John Brauchie is a sort of baseball hipster: he was making unassisted triple plays before unassisted triple plays were a thing—or at least before he knew they were a thing. “I think I was about 9 years old,” he said. “I caught the ball at first and touched first; then, I ran to second base and touched second. I didn’t even really know what I did or how rare it was until my dad told me later.”
John’s team made it to the Little League World Series that year—quite the feat for any young baseball player—but that was just the beginning of his impressive athletic career. When he was a senior in high school, his team—from Bishop Kelly High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma (go Comets!)—won the state championship title and was nationally ranked. That success caught the attention of college recruiters, and John ended up nabbing a spot as a first baseman at Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana.
There, as a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity, John earned his other claim to everlasting fame: booking hip-hop artist—and one-time Grammy nominee—Afroman for a party at the Phi house. “I blew our entire social budget on this one party,” he said, going on to note that the entertainment value was definitely worth the price. “It was a legendary concert,” he said. “There were hundreds of people there. The house got destroyed.”
While he’s the first to admit that he didn’t put as much focus on the academic portion of his college career as he probably should have, he did buckle down his senior year—and graduated in 2008 with a degree in history. Originally, he was considering going on to law school, but he decided to get some work experience under his belt instead. So, after graduation, he headed back home to Oklahoma (where the wind comes sweepin’ down the plain) and took a job as a payment processing account manager. Three years later, though, he was ready to trade wavin’ wheat for climbin’ cacti.
So, on Christmas Day, he announced to his family that he planned to pack up and ship out to Phoenix, Arizona. And five days later, he did just that. “I’m a very impulsive person,” he said. “But I had friends here, so I knew I had some couches to crash on for at least a couple of months.” Fortunately, it didn’t take him long to find gainful employment. Unfortunately, that employment was at an online advertising company that just didn’t jibe with John’s professional style. Of course, as the old saying goes, there’s a silver lining to every cloud, and in John’s case, that shining light was WebPT. He heard about the growing rehab therapy software startup from long-time WebPT employee Jessica Millett, who knew one of his buddies. “I thought, that’s an awesome company; I will literally do anything there,” he said.
He landed a gig on WebPT’s Support team in 2012 and later moved into the training department. He also served as a Tier II Support rep before hopping over to the Member Value team. In that role—which he’s had for about eight months—John helps current WebPT Members get the most out of everything our platform has to offer. Thanks to his support background, John is able to have “conversations [that] are much more deep than someone hired outside of the company.” That’s because he understands their day-to-day challenges and how they can use the app to solve them. One of those challenges: the nationwide shift to a value-based payment environment—something that has healthcare providers across the country looking for ways to objectively demonstrate the quality of care they provide. Luckily, WebPT has answered the call on that front with its recently launched Outcomes product. According to John, WebPT Outcomes already has generated a ton of interest among forward-thinking Members who are eager to take their clinics to the next level.
However, he also knows it will take a while to generate buy-in throughout the rehab therapy community—which means John and his fellow Member Value team members definitely have their work cut out for them in the coming months. But, that potential is what keeps him excited about his job: “There’s still stuff I want to learn, and there’s a lot of growth that’s going to occur within our existing Member base that I want to be a part of.” And after that, who knows; John hasn’t ruled out trying his hand in another role at WebPT. After all, he’s all about seizing opportunities as they arise.
In the meantime, he plans to enjoy Phoenix’s incredible spring weather—especially out on the Valley’s many hiking trails. “I love hiking,” he said. “In my family, it was kind of a rite of passage that you got to go on a big hiking trip in the Bighorn Mountains [in Wyoming] when you turned 14.” And even though Arizona’s “warm mountain climate” took some getting used to, John has adapted. In fact, he loves hitting the trails in Phoenix’s South Mountain Park so much that he recently bought a house at the base of the mountain.
John also is an avid participant on WebPT’s official company sports teams—including our basketball team. “We’re also working on putting together a curling team,” he said. As for baseball, while John’s unassisted triple play days are probably over, he wouldn’t be against coming out of retirement to represent the company if the opportunity presented itself. Just don’t ask him to hire the musical entertainment for the post-season party.
Fave Five with John:
- Favorite food: Sushi
- Favorite movie: Rudy
- Favorite sports team: Notre Dame
- Favorite band/musical artist: Neil Young
- Favorite place: Cloud Peak Reservoir (in Wyoming)