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HCRI Recognized as Center of Innovation for Stuttering Therapy
Date:6/21/2012

Roanoke, VA (PRWEB) June 21, 2012

Hollins Communications Research Institute (HCRI – http://www.stuttering.org) is recognized in this month’s issue of Virginia Business magazine as one of the most innovative nonprofit organizations in the commonwealth. This recognition reaffirms a 40-year history of “firsts” for the Roanoke, Virginia center, which is among few organizations in the world that specialize in both research on stuttering and effective treatment of this unique disorder.

For the past 40 years, HCRI’s focus on innovation has brought fluency skills to thousands who stutter around the globe. People from every state in the U.S. and 47 other countries have come to HCRI for the center’s one-of-a-kind, scientifically based stuttering treatment.

According to the National Institutes of Health, an estimated 66 million people stutter, with three million living in the U.S. Impairing the ability to speak smoothly and spontaneously, the condition can limit educational and career aspirations, hinder social growth, and produce emotional scars that may last a lifetime. Through the years, traditional stuttering and speech therapies have done little to help people manage their stuttering and speak fluently over a sustained period of time.

Ronald L. Webster, Ph.D. recognized this issue and founded HCRI in 1972 to investigate stuttering and develop new, scientifically based treatment options that improve fluency outcomes. Webster and the HCRI team began by conducting extensive research and discovered that stuttering has a physical basis, dispelling long-standing notions that stuttering is caused by emotional or mental issues.

This discovery led to the definition of specific speech muscle behaviors called “targets,” which replace distorted muscle activities that produce stuttering. With these target defin
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