When the wise men and women of the Academy came up with the International Award in Hearing “to honor and recognize achievements of international significance in audiology,” they obviously had someone like Harvey Dillon, PhD, in mind. A key requirement is that the recipient of the award must have provided “outstanding service to the profession of audiology in a clinical, academic, research or professional capacity.” Dr. Dillon, however, does not quite meet these requirements, as worded. His service to the profession is not limited to a clinical or academic or research or professional capacity. He has made major contributions to the profession of audiology in every one of these areas.
Dr. Dillon’s clinical contributions include innovative new clinical tests and methods of evaluation that are now widely used. One example is the Client Oriented Scale of Improvement (COSI), developed by Dr. Dillon and his colleagues. This technique represents a major advance in the clinical evaluation of hearing aids, rehabilitation strategies, and other methods for improving hearing health. Dr. Dillon’s recent work on developing new ways of evaluating central auditory processing disorders is another example of his many clinical contributions.
His academic contributions are also substantive and of international significance. He is well known as a lecturer who can reduce the complexity of difficult concepts for his attentive audience. A measure of the quality of his teaching is the frequent number of times he has been invited to lecture in countries throughout the world. His textbook, Hearing Aids, now in its second edition, has become the standard reference internationally for students, educators, clinicians, researchers, and others with an interest in hearing aids.
Dr. Dillon’s research contributions have had a major impact on the profession. He has published over 200 scientific articles with a worldwide readership. The Academy recognized him as an outstanding researcher when he received the Research Achievement Award in 2003. He has continued to receive an array of international awards for his research and the application of his research in clinical practice.
The professional contributions of Dr. Dillon are wide-ranging and profound. As director of the Australian National Acoustic Laboratories (NAL), he has had a major impact on the profession of audiology in Australia and abroad. His insightful leadership of a talented team of researchers and clinicians has resulted in substantive contributions to the profession with concomitant improvements in audiological practice throughout the world. The Academy chose well in selecting Harvey Dillon for the International Award in Hearing.