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2009 Faculty & Staff News

Dr. Lissa Power-deFur appointed to Governor's Council

March 4, 2009

Governor Timothy M. Kaine has appointed Dr. Lissa Power-deFur, associate professor and graduate coordinator for communication sciences and disorders at Longwood University and director of the Longwood Center for Communication, Literacy and Learning, to the Virginia Interagency Coordinating Council for Early Intervention Services (VICC).

As an advisory council to the executive branch of state government, the purpose of the VICC is to promote and coordinate early intervention services in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As a representative of higher education Dr. Power-deFur will have an opportunity to address issues associated with the preparation of future professionals who will work with infants and toddlers. Longwood's Communication Sciences and Disorders graduate program provides future speech-language pathologists to work under the direction of a faculty member providing early intervention services in the natural environment, typically the child's home.

Throughout my professional career as a speech-language pathologist I have been committed to providing early intervention services for children, said Dr. Power-deFur, a certified speech-language pathologist. One of my first clinical opportunities, prior to passage of the federal mandate for early intervention services, was working with an infant with hearing impairment which convinced me of the critical nature of early identification and intervention. This focus has remained throughout my career.

Dr. Power-deFur earned her master's and doctorate degrees in speech-language pathology from the University of Virginia. While working in special education and student services at the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE), she was involved in various preschool and early intervention initiatives and served as an alternate representative to the VICC for the VDOE. She also represented VDOE on the Virginia Hearing Impairment Identification and Monitoring System initiative and co-authored the parent guide to hearing impairment.

In 2004 Dr. Power-deFur joined the faculty at Longwood University, and was instrumental in creating the new graduate program in Communication Sciences and Disorders. In 2005, Longwood became the lead agency for the Infant and Toddler Connection of the Heartland. This program provides for early intervention services for the counties of Amelia, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Lunenburg, Nottoway, and Prince Edward since 2005. In addition to her work preparing future speech-language pathologists, Dr. Power-deFur directs Longwood's Center for Communication, Literacy, and Learning (LCCLL), which is located in downtown Farmville. In addition to offering early intervention services, the speech and language evaluation and intervention for children and adults, and tutoring services for school-aged children for the Southside Virginia community. For further information please contact the Center at 395-2972.