A Match Made at ASHA It was random circumstances that connected two SLPs—now married for 39 years—at the 1977 ASHA Convention. First Person/Last Page
Free
First Person/Last Page  |   July 01, 2018
A Match Made at ASHA
Author Notes
  • Herb Hein, MMSc, CCC-SLP, is vice president of Hein Speech-Language Pathology. Joanne Gerstein Hein, MS, CCC-SLP, is company president. hheinspeechlanguage@san.rr.com
    Herb Hein, MMSc, CCC-SLP, is vice president of Hein Speech-Language Pathology. Joanne Gerstein Hein, MS, CCC-SLP, is company president. hheinspeechlanguage@san.rr.com×
Article Information
ASHA News & Member Stories / First Person/Last Page
First Person/Last Page   |   July 01, 2018
A Match Made at ASHA
The ASHA Leader, July 2018, Vol. 23, 72. doi:10.1044/leader.FPLP.23072018.72
The ASHA Leader, July 2018, Vol. 23, 72. doi:10.1044/leader.FPLP.23072018.72
More than 40 years ago, my life changed at the 1977 ASHA Convention in Chicago. I was a clinical fellow at a rehabilitation clinic in California, with a contract that included attendance at ASHA. Little did I know what would happen at that convention!
The first night, I ran into my graduate school professor at the Conrad Hilton. He was stopped by his old friend, Marsha Hershman, who was in a group speaking with other passers-by. One of these people was Joanne Gerstein, a speech-language pathologist from North Carolina. My professor had to leave, but I stayed with this group. Marsha suggested dinner, so eight of us climbed into a taxi, with Joanne sitting on my lap (no seat-belt laws).
At the restaurant, Marsha looked at us and said, “It looks like you two should be married!” What?!! We had just met an hour before! I lived in California and Joanne in North Carolina. But Joanne and I kept spending time with each other between sessions: attending hearing aid parties, riding the elevated train, and viewing Monet paintings at the Field Museum. At the ASHA-sponsored dance with a wonderful live band, we discovered we were great dance partners.
We recognized we were perfect partners in many ways. We had a lot in common, growing up 30 miles from each other, and both receiving our undergraduate degrees in upstate New York and attending graduate schools in the South. She also shared she had dreamed about me the night before we met!
We went to New York the next month to meet each other’s families. Then, we endured a seven-month long-distance romance, staying in contact through letters and twice-weekly phone calls (after all, it was the ’70s). Joanne visited me in the spring, and decided to move to California. That June, I went to North Carolina and, with her dog Jubal, shared the road trip to San Luis Obispo, where we began our life together.
In 1979 we had three weddings: a legal ceremony under a tree outside the courthouse, a California beach wedding with friends, and a religious family wedding in New York. We still celebrate three anniversaries every year! We worked 50 miles apart in classrooms for students with communication disorders, sharing mimeographed worksheets and other materials.
In 1981, we moved to San Diego, working with adults and children in hospitals and other settings. In the late 1980s, we had two children, Adam and Natalie. Joanne began Hein Speech-Language Pathology, Inc., in 1987, and 10 years later, I joined her. We continue to enjoy working together in our private practice, providing treatment to clients of all ages, and developing treatment materials.
At the 2017 ASHA Convention in Los Angeles, we visited with our grown children, who live in Los Angeles, and celebrated the 40th anniversary of our hallway meeting. We remain grateful to ASHA for setting in motion our four-decades-long love story. We hope those attending future conventions will have opportunities to serendipitously meet lifelong friends (or lifemates?) just as we did so long ago.
0 Comments
Submit a Comment
Submit A Comment
Name
Comment Title
Comment


This feature is available to Subscribers Only
Sign In or Create an Account ×
FROM THIS ISSUE
July 2018
Volume 23, Issue 7