Education Program Advisory Committee

Thank you to co-chairs Maki Massone, MS, SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT, Elizabeth Fitzpatrick, Ph.D., and Trudy Smith, DipMus (Jazz), BSpecEd, MEd., Ph.D. candidate, LSLS Cert. AVT, and to the following committee members for their participation in the education program advisory and review process:

Symposium Chairs


Maki Massone, MS, SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT (Argentina)

Maki Massone, MS, SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT, is a member of the cochlear implant team at Hospital de Trauma y Emergencia Dr. Federico Abete, and the audiological therapeutic chair at Universidad del Museo Social Argentino. She is the co-author of the book, “La Práctica Auditivo Verbal en Latinoamérica,” and co-author and teacher of the course for professionals in Latin America “Auditory Practice”.


Elizabeth Fitzpatrick, Ph.D. (Canada)

Elizabeth Fitzpatrick, Ph.D., is a full professor in the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Ottawa and a senior scientist at the CHEO Research Institute, Ottawa. Prior to academia, Elizabeth worked for more than 20 years as a clinical audiologist and listening and spoken language therapist. Her current research is related to the epidemiology of childhood hearing loss and interventions and outcomes in both children and adults with hearing loss. She is currently leading a Canadian Institutes of Health Research funded study on the impact of unilateral and mild bilateral hearing loss in children. Elizabeth has authored three books and numerous scientific articles on pediatric hearing. In 2021, Elizabeth received the Honours of the Academy Award from the Canadian Academy of Audiology.


Trudy Smith, DipMus (Jazz), BSpecEd, MEd., Ph.D. candidate, LSLS Cert. AVT (Australia)

Trudy Smith, DipMus (Jazz), BSpecEd, MEd., Ph.D. candidate, LSLS Cert. AVT, is a teacher of the deaf and Listening and Spoken Language Specialist who has worked in education and advisory roles around Australia and the world for over 25 years. She is Manager of Continuing Professional Education at NextSense Institute and Adjunct Lecturer at Macquarie University. Trudy has extensive experience in telepractice and remote services, and has provided training and coaching for teachers, therapists, and families around the world.

Committee Members

Lydia Evans
Southern Cochlear Implant Programme (New Zealand)

Lydia Evans is a LSLS Certified Auditory-Verbal Therapist working for the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme in New Zealand. Prior to this she worked for both the Ministry of Education (NZ) and the Northern Cochlear Implant Programme.


Nora Gardilcic
Centro AUDILEN (Chile)

Nora Gardilcic is a speech therapist with a master’s in Audiology, and a LSLS Cert. AVT®. She is the director/co-founder of AUDILEN Center and coordinator of COMUNICA Center, both in Chile. She has co-authored the book “Auditory-Verbal Practice in Latinamerica” and is a member of Rehab Team Latam for Advanced Bionics.


Neryl Horn
NextSense (Australia)

Neryl Horn remembers working with her first cochlear implant recipient in 1995 in Sydney, Australia. She has witnessed many advances in both technology and teaching strategies, including 14 years with rural and remote telepractice.


Mélissa LeBlanc
Montreal Oral School for the Deaf (Canada)

Mélissa LeBlanc is a specialized teacher for children with hearing loss since 2005. A University of North Carolina FIRST YEARS Program alum, she is presently at the Montreal Oral School for the Deaf.


Teresita Mansilla
Private Practice (Paraguay)

Teresita Mansilla is a speech-language therapist and a LSLS Cert. AVT. She consults with the Florencia Foundation, a non-profit association advocated to train professionals and families of children with hearing loss who want their children to learn to listen and talk.


Dorie Noll
Fontbonne University (United States)

Dorie Noll is a professor at Fontbonne University and an LSLS Cert AVEd. She was an early intervention provider and earned a PhD from the University of Ottawa. She is the parent of a cochlear implant user.


Danielle Paquin
New England Center for Hearing and Rehabilitation (United States)

Danielle Paquin is a teacher of the deaf currently working as an LSLS Cert. AVEd at the New England Center for Hearing Rehabilitation, and for the National Cued Speech Association as the Deaf Children’s Literacy Project Coordinator. She resides in Connecticut.

Jasmine Simmons
Jacksonville Speech and Hearing (United States)

Jasmine Simmons is a deafBlind audiologist with a cochlear implant. She went to the University of Akron for her undergraduate degree and Central Michigan University for her doctorate. She resides in Jacksonville, Florida.

Ekaterine Tortladze
Aures Foundation (Georgia)

Ekaterine Tortladze is a mother of a daughter with hearing loss and the founder of a parent’s organization – Aures Foundation. She is a member of the World Hearing Day core group with the World Hearing Forum (WHO); a hearing health advocate in Georgia (CGHH); and a member of various councils for people with disability in Georgia.

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