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Actor Samuel L. Jackson and Business Leader Sander Flaum Honored by The American Institute for Stuttering
Emily Blunt served as Mistress of Ceremonies at 7th Annual “Freeing Voices, Changing Lives” Gala
Click to watch his acceptance speech and hear him tell his own story
New York City – June 4, 2013 – On Monday night The American Institute for Stuttering (AIS), a leading non-profit that provides assistance to people of all ages who stutter, honored legendary actor Samuel L. Jackson and renowned business leader Sander Flaum for masterfully rising above their stutter to earn influential careers that have made deep and enduring contributions to their respective fields. Radiant actress and AIS board member Emily Blunt was a charming mistress of ceremonies. As a former stutterer who stopped speaking altogether by age 12, Emily personally understands how vital it is to help children and adults achieve freedom and confidence in the face of stuttering
Stuttering is a speech disorder that affects approximately seven percent of children and one percent of adults. It is a genetic and neurological disorder that is not, as many assume, caused by anxiety. Stuttering is often dismissed as a minor hindrance, when in fact it can govern a person’s life, affecting their education, relationships, and career. Greatly misunderstood, stuttering is one of the few disorders that provoke undeserved shame by humiliation and even laughter by an uninformed public.Many individuals have overcome a stuttering problem and gone on to excel in all professional fields, including those that call for public speaking like acting, teaching and politics, as well as sports, the arts, business and education. Well-known stutterers include Vice President Joseph Biden, NBA star Kenyon Martin, Jack Welch, Bruce Willis, Carly Simon, Harvey Keitel, Leonard Lauder and AIS board member, actress Emily Blunt.The American Institute for Stuttering serves children and adults who stutter with specialized speech therapy. Their goal is to help clients achieve freedom and confidence in the face of stuttering. Their clients have come from across the United States and over a dozen countries around the world. The organization also trains speech-language pathologists in the expertise of stuttering therapy and engages and encourages people who stutter worldwide.
About the American Institute for Stuttering
The American Institute for Stuttering (AIS) is a leading 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in the United States that offers state-of-the-art speech therapy to people of all ages who stutter, guidance to their families, and much-needed clinical training to professionals. AIS offers a range of services, including early intervention therapy for children as young as two years old, support to school-age children (who are more often bullied than their peers), group therapy courses that accommodate diverse schedules, and unique three-week intensive treatment programs. AIS also provides training to speech-language pathologists, who traditionally are inexperienced in treating stuttering, to meet the great need for specially trained therapists. AIS is committed to advancing public understanding of stuttering and worked in Washington, D.C. to increase federal funding for research. The Institute adheres to the motto of our founder, Catherine Montgomery, who so eloquently noted, “Free a voice and save a life.”
For more information about stuttering and AIS, please visit http://stutteringtreatment.org.
About Samuel L. Jackson
Samuel L. Jackson’s childhood experience with stuttering was debilitating and it has been a lifelong process to control the disorder. Acting allowed him to use his voice as a form of expression and along with his determination and impressive talent he has evolved into one of the greatest actors of our time. Jackson is a powerhouse in the film industry and is considered one of Hollywood’s most acclaimed actors and hottest action heroes. With performances in more than 100 films, the superstar is box office magic and was labeled “the highest grossing film actor” of all time by Guinness World Records in 2011.
About Sander A. Flaum
Sander A. Flaum’s stuttering problem was once overwhelming, but his remarkable career is proof that it did not limit his ambition. He is a venerated business leader whose strategic philosophy has made him a pivotal force in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries as well as in academia. He is currently Principal of Flaum Navigators, an agency focused on transformational thinking in the industry. Flaum has authored two books on the subject of leadership, and his third book, “The Best Thing That Could Ever Happen To You: How A Career Reversal Can Reinvigorate Your Life,” with a foreword by former astronaut and Senator John Glenn, is due to be released in the fall of 2013. More information can be found on FlaumNavigators.com.
Flaum has been on the board of AIS since 2004 and was Chairman for three years. As a proponent of accessible speech therapy, he established The Rose Flaum Foundation, named for his mother, to provide tuition to students seeking stuttering treatment. As Flaum knows firsthand, professional treatment can liberate a voice and transform a life.