Loqui Director, Bernadette Dutton, won Speech Pathologist of the Year at the 2019 Australian Allied Health Awards as well as being recognised as an Excellence in Management and Leadership Award Finalist. Here’s a few words from Bernadette:
It is an absolute honour to receive the Australian Allied Health Awards 2019 Speech Pathologist of the Year. It is recognition for the enthusiasm and commitment our team have given to Loqui Speech Pathology, research, quality improvement projects, teaching and clinical growth. It is wonderful to see the Speech Pathology and aged care in the spotlight, recognising the pivotal role speech pathologists have in supporting adults living in community and aged care to improve their care and standard of life.
It brings me such joy to be a speech pathologist and support a team who are driven to help adults living at home or in aged care to maximise their eating, drinking, swallowing, and communication. I find it rewarding to work with our clients and those who support them to reach their goals and advocate for their needs. As Speech Pathologists we support our clients do 2 things we all enjoy and at times may take for granted, sharing a meal together and communicating. I am fortunate to work with bunch of incredibly inspiring speech pathologists who bring together their unique skills, interests and talents to form a great team.
My business, Loqui Speech Pathology, employed its first Speech Pathologist in 2014 and has grown to a team of 28. This has resulted in creating strong career pathways for speech pathologists within the aged care sector. I am proud of the high standard of care our clients receive. With our teams’ combined experiences and advocacy skills we have been able to undertake quality improvement projects with aged care homes relating to eating and drinking, “Dignity of Risk”, our wellness choir and cognitive communication programs.
I have enjoyed growing and mentoring a team of motivated professionals and providing them with a career in aged care. They are dedicated to delivering on Loqui’s vision to maximise communication and swallow safety.
Throughout my career, I have been inspired and mentored by colleagues, family and friends. Among the list of phenomenal people who have helped me along the way, there is one person that has truly guided me. His name is John Moodie. John taught me the finer art of leadership and resilience. He asked me hard questions about my business, where I was heading and my goals. He influenced my life and business career, sadly he passed away last year, and I am forever thankful for him being in my life. He was my business advisor, coach and friend. My award is dedicated to John.