Special Events at the ASHA Convention
Opening General Session
Thursday, November 15
8:30 a.m.–10:00 a.m.
GWCC, Thomas Murphy Ballroom
Catch the spirit of excellence as the ASHA Convention kicks off with the Opening General Session on Thursday morning. This popular event brings everyone together to celebrate the speech and hearing professional community. ASHA President Shelly Chabon will energize members with her presidential address about the Convention, current trends within the professions, and the latest information about the Association. Program Co‑Chairs Gregg Givens and Celia Hooper will provide an overview of Convention program sessions and highlight new events and other not-to-be-missed activities.
ASHA is honored to welcome Dr. Maya Angelou, one of the most renowned and influential voices of our time, as our Opening General Session keynote speaker. Hailed as a global renaissance woman, Dr. Angelou is a celebrated poet, memoirist, novelist, educator, dramatist, producer, actress, historian, filmmaker, and civil rights activist. Her classic autobiography, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, was published in 1970 to international acclaim and continues to experience enormous popular success. Dr. Angelou has received over 70 honorary degrees and is Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest University. Her inspiring achievements are evidence of a lifetime of excellence. Dr. Angelou's stirring words will open your mind and speak to your heart.
ASHA encourages all Convention-goers to attend the opening session that will set the agenda and tone for the next 3 days!
Read Dr. Angelou's poem, "A Brave and Startling Truth [PDF]."
ASHA Awards Ceremony
Friday, November 16
7:00 p.m.–8:30 p.m.
GWCC, Thomas Murphy Ballroom
The Awards Ceremony celebrates the highest achievements and excellence in the professions. Presentations will be made to recipients of the Honors of the Association, ASHA's most prestigious award which recognizes lifetime achievement, and to ASHA Fellows, whose contributions are the cornerstones of the professions. Additional awards will be given honoring members who have also contributed to the professions and Association.
The Annie Glenn Award will be presented. Annie Glenn, wife of Senator John Glenn, is known nationwide for her advocacy for those with communication disorders. Each year, the "Annie" is given in her name to an individual who demonstrates Mrs. Glenn's spirit.
Senator and Mrs. Glenn will present the 2012 Annie Glenn Award to Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, Captain Mark Kelly. Their incredible story has captivated the speech and hearing professional community and, indeed, the entire nation. In January 2011, Congresswoman Giffords was critically injured by a gunshot wound to the head at a public meeting with constituents near Tucson. Since that time, she has concentrated tirelessly on rehabilitation so she may be able to walk, speak, read, and write again. (Read more about Congresswoman Giffords' rehabilitation and treatment in the June 5 issue of the ASHA Leader.) Congresswoman Giffords and Captain Kelly have inspired us all by their hard work and their steadfast dedication to her recovery and to each other. Their story—told in the memoir, Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope—is truly evidence of excellence in action. On behalf of ASHA members, and in consideration of our clients and their families, the Association is pleased to recognize Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and Captain Mark Kelly with the Annie; they have touched all of us by their example of perseverance, courage, and hope in the face of adversity.