Honors and Awards

Honors of the Association

This award is presented annually to a member of the AVASLP, who over the course of his or her VA career, has made distinguished contributions in the areas of clinical practice, professional education, and/or research that has significantly enhanced the quality of care for veterans and positively impacted the profession of speech-language pathology in the Veterans Health Administration.

2023 Honors of the Association:

Melissa R. Ray, Brooke Army Medical Center

Previous Awardees

2021 Cindy Ochipa

2020 Stacey Curtis

2019 William Hula

2018 Heidi Williams

2017 Amber Hollingsworth

2016 n/a

2015 Loreen Blumenthal

2014 No awards given

2013 Joe Murray

2012 Micaela Cornis-Pop

2011 Robert King, Nan Musson

2010 Kathleen Wilson-Vazquez

2008 Kathy Dong

2007 Russell “Hank” Mills

2006 Patrick J. Doyle

2005 Richard Katz

2004 Zilpha Bosone

2003 Robert T. Wertz

2002 Leslie Gonzales-Rothi

Outstanding Achievement Award

This award is presented to members of the AVASLP in recognition of their expertise and commitment resulting in culmination of a major endeavor that enhances the practice of speech-language pathology in the Veterans Health Administration.

Previous Awardees

2020 Subject Matter Expert Team

        Patricia Cavanagh

        Kathy Walker

        Kathy Welden

        Joanne Yee

2019 Susan Meiser

2018 Carol Blossom Stach

2017 Karen Wheeler, Cynthia Ochipa

2016 Pauline Mashima

2015 Lyn Covert

2014 No awards given

2013 Katherine Walker

2012 PIRATE Clinical Team

2011 Sally Walsh

2009 Inge Thomas

2008 Gerardo Gutierrez

2007 Richard C. Katz, Micaela Cornis-Pop

Dysphagia Directive Taskforce

        Paula Sullivan – Co-chair

        Stephanie Daniels – Co-chair

        Carol Stach

        Carrie Stangl McBreen

        Kathy Groves-Wright

        Ernie Button

        Barry Klor

        Joe Murray

Subcommittee Members

VA National Dysphagia Diet

        Hank Mills

        Joanne Robins

        Joe Murray

Instrumental Assessment

        Joe Murray

        Carol Smith-Hammond

        Thomas Sowell

        Outside consultant

        Cathy Lazarus

2006 Suzanne Barslund, James Schumacher

2005 Paula A. Sullivan

2004 Russell Nelson

2003 Stephanie Daniels, Carol Stach, Sally A. Walsh

Hall of Fame

This award is presented to former members of the AVASLP in recognition of their sustained contributions to the practice of speech-language pathology in the Department of Veterans Affairs during the course of their career in the VA.

2023 Hall of Fame Awards:

Don MacLennan

Joseph Murray

Janet Patterson

Paula Sullivan

Kathleen Wilson-Vazquez

Previous Awardees

2019 Sarah-Payne Wilson, Deb Drewes

2018 Joseph Langhans

2017 Lyn Covert

2016 Sally Walsh

2015 No awards given

2014 No awards given

2013 Thomas Sowell, Leslie Gonzalez-Rothi, Robert Kukol

2012 Steven Deutsch

2011 Richard Katz, Dennis Lutz

2010 Beverly Hildebrand, Russel “Hank” Mills, Peter J. Ganley

2007 Russel Nelson, Susanne Barsland, Janet Whitney

2006 John Ashford, Doreen Oyadomori, Lee Ann Golper, Pat Holzapple, Rick L. Bollinger

2004/2005 Robert T. Wertz, Robert Miller

2003 Frank Milianti, Michael Groher

2002 Leonard L. LaPointe, Shirley J.  Salmon, Susan L. Langmore, Linda E. Nicholas, Tom E. Prescott, Tom Shanks, Gwenneth Vaughn, Bonnie Martin, Allen E. Boysen, Nina Simmons-Mackey, John C. Rosenbek, Bruce E. Porch, Robert H. Brookshire, Robert C. Marshall, Madge Skelly, Jim L. Aten, Joyce E. West, Kevin P. Kearns, Nancy Helms-Estabrook

AVASLP Champion

This award is provided to individuals outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs in recognition of their support and contributions that enhance the practice of speech-language pathology within the Veterans Health Administration.

Previous Awardees

2019 Shari Wade

2018 McKay Solhberg

2017 Bonnie Martin-Harris

2017 University of Pittsburgh Rehabilitation Sciences Team:

        Richard Schein

        Mark Schmeller

        Andi Sapitino

        Andy Jinks

2016 No awards given

2015 Renae Wilde

2012-2014 No awards given

2011 Pauline Mashima

2010 Kevin Manning

2008 Jim Lauder

2007 Jay Rosenbek

2006 Cathy L. Lazarus

2003 Phil Loverso, Lynn M. Maher

2002 Alex F. Johnson, Audrey L. Holland

“Rick L. Bollinger Clinician of the Year” Award

This award pays tribute to the first President of the AVASLP. It provides recognition to persons who provide outstanding clinical services to communicatively or swallowing impaired veterans. The criteria for selection would be as follows: The extent to which the nominee demonstrates conduct of exemplary clinical services within VHA, a Department of Defense facility, or other federal facility. The extent to which the individual has developed an innovative program that enhances the practice of speech-language pathology within VHA, the Department of Defense, or other federal facility.

2023 “Rick L. Bollinger Clinician of the Year” Award:

Joanne Yee, William S. Memorial Veterans Hospital

Previous Awardees

2021 Kathy Welden

2020 Nicole Pulia

2019 Beau Bedore

2018 Samantha Smolinski

2017 Telina Caudill

2016 Kimberly Eichhorn

2015 Christine Matthews

2014 No awards given

2013 Paula Sullivan

2012 Leslie J. Nitta

2010 Amanda Lewis

2009 Joe Murray

2008 Don MacLennan

2007 Michael Biel

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