Faculty

Benefit from instructors who are highly experienced with complex neonatal and pediatric patients

Catherine Shaker MS/CCC-SLP, BCS-S is a Pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist with over 43
years’ experience with neonates, medically fragile infants, and children through school age with complex needs across the continuum of pediatric settings. An ASHA Board Certified Specialist in Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders, Ms. Shaker has worked full-time in large Level III and IV NICUs for over 35 years and currently works at Advent Health for Children in Orlando. She has published several manuscripts on NICU intervention, and co-authored The Early Feeding Skills Assessment Tool with Dr. Thoyre. Ms. Shaker received the Pioneer Award from NANT (The National Association of Neonatal Therapists) and is a recognized leader in NICU practice and supporting EI clinicians following NICU graduates. She provides swallow studies for infants and children, is NDT trained, and an invited lecturer internationally nationally for therapists, nurses & physicians.

Theresa Gager MS/CCC-SLP has 35 years experience as a Pediatric Speech-Language
Pathologist, with children from infancy through school age with complex swallowing, feeding, oral-motor and respiratory problems. She is NDT trained, has serviced children in schools, outpatient, home health, EI and the NICU. Teaches and consults. Down to earth, a sought-after problem-solver.

Suzanne Thoyre RN, PhD is Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
School of Nursing. Dr. Thoyre has worked as a neonatal nurse for 31 years and coordinated the
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Program at the University of North Carolina. She lectures extensively nationally and internationally on cue-based feeding. Her research studies focus on the physiology of preterm infant feeding, mother/nurse-infant feeding interactions, and infants’ behavioral and physiologic responses to specific feeding interventions. A gifted and amazing researcher who brings current insights to infant-guided NICU feeding – will change your practice!