Annual Continuing Education Conference

Speaker Bios

Amy Graham is a speech language pathologist and owner of Graham Speech Therapy, a private practice in Colorado Springs that specializes in pediatric speech sound disorders. She received both her bachelors and masters degrees in Communicative Disorders from California State University, Fullerton and has been an SLP for over 20 years. Amy is the creator of the Graham Speech Therapy Oral-Facial Exam, the Bjorem Speech Decks for Lateralization and Cycles, and has been a guest on numerous SLP podcasts. She has a particular interest in supporting and equipping SLPs to help them provide evidence-based treatment by posting frequent therapy videos and practical therapy tips on social media platforms.

Doug Sladen, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. Dr. Sladen received his Master's in 1994 and his Ph.D. in 2006. His research interests are centered on the outcomes of adults and children with cochlear implants. Most recently he has been studying outcomes among patients with single-sided deafness (SSD) who receive a cochlear implant.

Ed Bice is a speech pathologist currently working as a Clinical Consultant for IOPI Medical. He has experience in various settings, including acute care, outpatient, home health, and skilled nursing. He has held various leadership positions such as a Regional Manager, Vice President of Clinical Services, and Chief Operating Officer. Ed has been a guest on national and international dysphagia podcasts, and written blogs concerning dysphagia and dysphagia related topics for Dysphagia Café and has publications in peer-reviewed journals. As adjunct faculty, he teaches the swallowing course at the University of Maryland. Ed has been an invited speaker for universities, state, and national conventions on various topics in dysphagia.

Lyndsey Zurawski, SLP.D, CCC-SLP is a school-based SLP in Palm Beach County, with a focus on language, literacy, and inclusive practices. She is a consultant and national presenter. In 2016, Dr. Zurawski received the School Clinician of the Year award from FLASHA. She is the Immediate Past-President of FLASHA and President-Elect of CSAP.

Aurora J. Weaver is an Assistant Professor for the Department of Speech, Language Hearing Sciences. She received both her Bachelor's degree in Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences, her clinical doctorate in Audiology (Au.D.) and Ph.D. in Hearing Science from Ohio University, in Athens Ohio. She is the Lead Researcher in the Auditory and Music Perception Lab, which studies the following areas: Developmental Psychoacoustics, Fundamental Central Auditory Processes & Diagnostic Audiology, and Auditory Benefits of Auditory & Musical Training. Dr. Weaver teaches medical aspects of hearing disorders, diagnostic audiology, outcome measures in audiology, professional issues in audiology, advanced amplification, and audiology grand rounds, at Auburn University. Throughout her time at Auburn University, she has cultivated service-learning opportunists for students to apply their knowledge and skills to a project in the community, and use these opportunities to help facilitate the soft skills students need and solidify their understanding of course content with active learning and meaningful civic engagement. I also serve on the Board of Directors for the Educational Audiology Association (EAA).

Sucheta Kamath is an award-winning speech-language pathologist, a TEDx speaker, an educator, a trainer who trains educators, a community leader, and an entrepreneur whose patented digital curriculum ExQ® is innovating personalized leaning in the Ed-Tech space. She is highly specialized in Executive Function training and empowering differently-abled learners to become self-devised strategic thinkers. Marked by distinctly imaginative, practical and yet engaging ways for translating the intersectionality between neuroscience, cognitive psychology, social psychology and education, Sucheta is recognized for her thought-leadership in transformative teaching and learning. Sucheta hosts a weekly podcast called Full PreFrontal®: Exposing the Mysteries of Executive Function; where her invited guests range from neuroscientists, researchers, SLP practitioners, educators, learning specialists, and leading thinkers. Over the past 20 years in her private practice, Cerebral Matters®, Sucheta has developed and implemented her signature “Thinking-To-Learn” programs for children and adults and curriculum for K-12 students that include Executive Function Mastery, Attention & Social Cognition Training, Working Memory Training, Abstraction & Critical Reading Training, and Mind Reading & Social Thinking. Learn more about Sucheta’s work at www.exqinfiniteknowhow.com.

Judy Rich, EdD, CCC-SLP, BCS-CL is a Professor of Practice University of Texas at Dallas. She is also the ASHA President-Elect.

Brandi L. Newkirk-Turner, is a Professor in the Department of Communicative Disorders and Associate Provost at Jackson State University. Her research examines multicultural issues that are relevant to speech-language assessment of African American English (AAE) speakers and best practices in preparing graduate students to serve culturally and linguistically diverse populations. She directs the Language and Literacy in Diverse Children Lab and is currently working on NSF-funded projects that examine variation and the grammar of child AAE. She is a recipient of the ASHA Certificate of Recognition for Special Contributions in Multicultural Affairs.

Erin Picou, PhD, CCC-A is an assistant professor at the Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson center for Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences in Vanderbilt University Medical Center. She currently directs the Hearing and Affect Perception Interest (HAPI) laboratory, which is funded through a variety of industry and federal funding sources. Her research interests are primarily related to hearing aid technologies for adults and children, with a specific focus on speech recognition, listening effort, and emotional responses to sound. Erin is currently serving as section editor for the American Journal of Audiology and also Ear and Hearing. In addition to her research activities, Erin is involved with teaching and mentoring AuD and PhD students at Vanderbilt.

Devin McCaslin, PhD currently serves as the Clinic and Academic Program Director of Audiology at Michigan Medicine in Ann Arbor and holds the rank of Professor in the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. Dr. McCaslin’s major academic, clinical and research interests relate to clinical electrophysiology, vestibular assessment, healthcare economics, and the application of artificial intelligence to manage and treat dizzy patients. He also serves as the Deputy Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the American Academy of Audiology and is a member of the Board of Directors for the American Auditory Society. He is also a Past President of the American Balance Society.

Justin Osmond, MBA (Masters Business Administration) and CEO/Founder (Olive Osmond Hearing Fund). Justin was born with a severe/profound hearing loss. Diagnosed at the age of 2 with a 90% hearing loss and after 12 years of intense speech and listening therapy, he can now speak with passion and through modern-day technology, hear with conviction. Considering the fact that he was a couple years behind his peers, he has shown through intense dedication, mental toughness and physical exertion, that nothing can stop him from going after his dreams. Despite living with a profound hearing loss, Justin pressed forward with a perfect brightness of hope and a love for all humanity. Even after being told by doctors, teachers and professionals that he would never play a musical instrument, he went on to play the violin, viola, piano, and drums. He has received numerous awards such as the prestigious sterling scholarship in music, academic scholarships, honorary achievements, and many athletic titles in soccer, football, basketball, and track. He is also proud to represent the Boy Scouts of America as an Eagle Scout, and he currently has his Master’s in Business Administration. Justin is a family man who resides with his sweetheart Kristi, his two little angels & fluffy dogs in southern Utah. Justin loves 4-wheeling, boating, camping, anything outdoors, and spending time with family and friends. Justin knows first-hand what it is like to live in a world without sound. In his recently published book “Hearing with my Heart”, he shares his story with the world in order to help everyone understand the struggles of living with a hearing loss and how to overcome it. He lives every day by his personal motto: “I may have a hearing loss, but that hearing loss does not have me.

Cassie Clark, Pharm.D. is the BCPS Director of Pharmacy at Merit Health Biloxi. She earned a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy in 2008 and a Bachelor of Science in biological sciences from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2003. She serves as the Director of Pharmacy at Merit Health Biloxi, with previous experience as an inpatient clinical pharmacist. Cassie is a member of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Mississippi Society of Health-System Pharmacists, and the Mississippi Pharmacist Association. She also serves on the topic selection committee and peer review committee for Therapeutic Research Center (Pharmacist Letter). Her professional areas of expertise and interest include antibiotic stewardship, drug utilization optimization, and compounding of sterile products.

Greg Snyder, PhD CCC-SLP, is an associate professor and graduate program coordinator for the department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at The University of Mississippi. Greg manages the Laboratory for Stuttering: Science, Treatment, Advocacy and Research (SSTAR). Current research interests include the application of motor theory to the speech sciences (including the prosthetic management of stuttering), as well as the use of disclosures as a means of improving the quality of life for the stuttering community.

Michelle Dawson, MS, CCC-SLP, CLC, Coordinator for Clinical Education and Assistant Clinical Professor with the Master of Speech-Language Pathology at Francis Marion University in Florence, SC, is the acclaimed host of “First Bite: Fed, Fun, Functional” a weekly Speech Therapy Podcast that addresses “all thangs” Pediatric Speech Therapy, and is sponsored by Speechtherapypd.com. Recently, Michelle authored, "Chasing the Swallow: Truth, Science, and Hope for Pediatric Feeding and Swallowing Disorders". She is an accomplished lecturer; traveling across the nation delivering courses on best practices for evaluation and treatment of the medically complex infant, toddler, and child with respect to their pediatric oropharyngeal dysphagia, pediatric feeding disorder, as well as language acquisition within the framework of Early Intervention. She has served as the Treasurer for the Council of State Association Presidents, is a Past President of the South Carolina Speech, Language, and Hearing Association, a 2017 graduate of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s Leadership Development Program, a 2020 recipient of the Pediatric Feeding Disorder Awareness Champion from Feeding Matters, a 2021 recipient of the Louis M. DiCarlo Award for Outstanding Clinical Achievement from the South Carolina Speech, Language, and Hearing Association, and six time recipient of American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s ACE Award for continuing education.

Theresa H. Rodgers, MA, CCC-SLP, EdS (LD) is ASHA's 2021 Past President, owner of SLP Consulting Services LLC, a speech-language pathologist and special education consultant. A board certified specialist in child language as well as a certified teacher of students with learning disabilities, she has many years of experience in administration and supervision including as the former Chief Administrative Officer for a government entity, special educator supervisor, and special education coordinator for a public school system. Theresa was the 2012-2014 ASHA VP for Government Relations and Public Policy and has served as president of ASHA, the Council for State Association Presidents, National Council of State Boards of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and LSHA. She is the former chair of ASHA’s Board of Ethics and the Council for Clinical Certification. An ASHA Fellow, Theresa is a frequent presenter at national and state conferences on ethics, advocacy, leadership, supervision, school-based practice, and other topics.

Susanna McDonald completed her Masters in Speech and Hearing Sciences with a focus in Early Oral Intervention from the University of Southern Mississippi. Most of her work experience consists of working with families and their children with hearing loss in their home or individual clinic setting. Susanna completed the requirements for LSLS certification in 2016, making her the third Listening and Spoken Language Specialist in the state. She currently works with children birth to 5 years who are pursuing listening and spoken language at The Children’s Center for Communication and Development. Susanna resides in Hattiesburg, Mississippi with her husband and two young children.

Rachel K. Powell, PhD, CCC-SLP, received her Master’s degree from The University of Southern Mississippi, and her Doctorate of Philosophy degree from Louisiana State University. She specializes in language development and disorders, and literacy acquisition and disorders. She has been employed as a speech-language pathologist, diagnostician, and instructional specialist in public schools for 18 years. She has taught as an Adjunct Professor for coursework in language, literacy, and speech sound disorders. She is a past-president of the Mississippi Speech-Language-Hearing Association, and currently serves as Legislative Chair. Rachel has been invited to present regionally on topics including language/speech evaluation, development of standards-based IEPs, and the language foundations of literacy. She has presented nationally on topics including curriculum-based interventions, response to intervention, and service delivery models. Rachel is published in Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools titled “Unique Contributors to the Curriculum: From Research to Practice for Speech-Language Pathologists in Schools.”

Dr. Whitney Gilbert has been a speech language pathologist in the public-school system since 2005. She has worked in Georgia, Mississippi and Virginia serving students from age 3 to 21 from diverse backgrounds. Dr. Gilbert has a Bachelor of Science in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Montevallo with a minor in deaf studies, a Master of Science in Communicative Disorders from the University of Mississippi and a Doctorate of Education in Special Education and Multiple Abilities from The University of Alabama. Over the past few years, Dr. Gilbert has worked in the middle and high school settings. She has an interest in augmentative and alternative communication for students with complex communication needs and functional communication for students transitioning into the community. Presently, Dr. Gilbert resides in Mississippi and works with Desoto County Schools.

Lauren Clay is a Therapeutic Interventionist currently serving Desoto County Schools. She is working with K-12 students across the district in the areas of behavior, social skills and applied behavior analysis (ABA). Lauren holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Shippensburg University, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania and a Master’s Degree in Special Education with an ABA concentration from Penn State University. Prior to becoming an Interventionist, Lauren worked as an elementary general education teacher and in special education as an inclusion teacher for K-5 and 9-12th grades.

Mary Alden Wing is a graduate student in the Audiology program at the University of Southern Mississippi. Her research interests are related to teacher training via tele-audiology, implicit bias, and gender bias. Mary Alden loves working with patients and helping give them better access to the communication world. After graduation, she hopes to become a successful audiologist.

Keysha Bradley is a native of Pontotoc,MS. She received her Bachelor’s of Science degree from The University of Mississippi in Communication Sciences & Disorders. Keysha is a rising third year Audiology student at the University of Southern Mississippi and is a proud member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc, MSHA,NSSLHA, and ASHA. 

Dr. Donyea Hargrove considers himself as a catalyst of change. Dr. Hargrove personal mission is to empower, encourage and equip the next generation of leaders in the area of diversity equity and inclusion.Dr. Hargrove is an 2 time graduate of Thee Alcorn State University; where he received his Bachelors Degree in Education and Master’s degree in Guidance Counseling. Dr. Hargrove received his Ph.D. from Thee Jackson State University in the 2019. His dissertation topic, “The Perception of the Chief Diversity Officer and their role in the recruitment and retention of African American Faculty at predominant white institution in higher education”. He has served in the higher education community in different capacities for over the last 11 years at institutions such as, Alcorn State University, Tougaloo College, and Jackson State University.

Dr. Hargrove is passionate about the area of diversity, equity and inclusion. He is a member of the National association of diversity officer in higher education. Furthermore he received diversity certification from the university south Florida. Dr. Hargrove is married to the lovely Lindsay Hargrove and they have 5 beautiful children, Camron, Mackenzie, Moriah, Marley, and Meredith.

Teresa Laney is the Monitoring and Related Services Coordinator for the Mississippi Department of Education. In this role, she provides professional development and coaching to school districts both regionally and individually, and oversees programmatic monitoring for the Office of Special Education. Teresa has a B.S. in Speech-Language and Audiology from the University of Southern Mississippi and an M.S. in Communication Disorders from Western Kentucky University, is a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), and currently serves as President-Elect of the State Education Agency Communication Disabilities Council (SEACDC). She is certified in dyslexia assessment and has seven years of experience evaluating and tutoring children with reading difficulties.

Leisa McCullough attended undergraduate school at the Mississippi University for Women in Columbus, MS where she completed her Bachelor of Science in Speech-Language Pathology and her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. She then completed her Master of Science in Communicative Disorders at Jackson State University in Jackson, MS. Her primary work experience is in the adult acute care setting, including long term acute care facilities specializing in trach and vent weaning. Leisa is currently a full-time speech-language pathologist at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, MS where she is a member of the adult acute care team within the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. Leisa’s primary interests are assessment, intervention and management of oropharyngeal dysphagia and communication impairments in the adult acute care population, including head/neck cancer patients, trauma patients, stroke patients and specifically with patients who are post tracheostomy. Leisa also enjoys serving as a clinical instructor for graduate student clinicians. She is an ASHA credentialed SLP and an active member of MSHA.

 

Angie Brunson, M.S. CCC-SLP is a speech-language pathologist at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, MS. Angie is part of the adult acute care team within the Department of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery at the state’s only Level one trauma center. Angie has thirty years of experience in the field with primary interest in the area of dysphagia assessment and intervention within the neurogenic, trauma, and medically fragile patient population. This also includes management of head and neck cancer patients following tracheotomy and total laryngectomy. Special interests include dysphagia and vocal fold dysfunction post extubation. Angie has a love for hands-on education and training with future clinicians in the acute care setting.


Paige Sanford
holds a Master's Degree and currently is a Speech Language Pathologist- Clinical Fellow at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She has completed externships at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in the Adult Acute care setting and Head and Neck Cancer Institute in which she worked with a range of ages and disorders providing therapy at an acute stage in which oral motor exercises have a role that varies from other settings I have had the opportunity to work in. I have also had the experience treating patients in a skilled nursing facility providing therapy to a range of disorders at a different level of care. These experiences have shaped my clinical view of oral motor exercises, their use in our field, and the lack of understanding surrounding their effectiveness and best practice for use.

Missy Schraeder, Ph.D., is director at the DuBard School for Language Disorders at The University of Southern Mississippi. She is on the board of directors for the Academic Language Therapy Association and president-elect for Mississippi Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She received her doctorate in educational administration, is a nationally certified speech-language pathologist, Certified Academic Language Therapist-Qualified Instructor, and Structured Literacy Dyslexia Specialist. She is an adjunct instructor in Speech and Hearing Sciences and Dyslexia Therapy and teaches courses in professional development. She has presented at national conferences in the areas of oral and written language disorders/dyslexia, multisensory instruction, and apraxia of speech.

Jessica May, M.A., CCC-SLP is originally from Ohio. She received her Master's degree in speech-language pathology from Kent State University in 2010 and her BA in Psychology from Southern Wesleyan University in 2007. Having trained in the acute care setting, Jessica specializes in the evaluation and treatment of swallowing disorders and has been utilizing FEES and MBSS to assess swallow function since 2013. Additionally, she is trained in Videostroboscopy, Vital Stim therapy, and Myofacial Release. Jessica is currently employed by UMMC and is a member of the adult acute care team.

Caroline Jones, M.S., CCC-SLP, is a speech-language pathologist and instructor in the Department of Otolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She received her B.S. from the University of Mississippi in 2014 and her M.S. from Jackson State University in 2017. She currently works in adult acute care at UMMC where she specializes in evaluation and treatment of swallowing disorders and speech, language, and cognitive disorders as well as tracheostomy voice restoration.

Ashley Anne McDonald, Au.D, CCC-A, FAAA Assistant Professor, Pediatric Audiologist University of Mississippi Medical Center Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery

Ashley Grillis obtained her Doctor of Audiology in 2013 at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Knoxville. She joined the University of Mississippi Medical Center in January 2017 as an assistant professor in the Department of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery. Her clinical duties include diagnostic and treatment for the pediatric population, with specific interest in cochlear implants and early intervention. Dr. Grillis serves as Team Lead for Pediatric Audiology Services at UMMC. Grillis has previously served as the educational audiologist at the Mississippi School for the Deaf in Jackson and a clinical audiologist at Bridgewater Balance and Hearing in Knoxville, Tennessee. Grillis serves on several state and national committees including American Speech-Language- Hearing Association Committee of Ambassadors, American Cochlear Implant Alliance state champion, Mississippi Department of Health Advisory Council, Mississippi Early Hearing Detection and Intervention program advisory council, and Mississippi Speech Hearing Association audiology committee.

Tiffany Hodge is a Speech Language Pathologist at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She dual-specializes in working with kids and adults with hearing loss/cochlear implants as a part of the UMMC Cochlear Implant Team, and in evaluation and treatment of pediatric feeding/swallowing disorders. She completed her undergraduate and graduate degrees at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, MS. She has diverse work experience across many areas - with pediatrics, adults, as well as with geriatrics, in inpatient, outpatient and nursing home settings. Her passion is with pediatrics, but she enjoys helping people of all ages understand and manage complexities in the world of speech, language, hearing and swallowing disorders.

Hannah Sanders, M.S., CCC-SLP is a speech language pathologist and graduate program coordinator at The Children’s Center for Communication and Development at The University of Southern Mississippi. Hannah has worked at The Children’s Center for eight years where she provides services to infants, toddlers, and preschoolers in home, daycare, and center-based settings. As graduate program coordinator, she coordinates trainings and monitors progress for graduate students as they spend time at The Children’s Center as graduate assistants and graduate clinicians. Hannah participates in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit’s (NICU) follow-up clinic for children discharged from Forrest General Hospital’s NICU. Hannah is certified in the assessment of tethered oral tissues (tongue tie, lip tie). Hannah has also completed The Hanen Centre’s “More Than Words” program. Hannah received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from The University of Southern Mississippi. While completing her undergraduate degree, she wrote an undergraduate thesis through participation with the USM Honors College titled “Mother’s Opinions of Overgeneralization of Plural Nouns and Verb Tenses”. As a graduate student, Hannah was selected as a graduate assistant at The Children’s Center for Communication and Development for one school year. Hannah and her husband, Josh, have three children, Gus (6), Silas (4), and Millie (1). The Sanders family enjoys traveling and spending time outdoors.

Courtney Turner, Au.D., CCC-A - Courtney Turner, Au.D., CCC-A is an audiologist at The Children’s Center for Communication and Development at The University of Southern Mississippi. For the past six years, Dr. Turner has provided both clinical and educational audiology services to children from birth to 5 years of age with a variety of developmental and communicative disabilities. Dr. Turner serves on the Mississippi Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Advisory Committee, the State Department of Health Speech-Language Pathology/Audiology Advisory Council, and the executive board of the Mississippi Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She is an active member of ASHA SIG 9: Pediatric Hearing and Hearing Disorders; a graduate of ASHA’s Leadership Development and Early Career Professionals programs; and a member of the advocacy committee of the Educational Audiology Association.

Cindy Wiltcher graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1981 with a Masters in Speech and Hearing Sciences. She worked for the Jones County Schools for 33 years before retiring in 2014. She continues to work part time for the Laurel City Schools. She became interested in etymology after hearing Dr. Pete Bower’s presentation on Structured Word Inquiry at the National Dyslexia Conference in 2012. Over the past eleven years, she has taken many online classes from various instructors on how words are created and related. She has used this information to help struggling readers understand the structure of words, which has in turn helped them become better readers and writers.

  1. Andrea Lowrie, M.S., CCC-SLP Instructor; Speech-Language Pathologist University of Mississippi Medical Center Department of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery Division of Speech-Language Pathology Andrea has been an SLP for 24 years. She earned her Masters degree from The University of Alabama and completed her CFY in a skilled nursing facility. Since that time she has worked in the inpatient rehabilitation setting and in acute care. She is currently the Team Lead for the adult acute care SLPs in the Division of Speech-Language Pathology in the Department of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery at The University of Mississippi Medical Center. In the acute care setting, she evaluates and treats patients with dysphagia from a variety of etiologies. She also presented at MSHA in 2018.

Charles G. Marx, Au.D., CCC-A is an Audiologist and Associate Professor at The University of Southern Mississippi. A graduate of Mississippi State University (B.A.) and the University of Southern Mississippi (M.S., Au.D.), Dr. Marx teaches courses involving the electrophysiological assessment of hearing and balance. His primary clinical duties at the University involve the electrophysiological assessment of hearing in infants and young children and general Pediatric and Adult behavioral audiometry. Prior to working at USM, Dr. Marx served as the director of Wesley Medical Center’s Neurodiagnostics Department for 25 years.

Sangamanatha Ankmnal Veeranna (Ph.D.) is an Assistant Professor in audiology at the University of Southern Mississippi. Completed my Ph.D. in Hearing Science from the Western University, Canada. My area of research includes psychoacoustics, electrophysiology, and auditory processing disorder.

Delisha D. Speech is a speech language pathologist and owner of Say It Again Speech, Language, and Hearing Therapy Services, a small private practice in Ridgeland, MS. Say It Again… specializes in providing diagnostic and therapy services to pediatric patients and school age children. In addition to private practice, Ms. Speech’s clients include HeadSart agencies and several MS Department of Health-Public Heath Districts where she provides early intervention services, to the birth-to-three population. Ms. Speech has been a certified speech-language pathologist for 20 Years.  She has a Bachelor’s degree in mass communications in 1996 from Jackson State University and she received her Master’s in Communicative Disorders from Jackson State in 2001. In 2015 she began to increase her knowledge base through continuing education opportunities. She completed the Susan Barton’s Screening of Dyslexia Seminar and soon after began to implement the Barton Reading Curriculum into her clinic where she also provides additional services for students with reading deficits including dyslexia. 

Mallory Robertson is a graduate student in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at the University of Mississippi. Mallory graduated from Oklahoma State University in 2015 and upon graduating, accepted an offer from Teach For America and moved to Mississippi to teach middle school science. She served as a graduate clinician in the HILL Program at the University of Mississippi's Speech and Hearing Clinic in Fall 2020 where she became involved in the teletherapy research project for families of children who use speech-generating devices. After completing her graduate degree, Mallory is interested in working in a clinical setting for clients with developmental disabilities.

Susannah Silvia, M.C.D, CCC-SLP is the multi-area director at Beyond Therapy for Kids in Ridgeland and in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. She is a board-certified speech- language pathologist holding the Certificate of Clinical Competence with American Speech and Hearing Association. She obtained her master’s degree in communication disorders from Louisiana State University Health Science Center. Since 2005, Susannah has established various pediatric programs at Beyond Therapy and assisted in the growth and development of pediatrics in other outpatient clinics. She specializes in early language disorders, childhood apraxia of speech, severe articulation disorders and feeding disorders. Susannah is an adjunct professor at Jackson State University where she teaches graduate level courses, Early Intervention and Special Populations. She is an advocate for educating families on childhood development through her children’s book, Your Baby Loves to Say THAT! and blog, @thesouthernbabble on Instagram.

Alyssa Nuzzo, M.S., CCC-SLP is a pediatric speech-language pathologist in the department of Otolaryngology at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She received her B.S. in Communicative Sciences and Disorders from the University of Mississippi in 2014 and received her M.S. in Speech-Language Pathology from Northwestern University in 2017. Alyssa has worked in the outpatient pediatric setting treating and evaluating medically fragile patients with speech/language disorders, feeding/swallowing disorders, and cognitive/linguistic disorders as well as implemented AAC. She currently provides specialized treatment for feeding/swallowing disorders in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Children's of Mississippi. Additionally, Alyssa is a member of the MSHA Membership Committee and MSHA CEU Committee.

Meagan Allen, MS, CCC-SLP Meagan graduated from University for Women in 2010 with a master’s in speech-language pathology. She joined the faculty at UMMC in 2013. She currently works full-time in the Level IV NICU at Children’s of Mississippi where she is the SLP Team Lead. Meagan’s clinical interests and specialization are in neonatal and developmental feeding as well as educating other therapists, staff, providers and families to optimize successful outcomes for patients. Meagan has a passion for continued education in this field to further her knowledge and skills. “We have so much to learn from each other and our patients and each day as a new learning opportunity to better ourselves as clinicians.”

Dr. James Peck obtained his doctorate in audiology from Vanderbilt University. He spent his career as a clinician-teacher. Dr. Peck is an associate professor emeritus of the University of Mississippi Medical Center. His major interest is false and exaggerated hearing loss, about which he has given state and national presentations. His book, Pseudohypacusis: False and Exaggerated Hearing Loss, is the only book on the topic. He is also the author of the chapter on pseudohypacusis in the Comprehensive Handbook of Pediatric Audiology.

Mallory Upchurch, MS, CCC-SLP, CNT Mallory Upchurch joined the University of Mississippi Medical Center faculty in March 2015 as a Pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist. She attended graduate school at the University of Mississippi where she received a MS degree in speech-language pathology. She received her certification as a neonatal therapist in January 2020. Mallory is licensed by the state of Mississippi and is certified by American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA). Her clinical interest are pediatric feeding and swallowing and neonatal intensive care unit.

Dr. Brigitta Walker is an ASHA certified speech-language pathologist currently employed at North Mississippi Health Services. She has practiced speech-language pathology for over 30 years and has provided speech pathology evaluation and intervention services to adults with speech, language, cognitive, voice, fluency and swallowing impairments. She served as adjunct instructor at Nevada State College during the 2021 spring semester where she taught cognitive communication disorders to first year graduate students. She also worked as Adjunct Professor at the University of Mississippi where she taught Dysphagia to second year graduate students. Dr. Walker is currently Co-Instructor to SLPD Capstone Residency Students at Rocky Mountain University of Health Professing Provo, UT. Dr. Walker has multiple certifications including VitalStim, LSVT LOUD, Interactive Metronome, and STAR Oncology Rehabilitation Certification. She is proficient in evaluating swallowing skills using Modified Barium Swallow and Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing.

Chelsea Colip, MS, CCC-SLP, CALT, is a classroom teacher at the DuBard School for Language Disorders at The University of Southern Mississippi. She is a nationally certified Speech-Language Pathologist and Certified Academic Language Therapist. She holds licensure with the Mississippi Department of Education in Speech-Language Pathology (K-12) and an endorsement in Mild to Moderate Disabilities in Special Education (K-12). She also holds licensure with Mississippi Department of Health. She is a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the Academic Language Therapy Association, and the Mississippi Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She received her bachelor’s degree from The University of Mississippi and her master’s degree from The University of Southern Mississippi.

Dr. Amanda Mathews is an Assistant Professor in Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Southern Mississippi. Her research interests include: Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and training graduate students in the areas of: multiculturalism, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Pediatric Feeding and AAC. Her clinical interests include: Childhood Apraxia of Speech, Pediatric Feeding Disorders and other developmental pediatric communication disorders.

  1. Hunter Manasco is a Professor of Speech-Language Pathology at Mississippi University for Women. He specializes in neurogenic communication disorders.

Ruth Ann King received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the University of Mississippi in 2009 and her Master of Science Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the University of Mississippi in 2011. She is an ASHA certified speech-language pathologist and has been practicing for over 10 years within a variety of settings within the state. She is the owner of King Speech-Language Therapy, LLC in Corinth, MS, a private practice dedicated solely to offering speech-language therapy services since 2017. Ruth Ann is a three time ASHA ACE Award recipient, a product reviewer for Plural Publishing, and has been an ASHA Progeny participant as well as an author for the ASHA LeaderLive. She is an active MSHA member and currently serves on the MSHA PR & Marketing Committee.

Evy Jewell Hayes is a graduate student at the University of Southern Mississippi. Her professional interests including serving clients from diverse cultural backgrounds which led to her decision to conduct research in multicultural training. She is currently working on a Master's Thesis in multiculturalism under the direction of Dr. Amanda Mathews.

Stacey Mathis, MS, CCC-SLP, Lead SLP for DeSoto County Schools. I have been in SLP for 22 years. 9 years as a pediatric SLP in various medical settings. 13 years as a school-based SLP. I currently lead 56 SLPs and Speech Associates in the DeSoto County school district.

Alicia Swann, M.C.D, CCC-A, is a board-certified educational audiologist with over 27 years’ experience in assessment and treatment of auditory processing disorder (APD). She is the owner of Auditory Processing Center, LLC, a private practice in Clinton, MS, specializing in APD evaluations and therapy for children and adults. She has developed auditory curriculums for listening skill development and auditory processing intervention, co-authored research articles on diagnosis and treatment of amblyaudia (lazy ear), and has expertise in developing listening and spoken language skills in hearing-impaired children and communication disorders. Alicia received her M.C.D. in Audiology from Auburn University, and is Board Certified in Audiology through the American Board of Audiology, a certified member of ASHA, a Fellow of the American Academy of Audiology, and a member of the International Guild of Auditory Processing Specialists. She is also both a licensed Audiologist and Audiology Educator and a telepractice provider in Florida and Louisiana. Alicia presents nationally on Auditory Processing Disorder, and frequently provides consultations, in-services, and presentations for professional organizations.

Jeffalyn Trammell has worked in the field of speech pathology since 1978. She helped develop MSHA telepractice guidelines.

Ruth Ann King received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the University of Mississippi in 2009 and her Master of Science Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the University of Mississippi in 2011. She is an ASHA certified speech-language pathologist and has been practicing for over 10 years within a variety of settings within the state. She is the owner of King Speech-Language Therapy, LLC in Corinth, MS, a private practice dedicated solely to offering speech-language therapy services since 2017. Ruth Ann is a three time ASHA ACE Award recipient, a product reviewer for Plural Publishing, and has been an ASHA Progeny participant as well as an author for the ASHA LeaderLive. She is an active MSHA member and currently serves on the MSHA PR & Marketing Committee.

Kelly Spence is MSHA Vice President of School Issues. She works in the public school setting.

Mary Campbell, M.S., CCC-SLP is a pediatric speech-language pathologist in the department of Otolaryngology at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She received her B.S. in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Louisiana at Monroe in 2009 and received her M.S. in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Louisiana at Monroe in 2011. Mary has worked in the outpatient pediatric setting treating and evaluating developmentally delayed patients with speech/language disorders and cognitive/linguistic disorders. She currently provides specialized treatment for feeding/swallowing disorders in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Children's of Mississippi. Additionally, Mary is a member of the MSHA Healthcare Committee.

KK Harrington, MS CCC-SLP Owner/Endoscopist at Mississippi Dysphagia Specialists, LLC (A Mobile FEES Company). She received her Bachelor's degree in Communication at Mississippi State University in 2008 and her Master's degree in Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Mississippi in 2012. Over the past decade, KK has been working in a variety of medical settings including acute care hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, inpatient rehab and outpatient rehab in Nashville, Knoxville and Jackson, MS. She is passionate about dysphagia evaluation and treatment prompting her to begin a mobile FEES company in 2019. She now serves the state of Mississippi with mobile swallowing diagnostics. She also works PRN for the University of Mississippi Medical Center and Lackey Memorial Hospital.

Krissy Beattie, M.S, CCC-SLP is a pediatric speech pathologist and an instructor in the Department of Otolaryngology and Communicative Sciences at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She has 12 years of experience across multiple settings serving pediatric patients with feeding disorders and oral motor dysfunction. She is a member of both the American Speech Language and Hearing Association and the Mississippi Speech Language and Hearing Association. She is a 2007 graduate of Mississippi University for Women where she served on the NSSHLA committee then went on to receive her MS in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Southern Mississippi. She has completed coursework in TOTs, sensorimotor approach to feeding and has also started feeding programs at various clinics across the Jackson area. She joined the UMMC faculty in early 2021 and enjoys working in the outpatient setting there.

Jenna Nassar, M.S, CCC-SLP, BCS-S is a pediatric speech pathologist and an instructor in the Department of Otolaryngology and Communicative Sciences at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. In addition to these roles, Mrs. Nassar is also the Clinical internship coordinator for the department of Speech Pathology. She specializes in pediatric swallow & feeding disorders, is trained in a variety of treatment approaches to include the SOS approach to feeding and oromyofunctional disorders. She has completed her Board Certification in swallow and swallowing disorders through the ABSSD. She is a member of both the American Speech Language and Hearing Association, the Mississippi Speech Language and Hearing Association, and SIG 13. Her background includes several years of working with swallowing disorders in trach & ventilator patients and now pediatric feeding disorders. She graduated summa cum laude in 2007 from Mississippi University for Women with a BS in speech and hearing science and then graduated in 2009 with high distinction with an MS in Communicative Sciences from Jackson State University. She enjoys the academia related to her profession and has served as an intermittent adjunct professor as well as a student intern supervisor. As student coordinator, she has helped build a strong student intern program at UMMC to help educate future clinicians in the field. With a strong focus on education and research, she is a part of interdisciplinary teams of both physicians and therapists, which serve to better patient care and educate on the growing field of pediatric dysphagia particularly in her area of interest in feeding disorders and tongue and lip tie. She has served as past Sponsor and Exhibitor chair for the MSHA continuing education conference and currently serves as the VP of Continuing Education.

Rachel Tyrone is a Speech Language Pathologist at the University of Mississippi Medical Center where she has specialized in the evaluation and treatment of pediatric feeding and swallowing disorders. She obtained my BS and MS in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Southern Mississippi. She is currently a PhD student in Population Health Sciences through the University of Mississippi Medical Center. This is the first school of Population Health in Mississippi and is one of only a handful of programs in the country.

Emma Grace Olsen is a student liaison for the MSHA Healthcare Committee. She represents the Mississippi University for Women on the committee.

Kari Lynn Stephens is a student liaison for the MSHA Healthcare Committee. She represents Jackson State University on the committee.

Breanne Dalton is a student liaison for the MSHA Healthcare Committee. She represents the University of Southern Mississippi on the committee

Rinki Varindani Desai is a medical speech-language pathologist, certified brain injury specialist and certified dementia practitioner; specializing in the assessment and treatment of cognitive-linguistic and swallowing disorders in adults. She serves as Associate Coordinator of ASHA’s Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders Special Interest Group (SIG 13), Co-Chair of the Dysphagia Research Society's COVID-19 Task Force and Chair of the MSHA Membership Committee. She is the co-founder of the Swallowing Training and Education Portal, founder of the Medical SLP Forum and co-creator of the Dysphagia Therapy mobile app. A recipient of eight ASHA ACE awards, Rinki was one among 30 clinicians in the world selected for ASHA’s Leadership Development Program in 2017 and ASHA’s Faculty Development Institute program in 2019. After receiving her B.S. in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology in 2009 from AYJNISHD in Mumbai, she earned her M.S. in Communication Disorders from the University of Texas at Dallas in 2011. She has practiced for over a decade in acute, sub-acute and long-term care medical settings in the United States. Rinki is currently the adult outpatient lead SLP and a clinical instructor in the Department of Otolaryngology - Head Neck Surgery at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson. She has presented nationally and internationally on topics related to adult dysphagia. She enjoys reading, writing, traveling, and doing what she can to help advance the profession by paying it forward.

Amy Livingston is a speech-language pathologist, current president of MSHA. She has worked at the University of Mississippi and has successfully managed multidisciplinary teams working with children who have Autism Spectrum Disorder and other severe language disorders.

Tyler J. Standland received his Bachelor's degree in Speech-Pathology from the University of Southern Mississippi, and is currently working to obtain his Master's in Communication Sciences and Disorders at the University of Mississippi. Tyler worked as a graduate assistant in the Telepractice for Language Learning Lab at the University of Mississippi, and currently serves as a student liaison for the MSHA Healthcare Committee.

Dr. Amitava Biswas teaches in the School of Speech and Hearing Sciences of the University of Southern Mississippi since 2015. He earned PhD in Speech and Hearing Sciences from Indiana University in 2005.

Kaylin McCree is a graduate student and student researcher at Mississippi University for Women with a special interest in Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders.

Dr. Carolyn Wiles Higdon, CCC-SLP,  F-ASHA, F-NAP, professor/former department chair of University of Mississippi/ UM Medical Center, and CEO of Wiles Higdon & Associates, LLC, a private practice. Her honors include Fellow of ASHA,  Fellow of NAP, Phi Kappa Phi, and Honors of Mississippi Speech and Hearing Association (MSHA) as well as MSHA Clinician of the Year.  Dr. Higdon has served ASHA through the Financial Planning Board, Government Relations and Public Policy Board, Special Interest Divisions Board of Division Coordinators and the Council of Academic Accreditation, as well as serving as a CAA and JACHO site visitor, consultant to the ASHA Health Care Economics Committee, and chapter advisor to the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association. Dr. Higdon is a past ASHA Board of Directors Vice President of Finance, and editor of the ASHA Special Interest Group 17 Perspectives Journal, an inter-professional journal. Research threads include augmentative and alternative communication, interprofessional practice, and professional issues. Dr. Higdon is active in related organizations including National Academies of Practice, International Association of Rehabilitation Professionals, and the Council of Academic Programs/CSD, and the PAHO program in Guyana.

Lauren Robinson, MS, CCC-SLP, CALT, is a classroom teacher and Enrollment Coordinator at the DuBard School for Language Disorders at The University of Southern Mississippi. She is a nationally certified Speech-Language Pathologist and Certified Academic Language Therapist. She holds licensure with the Mississippi Department of Education in Speech-Language Pathology (K-12) and endorsements in Mild to Moderate Disabilities in Special Education (K-12) and Pre-Kinder-Kindergarten (153). She also holds licensure with the Mississippi Department of Health. She is a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the Academic Language Therapy Association, and the Mississippi Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from The University of Southern Mississippi.

Caroline Murray, M.S, CCC-SLP is a Speech-Language Pathologist, Clinical Instructor, and Director of SLP at the Cancer Institute within UMMC’s Department of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery. She attended Kansas State University where she received her Master of Science in Communication Sciences & Disorders in 2016 and Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders in 2014. She specializes in the evaluation and treatment of swallowing, voice, and resonance disorders in adults. Her expertise is utilized at UMMC’s multi-disciplinary Voice and Swallowing Center and the UMMC Head & Neck Cancer Institute.

Cindy Brown is the Outreach Coordinator at the DOM with 26 Years of Healthcare Experience. She is a Jackson State University Graduate with a BA Degree in Business Admin.

Mary T. Schaub, M.S. CCC-SLP Assistant Professor. School of Speech & Hearing Sciences, University of Southern Mississippi. Have extensive experience in treating clients with complex medical and communication disorders and teaching graduate classes in the area of Augmentative Communication Systems.

Steven J. Cloud, Ph.D., CCC-SLP is the Interim Director, SLP Program Coordinator, and Professor in the University of Southern Mississippi School of Speech and Hearing Sciences. He has 12 publications and more than 40 presentations at state and national venues.

Kimberly Ward, Au.D., CCC-A is an Associate Professor and Audiologist at the University of Southern Mississippi. Kim currently serves on ASHA’s Healthcare Economics Committee (HCEC) and has previously served as on ASHA’s Medicaid Committee. She is the immediate past president of the Educational Audiology Association and a past president of the Mississippi Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She continues to serve on leadership boards and committees for numerous state and international philanthropic and professional organizations.

Haley Messersmith, Au.D. is a clinical audiologist that resides in Oxford, MS. She is currently serving as VP of Audiology for MSHA. Haley received her Doctorate of Audiology from Auburn University in 2009, following the completion of her undergraduate degree from the University of Mississippi. She worked as a clinical audiologist at Mann ENT Clinic in Cary, North Carolina before returning to the University of Mississippi in a clinical and academic role in 2012. Haley teaches the Basic Audiology course at Ole Miss and loves introducing students to the field. Clinically, Haley practices audiology at both the University Speech and Hearing Clinic and at ENT Consultants of North Mississippi. Her clinical interests include medical audiology and advanced hearing aid technology for both children and adults. When she isn’t in the classroom or clinic, Haley enjoys eating tacos with friends, reading, and spending time outside with her husband and two daughters.

Jennifer Grant is an Office Director at the Mississippi Division of Medicaid (DOM) in the Office of Medical Services. Mrs. Grant began her employment with DOM in June of 2008. The Office of Medical Services is responsible for many medical programs, contracts, and waivers, including but not limited to: Dental and Orthodontia, Durable Medical Equipment, Early and Periodic, Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) services, Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs)/Rural Health Clinics (RHCs), Home Health, Laboratory, Physician Services, Preventive Health Services, Private Duty Nursing (PDN), Radiology, Speech/Physical/Occupational Therapies, Telemedicine, Vaccines for Children (VFC), Family Planning Waiver (FPW), and Healthier Mississippi Waiver (HMW). Additionally, the Office oversees the Utilization Management and Quality Improvement Organization (UM/QIO) contract for DOM, as well as the Non-Emergency Transportation (NET) Broker contract.

Janette Hreish, M.S. CCC-SLP is Instructor and Clinical Educator at Mississippi University for Women, Department of Speech Language Pathology in Columbus, MS. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in speech language pathology from Mississippi University for Women. With a Master of Science degree in speech language pathology from the University of Southern Mississippi, she specializes in the areas of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) as well as undergraduate and graduate education. Her clinical and research experience focus on assessment and implementation of AAC, functional communication, neurologic and genetic disorders, language and literacy, and severe impairments across the lifespan.

Marcia Washington Occupational Therapist specializing in Sensory Integration EDUCATION St. Louis University Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy 1994-1998 WORK EXPERIENCE Longtown Medical Park, North Mississippi Outpatient Rehab Pediatric Occupational Therapist 1998-2009 KidSense, PA Owner, Founder, Manager and OT 2009-Present SKILLS Certified in Sensory Integration in 2002 Provider for Integrated Listening Systems/Safe and Sound Protocol Provider for Neuronet Learning Trained in Handwriting Without Tears Completed course in Rythmic Movement Training Have presented at many education courses and workshops for teachers, social workers, therapists, physicians and parents. Yearly lead the area CEU course for Pediatric OTs.

Kaylin McCree is a graduate student and student researcher at Mississippi University for Women with a special interest in Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders.

Gina Keene  is a speech-language pathologist at the University of Mississippi.  She currently is the director of the HILL Program which serves children aged 3-7 with moderate to severe language delays by providing intensive, individualized group and one-on one services.  Her interests include AAC, ASD, literacy, and child language development.

Alayna Turner is a second year graduate student and student researcher at Mississippi University for Women. 

 

Hannah Gilliland is a second year graduate student and student researcher at Mississippi University for Women. 


Machelle Aultman