Board of Directors
President: Kittie Verdolini-Abbott
Katherine (Kittie) Verdolini Abbott, PhD, CCC-SLP, MDiv, is currently Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) at the University of Delaware. Prior academic posts include CSD at the University of Iowa, Otolaryngology at Harvard Medical School, and CSD at the University of Pittsburgh. With a background in performing voice, she has worked clinically as a voice-specialized speech-language pathologist since 1979. She completed her PhD in Experimental Psychology/Cognitive Science at Washington University in St. Louis in 1991, with an emphasis in implicit and explicit processes in perceptual-motor learning. Her research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health since 1997. Research topics have spanned a series of topics including hydration, exercise physiology, wound healing, personality, meditation, and clinical trials in voice.
Past President: Aaron Johnson
Like most vocologists, Aaron Johnson’s career path has been varied and multidisciplinary. He began as a singer, studying vocal performance at Northwestern University, and then sang professionally and taught singing for over a decade. In 2005 he shifted his focus to the health and science of the voice and discovered his passion for voice research at the Summer Vocology Institute. He earned a master of science in speech-language pathology from Rush University and a research doctorate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and spent four years on the faculty in the Department of Speech and Hearing Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In 2016 he joined the New York University (NYU) Voice Center as an assistant professor of otolaryngology in the NYU School of Medicine. At NYU he is able to draw upon his multidisciplinary background as a clinician, researcher, and educator. As a speech-language pathologist and singing voice specialist, he evaluates and treats voice disorders in performers. He also directs an NIH-funded research laboratory investigating the neuromuscular mechanisms underlying vocal exercise. Through collaborations across NYU he is able to direct singing-voice research, teach future vocologists, and move the field of vocology forward.
President-Elect: Amelia Rollings
Amelia Rollings holds a PhD in vocal pedagogy from the University of Kansas and an MM in voice performance and pedagogy from The Pennsylvania State University. Operatic and oratorio roles include the soprano soloist in Verdi’s Requiem, Third Norn in Wagner’s Götterdämmerung, Lady Billows in Britten’s Albert Herring, Magda Sorel in Menotti’s The Consul, and Witch in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel. Musical theatre roles include Pirelli in Sweeney Todd, Bellomy in The Fantasticks, and Saraghina in Yeston’s Nine.
Rollings currently teaches in the Theatre & Dance Department at Western Kentucky University as assistant professor of musical theatre voice. Dr. Rollings was recently awarded the 2018 Van L. Lawrence Fellowship, an award given by The National Association of Teachers of Singing and The Voice Foundation. An active researcher in vocal pedagogy, she has presented her research in such refereed venues as The Voice Foundation Symposium, The International Phenomenon of Singing Symposium, The Singing Network, the Pan-American Vocology Association Symposium, the National Association of Teachers of Singing National Conference, the Fall Voice Conference, and the Ohio State Voice Forum. Her primary research interests include musical theatre voice pedagogy, group voice teaching, and the effects of shoe heel heights, head position, and jaw opening on acoustical and perceptual measures of singing efficiency. Her most recent publication on the effects of high-heeled shoes can be found in the Journal of Voice.
Vice President: Ingo Titze
Dr. Ingo R. Titze has served as Founder and President of the National Center for Voice and Speech since 1990. His was a University of Iowa Foundation Distinguished Professor of Voice, Speech, and Vocal Music prior to retirement from Iowa in 2019. He has published over 500 articles in scientific and educational journals. His book publications include Principles of Voice Production (1994), The Myoelastic-Aerodynamic Theory of Phonation (2006); in collaboration with Katherine Verdolini, Vocology: The Science and Practice of Voice Habilitation (2012); and Fascinations with the Human Voice (2010), which is printed in eight languages. His research interests include biomechanics of human tissues, acoustic phonetics, speech science, voice disorders, professional voice production, and the computer simulation of voice. His formal training is in Electrical Engineering (MS) and physics (PhD) Dr. Titze is a founding member and first elected President of the Pan- American Vocology Association. Other professional affiliations include the Acoustical Society of America, The National Association of Teachers of Singing, the American Speech Language Hearing Association, and the American Laryngological Association. Honors include The Gould Award for outstanding research in laryngeal physiology (1984), the Silver Medal Award from the Acoustical Society of America (2007), the Honors of the Association Award from ASHA (2010), and the Sundberg-Titze Award from the Voice Foundation (2020). He has administered and taught in the Summer Vocology Institute, the premiere Vocology training program, for 20 years. He has been married to Kathy Titze for 52 years, with whom he has four children and nine grandchildren. He remains an active singer.
Treasurer: Annika Wilson
Annika Wilson is a recent hire as a clinical speech language pathologist at Duke Voice Care Center. Previously, Wilson was a high school music teacher and elementary school speech language pathologist. She has remained an active choral singer since childhood and has directed church choirs/bands throughout the Midwest for 12 years. She is a graduate of Concordia University Wisconsin with a bachelor's degree in vocal performance/ K-8 educational studies, and St. Ambrose University with a master's degree in speech language pathology. Most recently, Wilson is a graduate of the Summer Vocology Institute, class of 2019. As a passionate pioneer for multidisciplinary vocology, Wilson provides rehabilitation for singers with voice disorders, lectures on voice habilitation/rehabilitation, and continues her musical directing via her own LLC.
Membership Director: Rachel Verlarde
Rachel Velarde is currently professor of music at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, AZ, teaching voice, song literature, and voice pedagogy to undergraduate students. She grew up in Bloomington, IN (Mary Goetze, then-director of the Indiana University Children’s Choir, has continued to be a musical mentor). When she was six years old, her family moved to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia for two years. Her experiences gave her a lasting impression about the universality of humanity. She has traveled to France and Austria, and has regularly traveled to Italy, as a performer and as voice faculty. Dr. Velarde received her BA in Music from Smith College in Northampton, MA in 1994. She earned two master of music degrees, in vocal performance and vocal pedagogy, from Arizona State University in 1997, and her DMA in vocal performance from from the same institution in 2013. Dr. Velarde began teaching private voice and piano lessons in 1993 and became a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) in 1996, and has served in multiple board positions. In 2012, Rachel received Honorable Mention for the Van L. Lawrence Fellowship in vocal pedagogy research, and completed the Wicklund Singing Voice Specialist (SVS) Certification. She became a PAVA member in 2016 and is passionate about spreading the PAVA mission to colleagues worldwide.
Communications Director: Beth Falcone
Beth Falcone is a New York based composer/lyricist, pianist, conductor and singing voice teacher. Her musical, Wanda’s World, was produced off-Broadway at the 45th St. Theater (Amas, in association with Terry Schnuck) received two Lortel Award nominations, including best musical, a Drama Desk Award nomination for best book, and she is a Kleban prize winner for Most Promising Lyricist. The show was released on Broadway Records in December of 2019 with album producer Michal J. Moritz, Jr. and has been licensed by Theatrical Rights Worldwide. For more information, visit: WANDASWORLDMUSICAL.com. Her work has been featured in Broadway Bound (Merkin Hall), Lincoln Center Library’s New Composers’ series, the BMI Showcase, Between the Lines radio show, and her music has been published at ContemporaryMusicalTheatre.com. Beth is a Dramatists’s Guild Fellow, a proud member of MAESTRA, BMI, NYSTA, PAVA (Pan American Vocology Association), VoiceCare Network, Voice Foundation and has a private studio in Manhattan. Her pitch matching method is the subject of a research study in collaboration with New York Medical College, and she is currently writing a book: ”Life’s a Pitch and Then you Sping!”
For more information on Beth’s latest activities, visit: BethFalcone.com.
Central Governor: Nandhu Radhakrishnan
Dr. Nandhu Radhakrishnan is an Associate Professor and Director of K-State Voice Clinic at Communication Sciences and Disorders, Department of Applied Human Sciences, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas. He received his doctorate at Bowling Green State University, Ohio and completed his clinical fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Voice Center, Pennsylvania. His areas of specialty include clinical, professional, and performance voice issues. He has published chapters and articles related to voice science, and has conducted national and international workshops related to assessment and intervention of voice. Through his limited liability company (VASEE), he offers continuing education related to vocal arts and science. He has designed an innovative voice therapy approach called Nasal Resistance (NR) technique. He is a member of the Editorial Board of Journal of Voice, Voice Science Advisory Committee of NATS, and the founding faculty of one of the first chapters of PAVA (Southeast Texas Chapter). Apart from PAVA, he is a member of various organizations, including the Voice Foundation, Voice and Speech Trainers Association, and Life Member of Indian Speech, Language, and Hearing Association. Apart from his profession, he is a playwright, stage artist, YouTuber, and hobby-chef.
Eastern Governor: Matthew Hoch
Matthew Hoch joined the voice faculty of Auburn University in 2012, where he was tenured in 2015 and promoted to the rank of professor in 2020. His research program focuses on the scholarship of voice pedagogy and the practical applications of singing voice research in the applied voice studio. Specific avenues pursued include quantification of vocal dose as a means to frame exercise physiology aspects of skill acquisition and fatigue resistance when training up for recital performance as well as furthering pedagogical scholarship in other aspects of voice pedagogy. Hoch’s published bibliography on these topics includes several books as single author, first author, or editor and peer-reviewed articles in over a dozen academic and professional journals. He earned his DMA in vocal performance at the New England Conservatory and is an NCVS-trained vocologist. He is the 2016 winner of the Van L. Lawrence Fellowship, awarded jointly by the Voice Foundation and NATS. In addition to his academic life, Hoch serves as choirmaster and minister of music at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Auburn, Alabama, where he lives with his wife, Theresa, and three children: Hannah, Sofie, and Zachary.
Western Governor: Lynn Maxfield
Lynn Maxfield, PhD, is Director of the Utah Center for Vocology and assistant professor (lecturer) at the University of Utah’s School of Music. He also serves as the contracted voice Coach at the Utah of Utah Voice Disorders Center and is the Associate Editor of the Mindful Voice column of the NATS Journal of Singing. He holds a PhD in Voice Pedagogy and an MA in Voice Performance, both from the University of Iowa. Prior to joining the University of Utah, he taught voice and voice pedagogy at Eastern Connecticut State University, Monmouth College, and Knox College, as well as music theory and ear training at Carl Sandburg College.
Canadian Governor: Melanie Tapson
Melanie Tapson is a singer and speech-language pathologist focused on voice care for professional voice users and performers and transgender voice and communication training. She holds a BFA in jazz voice, a BEd in senior vocal music/drama, and an MSc in SLP. She maintains multiple professional designations and a certificate in performing arts health from PAMA and ACSM.
Tapson keeps up with current research in therapeutic interventions for voice. She is an adjunct lecturer at the University of Toronto, lectures at the Glenn Gould School, and frequently gives workshops by invitation. Her twenty years as a professional performer, combined with her training and experience as an educator and SLP provides her with a unique perspective. She believes that treating the voice requires treating the whole person through a collaborative approach. She empathizes with the demands of the professional voice user’s schedule and lifestyle first-hand, and she fiercely advocates for preventative voice care. Tapson remains active singing in musical theatre productions and doing voiceover work.
Latin American Governor: Carlos Manzano
Phoniatrician, MD (Specialist in voice, speech and swallowing disorders). GRADUATED FROM THE NATIONAL REHABILITATION INSTITUTE endorsed by the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). HIGH SPECIALTY COURSE IN PEDIATRIC FONIATRICS GRADUATED FROM THE CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL OF MEXICO endorsed by the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Master of Medical Sciences endorsed by UNAM. Graduated from the Summer Vocology Intensive (SVI) at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City with Dr. Ingo Titze. President The Voice Foundation – Mexico Chapter. Member of the Panamerican Vocology Association (PAVA). Phoniatrician AT MÉDICA SUR HOSPITAL AND CENTRO MÉDICO ABC HOSPITAL in Mexico City.