It was 1990 when William “Bill” Detoro Sr. launched Anatomical Concepts, Inc. What started 30 years ago as a solution to foot drop and heel ulceration reduction, has now grown into a 2nd-generation, global leader in prefabricated and custom-made braces for the orthotic and prosthetic, physical therapy and rehabilitation industries.
A lot has changed over the last three decades – from new technologies in orthosis development and production to expanded treatment capacity with orthoses – and there’s no better individual to speak with about these advancements than “Bill Sr.”
To celebrate Anatomical Concepts, Inc. 30-year anniversary, we sat down with Bill Sr. as he shares how the business started, where it’s at and where it’s going.
1. 2020 marks Anatomical Concepts 30-year celebration. In that time, what would you say is the organization’s biggest accomplishment?
Bill Sr.: Having the ability to maintain our current market share without unnecessarily large price increases for our products, all while insuring that quality remains the number one priority.
2. What does Anatomical mean to you?
Bill Sr.: Anatomical Concepts has been a dream come true, not only for myself, but for my family and so many other families that have made a living through employment with us.
3. What challenges did you face as an orthosis business 30 years ago?
Bill Sr.: We faced many obstacles early on, but I say the biggest hurdle was taking a financial chance of attempting to build a business from the ground up and not negatively affect Youngstown Orthotic Prosthetic Inc., which I operated at the time.
4. What obstacles do you face today?
Bill Sr.: I have amazing children who have assumed the various responsibilities of running the day-to-day operations. From my son – Bill Jr., President of Anatomical Concepts – to my daughters – one in production and another in marketing and advertising – they have an understanding and love for the good of the business.
5. What role has Anatomical Concepts played in the orthotics industry?
Bill Sr.: The orthotic profession customarily supports organizations that uphold their mission and highest standards, which has been one of our main goals.
6. What are some of your fondest memories of the past 30 years?
Bill Sr.: I would say having the opportunity to work with an incredible group of people year after year. It’s so gratifying being able to provide a way of living for individuals, but also caring deeply about them.
7. If you could go back in time, what's one piece of advice you would give yourself 30 years ago?
Bill Sr.: I would have taken more of a risk and not have given so much of Anatomical Concepts stock away at the beginning of the process.
8. What's been most surprising about the journey to 30 for Anatomical?
Bill Sr.: The mere fact that so many businesses, especially in our industry, have come and gone, and yet, we’re still standing, and at a reputable level.
9. Where do you see the orthosis industry heading in the next decade?
Bill Sr.: Today’s orthotic practitioners have become more comfortable with pre-manufactured orthotic products. I feel strongly that Anatomical Concepts is well positioned to continue offering superb solutions that can assist a new generation of practitioners.
10. 30 years is a special milestone. What are your aspirations for Anatomical at year 40?
Bill Sr.: It’s an incredible achievement to mark 30 years of improving patient outcomes. Our goal moving forward is to continue staying focused and being able to maintain all the ideals and successful attributes of our business model that has brought Anatomical Concepts where it is today.
Anatomical Concepts has put in place a model incorporating innovation and commitment – a global leader in the orthotic industry – for better patient outcomes. In 30 years, a vision turned into reality through design, patents and marketing.
What does the next 30 years mean for Anatomical Concepts and orthotics? We’re excited to take that next step forward and see.