Lori Melnitsky, M.A., CCC-SLP
I’m Lori Melnitsky, a licensed and certified Speech-Language Pathologist, Stuttering Specialist and JST Certified ADHD Life Coach with over 25 years of clinical experience. I am certified in New York*, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, California and Florida. I have helped hundreds of children, teens, and adults decrease stuttering, become fluent speakers, and develop the life skills they needed to achieve their goals. I have advanced training in stuttering, speech, and ADHD coaching, Executive Functioning including: I could not speak full sentences until the age of 25 due to severe stuttering which caused social issues. I am here to help children and adults talk more fluently, with confidence and believe in themselves.
My prior struggles led me to offer unique programs and also become certified in the Parkinson's Speak Out Voice Program. This is a population that can be helped if services are sought early on. Besides my family, my dog Reggie and the NY Yankees, my greatest joy is seeing others be heard and understood.
Lidcombe Stuttering Program Certification for Early Childhood Stuttering
MPI-2 Stuttering Program Certification for Adult Stuttering
ADHD Coaching Certification from JST Coaching
Certified Parkinson's Voice SPEAK OUT Program
*Therapy in New York includes Long Island, Queens, Westchester, and Manhattan.
My story began with severe stuttering, but it didn’t end there.
I have stuttered for as long as I can remember. I have personally experienced the challenges that many of my clients face— fear of speaking, shame about stuttering, and poor self-esteem. Not only that, but I have experienced it from a parent’s perspective, too. My oldest daughter began stuttering early in life and my younger daughter has an ADHD diagnosis.
Initially, I hid my stuttering and pursued a bachelor’s degree in accounting. I couldn’t imagine myself in a speaking field because I stuttered so severely. I was an accountant for five years, and eventually, I became involved in “practice groups” for adults who stutter. These support groups gave me a sense of community and offered fluency strategies to help overcome my stuttering. They gave me the confidence to change my life, and I felt like I finally found a career filled with purpose. I decided to apply to graduate school for speech pathology, and earned my master’s degree in 1992.
As you can imagine, it wasn’t easy to enter the field of speech pathology with a stutter. I had a list of two potential universities in mind, but the first one overtly discouraged me from going into a field where I talked to people on a daily basis. However, during my interview at Hofstra University, I met Dr. Audrey Eisen, who unconditionally accepted me into the graduate program and supported me throughout the process. I remember being petrified to participate in my first clinical experience in the Hofstra Clinic, but my first client was a wonderful man in his fifties who had suffered a stroke. I remember thinking: “What if I stutter? What will he think? What will my supervisor think? Will I be able to help him? How will I handle it?” —But, to my surprise, when I started speaking, he looked at me with relief and said, “You have a speech problem too?” I now appreciate the unique insight that my communication challenges have given me, and I am confident that I can help others using the same strategies that helped me.
It was always my dream to specialize in stuttering and ADHD coaching, so I founded my private practice, All Island Speech & Stuttering Therapy in 2001. I didn’t want others to experience the obstacles that I had experienced in my stuttering journey, and I didn’t want others to encounter the barriers of ADHD that my family had to walk through. Over the years, I have spoken about stuttering, ADHD, and dyslexia at The Long Island Speech and Hearing Association, Westchester Speech and Hearing Association, Hofstra University, Long Island University, Hofstra Radio, The National Stuttering Association, and various school districts. I am a published author and had the opportunity to write the forward for a children’s book on stuttering, called Jason's Secret. I have been an adjunct instructor at local universities and have also launched a stuttering podcast, Stuttering DeMystified.
I firmly believe that all who stutter deserve to be heard, and everyone with ADHD can succeed with the right support. If you or your loved one is struggling with speech or executive functioning, please don’t feel like you need to go it alone. Reach out to learn how I can help!