UM professor named fellow of national Speech Language Hearing Association

Julie Wolter, right, was recently recognized at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention. (UM News photo)

University of Montana professor Julie Wolter was named a Fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association during the national organization’s annual convention in Boston this month.

The fellowship recognized Wolter for her years of research in language and literacy, as well as for service to ASHA and the field of speech-language pathology. The organization is comprised of 198,000 members who are speech-language pathologists and audiologists working in schools, hospitals and universities throughout the U.S.

Wholter chairs the Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences at UM.

“It is deeply humbling and truly an honor to be recognized by my peers and be part of a ceremony where individuals whom I admire are recognized for their efforts and the hours they have dedicated to improving the lives of individuals with spoken and written communication disabilities,” Wolter said after the awards ceremony.

Wolter has focused her research career on how children with speech and language challenges – such as those with developmental language disorders – go on to develop improved reading and writing abilities.

She recently received a multimillion dollar National Institutes of Health grant to study the development of reading and writing in children with speech and language challenges. She works with local school districts to implement and develop screening practices to identify children who present language and/or literacy challenges as early as kindergarten.

“I am committed to this incredibly innovative program in Montana to help train individuals to become speech-language pathologists, regardless of where they live and whether they can move to Missoula,” Wolter said.

In the ASHA Fellow nomination letter, UM faculty colleagues, students and peers throughout the U.S. said Wolter was “a champion who is committed to ending rural disparities in education and health care, which is reflective of U.S. Department of Education funding that she has secured for students who train in rural areas through the distance graduate program that is part of her department.”