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Professor receives state association's highest honor

March 31, 2009

KALAMAZOO--The Michigan Speech-Language-Hearing Association is bestowing its highest honor on a Western Michigan University professor.

Dr. Gary D. Lawson, associate professor and clinical supervisor in the Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, received the MSHA's Honors of the Association Award March 27, during an awards luncheon at the association's annual conference in Dearborn, Mich.

The MSHA Honors Award recognizes sustained, outstanding accomplishments in the profession of speech, language and hearing. It is conveyed to those who actively demonstrate their expertise through ongoing service that directly benefits MSHA and the field as a whole and have a significant impact on people with communication impairments.

The Honors Award is considered a coveted honor. It recognizes Lawson's academic work in teaching and creating curriculum advancing the preparation of audiologists and for his steadfast support in the advancement of best practices of the profession.

Lawson has been a member of the WMU Speech Pathology and Audiology Department since 1978. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in speech pathology from the University of Tennessee and a doctoral degree in audiology from Michigan State University. He has completed post-doctoral work at the University of Michigan at the Vestibular Testing Center in the Department of Otolaryngology.

During his WMU tenure, Lawson has been responsible for overseeing the clinical education and preparation of student audiology clinicians and for the successful implementation of the WMU audiology doctoral program. Under his guidance and leadership, a whole generation of student clinicians has been trained to practice audiology.

Lawson has served as president, president-elect and past president on the association's executive council, was a leader in the development of the association's strategic plan and has contributed to the association's legislative efforts over the years.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, (269) 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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