The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) announced the recipients of ASHA’s 2023 Media Champion Award today, which recognizes media outlets, ASHA members, and others for outstanding coverage and outreach about communication disorders and the work of communication professionals.

“Having the ability to communicate matters a great deal in so many respects—including learning, working, or social engagement,” says 2023 ASHA President Robert M. Augustine, PhD, CCC-SLP. “We are fortunate to have this year’s Media Champion Award honorees, all of whom have helped shine an important educational light on communication disorders, the audiology and speech-language pathology professions, and the services their professionals provide.”

ASHA’s 2023 Media Champion Award recipients are as follows:

The Associated Press (AP): For Fetterman’s Doctor Says He’s Recovering Well From May Stroke (October 19, 2022) and Fetterman Struggles in Senate Debate Against Oz After Stroke (October 26, 2022). For both articles, the AP quoted ASHA staff for context related to U.S. Senator John Fetterman’s recovery of his communication abilities after experiencing a stroke last year.

Forbes: For How Much Do Cochlear Implants Cost? (January 27, 2023); In-The-Canal (ITC) Hearing Aids: Features, Costs, and More (April 25, 2023); and The Best Over-The-Counter Hearing Aids That Help You Hear For LessForbes quoted ASHA members and staff to provide a comprehensive look at treatments for hearing loss.

CNET: For over-the-counter hearing aid articles from June 7, 2023June 21, 2023, and July 19, 2023, as well as the July 21, 2023, article Hearing Aids May Help Stave Off Dementia Risk. CNET provided extensive coverage and guidance for the newly available class of over-the-counter hearing aids and provided a look into the importance of addressing hearing loss.

Wall Street Journal: For If Your Toddler Isn’t Talking Yet, the Pandemic Might Be to Blame (by Sarah Toy, published May 19, 2023). The Wall Street Journal highlighted ASHA’s findings that speech-language pathologists have seen an increase in demand for addressing communication problems in children ages birth to 5 following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Scripps News Morning Rush: For its June 5 broadcast on pediatric hearing aids. Scripps News interviewed ASHA President-Elect Tena McNamara and member Leisha Eiten to discuss insurance mandates for pediatric hearing aids.

Concord Monitor: For Speech-Language Pathologists Are in High Demand, and Kids Need Them Now More Than Ever (by Jacqueline Cole, published June 19, 2023). The Concord Monitor interviewed an ASHA member and ASHA staff for insight on the national issue of rising demand for speech-language pathologists following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Early Learning Nation: For Bilingualism Is a Resource, Not a Disability. Education Professionals Need to Follow the Science (by Mark Swartz, published February 1, 2023). Early Learning Nation spoke to an ASHA member and ASHA staff to help highlight the developmental benefits of bilingualism.

BuzzFeed News: For What Can Babies Hear In The Womb? Rihanna’s Super Bowl Performance Sparks Hilarious Memes (by Katie Camero, published February 13, 2023). BuzzFeed News quoted ASHA staff for their article, which addressed the question of hearing safety for fetuses after the singer Rihanna performed at the Super Bowl while pregnant.

WTOP: For What To Do Before Considering an Over-the-Counter Hearing Aid (October 11, 2022) and What To Consider When Choosing Over-the-Counter Hearing Aids (October 17, 2022). WTOP spoke to hearing health experts to provide guidance on over-the-counter hearing aids leading up to and following their availability.

Real Stories ASHA Member Participants: The participants below were featured in videos that were promoted on social media as part of ASHA’s Real Stories campaign.  In the videos, they share stories about making a difference in the lives of those who have been in their care.

Gabriel Bargen, PhD, CCC-A—Audiologist, Associate Professor of Pediatric Audiology at Idaho State University, Pocatello, Idaho

Suzanne Coyle, MA, CCC-SLP—Speech-Language Pathologist, Executive Director of Stroke Comeback Center, Vienna, Virginia

Rinki Varindani Desai, MS, CCC-SLP—Speech-Language Pathologist, Founder of The Swallowing Training and Education Portal, Jackson, Mississippi

Ebony Green, CCC-SLP—Speech-Language Pathologist, Founder and Director of Casa Speech Therapy, Chandler, Arizona

Karen McQuaide, AuD, CCC-A—Audiologist, Director of Audiology at Penn Medicine Becker ENT, Freehold, New Jersey

Rebeca Woods, MA, CCC-SLP—Speech-Language Pathologist, IDEA Public Schools, San Antonio, Texas

Darius Thomas, MS, CCC-SLP—Speech-Language Pathologist, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Dynamic Therapy, Washington, DC

Further reading: ASHA Urges Families to Identify Signs of Hearing Loss for Children