In Memoriam

In Memoriam: Judy S. Gravel, Ph.D.

Dr. Judith S. Gravel passed away on December 31, 2008, at Mt. Sinai Medical Center in New York after a valiant battle with ovarian cancer. Throughout her illness, she continued to serve as the Director of the Center for Childhood Communication at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) where she elevated the service, education and research mission of the center through her strong leadership and mentoring.

An internationally renowned pediatric audiologist, Judy held the William P. Potsic Endowed Chair in Pediatric Otolaryngology and Childhood Communication at CHOP. After earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Judy practiced clinically in the Washington, DC area at Gallaudet University and the Fairfax County Public Schools before earning her Ph.D. at Vanderbilt University.

Judy held faculty appointments at Columbia University, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Vanderbilt University, and the University of Pennsylvania. A Fulbright Senior Specialist in Global/Public Health, Judy served on or chaired more than 60 committees, panels, task forces, and review teams on behalf of the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Public Health Service, Commission of the European Communities Directorate, National Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Technical Assistance Advisory Group, International Working Group on Childhood Hearing, the Pennsylvania Department of Health, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and the American Academy of Audiology. Her prolific research activities resulted in the publication of more than 100 peer-reviewed scientific and lay articles and 35 book chapters in the area of pediatric audiology. Her groundbreaking work on early hearing detection, early intervention and otitis media greatly advanced the specialty of Pediatric Audiology. However, her focus and greatest energy were consistently devoted to applying research findings to clinical practice to improve the lives of children with hearing loss, as evidenced by her love of teaching and clinical care.

While leading the Center for Childhood Communication (CCC), Judy was awarded the Honors of the Association of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, The Sylvan Stool Award for Lifetime achievement in Teaching and Service from the Society for Ear Nose and Throat Advances in Children ( SENTAC ), The Antonia Brancia Maxon Award for Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Excellence at the National EHDI Conference, and the Distinguished Achievement Award from the American Academy of Audiology.

The daughter of Muriel and the late Leonard Gravel of West Springfield, MA, Judy is survived by her husband, Bruce Taylor of Wilton, CT, her sister Janet Angelico (Joel) of Foxboro, MA; Bruce’s children Julie (Joshua) Taylor Hall of Charleston, SC and Jay (Adrian LeMaster) Taylor of Franklin, TN; six grandchildren; and six nieces and nephews.

Those who knew Judy respected her wisdom and humility. She held the highest standards of professionalism and personal integrity. She was admired and loved by everyone who had the good fortune to know her.

A memorial service will be held at 11 AM on January 24th at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, New Canaan, CT. To continue the work to which Judy Devoted nearly 40 years of her talent and passion, the “Judy Gravel Fund” has been established at the Center for Childhood Communication at the Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia. In lieu of flowers, Judy’s family requests that donations be made to:

The Judy Gravel Fund

C/o Dr. Carol Knightly
The Center for Childhood Communication
One Wood Center
The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
34th and Civic Center Blvd.
Philadelphia, Pa 19104


Judy Gravel Pediatric Audiology Fund
c/o The Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center
1215 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37240