Dianne Fulwider '90 Shares Autism Approach, Considers Work with CU SLPA a Privilege!

Through our SLHS/CDSS Alumni Facebook group, we learned of Dianne Fulwider’s work with children on the autism spectrum in Douglas County. Dianne is a member of the Autism Assessment and Training Team there, a new group that is working to train and support teachers who work with students on the spectrum. She generously shared news of her work and wrote about some of the approaches they use. Dianne received her BA from CU in 1990 and went on to get her MA from UNC/Greeley in 1992. She has spent her entire career in public schools, mostly with children aged 3 to 12. She says she looks forward to many more years. 

“I work at Trailblazer Elementary School in Doug CO. We have about 11 kids on my caseload who have autism OR anxiety. Not all have been diagnosed but all have classic symptoms that we manage in a unique way. I am at the building 4 days a week. I have a full time SLPA who works with me. Her name is Emily Ridgley and she is a product of your CU under-grad program. Emily has a Bachelor's degree in Communication Disorders from CU-Boulder and an additional 100 hours of study in order to be a certified Speech-Language Assistant. She is my right hand lady and I could not do it without her. We have an amazing principal who sees the good in these kids and supports us and allows us to do what we need to do." 

"Our #1 goal is to reduce anxiety about academics (and sometimes social). When we do this, our students do better academically have fewer autistic-like behaviors and our autistic kids are less anxious and seem much easier to manage. Some of the added features of our approach include the following: (continued)

CU SLHS Offers "Early Circles"

Early Circles: Fridays 9-11:30 June 15, 29, July 6, 13, 20

Family education and coaching for families of children with Down syndrome ages birth to 3 to support interaction and communication development.  Family meetings on Friday mornings will include discussion and practice in communication enhancing strategies, coaching through the review of video of interactions at home, and information about local resources and opportunities. (Children are not present during family meetings.)  Fee for the program: $500, Scottish Rite Funding available.

Questions?  Contact Amy Thrasher



Kathe Perez Keynote Speaker

Kathe Perez, '86 was recently Keynote Speaker at Colorado Gold Rush 2012 in Denver. The event, sponsored by The Gender Identity Center is their biggest event of the year, one they say "was a big success as usual... and most importantly, everyone had fun while learning and expanding their gender concepts."

Kathe is an internationally recognized expert in the care and training of the human voice. As a certified Speech-Language Pathologist, Kathe has been working in the field since 1986. An advocate and supporter of the transgender community, she has been providing voice feminization therapy (VFT) for years and has helped thousands gain confidence in the way they speak. Kathe presents at TG conferences around the United States demonstrating voice feminization therapy techniques and exercises. As a Voice Feminization Specialist, Kathe collaborated with Lynn Skinner fore the voice feminization training series, Fundamentals of Your Feminine Voice which has received international recognition and acclaim.  

The Gender Identity Center of Colorado, Inc. is a non-profit corporation organized in 1978 and incorporated in June 1980. The organization was formed to provide support to anyone gender variant in their gender identity and expression. The Gender Identity Center of Colorado is also an informational and educational resource to the community at large. The Center is available to anyone, male / female / other, who can benefit from its services and includes resources for spouses, significant others, parents, and siblings. 

You can read more about Kathe's unique journey as an SLP in her alumni spotlight and on her website.

Child Learning Center Highlighted in the Scottish Rite News

The SLHS website noted that The Child Learning Center was highlighted by the Scottish Rite partnership program based upon a letter from the parent of a CLC preschooler submitted by Ann Hyde-Smith, CLC Director & Preschool Teacher. See page 6 of the Scottish Rite Newsletter RITEVIEW, Winter 2012.



Appreciation for SLHS AAC class!

 We are posting this for Karen Duerk, '02 who is collecting signatures for a letter of appreciation to SLHS (nice gesture!). Here are the details: 

 "I am an SLHS grad from 2002. I created a letter of appreciation for the AAC class at CU. I would love to have more  signatures from SLHS graduates who agree with the letter. I am not on Facebook, but please contact me HERE if you'd like to see the letter and add your signaure. I appreciate your help with this important cause!" 

Karen Duerk, MA, CCC-SLP

Can you respond to Karen?






Melanie Potock, '93 Has Brush with Grammy Fame!

From the ASHA LEADER, 2/14/12

"Colorado speech-language pathologist Melanie Potock, who specializes in pediatric feeding issues, recently helped produce a children's music album that aims to woo picky eaters into being more adventurous. It was so well received by the studio that produced it, in fact, that it was submitted for consideration for a Grammy award. Although the CD ultimately didn't make the final cut of nominees up for the award in February, Potock is still in awe that the CD—her first ever—would merit such attention." 
For more about Melanie and her projects see an earlier article and the alumni spotlight we published last year.


More ASHA '11: Student, Faculty & Alumni Attendees!

Thanks to Alumni Amy Thrasher, '97, current SLHS Clinical Assistant Professor, for these photos!

Loriann Schwartz, '12, Jen Jacobsen, '12 & Erin Stucky, '12

Loriann Schwartz, '12/Poster Presentation

 Lancey Pratt '13 & Emily Engle Bailon '12

Danielle Kemp, '12

Danielle Kemp, '12, Loriann Schwartz, '12, Judy Brooke, (SLHS Faculty), Kristina Koenig, '12, Pui Fong Kan (SLHS Faculty), & Amy Thrasher, '97


Danielle Kemp, '12 Poster Session



Amy Thrasher, '97 & Sheila Goetz, former SLHS Faculty

Pui Fong Kan, SLHS Assistant Professor

See more ASHA '11 Photos

Submit your photos to us HERE!


Alumni at ASHA/San Diego

Sheila Goetz, former SLHS Faculty and Clinical Supervisor, caught up with some of our alumni at the recent ASHA Convention. 
Good to see those familiar faces! If you have ASHA photos, please share here!

Kathy Hardin

Amy Thrasher & Lori Banghart

Yumiko Tanaka


                  Mary Wallace & Patty Walton

Tracy Kovach (studying the exhibit guide!)

SLHS PhD student Nick Walker & Kathy Hardin

Mark Guiberson and Teresa Rodriguez

SLHS Faculty/Clinical Dir. Susan Moore & Robin Pierce

Catherine Dabasinskas

ABC Puts Gabby Giffords' Therapists in Spotlight


  In a series on Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, ABC's World News cited her therapists as  "angels" and "unsung heros". In addition to the video above, other videos feature Dr. Nancy Helm-Estabrooks, W. Carolina University, Congresswoman Giffords head speech pathologist and Dr. Oliver Sacks, professor of Neurology at Columbia University and author of the book, "Musicophilia" who states that "Nothing activates the brain so extensively as music." His book gives an overview of the therapy and explains how music supports language re-learning. Gabby's progress has been quite remarkable and she gives due credit to her team of therapists who have utilized humor, music, and emotional support to help Gabby move forward. Other videos can be seen at http://abcnews.go.com/US/gabby_giffords/humor-determination-key-congress... and http://abcnews.go.com/US/gabby_giffords/ A newly released book by Gabby and her husband titled, Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope also documents her recovery process.

Entrepreneurship Certification Program Offered for CU Non-Business Majors

In the past we have featured SLHS/CDSS alumni who are entrepreneurs in our field, starting private practices, authoring SLP & audiological materials and developing cross-disciplinary enterprises. CU now offers courses and certification to help students think through entrepreneurial endeavors. In the recent CU-Boulder in the News: October 2011, the Robert H. and Beverly A. Deming Center for Entrepreneurship at CU reveals entrepreneurial programs for all majors. One option is a Cross Campus Entrepreneurship Education & Certificate developed for students of all majors—from engineering to theater—offered through the Center for Entrepreneurship in the Leeds School of Business. Non-business majors with upper division status (minimum of 60 credits) can apply. Core courses, internships and experience in the business community are part of the requirements. The Deming Center also gives students a host of entrepreneurial opportunities in a number of transformational industry sectors such as bioscience, clean energy and organic business. That includes entrepreneurial programs and certificates in specific schools, colleges and Residential Academic Programs.

The article announced an award from the Department of Energy last week to the CU Clean tech Program at the Deming Center a grant to host a regional competition for students working on renewable energy start-up companies. Students from 10 states will submit clean-technology business plans to compete for $100,000. The university and the Deming Center are leaders in commercializing renewable energy.

But opportunities are not solely for large company endeavors. For example, Daniel Schaefer, a CU-Boulder doctoral candidate in communication was featured in the article. During his participation, he developed an special keyboard application for his Android smart phone for easier Twitter posting during disasters. At best, the center provides a place for innovation and exchange with other students to develop new ideas in their chosen field.

For an overview and description of requirements for the certificate go to.:
For the Oct. 2011 edition of CU-Boulder in the News go to:

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