Registration Now Closed

Time-ordered agenda: 

7:00pm - 7:10pm Introductions

7:10pm - 7:40pm Public Policy with Panel Discussion

7:40pm - 8:10pm Challenging Situations with Panel Discussion

8:10pm - 8:30pm Resources for Advocacy


SLPs and audiologists are invited to attend a panel discussion on public policy to learn more about approaches to finding and solving problems that affect the practice of speech-language pathology and audiology.  Invited panelists will share their experience solving clinical issues, professional issues, and discuss their unique approaches to understand the effects of public policy on professional practice. Panelists will be from a variety of professional backgrounds including ASHA leadership, SCSHA leadership, other state groups, large employers, and non-profit organizations.  Attendees may submit questions for the panel prior to the event and some questions will be accepted live online during the event.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Learn how public policy affects professional practice across a wide variety of clinical settings.
  2. Discuss factors that make-or-break decisions in challenging clinical situations
  3. Obtain resources to advocate for policy changes.


Tim Boyd, MPH, ASHA ASHA ASHA Director of State Health Care & Education Affairs

Tim Boyd has served as ASHA’s Director of State Health Care and Education Affairs since July 2019. Before joining ASHA, Tim worked on state policy for the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) and domestic policy for the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF). Tim earned his B.A. in Political Science from the University of California Santa Barbara and an M.P.H. from George Washington University.

Financial: I am a full-time employee at ASHA
Non-financial: I am the family member of an SLP/ ASHA member

Adrienne Davis, MSP, CCC-SLP

Adrienne Davis is a speech language pathologist currently practicing in long-term acute care in  Columbia, SC.  She earned her Masters in Speech Pathology from the University of South Carolina.  She has experience in the evaluation and treatment of a variety of disorders across the age spectrum, with special interests in working with adults with voice and swallowing disorders.  Adrienne also passionately participates in professional, patient, and family advocacy efforts, as well as mentoring future professionals.  While currently serving as President Elect of the South Carolina Speech and Hearing Association and participating in a variety of other organizations in her community, Adrienne's most important job is that of wife of nearly 12 years and mom of 1.

Disclosures: no relevant financial or non-financial disclosures

Maggie Donaker, MS, CCC-SLP 

Maggie Donaker is a medical SLP to whom has 11+ year experience in acute and subacute settings working with adults. Her call to high level of care has lead to opening her own private practice, Transcend Speech and Swallowing Solutions, LLC to serve Sarasota County in Florida. Her passions for patient's and advocacy for excellence has awarded her the first ever NFODS/DRS Micheal Donovan Advocacy Award due to her diligence in advocacy for individuals with dysphagia. Maggie was elected Director of Operations for Dysphagia Outreach Project, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization run by volunteers. In my time here at the Dysphagia Outreach Project she  developed, executed, and assessed over 250 submissions through a one-of-a-kind application and distribution system to provide all aged individuals with supplies they need to manage, overcome, and transcend above their swallowing impairments.  Maggie founded and is facilitating Dysphagia Digest of Florida, the only swallowing support group in the state of Florida. In June 2020 Dysphagia Awareness Month for the Dysphagia Research Society, Maggie completed two advocacy videos regarding dysphagia and the impact on professionals, patients and their families. Maggie is known to present at state conventions such as FLASHA and GSHA in response to her research on interprofessional relationships of speech pathologists and radiologists within the fluoroscopy suite as well as presenting at Keiser University Nursing Program to impact the next generations of patient care providers. Maggie has a passion for advocacy through education, communication and humor.  

Disclosures: no relevant financial or non-financial disclosures


Kristen West, MS, CCC-SLP

Kristen West, MA CCC-SLP is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. In addition, she is a doctoral student pursuing her EdD at Slippery Rock University studying the public education system and supports for children with dysphagia. Clinically, Kristen has experience in a variety of pediatric settings including early intervention, pediatric acute care, outpatient and school-based services. Prior to joining Edinboro University, she helped establish a public school safe feeding program and served as a safe feeding consultant for the same educational agency. Currently, Kristen serves as the Vice President of Pediatric Affairs for Dysphagia Outreach Project, is the ASHA Committee of Ambassadors speech-language pathology member for the state of Pennsylvania, a mentor in the MedSLP Collective and a member of SIG13 and PSHA. Kristen is passionate about advocating for high quality feeding and swallowing services for children and their families across the continuum of care and ensuring equitable access to services for all children in need.

Disclosures: No relevant financial or non-financial disclosures.


Amber Heape, ClinScD, CCC-SLP 

Dr. Amber Heape is a full-time clinical educator for Pruitthealth Therapy Services, where she has led multiple interdisciplinary teams and authored corporate clinical programs for around 100 skilled nursing facilities.  She received her Doctor of Clinical Science and a certificate in healthcare education from Rocky Mountain University.  She is an adjunct professor for RMU and SC State University.  Dr. Heape is a fellow of the National Academies of Practice, a Certified Dementia Practitioner, a Certified Montessori Dementia Care Professional, and volunteers with organizations that promote and preserve quality care in aging.  She has authored numerous continuing education courses and has presented at state and national conferences. Dr. Heape currently serves on the SIG 15 Coordinating Committee, ASHA Convention Planning Committee, and is the State Advocate for Medicare Policy (StAMP) for South Carolina.  This past year, she co-founded the SCSHA Leadership Development Program.  She has a passion for evidence-based practice and clinical research, and mentors graduate and doctoral students in their research endeavors.

Disclosures: No relevant financial disclosures.  Non-financial- volunteer roles in state and national SLP organizations.  


Kelly Caldwell, MA, MS, CCC-SLP



Kelly Caldwell is a Speech-Language Pathologist at a Voice Clinic in Anderson, SC. She earned her Master of Arts in Teaching- Music Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders degree from East Carolina University.  Special interests include functional dysphagia, dysphonia, and upper airway disorders. Outside of the clinic, Kelly enjoys mentoring SLPs on the Med SLP Collective.  She is currently serving SCSHA as the Vice President of Government Affairs.

Disclosures: No relevant financial or non-financial disclosures.