Friday, November 22
6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Orange County Convention Center, 415 ABC (Valencia Ballroom)
The Awards Ceremony celebrates high achievements and excellence in the professions. Awards presented this evening include the Honors of the Association—ASHA's most prestigious award, which recognizes lifetime achievement—and ASHA Fellows, whose recipients' contributions are the cornerstones of the communication sciences and disorders (CSD) professions. ASHA will present additional awards to honor other members who have also contributed to the professions and to ASHA.
The Annie Glenn Award is also given each year at the Awards Ceremony. Annie Glenn, wife of Senator John Glenn, is known nationwide for her advocacy for those with communication disorders. "The Annie" recognizes an individual who demonstrates Mrs. Glenn's spirit by making a positive impact on those with communication disorders. This beloved award is a perpetual highlight of the ASHA Convention.
We are thrilled to present the 2019 Annie Glenn Award to Taro Alexander, Founder of SAY: The Stuttering Association for the Young, a national nonprofit organization that empowers, educates, and supports young people who stutter and the world that surrounds them. SAY offers comprehensive, innovative programs that address the physical, social, and emotional impacts of stuttering.
Taro, a person who stutters, personally understands the challenges that young people who stutter may face. These challenges can include feelings of shame and isolation. Drawing upon his experience as an actor, a director, and a teacher, he founded SAY (known originally as the Our Time Theatre Company) in 2001, in New York, bringing together young people who stutter and helping them learn acting, writing, dance, singing, and drumming. SAY expanded the emphasis on performing arts into the broad range of year-round programs that the organization now offers including Camp SAY Summer Camp, Confident Voices after-school and weekend programs, Camp Say Across the USA day camps, speech therapy, SAY: DC, SAY: Storytellers, and more. SAY provides outreach to young people who might otherwise never know the reassurance and relief of connecting with others who stutter. SAY creates an encouraging, supportive environment where kids can be themselves, take chances, and grow.
SAY has received several prestigious awards, including the 2017 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, the 2002 Charles Van Riper Award from the National Council on Communicative Disorders, and a Special Citation from the New York State Speech-Language-Hearing Association. SAY has also been featured on television programs such as The Meredith Vieira Show, ABC News, CBS Sunday Morning, NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams, TODAY, and 20/20, and in publications such as The New York Times, New York Magazine, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and many more.
You will truly be inspired by Taro Alexander's dedication to empowering young people who stutter and the impact of SAY's programs. Join us on Friday evening as we honor the achievements of colleagues in the professions and award "the Annie" to our very special guest, Taro Alexander. We will also have a special performance by SAY Alumni Isabella Negron, Julianna Padilla, and Amy Rodriguez. Come to the Awards Ceremony, and be uplifted!