Looking back on 2020 and Wishes for 2021 – A Letter from Dr. Gabbard

I am inspired by the resilience of our community and the MDC Team. I am also optimistic about expanding our impact in 2021. Thank you for sharing this journey with us!

There were challenges in 2020 that are obvious to everyone. However, we had many firsts in 2020:

  1. We created a safe environment at the MDC with space modification, extra cleaning and facemasks. Our window face masks went viral as we distributed both the masks and the mask pattern all over the country! We advocated for communication strategy modifications for those struggling. (9news Article)
  2. We launched a new, improved website that is more user friendly and easier to navigate.  Please take a look if you haven’t already.
  3. We hosted our first virtual Legacy Celebration in November! The online event was fun and successful thanks to Justin Osmond, Hazel Miller, Bathing Lagoon, and Camera Jams. (www.mariondowns.org/legacy2020)
  4. We celebrated the career accomplishments of Dr. Vickie Thomson! Dr. Thompson’s contributions to Early Hearing Detection and Intervention programs impacted practice in Colorado and beyond. We are proud to celebrate and honor her.

As we look ahead into 2021, we are hard at work preparing to expand our impact.

  1. Marion’s Way Preschool will see a rebirth this summer. We continue to implement the vision of our beloved teacher Dianne Goberis and honor her legacy. Watch for details in February.
  2. Our Hearing Conservation Program continues to expand its service line through on-site testing, sound level surveys, dosimeter testing, work relatedness determinations, custom ear protection and ear protection fit testing. (https://mariondowns.org/occupational-hearing/)
  3. Our Audiology Clinic is expanding its services to musicians and individuals seeking ear protection options. In addition to traditional audiometry, we offer ultra-high frequency testing, otoacoustic emissions, a wide variety of custom in-ear monitors and specialized ear protection. (https://mariondowns.org/music-audiology/)
  4. Expanded speech-language assessment and therapy is now available with our new speech-language pathologist, Sarah Bookout. (https://mariondowns.org/speech-language-evaluations-therapy/)
  5. We will be launching the new Teen Program with opportunities for mentorship, education, socialization and adventure! More information will be available in the spring of 2021.

We are grateful for your support and we look forward to many more years of serving as a center of excellence for individuals with hearing loss or communication challenges and their families.

Sandra Abbot Gabbard, PhD
President/CEO, Clinical Audiologist
Marion Downs Center