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Dr. Bernard Rousseau Joins Pitt as Chair of Department of Communication Science and Disorders

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Courtney Caprara

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PITTSBURGH – The University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (SHRS) has named Bernard Rousseau, Ph.D., M.M.H.C., C.C.C.-S.L.P., American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) Fellow, as the new chair of the Department of Communication Science and Disorders. He will officially assume his position on Sept. 1, 2018.

Rousseau joins Pitt from Vanderbilt University Medical Center, where he held various appointments for the last 14 years. Most recently, he served as associate vice chair for research and director of the Laryngeal Biology Laboratory in the Vanderbilt Department of Otolaryngology, and as chancellor faculty fellow and associate professor of otolaryngology, hearing and speech sciences and mechanical engineering.

“Dr. Rousseau is an accomplished researcher who has contributed significantly to the field of communication sciences and otolaryngology, and we look forward to seeing the department grow to new heights under his skilled leadership,” said Arthur S. Levine, M.D., senior vice chancellor for the health sciences and John and Gertrude Petersen Dean of Medicine at Pitt.

“We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Rousseau to the Pitt family,” said Anthony Delitto, Ph.D., dean of SHRS. “His many achievements and commitment to collaboration and research that advances his field make him the ideal leader for our department as it moves forward.”

Two National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded research projects are coming to Pitt with Rousseau, along with a majority of his research team from Vanderbilt. The first project focuses on improving outcomes for patients with unilateral vocal fold paralysis through innovative technology designed to improve pre-operative surgical planning. The second project seeks to determine the safety and efficacy of treatments for voice disorders.

“As I step into my new role at Pitt, I am energized by the fact that the university and the city of Pittsburgh have all the necessary ingredients to truly advance the study of communication science and disorders,” said Rousseau. “The outstanding faculty, the clinical infrastructure, and the exciting opportunities to leverage and strengthen partnerships across the various schools, programs and highly ranked departments at Pitt will allow us to take this program and this field to the next level.”

After receiving his undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Central Florida, Rousseau received his doctorate in communicative disorders from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, as well as a master’s in management of health care degree from the Vanderbilt University Owen Graduate School of Management. He is one of only 10 individuals elected as a fellow of both ASHA and the American Laryngological Association.