Though formally educated in sensory psychology and not audiology, Donald (Don) Henderson, PhD, has earned a great deal of respect and admiration from many audiologists due to significant contributions through his pioneering work in basic and applied research for audiology and hearing science. If one were to look through his vitae, there would be abundant evidence of his productive quest to reduce the impact of hearing loss.
Dr. Henderson is a professor of communicative disorders and sciences at State University of New York. Besides his appointments as a full professor, he has served as the director of The Callier Center, acting dean of the School of Human Development at the University of Texas at Dallas, chair of communicative disorders and sciences at State University of New York at Buffalo, and director of the Center for Hearing and Deafness at SUNY Buffalo.
In 2006, his contributions were formally recognized by two separate entitiesthe National Hearing Conservation Association with the Outstanding Hearing Conservationist Award and by the Hofstra University with the National Research Award for Distinguished Contributions to the Field of Research in Hearing Science. Dr. Henderson is an internationally recognized scholar and researcher with over 130 peer-reviewed articles, 43 book chapters and edited 11 books. Not only has he been awarded 32 awards and grants from federal, state, and private sources, but he has served on many prestigious national grant review panels including the National Institutes of Health, Institute of Medicine, Office of Naval Research, and National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health through his long career that spans over 40 years.
His bench-to-bedside translational research has involved novel pharmacological approaches for preventing noise-related hearing loss that has resulted in three drug patents for prevention or reversal of sensorineural hearing loss through biological mechanisms. His in-depth findings have provided critical scientific evidence that continues to be used within the industry as well as for standards and legislation to prevent hearing loss. Dr. Henderson has mentored many young hearing scientists, audiologists, and professionals in other disciplines, many of whom have gone on to successful careers in academia, industry and the military. His unique and gifted teaching style, in which he elegantly weaves basic research data into meaningful applications has made him a highly sought lecturer outside of his own institutions. As one colleague noted, All that Don has and is accomplishing is done with genuine kindness, humbleness and respect. Without a doubt, Dr. Henderson is well deserving of the 2013 Career Award in Hearing or Balance!