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University Ear, Nose, & Throat Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists

Audiologists

Dana Ailes, AuD., CCC-A

Prior to joining UPMC in 2016, Dana has worked in the greater Pittsburgh area since she began practicing Audiology in 1992. She received her bachelor's degree in speech and hearing disorders from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, her master's degree in audiology from West Virginia University, and her doctorate of audiology from A.T Still University of Health Sciences at Arizona School of Health Sciences. Her special interests include diagnostic audiology, hearing aid fittings, and assessment and treatment of  vestibular disorders. She is a certified member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. She currently sees patients at our UPMC Natrona Heights ENT & Audiology location. 

Kate Bayer, MA., CCC-A

Kate Bayer, MA, has been practicing in the field of audiology since 2003. She received her bachelor's degree from West Virginia University and her Master's degree from Ohio University. She is a certified member of the American Speech-Language Hearing Association, and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Kate's special interests have focused on diagnostic testing, hearing aid fittings, and rehabilitative services. She also provides assistive devices to improve communication for individuals with various types of hearing losses. 

Beth "Annie" Bereksazi, AuD., CCC-A

Beth "Annie" Bereksazi, AuD., CCC-A, has been practicing in the field of audiology since 2005. She received her bachelor's degree from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania and her doctorate from the University of Pittsburgh. She is ASHA certified and licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special areas of interest include diagnostic testing and hearing aid fittings.

Benjamin Boss, AuD

Benjamin Boss joined the staff of audiologists at the UPMC Eye & Ear Institute in 2014. He received his bachelor's degree from the University of Pittsburgh and his doctorate from Arizona State University. His special interests include cochlear implant assessment and programming, tinnitus retraining therapy, diagnostic testing, hearing aids, assistive listening devices, and hearing protection. He is a member of the American Speech-Language Hearing Association and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. 

Amanda Cassidy, AuD

Amanda K. Cassidy, AuD., joined Metropolitan ENT-UPMC in 2007. She received her doctorate of audiology degree from West Virginia University​. She is a member of the American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association and its licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special areas of interest include diagnostic testing and hearing aid fittings. 

Katie Coyan, AuD

Kathleen Costigan Coyan, AuD, joined UPMC in 2015. She earned her doctorate of audiology from University of Kansas Medical Center in 2013. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special interests include diagnostic testing and hearing aid fitting. 

Gina DeBeni, AuD

Gina DeBeni, AuD., joined UPMC in 2012. She can be seen at our Wexford and Bethel Park/South Hills offices. She received her bachelor's degree in speech pathology and audiology and her doctorate of audiology degree from West Virginia University. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special areas of interest include diagnostic testing and hearing aid fittings. 

Debra S. Eisner, MS

Debra S. Eisner, MS, has worked as an audiologist at UPMC since 1979. She received her bachelor's degree in hearing and speech from the University of Maryland and her master's degree in audiology from Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C. Her special areas of interest include diagnostic testing and hearing aid fittings. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Renee M. Garvin, AuD, CCC-A

Renee Garvin, AuD, CCC-A, has been practicing in the field of audiology since 1989. She received her bachelor's and master's degrees from Clarion University of Pennsylvania and her doctorate from A.T. Still/ Arizona School of Health Sciences. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology, ASHA certified and licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Dr. Garvin's special interests have focused on evoked potentials, intra-operative monitoring and vestibular evaluation. She also provides hearing aid related services. She is currently one of our audiologists staffing our UPMC St. Margaret location and our UPMC Mercy Hearing and Balance Center.

Kathleen Gilmartin-Vesco, AuD

Kathleen Gilmartin-Vesco, AuD, joined the staff of audiologists at the UPMC Eye & Ear Institute in 1980. She received her bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Pittsburgh, and received her doctorate in audiology from the University of Florida. Dr. Gilmartin’s clinical duties include audiologic evaluations of adults and children, special tests, hearing aid dispensing, and cochlear implant assessment and programming. Dr. Gilmartin is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Jessica Hewitt,​ AuD.

Jessica Hewitt joined Metropolitan ENT-​UPMC in 2009. She received her bachelor's degree in Speech Pathology and Audiology and her doctorate in audiology from West Virginia University. She is a current member of the American Academy of Audiology and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her areas of interest  are diagnostic testing and hearing and fittings. 

Rick Hyre, MA

Rick Hyre, MA, has been an audiologist with UPMC since 1981. He received his bachelor's degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and his master's degree in audiology from the University of Pittsburgh. His special interests include diagnostic testing, hearing aid fitting, electrophysiology, and intraoperative monitoring. He is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Megan Keirans, AuD

Megan Keirans, AuD., earned her Bachelor of Science in speech-language pathology and audiology from Northeastern University in Boston, MA and her Doctor of Audiology from the University of Pittsburgh. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her clinical areas of interest include diagnostic testing, hearing protection, assistive listening technology, and adult amplification services. She completed her clinical externship year with UPMC at our Eye and Ear Institute location and has been with UPMC as a clinical audiologist at our St. Margaret location since 2016. 

Susan Klein MA

Susan Klein, MA, has worked as an audiologist at UPMC since 1981. She received both her bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Pittsburgh, and holds a license to practice in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special interests include diagnostic testing, hearing aid fitting, and facial nerve testing. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Abby McClleland, AuD

Abby McCllelland, AuD, joined UPMC in 2016 at the Wexford and Passavant Hospital offices. She received her master's and doctorate of audiology degree from the University of Pittsburgh and her Bachelor of Arts degree in Speech and Hearing Sciences from the Ohio State University. Her areas of interest include diagnostic testing as well as hearing aid fittings. She is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. 

Virginia Milne, AuD

Virginia Milne, AuD, joined UPMC in 2010 at our Seven Fields and St. Margaret's offices. She received her bachelor's degree in communication disorders and psychology and her doctorate of audiology degree from Kent State University as part of the Northeast Ohio Au.D. Consortium. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special areas of interest include diagnostic testing, hearing aid fittings, and auditory processing disorders.

Catherine V. Palmer, PhD

Catherine Palmer, PhD, joined the University of Pittsburgh in 1990 and became director of Audiology and Hearing Aids in the Department of Otolaryngology in 1998. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and her master's degree and doctorate at Northwestern University. She worked as a clinical and research audiologist in the Veterans Administration for two years. Dr. Palmer specializes in rehabilitative audiology including the use of hearing aids and other assistive devices to improve communication for individuals with hearing loss, and hearing protection for specialized situations. Dr. Palmer also manages a research laboratory at the University of Pittsburgh where her research focuses on matching technology to individual needs and examining adaptation in the human auditory system.

Corrine Pfaff, AuD.

Corrine Pfaff, AuD., joined UPMC in 2005 at our Horizon (Hermitage) office. She currently practices at our Monroeville location. She received her bachelor's degree in communication sciences and disorders from The Pennsylvania State University and her master's degree and doctorate of audiology from the University of Pittsburgh. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology, Speech-Language-Hearing Association and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special areas of interest include diagnostic testing, hearing aid fittings, and auditory processing disorders.

Kara Quigley,M.A.

Kara Quigley, M.A., has worked as an audiologist since 2000. She received both her bachelor's and master's degrees from The Ohio State University, and holds a license to practice in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Her special interests include diagnostic testing and hearing aid fittings. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. 

Jillyn Roxberg, MA

Jillyn Roxberg, MA, received her bachelor's degree in Speech and Hearing Science from University of Iowa, and her master's degree in Audiology from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Prior to joining UPMC in 2007, she worked as both a clinical and research audiologist in the Department of Veterans Affairs and at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her primary interests are diagnostic evaluations, vestibular testing and hearing aid fitting. She is a member of the American Auditory Society, American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Reva Rossman, Ph.D

Reva N. Rossman, Ph.D., joined the University of Pittsburgh as a graduate student and remained after receiving her doctorate in 1992. She received her underg​raduate degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo and her master's degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Prior to Pittsburgh, she worked as a clinical and research audiologist in Toronto and at the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Rossman specializes in rehabilitative audiology including the use of hearing aids, other assistive devices, and counseling to improve communication and quality of life for individuals with hearing loss. 

Laurel Steele, MS

Laurel Steele, MS, has worked as an audiologist at UPMC since 1997 at the Indiana, Pa. office. She received her bachelor's and master's degrees from West Virginia University. Her special interests include diagnostic audiology, treatment of vestibular disorders, and tinnitus treatment. She is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Sharon Tiesi, MS

Sharon Tiesi, MS, has been an audiologist at UPMC since 1978. She received a bachelor's degree in speech pathology and audiology from Clarion University, and a master's degree in audiology from the University of Pittsburgh. Her special interests include cochlear implants, diagnostic testing, and hearing aid fitting. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Audiology, a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, and is licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Lori Zitelli, AuD, MS

Lori Zitelli began working for UPMC in 2012. She received her clinical doctorate in Audiology from the University of Pittsburgh. Her interests include amplification, tinnitus treatment, clinical education, clinical research, and interventional audiology. She is also a part-time lab instructor at Pitt and teaches a Clinical Procedures Lab for first year AuD students. She is an active fellow of the American Academy of Audiology. 

Speech-Language Pathologists​

Keely Anthony, MA, CCC-SLP

Keely Anthony, MA, CCC-SLP, is a Senior Speech-Language Pathologist in the Department of Otolaryngology. She received her bachelor’s degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from The Pennsylvania State University and her master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Pittsburgh. Ms. Anthony’s clinical experience is in the evaluation and treatment of swallowing disorders in the acute care setting, with an emphasis on neurological, neurosurgical, head and neck cancer, tracheo​stomized, and ventilator-dependent patients. Additional experience includes evaluation and treatment of speech, language and cognitive-linguistic communication disorders. Ms. Anthony also provides voice restoration for individuals following total laryngectomy and works closely with patients who have long-term swallowing disorders in the Swallowing Disorders Center. She has also participated in a poster presentation at the Dysphagia Research Society focusing on post-operative dysphagia management following Transoral Robotic Surgery (TORS).

Brooke Baumann, MS, CCC-SLP

Brooke Baumann, MS, CCC-SLP, received her undergraduate and graduate degrees from Duquesne University and completed her fellowship training with the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System. Ms. Baumann has experience in evaluating and treating swallowing disorders in the acute care setting, which includes work with tracheostomy and ventilator-dependent patients, patients with neurologic diseases, geriatric disorders, cardiothoracic surgeries (lung transplant), and head and neck diseases. Other experience includes evaluating and treating voice, motor, speech, language, and cognitive disorders. Ms. Baumann also specializes in providing acute augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) strategies for critically ill non-speaking patients and voice restoration following total laryngectomy.

Sara Bray, MA, CCC-SLPS

Sara Bray, MA, CCC-SLP, is a senior speech pathologist in Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. She received her bachelor’s degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders and her master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Pittsburgh. Ms. Bray’s clinical and educational training is in adult acute care speech-language pathology with emphasis on dysphagia, tracheostomized and ventilator-dependent patients, and trauma and cardiothoracic surgery populations. She is also certified in and works with clients seeking foreign accent modification. Ms. Bray has participated in several poster presentations at the ASHA convention and Dysphagia Research Society meetings. She is involved in mentoring and training clinical fellows in the Division of Speech Pathology.

Stephanie Brunn

Stephanie Brunn earned her Master of Arts Degree in Speech Language Pathology from Kent State University in 1993. She is qualified to evaluate and treat speech/language disorders, cognitive disorders, voice disorders and swallowing disorders (dysphagia). Stephanie has worked in a multitude of settings (acute care, post-acute rehabilitation, home health, outpatient, and long-term care) with a wide variety of neurological, oncological, cardiac and pulmonary disorders. She has many years of experience treating swallowing disorders including the completion of Modified Barium Swallow Studies. She also has experience in the completion of Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing. Stephanie has been working for the University of Pittsburgh Physicians Department of Otolaryngology (Division of Speech Language Pathology) since February 2015 and is a provider of outpatient services that are provided through the Swallowing Disorders Center at UPMC.

Danielle Columbe, M.A., CCC-SLP

Danielle Columbe M.A., CCC-SLP, Director of Operations, is a graduate of Penn State University and earned her Master’s Degree from the University of Akron. She has been with the Department of Otolaryngology since 1999 where she began her career as a clinical fellow in the UPMC Voice Center. She spent several years serving as a member of the Swallowing Disorders Center team completing Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FEES) studies with ENT and providing outpatient swallowing therapy to patients with dysphagia. Ms. Columbe has extensive experience in evaluating and treating swallowing disorders in medically complex patients in the adult acute care/ICU setting. Her clinical background includes work with tracheostomized, ventilator dependent, neurologic, hand and neck cancer, trauma and geriatric populations. At present, Ms. Columbe works closely with ENT surgeons and leads the specialized team of Speech-Language Pathologists who provide voice restoration to head and neck cancer patients following total laryngectomy. Her collaborative work with ENT with this population has been shared in a poster presentation at the 2014 ASHA convention and a study published in Annals of Otology and Rhinology.

Jessica Jordan

Jessica Jordan is a Medical Speech Pathologist in the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Ms. Jordan received her Bachelor of Science from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and her Master’s Degree at the University of Pittsburgh. Her clinical training has largely been in the adult acute care setting, but she has experience in the rehabilitative setting as well. Ms. Jordan’s primary focus in the acute care setting has been in the evaluation and treatment of dysphagia with emphasis in tracheostomized and ventilator-dependent patients, pulmonary transplant patients, those with head and neck disease, and the geriatric population. Ms. Jordan also works with outpatients in evaluation of swallowing function and dysphagia treatment in those with head and neck disease, neurological disorders, as well as the geriatric population.

Christina Kelly, MA, CCC-SLP

Christina Kelly, MA, CCC-SLP is a medical speech pathologist who received her bachelor’s degree from Penn State University and her master’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh. Ms. Kelly completed her fellowship at UPMC in the Department of Otolaryngology. She has experience evaluating and treating speech, language, voice, and swallowing disorders in acute care and outpatient settings. Ms. Kelly has extensive experience with medically complex patients including tracheostomized and ventilator dependent patients. She specializes in head/neck cancer, specifically dysphagia rehabilitation during and after radiation therapy. Ms. Kelly also works closely with ENT physicians completing instrumental evaluations and treatment planning. She completed a research project and conference presentation specific to dysphagia evaluation for head/neck cancer. Ms. Kelly also has a background in voice restoration for total laryngectomy, videostroboscopy and treatment of organic and functional voice disorders.

Kathryn Krobot, MA CCC-SLP

Kathryn Krobot, MA CCC-SLP, is a medical speech pathologist in the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Linguistics and her master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Pittsburgh. Ms. Krobot’s clinical and educational training is in adult acute care speech-language pathology with emphasis on dysphagia, tracheostomized patients, stroke patients, and patients with neurological disorders. She is certified in Lee Silverman Voice Therapy and works with patients with Parkinson’s disease. She is also involved with voice restoration for total laryngectomy patients.

Brian Leonard

Brian R. Leonard is a Speech-Language Pathologist in the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. He obtained a Master’s degree from California University of Pennsylvania. Brian is the primary acute care therapist at UPMC East. He has experience in the diagnosis and treatment of individuals in acute care, rehabilitation, and outpatient care settings. Brian primarily works with individuals who have dysphagia following head and neck cancer and other etiologies.

Allison Martin, MS, CCC-SLP

Allison Martin, MS, CCC-SLP received her bachelor’s degree in communication science and disorders and her master’s degree in speech-language pathology from the University of Pittsburgh. She completed clinical training as well as her clinical fellowship in the adult acute care setting. She is experienced in the evaluation and treatment of swallowing, speech, language, and cognitive-linguistic disorders, with a focus on dysphagia in the pulmonary patient population. Ms. Martin is involved with the Palliative Care team at UPMC and is interested in swallowing and communication needs for improvement of patient comfort. Ms. Martin is also trained in the Compton PESL Accent Modification Method, and works with clients in the Foreign Accent Modification Program.

Lindsay Savinda, MS, CCC-SLP

Lindsay Savinda, MS, CCC-SLP, is a medical speech pathologist in the Department of Otolaryngology. She graduated from Ohio University in Athens, Ohio and earned her master's degree in Speech Language Pathology at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Lindsay is experienced in evaluating and treating speech, language, and swallowing disorders in an acute care setting with exposure to the rehabilitative setting. She works closely with acute and long term swallowing disorders and has experience with Modified Barium Swallow studies. Lindsay also works in the Swallowing Disorders Center providing diagnostic swallowing evaluations and treatment. She also provides evaluation and treatment to the head and neck cancer population during and post CRT treatment. Her population of focus is with adults and geriatric patients.

Kristen Stablein

Kristen Stablein has spent her career as a Speech Language Pathologist within the acute care and post-acute rehabilitation settings. She earned her Master of Science Degree in Speech Language Pathology from Duquesne University in August 2009. She has been working for the Department of Otolaryngology since 2012. Kristen has experience in evaluating and treating speech, language, cognitive-linguistic, voice, and swallowing disorders with various neurological, oncological, cardiac, and/or pulmonary diagnoses. She has extensive experience in completion of Modified Barium Swallowing Studies (MBSS) for both inpatients and outpatients. She also has experience in completion of Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FEES). While the majority of her time is spent treating inpatients, Kristen also provides outpatient swallowing therapy for those patients who have been seen within the Swallowing Disorders Center.

Nicole Veydt, M.A./CCC-SLP

Nicole Veydt, M.A./CCC-SLP, received her Bachelor’s degree in Speech Language Pathology from the California University of Pennsylvania, and her Master’s degree from Ohio University. She has extensive experience in the adult inpatient rehabilitation and long-term acute care hospital settings, evaluating and managing a wide range of cognitive-communication and swallowing disorders, including work with tracheostomized and ventilator-dependent patients. Ms. Veydt is also certified in and provides instruction to clients seeking foreign accent modification.

Tamara Wasserman-Wincko, MS, CCC-SLP

Tamara Wasserman-Wincko, MS, CCC-SLP, is one of the clinical practice managers of the Speech Pathology Division and a clinical instructor in the Department of Otolaryngology. She earned her master's degree at Nova Southeastern University in speech pathology and completed her fellowship at UPMC. She also serves as the coordinator of the UPMC Swallowing Disorders Center. Ms. Wasserman-Wincko has co-authored a text book chapter on the management of swallowing disorders in patients with tracheostomy tubes and has participated in conference presentations. Her area of expertise is in evaluating and treating patients with all types of swallowing difficulties in the outpatient and acute care setting, including patients with head and neck cancer.

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