Mr. Central Florida 2020 is Crowned!


On October 29th, Central Florida Speech & Hearing Center held its 8th annual Mr. Central Florida, sponsored by The Ruthvens. It was the first livestreamed event, where guests could watch from the comfort of their home or their cars at the Silver Moon Drive In. This year, 21 men competed for the title by seeking votes to raise money for the Center. The competition was fierce, but all in good fun, raising more money than ever before.

The 2020 Mr. Central Florida winner was Lt. Jim Ostojic, representing the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. Jim shattered past records and raised over $83,000. For most of the competition, he had two contestants that were neck in neck. In the end, Jim pulled from the pack and took the title home!

Tony Corrao, representing CPS Investment Advisors, also broke the top fundraising record, raising over $55,000. Although in 3rd place, Tom Lloyd, representing Bank of Central Florida, still raised an astonishing $34,000.

Central Florida Speech & Hearing Center and the patients we serve are thankful beyond words for every single contestant, the planning committee, the volunteers, and our community who opened their hearts to make sure that we can continue to provide the human connection – communication.

The money raised by these men will provide speech, language, and hearing care for children and adults in Polk, Hardee, and Highlands County.


EmpowerPolk Grant Awarded

The Center was awarded an EmpowerPolk Grant from the GiveWell Community Foundation for our POP (Patient Organization Productivity) program. This grant allows us to upgrade our existing patient management software and serve our patients more effectively. We will be able to schedule appointments quicker, generate important data, manage marketing efforts, communicate in different ways, and access information easier.

We are so grateful for the GiveWell Community Foundation and their support of this program!


Resources for kids at home

Due to the COVID-19 virus, schools around the nation are closed and some parents are keeping their children home from speech-language therapy. Our Speech-Language Pathologists have put together a list of resources that can be used at home. Many of these links include free opportunities for practicing and learning at home!

To help explain the Coronavirus to your children, check out the following:

Links for “on-screen” activities

Libby (app)

Provides access to thousands of books from our public libraries (you will need a public library card for access) 

Into the

Play games that practice reading strategies. 

Suessville – 

Read, play games, and hang out with Dr. Seuss and his friends


Read, play games, and conduct cool science experiments

Help Kidz

Resources available for parents to use at home during this period and beyond

Lakeshore Learning Resources

Activities to Encourage Speech and Language Development | Reading Rockets

Things to do “off-screen”

Start a Nature Diary

Look out the window or venture outside – keep notes of what you hear, smell, and see: birds, flowers, changes in the weather, what else?

Make a puppet (think-old socks) 

Create a puppet show and perform it for your family.

Make Lists

Things that make you happy, people in your family, things you love to eat, activities you like to do, etc. (verbally or written)

“Letter of the Day”

Each day pick a letter.  Go around your house and find items that begin with that letter.  Older Kids – Practice spelling them and using the word in a sentence.   Play ‘I Spy’ – works on vocabulary, wh questions, adjectives, etc

Play ‘I Spy’

Works on vocabulary, wh questions, adjectives, etc.


Thank you, Kiwanis!

The Kiwanis Club of Lakeland has selected the Center to receive a grant for iPads in our Speech-Language Pathology Department. Our seven speech-language pathologists use iPads regularly in our speech-language therapy sessions for a number of reasons. The children of today are growing up as “digital natives” as technology has been a part of their lives from day one. For them, the iPad is familiar technology so they take to it naturally. In some cases, we are able to present new/different information to patients and in other cases, we are presenting the same materials we have previously used but are able to present them in a new way that keeps our patients engaged and motivated.

Senior Speech-Language Pathologist, Amy Tyner accepts a grant from The Lakeland Kiwanis Club on behalf of the Center.

Thank you, Kiwanis for your amazing support of the Center and our patients!


CFSHC awarded Florida Blue Grant

Central Florida Speech & Hearing Center has been awarded the 2019 Innovation in the Health Care System grant from Florida Blue Foundation. The 3-year grant supports the Center’s C.A.R.E. program, an extension of the existing Audiology for Seniors program.

C.A.R.E. (Communication Access for Restricted Elders) provides seniors in our community, not only with audiology care, but with transportation and the opportunity to interact with others. The program implements a Vocational Rehabilitation course, which provides patients with both information and socialization. The program will begin in January and will feature partnerships with neighboring organizations such as VISTE, LVIM, Independent Living Organizations, and Senior Resource Centers.


Best of Central Florida!

We are so excited to announce that we are the Best of Central Florida Hearing Aid Center for the 4th year in a row!

Dr. Katie Nail took first place as Best Audiologist and Dr. Shaila Perez was right behind her in second place!

Thanks to everyone who voted for us! Your support is astounding and we love you!


Escape Room Winners

CONGRATULATIONS to Team Prisbe, our first place winners in the Lakeland Escape Room Tournament!

Thank You to Lakeland Escape Room for their generosity and fun-filled day!