Supporting Achievement...

The Communication Disorders Foundation began in 1985 and became official in 1986 as a nonprofit organization of volunteers supporting speech-language pathology and audiology through fundraising for scholarships to graduate students in Virginia’s communication sciences and disorders programs, and supporting achievement and honoring excellence in student and colleague accomplishments.

Honoring excellence...

Over 32 years, 51 different individuals have served on the CDF Board of Trustees. Our posts are generally for three years, although we welcome longer stays of hard workers. We also welcome new applicants, particularly if you’re good at fundraising, because that’s what we’re about—raising money and awarding scholarships to students like Julia Spong (UVA) and Emily C. Speaks (Radford) honored recipients of our 2018 scholarships. We also sponsor an auction at the annual SHAV Conference as our primary fundraiser, and we give $1000 to students for outstanding posters at the Conference. We award our peers with special recognition (the Martha Mullins Callender Award, Friends of the Foundation Award) each year. We’re separate from SHAV, yet we work closely with the SHAV Board and SHAV’s management firm as allies and colleagues.


  • A fundraising auction as part of the annual SHAV Conference

  • A student poster competition as part of the annual SHAV Conference program.

  • An annual scholarship competition to select and award student funding (e.g., Rita Purcell-Robertson Scholar, David Narburgh Scholar)

  • The honoring of professionals in speech-language pathology and audiology (e.g., Martha Mullins-Callender Award, Friend of the Foundation acknowledgement)

  • The dissemination of news, activities, and available access through routine submissions to the SHAV-A-GRAM and maintenance of a CDF website.

Over the years, the CDF of VA has awarded over 60 scholarships to deserving graduate students. The Foundation has bestowed the Martha Mullins-Callender Award on over 20 of your colleagues and the Friends of the Foundation Award to over 14 individuals, civic groups and businesses. All of this has been possible because of you, our colleagues, our students and the many businesses and organizations who have supported the Foundation
— Patti Peters, CDF Trustee