Our 2023 Award Winners

Date: 8th September 2023

Half a year has passed since ASLTIP proudly hosted our second awards ceremony, marking a significant milestone as it was the first time we gathered in person to hand over the awards at our Therapy Talks event. We are thrilled to present our winners, who graciously share insights into their work and the profound significance of receiving an ASLTIP award.

As a dedicated membership organisation, we take immense pleasure in recognizing and spotlighting the outstanding achievements of our members. As the board overseeing these accolades, we were truly impressed by the wealth of nominations, and we extend our heartfelt congratulations to our deserving winners once more.

We started with three distinct award categories, namely Startup, Leadership, and Team Player, cleverly spelling out SLT. In addition, we introduced The Maria Farry Award for Outstanding Contribution to further celebrate excellence within our community.

Start-up Award – Maeve Lappin

Maeve Lappin with Lyndsey Allen, current Engagement Director

Maeve is a Speech and Language Therapist and founder of Speech, Language, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy & Training (SLACTT).

Maeve says, “SLACTT combines Speech and Language Therapy (SLT) with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). This blended service is delivered to children, young people and adults who present with a stammer, with selective mutism/communication or any other communication challenge with a psychological component. In addition, I have embarked on ACT coaching for both Speech and Language Therapists (SLTs) and Caregivers encouraging individuals to lean into themselves through evidence-based self-care and development. ACT coaching cultivates clearer decision-making, reduced burn-out and a stronger authentic presence in therapeutic alliances. I am both a Speech and Language Therapist and a Clinical Behaviour Analyst, specialising in ACT.

Winning the ASLTIP Award for Best Start Up 2022 has enabled me to pursue this blended and niche area of work. It provided an enormous boost as I ventured out independently into a more uncertain terrain. My passion for exploring the overlap between communication and psychological need provided the drive to study this area over the past 6 years. That said, a new level of curiosity was needed to apply this blended approach to individuals within real-life contexts. I am so humbled by this award and grateful to ASLTIP, as each new step now feels like it is in the right direction.”

 Leadership Award – Asma Khanum

Asma Khanum with her award

Asma is a Speech and Language Therapist and CEO of Chatterbug Ltd.

Asma says: “Today, as we celebrate 15 years of this social enterprise, Chatterbug stands proudly, nationally recognised, and a trusted NHS partner with a formidable team of 50. Yet, there’s a deeper layer to my journey that unfolded over time. It was a profound realisation that the challenges I grappled with in my early days were intrinsically tied to my identity as an Autistic individual. With this revelation came a renewed perspective; I embraced this aspect of myself, recognising that the very qualities that set me apart – my unique perspective and problem-solving skills – were my greatest assets. Supported by an incredible team, I embarked on a voyage of self-discovery that allowed me to wholeheartedly embrace my authentic self. This remarkable transformation ignited a fire within me – a passion to innovate, to craft services that resonate with the needs and aspirations of children and young people. Every hurdle conquered, and every milestone achieved, is a testament to the unwavering dedication of my team and myself. Yet, our journey is far from over. The profound significance of Speech, Language, and Communication skills in shaping young lives propels us forward. Our mission is clear: to ensure that children with SLCN receive the highest quality support, precisely when and where they need it. And then, a defining moment, an affirmation that warmed my heart and reaffirmed the path I’ve tread – the ASLTIP Leadership award. To be recognised by fellow leaders, individuals who understand the depths of these challenges and the magnitude of our accomplishments, is beyond words. It’s an acknowledgment that transforms struggles into triumphs, doubts into unwavering conviction. This award encapsulates the essence of my journey – a journey driven by passion, purpose, and an unyielding commitment to empowering those whose voices deserve to be heard.”

Team Player – Emma Harrison

Emma Harrison with Lyndsey Allen

Emma Harrison is a Speech and Language Therapist and Clinical Director of Emma Harrison Speech and Language Therapy.

 Emma says “Emma Harrison Speech and Language Therapy began just 6 years ago, when I took the leap and left a 20 year career within the NHS. I’m lucky enough to be a mummy to 2 beautiful children and as a passionate therapist I needed to make a change to regain our family’s work life balance. I knew I could achieve this through independent practice.

 Just less than a year ago, in October 2022, after being on my own for 5 years our business began to grow very quickly. The demand for speech and language support is ever increasing and I knew in order to reach more families our business model needed to change. As of today I’m very proud to say were a team of 10 highly skilled therapists covering the North East of England. We strive to make a difference to all the families we have the opportunity to work with and endeavour to help each little one we meet to become the best version of themselves. 

 We support children in their homes, nurseries and schools and are lucky enough to provide nursery and school contracts, alongside consultation work and educational training. We constantly expanding our joint working with other professionals and enjoy supporting student SLTs within our practice. We have also created a platform to help even more families through digital products and online courses and utilise social media to expand our support reach even further.

 My highlight since starting my independent practice has without a doubt winning an ASLTIP award. To be recognised for the team growth we have achieved was so very unexpected and an honour. I had no idea of the direction we were going when I began my independent journey, but I am clear about the direction we’re going in in the future. The biggest thanks goes to my amazing team, this award is for them.”

 Maria Farry Award for Outstanding Contribution – Jennifer Benson

Jennifer Benson with her award

Jennifer is a Speech and Language Therapist and founder of Jennifer Benson Speech and Language Therapist

Jennifer says “I specialise in adult neurology, covering a wide range of communication and swallowing difficulties that fall within that remit. This includes people living with a wide variety of conditions, including Motor Neurone Disease and acquired / traumatic brain injury. I am a Clinical Adviser for the RCSLT in the areas of progressive neurological conditions, MND, dysphagia and AAC. I am also SLT on the Expert Core for the MNDA Community of Practice, representing the SLT profession within the MDT and focusing on education, expert review and contribution to project areas such as review of the NICE guidelines.

I love my work and I love working independently, as I feel it gives me the freedom and creativity to give my patients the therapy they need, whatever their condition. Winning the ASLTIP award was a lovely surprise and an absolute honour!”


Ruth Crampton, with current chair Sarah Buckley

Extraordinary Leadership – Ruth Crampton

This year we also added an extra special award for our outgoing chair Ruth Crampton. She was nominated by an ASLTIP member for her extraordinary contribution to the organisation during her time in the role. Ruth was chair of ASLTIP throughout lockdown and showed amazing leadership skills to support our members in such a challenging time. Ruth was ASLTIP chair for 4 years and is currently supporting the board in her role as past-chair. In addition to Ruth’s role on the board she also runs Let’s Expand Communication. 


On behalf of the Executive Board, we would like to extend congratulations to all of our award winners and look forward to the next event.

Julie Cota – ASLTIP Secretary


Interested in becoming a member?

ASLTIP’s membership has been growing rapidly since 1989. We are a support organisation run by our members. The executive board is always grateful for new members and new ideas.

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