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The Canadian Stuttering Association 2014 Mini-conference

Alex and Sam Alexandra and Sam at the check-in table

The 2014 Canadian Stuttering Association Conference took place on October 25. It featured a series of speakers that addressed topics such as current research and treatment directions. People who stutter were also featured speakers, giving personal commentary on their own experiences and perspectives. Attendees enjoyed a lunch and time to socialize and meet people, as well as say hi to old friends.

After an introduction by the conference chair, Andrew Harding, Podcaster and author Daniele Rossi gave his presentation on Stuttering is Cool, his book about stuttering described with humour and positivity. The next presentation was a panel from the Department of Speech Language Pathology, University of Toronto. Entitled "Knowledge is Power - How Speech Works" it featured Dr. Pascal Van Lieshout putting current research into context. Then, Aravind Namasivayam took the stage to discuss brain research and its applications to therapy. Also Anna-Maria Mersov discussed the latest tool for studying how speech works.

Carolina Ayala, well known in the stuttering community for her activism for people who stutter, gave a moving presentation about how she accepts herself and her positive attitude towards life. Many people at the conference had heard her CBC radio interview earlier that week.

The conference then broke for a chance to have lunch and do some socializing, and attendees enjoyed sandwiches, pizza and salad while meeting and greeting.

Audience Attendees at the 2014 CSA conference

The afternoon sessions featured speech therapists, two of whom were from the Speech and Stuttering Institute, Dr. Bob Kroll and Hadar Kaidar. Carla DiDomenicantonio and Tony Churchill gave interesting presentations from the point of view of speech therapy and being a person who stutters.

The conference ended with a lighthearted speech from Tim Pierce who spoke about how he has dealt with his own stuttering over the years. For more photos of the event, see our Flickr page.

The Canadian Stuttering Association is proud to have produced a successful conference and thanks everyone who participated and attended. Judging from the responses, it will become an annual event. See you next year!

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