Professor Emeritus 'Sue’ Dowling Remembered for her Speech-Language Pathology Contributions

Dr. Sue Dowling
Dr. Sue Dowling

Susann Dowling, a respected University of Houston professor emeritus known for her significant contributions to speech-language pathology and audiology, passed away on Feb. 4. She was 78.

Dowling, who earned her Ph.D. from Indiana University, was celebrated for her pioneering work in speech-language pathology and audiology, earning her the prestigious recognition as an ASHA fellow. Her dedication to the profession and her role as a tenured full professor at the University of Houston left an indelible mark on academic and professional communities alike.

Laura Ciszek, CCC-SLP (MA. ‘99, Ed.D. ‘19), a clinical associate professor and director of the master's Program in COMD at the University of Houston, remembered Dowling for her profound impact on students and colleagues.

"Dr. Dowling's course on supervision in grad school had a tremendous effect on me professionally," Ciszek said. "The counseling concepts she taught were universal and have helped in so many ways. The kindness Dr. Dowling showed me as a student and later as a colleague was remarkable. She will be dearly missed.  I am so fortunate to have known her and learned from her."

In addition to her academic achievements, Dowling served as the past president of the Council of Supervisors in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology (CSSPA). Her leadership and vision helped shape the future of supervision in the discipline, contributing to a legacy of excellence that continues to influence the field.

Dowling's commitment to her field was matched by her dedication to her students and colleagues. Dr. Marty Adams, former Chair of COMD, highlighted the consistent excellence and presence she brought to the department, especially during challenging times.

"Sue was a steadying presence, especially during that time when the Program was under threat of elimination," Adams said. "She earned everyone's respect, and I can easily imagine scores of former students who will have a keen sense of loss on getting this news."