Dr. David A. Daly's Background
David Daly was a moderately severe stutterer throughout elementary school, high school, and college. Before receiving successful speech treatment at the age of 23 from a dedicated and knowledgeable clinician, he was rejected for jobs and turned turn by the military because of his stuttering. One of his most painful memories was struggling for almost two minutes trying to say "I do" when he got married.
While working on a master's degree he met Dr. Eugene B. Cooper who agreed to help him with his speech. Dr. Cooper was the first speech-language pathologist who did not insist that David would always be a stutterer. Instead he said something like, "I don't know how fluent you might eventually become. Why don't we work together and see?"
These words of encouragement, together with the dedication, knowledge, and commitment offered by this caring clinician, changed David's attitude towards his speech. Stuttering was viewed as a challenge rather than a curse. During therapy he began to believe in himself. Diligent practice resulted into more fluent speech and increased confidence.
The treatment process took time. Fluency gains were occasionally lost and additional work was needed to gain them again. But the thrill of being able to order in a restaurant, to use the telephone, to introduce acquaintances, and to make speeches at national meetings without fear was unbelievable.
After working as a speech-language clinician in the schools for a year, David decided to pursue a doctorate specializing in stuttering disorders. His goal was to obtain the skills and knowledge to help other persons who stuttered. He obtained his doctorate in Speech-Language Pathology from Pennsylvania State University and then taught at the Medical School campus of the University of Alabama in Birmingham for five years.
In 1973 he was appointed director of the University of Michigan's residential summer camp for stutterers, Shady Trails. Hundreds of youngsters who stuttered benefited from his clinical and research studies conducted during his years as director. He has been a professor at The University of Michigan for 25 years, serving as director of the speech clinic, the residential aphasia clinic, and chairperson of the academic program.
Dr. Daly's professional career has focused primarily on children and adults with fluency disorders. He has written dozens of research articles, several chapters, and two books on stuttering, both published by LinguiSystems, Inc.: