Candidate for Vice President for Science and Research: Robert Burkard, CCC-A

Robert Burkard

Robert Burkard, PhD, CCC-A, is professor and chair, Department of Rehabilitation Science, University at Buffalo, which houses the occupational therapy and physical therapy programs. He earned his bachelor’s degree in communication disorders from Buffalo State College and his master’s and PhD degrees in audiology from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He completed an audiology Veterans Administration traineeship at the VA hospital in Madison, Wisconsin. He has been a faculty member in Communication Disorders and Sciences Departments at Boston University and the University at Buffalo.

Dr. Burkard served as an associate chair and chair of American National Standards Institute (ANSI) S3 Bioacoustics, which is responsible for U.S. audiometric standards development. He has served as the editor for the American Journal of Audiology. He was the audiology cochair of the 2007 Annual ASHA Convention in Boston, MA. He currently serves on ASHA’s Health Care Economics Committee and is a member of ASHA’s Ad Hoc Committee on the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF). He was a member of the planning committee for the October 2012 ASHA Changing Health Care Landscape Summit. In the recent past, he served as chair of the ASHA Ad Hoc Committee on Interprofessional Education (IPE). He has served on federal grant-review panels and reviews articles for professional journals. He was named an ASHA Fellow in 2005 and received the Honors of the Association in 2011.

His research has focused on human and animal auditory evoked potentials. He has been a coinvestigator of functional imaging studies in humans (including positron emission tomography and functional magnetic resonance imaging). He has, more recently, become interested in vestibular and balance function. He has published peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, served as coeditor of several books, presented at numerous national and international meetings, and had some success in attracting extramural grant support.

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The ASHA Leader asked the candidates:

What is your top priority if elected to the ASHA Board of Directors?

My top priority will be to seek the evidence needed for our members to engage in optimal clinical practice. We must lobby for the funding required to better understand the cause of communication disorders, as well as their prevention and treatment. We must integrate the electronic health record with clinical outcomes (i.e., the Physician Quality Reporting System) to create a learning health-care system, where outcomes are continuously updated to inform best practice. We must seek better evidence about best practices for our clinicians in the schools, and evaluate the effectiveness of our continuing education programs. In addition to improving our evidence base for clinical practice, we must better assess the efficacy of how we educate and train future clinicians and clinical scientists.

Why are you running for Vice President for Science and Research on the ASHA Board of Directors?

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