bowie was modest and sincere, always doing more than he had to and never asking anything for himself. Some give little or nothing, yet tell the PAC what to do with the money someone else gave. It is CPAC's hope and intent that donors named to the Robert Bowie Society will feel pride and achievement.
Fortunately, we no longer have the threat of prison. What we have to do is less dramatic. But it is what we HAVE TO DO and it is just as important. We have to give money, sometimes when it hurts -- in essence, our own little "JAIL” sentence.
For a list of current Bowie Society members, click here.