Clair O'Dell Awarded Honorary Doctor of
Chiropractic Humanities Degree
AUGUST 12, 2002 - Legendary chiropractor
and staunch Sherman College supporter Clair W.
O’Dell, D.C., Ph.C., was recently presented with
the honorary Doctor of Chiropractic Humanities (D.C.H.)
degree in honor of his commitment to the
chiropractic profession and to Sherman College.
During Sherman College’s June commencement
ceremony, President Jerry L. Hardee, Ed.D.,
presented O’Dell with the framed honorary degree
as well as a gold medallion bearing the Sherman
College logo. O’Dell then presented the
commencement address to the graduates.
Hardee said O’Dell was very worthy of receiving
the Doctor of Chiropractic Humanities degree.
“Dr. O’Dell is a giant in the chiropractic
profession,” he said. “He was around during the
turbulent times and took many personal risks to
ensure that the philosophy espoused by D.D. and
B.J. Palmer remained intact. Having assisted so
many individuals to become chiropractors and to
grow in the field is a tribute to his commitment
and perseverance for a profession that he loves
A 1936 graduate of Palmer College of
Chiropractic, O’Dell practices in Southgate, MI,
and continues to write, travel and lecture about
the benefits of chiropractic care. He is now in
his 65th year of practice.
O’Dell and his wife, Martha, estimate that they
have influenced nearly 200 people to become
doctors of chiropractic, including many members
of their own family. Their sons, Roger and
James, have been doctors of chiropractic for 40
and 35 years, respectively, and their daughters,
Joan Swistock and Kay Alcott, are chiropractic
assistants. Twelve grandchildren and 17
great-grandchildren are faithfully carrying on
the chiropractic legacy — 39 in total are
involved in the profession.
O’Dell is a charter member of the International
Chiropractors Association. He was instrumental
in the formation of the American Chiropractic
Association and was first president of the
Straight Chiropractic Academic Standards
Association. He was chairman of the committee
that brought about the antitrust lawsuit against
the American Medical Association in the 1970s
and ‘80s. He also assisted in getting
chiropractic licensing laws passed in
Massachusetts, New York and Oklahoma.
O’Dell was recently honored with the Lifetime
Service Award at the World Chiropractic Parker
Seminar. He was named Humanitarian of the Year
by the World Chiropractic Alliance in 2000 and
was cited for his service to the profession as
well as to his patients. He has previously been
named Chiropractor of the Year and Career
Advisor of the Year by Sherman College.
In addition, he is a member of the International
Board of Governors of the World Chiropractic
Alliance and the Sherman College Board of
Regents, a select group of people dedicated to
supporting quality straight chiropractic
Archived News Releases
Back to Campus