Jennell C. Vick
Jennell C. Vick, Ph.D., assumed the position of Executive Director in March of 2015. Dr. Vick comes CHSC from the Departments of Psychological Sciences, Biomedical Engineering and Pediatrics at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) in Cleveland, Ohio. Dr. Vick is no stranger to CHSC. Over 20 years ago, she trained as a Speech Language Pathologist at CHSC and received her Master of Arts from Case Western Reserve University’s Department of Communication Sciences. For eight years, as a Research Scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dr. Vick collaborated with one of the world’s top researchers in the area of speech production and cochlear implants. She then completed her doctorate at the University of Washington in Seattle and was in the inaugural class of Callier Postdoctoral Fellows at The University of Texas at Dallas Callier Center for Communication Disorders. She returned to Cleveland when she joined the faculty at CWRU in the Communication Sciences Program. Dr. Vick resides with her husband, Dr. Gregory Lee, and their two young daughters in Shaker Heights.
Dan Craft, CPA
Director of Finance and Administration
Dan Craft joined CHSC in 2017 as the Director of Finance & Administration. He is responsible for strategy and operations, finance and accounting, business planning, administration, HR and IT.
With more than two decades of leadership experience, most recently as a Partner at Ernst & Young focused on organizational change and business transformation, he also served as a government and non-profit accounting leader at Arthur Andersen.
Mr. Craft is a CPA and member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Ohio Society of Certified Public Accountants.
Michelle Foye, M.A., CCC-SLP
Director of Speech Language & Learning Services
Michelle Foye, M.A., CCC-SLP has been an SLP at Cleveland Hearing and Speech Center since 2001. While working as an SLP at CHSC, Mrs. Foye was the Head Start and School contract coordinator. In 2015, Mrs. Foye was appointed Director of Speech Language & Learning Services. Mrs. Foye is an ASHA certified Speech Language Pathologist and is licensed by the Ohio Board and Ohio Department of Education. Mrs. Foye holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Hearing and Speech Sciences from Ohio University and a Master of Arts degree in Speech-Language Pathology from Kent State University. Prior to coming to CHSC, Mrs. Foye worked as an SLP with children at Lorain County Board of Developmental Disabilities and Monterey County Office of Education. Mrs. Foye served for three years in the CWRU Motor Speech Lab as the Laboratory Manager. In this role, she managed a highly technical project, funded by The Hartwell Foundation, on the movement of the tongue during speech production in older children and adults. As part of this work, Ms. Foye was coauthor on three peer-reviewed podium presentations at national and international meetings and is co-author on three manuscripts submitted for publication. Mrs. Foye’s clinical interests are with preschool and school age children with speech, language, reading, and writing disorders.
Bridgid M. Whitford, AuD., CCC-A
Director of Hearing Services
Bridgid Whitford Au D, CCC-A has been with Cleveland Hearing & Speech Center since 1993. She first came to CHSC as a clinical audiologist. In 2011, Dr. Whitford added management of the Regional Infant Program (RIHP) to her responsibilities and in 2015 she was appointed the Director of Hearing Services. In this role she is responsible for developing and managing programs and services within the audiology department including early interventions services for children with hearing loss (formerly known as RIHP). Dr. Whitford oversees staff development, compliance regulation and strategic planning and implementation. In addition, Dr. Whitford advocates on behalf of people with disabilities and works with local and state legislators to make positive changes for services and funding available to people with hearing loss.
Clinically, Dr. Whitford has treated patients of all ages but has a particular interest in pediatric and educational audiology. She is active participant in the State of Ohio Early Hearing loss Detection and Intervention (EHDI) program and sits on several statewide committees to improve access to services for children with hearing loss in Ohio.
Dr. Whitford holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from Miami University, a Masters in Science in Audiology from Kent State and a Doctor of Audiology from AT Still University.
Maria O'Neil Ruddock
Director, Community Center for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing
Maria O’Neil Ruddock, Psy.D. has been affiliated with the Cleveland Hearing and Speech Center since 1990. When she joined the CHSC staff she provided psychological services in the Community Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH), including individual and family therapy, psychological assessment, and consultation to a variety of social service organizations, schools, and mental health facilities. Maria left the Center in 1995 but continued to provide services to D/deaf individuals and agencies on a consultative basis. She subsequently joined the Board of Directors serving as the Chair of the Deafness Advocacy Committee working closely with long time Director of CCDHH, Susan Bungard. In 2011 Maria rejoined the staff as Coordinator of Training and Outreach Services. In this role she provided support services & advocacy to individuals and families in both the Deaf and hard of hearing communities as well as information and referral, consultation, training, and education to agencies and organizations that interface with individuals who are Deaf or hard of hearing and their families (e.g. hospitals, social service agencies, mental health agencies, police departments, schools, private corporations, government agencies, etc.). In addition, she directed a grant project funded by the Office on Violence Against Women studying the incidence, prevalence and impact of domestic and relationship violence in the D/deaf community. Maria currently serves as Director of the Community Center, overseeing all programs and services including Interpreting, The Learning Center, Support Services, Sign Stage, and the Neuropsychology Program. Supporting the work of her committed and dedicated staff while continuing to provide training and advocacy are the highlights of her position.
Maria holds Bachelors of Arts from The University of Hartford in Special and Elementary Education; A Masters in School Psychology and a Doctorate in Clinical Child Psychology from New York University.
Director of Marketing and Communications
With an extensive background in marketing, design, publication, and communication for industries as varied as non-profit, retail, international finance and real estate, Sharon Dundee came to Cleveland Hearing & Speech Center in 2014. Initially, as Manager of Marketing, Communications and Events within the Development department, she was responsible for the day-to-day responsibilities of marketing and advertising for the Center and each of its (then) four areas of service. In addition, she helped to create and manage numerous special events throughout the year including several major fundraisers. In 2017 she was appointed Director of Marketing & Communications as part of the Strategic Plan initiative to create a new, independent Marketing Department. In this role she is responsible for developing and managing marketing strategies, a comprehensive advertising plan, public relations, and digital/social media functions. She oversees and manages the marketing budget, works with numerous outsource vendors, media reps and CHSC staff to ensure a consistent brand and message for the Center.
Ms. Dundee holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Youngstown State University. She is affiliated with American Advertising Federation, eMarketing Association, and the Editorial Advisory Board of Mitchell Media.
Director of Development
Sara Thomas started with Cleveland Hearing & Speech Center in 2015, bringing great enthusiasm and passion for creating positive change in our community. Sara has a diverse and extensive background in the nonprofit field through development and direct-service programming.
In her current role as Director of Development, Sara oversees departmental operations and staff, whose goal is to advance the philanthropic efforts of the organization. Sara has made a number of extraordinary contributions, including reviving and re-envisioning our annual benefit, focusing and improving our biannual publication, Communication Matters, transforming our annual report into an Impact Report, and leading the Development team, all while providing ongoing leadership for the New Partners and the Big Wheel Relay. Sara also possesses extensive professional development training and has an executive coaching background, all of which lend themselves to the scope and magnitude of this incredibly dynamic and critical leadership position.
Sara graduated from Hiram College with a BA in Sociology. After college she joined Americorps and completed 1,700 hours of service with Habitat for Humanity. Sara holds two Master’s degrees in Nonprofit Management (from John Carroll University) and Positive Organizational Change (from Case Western Reserve University). Sara serves on the Board of AFP Greater Cleveland and is involved in several other civic engagements.
Rebecca Mental, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Director of Research
Rebecca L. Mental, Ph.D., CCC-SLP joined the leadership team at Cleveland Hearing and Speech Center (CHSC) as Director of Research in 2018. Her responsibilities include designing protocol for collecting and analyzing outcome data, spearheading novel research initiatives, facilitating a culture of evidence-based practice and providing direct therapy to clients with speech and language needs.
Dr. Mental earned her Ph.D. in Communication Sciences from Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) in 2018 - her dissertation research was a collaborative effort between CWRU and CHSC. She designed and implemented a clinical research study that utilized visual biofeedback software for the treatment of older children and adults with speech sound errors. The software, Opti-Speech, allows the user to see a three-dimensional visual of his or her tongue moving in real time.
Dr. Mental has been associated with CHSC in varying capacities since she participated in her first graduate school clinical placement at the Center in 2012. She completed her clinical fellowship at the Center in 2017 and is an ASHA-certified speech-language pathologist licensed by the Ohio Board. Clinically, Dr. Mental enjoys working with both children and adults, with a special interest in Opti-Speech for the treatment of speech sound disorders. Dr. Mental also serves as adjunct faculty at CWRU, most recently teaching graduate-level courses on research methods and evidence-based practice.
Director of Interpreting Services
Tim worked for CHSC from 2007-2012 in various capacities, including Operations Manager in the CCDHH. He has been an ASL interpreter since 2004, when he completed his training at Gallaudet University.
Tim has had many years of experience working in the world of communication access, with great success creating solutions that were positive and effective for the many stakeholders involved. He has worked in account management, business development, and territory management for many of the country’s top communication access companies like Purple Communications, Karasch & Associates, and ClearCaptions, Inc.
Tim is an incredibly energetic and positive person and these qualities will benefit all of CHSC. Tim shares our vision for our Northeast Ohio D/deaf and Hard of Hearing community where communication access is supported by great partnerships between CHSC and the agencies and organizations that provide services to the community.