Awards Citations 2016

Read citations for the following awards:

RCSLT Fellowships
RCSLT Honorary Fellowships
The Sternberg Award for Clinical Innovation
Giving Voice Awards 2016


RCSLT Fellowships


RCSLT fellowships acknowledge and honour RCSLT members who have contributed
outstanding service to the RCSLT or who have shown outstanding scholarship within the
profession. This year’s recipients are:

Professor Janice Murray

Janice is an SLT who has excelled in her chosen specialism augmentative and alternative
communication (AAC). She is respected internationally in this field. Janice’s publications
demonstrate her commitment to supporting inclusion of individuals who are at the receiving end of
health and social policy, but whose voices are rarely heard. She has a particular interest in the
communication abilities of people with cerebral palsy and has subsequently expanded her work
into wider fields, co-researching with service users, national and international colleagues. Her
track record of ‘translational’ research means that the results of her work have become embedded
in policy and service provision. Janice has served as chair of Communication Matters in the UK
and as council chair of the International Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication.
She has also been head of speech and language therapy at Manchester Metropolitan University
(MMU) for five years. Janice was awarded a professorial chair at MMU early this year.

Dr Jo Patterson

Jo qualified from City University in 1991. Since that time, she has focused her expertise on the
rehabilitation of swallowing for patients with head and neck cancer. Since 2000, Jo has held a
Macmillan post at City Hospitals Sunderland NHS foundation Trust, leading the Head and
Neck/ENT service. She currently holds a prestigious NIHR Clinical Lectureship, during which time
she has conducted a feasibility study for combining cognitive behavioural therapy with traditional
swallowing therapy in head and neck cancer. Her research portfolio also includes being co-applicant
on several multi-centre studies, co-authoring book chapters and publication of more than
25 papers in peer reviewed journals. She continues to champion clinical academic career
pathways and many postgraduate students have benefitted enormously from her supervision of
dissertations and theses. This high volume of quality research output has gained her an
international reputation and she has been invited to present at several international scientific
meetings as well as collaborating with other high-profile SLTs overseas.

Alison Williams

Alison is a major influencer of policy development in Wales to support young children at risk of
reduced speech and language development from social deprivation. The outcome of her
influencing is that the Welsh Government’s flagship programme, ‘Flying Start’, now has clear
professional, evidence-based guidance for the early language element with doubled investment in
speech and language therapy in this public health role to about £600,000 across Wales. Alison
wrote the Welsh Government’s early language guidance and now all 22 local authorities in Wales
must deliver the early language element of the Flying Start programme according to this highly praised
document. Prior to her government secondment role, Alison worked very closely with the
RCSLT policy team in Wales to deliver on our RCSLT Flying Start influencing strategy.

RCSLT Honorary Fellowships


Honorary fellowships acknowledge and honour non-SLTs who have contributed
outstanding services to speech and language therapy and for the benefit of those with
communication disability. This year’s recipients are:

Simon Judge

Simon is a senior clinical scientist and has been heavily involved in the field of augmentative and
alternative communication, and assistive technology since the beginning of his career. His current
role is leading and developing the Barnsley Assistive Technology Team. During Simon’s time as
lead, the service has become recognised as a key research resource with a national and
international reputation. Simon has always worked closely with SLTs and has ensured they are
included in all service improvement decisions and research developments. He has been an active
member of Communication Matters and was a key player in the lobbying activity that resulted in
£15 million recurring funding for specialised AAC services in England and Wales. He is also an
honorary researcher with Sheffield University and over the past five years has contributed to
research projects to the value of £5 million. These activities have resulted in a number of
publications, many of them co-authored with SLTs.

Professor Lesley Milroy

Lesley is a sociolinguist and a professor emerita of the University of Michigan. Between 1972 and
1988, she held research and teaching positions at Ulster Polytechnic (now University of Ulster),
Manchester and Newcastle. Lesley was promoted to a personal chair at Newcastle in 1988, and in
1994 moved to the US where she worked as a professor and the chair of the department of
linguistics at the University of Michigan. Since 2000, she has been honorary visiting professor of
linguistics at the University of York. Following her retirement in 2004, she has lectured in
sociolinguistics at Oxford University and around the world. Lesley is the author of over seven
books, 15 journal articles and sits on the editorial boards of several major journals. She is probably
best known for her research in Belfast in the 1970s (with her husband James Milroy) where she
examined social networks and linguistic variation using participant observation. While all of the
above demonstrates Lesley’s undoubted expertise and academic contribution to sociolinguistics, it
also evidences her most valuable contribution and her commitment to the speech and language
therapy profession as a whole and its clients.

The Sternberg Award for Clinical Innovation


Kindly donated by RCSLT Senior Life Vice President Sir Sigmund Sternberg, this award is
for innovative clinical work. This year we are pleased to announce one £1,000 award

HM Young Offenders Institution Feltham Autism Accreditation

There had been an autism service within the mental health team at Feltham since 2012; however,
it was felt that to improve the experience for service users it was necessary to look at a whole
prison approach. Lead SLT Kim Turner and Lead Consultant Psychiatrist Dr Alexandra Lewis
worked with the National Autistic Society (NAS) to develop a new set of standards that could work
across the prison estate. Kim and her colleagues delivered educational sessions to increase the
awareness of all staff about autism. Twenty-five staff members became ‘Autism Champions’,
acting as a resource for other staff. Efforts were also made to increase autism awareness among
prisoners. At the end of 2015, Feltham received NAS autism accreditation status – the first prison
worldwide to achieve this. Because staff are more aware of autism it is likely this will have an
impact on the management of conflict situations and result in better de-escalation. At an individual
level, it has had a significant effect for many, not only during their time in prison but also for their
relationships. The then prisons minister, Andrew Selous, visited Feltham and recommended that
accreditation is rolled out across the whole prison estate.

Giving Voice Awards 2016

The Giving Voice Awards are given to those who have made a significant contribution to
the Giving Voice campaign over the past year. As with previous years, there has been a
high volume of excellent nominations. We would like to thank all Giving Voice champions
for their continued support.

My Journey My Voice Exhibition Participants and Partners

My Journey My Voice is a hugely successful multimedia portraits and stories exhibition which has
been touring Northern Ireland since last year to raise awareness about people’s communication
needs. It was curated and staged by RCSLT Northern Ireland with support from the charity, Disability
Action, and the Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Board. It features nine photographic portraits by Laurence Gibson of individuals with different communication needs.The exhibition has not only captured the attention of the press but also key decision makers and politicians, which has helped change perceptions and influenced legislation, policy and attitudes.

The judges felt that without these participants and the support of partner organisations the
exhibition may not have captured the public’s attention in the way that it has. Collectively they
have changed people’s perceptions and influence the media, legislation, policy and attitudes.

Anita Smith - Consultant SLT and Head of SLT Service at East Sussex Healthcare Trust

On 11 May this year, Anita organised the UK’s first Swallowing Awareness Day to draw attention
to Dysphagia – the medical term to describe swallowing difficulties. Gathering local, national and
international support for the awareness initiative via the media and social media, Anita mobilised
scores of people across the UK to demonstrate the life-transforming, cost-effective work that
speech and language therapists do in caring with people with Dysphagia. This could apply to
people who have swallowing difficulties after a serious incident, such as a stroke, or as part of a
life-limiting disease, such as Parkinson’s or Motor Neurone Disease, or just part of getting older.
The judges felt that Anita had worked collaboratively with a wide range of SLTs and organisations
to significantly raise awareness amongst of people’s swallowing difficulties – a clinical area which
often receives less profile than communication disability.

Newcastle University Speech Therapy Society

Newcastle University’s Speech Therapy Society has deployed a variety of techniques this year to
raise awareness of how the SLT profession transforms the lives of people with communication and
swallowing needs. They have collaborated with other university societies and have used Giving
Voice branded collateral and merchandise to give their campaigns a consistent identity.
Great examples of events they have staged include flash mobs in the city centre to attract the
public’s attention, a pub quiz to test people’s knowledge about speech and language therapy,
challenging people to use Makaton sign language and different forms of communication other than
using their voices, and holding a comedy evening with the comedian Lost Voice Guy to raise
awareness of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) amongst people who have little
knowledge of it.

The judges decided to recognise the society with a Giving Voice Award as its members had clearly
demonstrated great creativity and enthusiasm for the speech and language therapy profession
and people’s communication needs.

Dr Justin Roe – Joint Head of Speech & Language Therapy at The Royal Marsden NHS
Foundation Trust – Clinical Service Lead at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust –
Honorary Lecturer at Imperial College London – and – Grainne Brady – Highly Specialist
Speech and Language Therapist at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust

Both Justin and Grainne are specialists in the care of cancer patients and specifically, those with
lung and head and neck cancer. Earlier this year, the pair seized an opportunity – when it was
presented to them by the RCSLT’s press office – to write a secret diary of a speech and language
therapist working with cancer patients for The Guardian newspaper. The article provided a
valuable insight into the reality of working with head and neck cancer patients – from dealing with
people in shock at bad news to helping others adapt after treatment. The story was shared almost
4,000 times from the Guardian’s website and was read by over 53,500 people globally via the
RCSLT’s Facebook page. The judges decided to award Justin and Grainne with a joint Giving
Voice Award for their efforts in capturing the public’s attention and considerably raising awareness
globally of the profession and people’s communication needs.

Naomi Sirkett, Nikki Clark and Laura O’Shea – Speech and Language Therapists at Salford
Royal NHS Foundation Trust

In an increasingly competitive environment, where all healthcare professionals attempt to raise
awareness about the specific challenges they face, Naomi, Nikki and Laura decided that they
needed to proactively ‘give voice’ to their service and gain the support of their local MP and clinical
commissioners for the work speech and language therapists do in transforming lives. In addition to
raising their profile amongst clinical commissioners, they decided to invite their local MP to meet
with patients and listen to their moving stories to gather support for their service and highlight the
challenges faced by all. The judges said that their activity was highly successful because their
engagement was focused and branded. It will now be used as a national model for how to engage
with your MP.

Margaret Mary Ray – Head of Adult Community Services Speech and Language Therapy at
Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Last autumn Margaret led a month-long, county-wide campaign to ‘Give Voice’ to her speech and
language therapy team to demonstrate its positive impact on the community. By rallying staff to
produce Giving Voice branded posters and displays to use alongside events that she had
organised, Margaret was able to bring key aspects of her team’s work to a diverse group of
people. Through her exhaustive efforts, she was able to influence local MPs and achieve media
coverage via local newspapers and BBC Radio Cornwall about her team’s valuable work. This
ensured that key Giving Voice campaign messages were taken to the heart of the community and
beyond her immediate work environment.

NHS Tayside Children and Young People’s Speech and Language Therapy Service Social
Media Team

The speech and language therapy team of nine* from NHS Tayside have harnessed the power of
social media and transformed their service’s public profile by delivering good quality, highly
accessible advice for parents, carers and allied health professionals about children and young
people’s communication needs. Whilst emphasising early intervention and prevention and
reflecting the Children’s and Young People’s Act, the campaign also empowers the public by
providing them with useful and practical information. The judges were impressed with the team’s
creative and collaborative approach to working in partnership with other organisations to achieve
public awareness for their service and their ability to harness modern technology to increase their
audience share. *Sarah Gallagher, Sophie Gough, Xophie Hooper, Lori Hutton, Maria Kelly, Kirsty
Peters, Katrine Smith, Annie McWilliams and Rebecca Webster.

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