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Honoring Dr. Arlene Carney

May 17, 2019

Arlene Carney received her PhD from our department in 1977. After holding positions at the University of Miami, Purdue University, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, and Boys Town National Research Hospital, Dr. Carney joined us as a faculty member in 1994. She held many positions in our department and at our University including director of clinical programs, department chair, associate dean for undergraduate programs of the College of Liberal Arts, and vice provost for faculty and academic affairs for the entire University of Minnesota system. 

Dr. Carney has been a true “total scholar” and has made thoughtful and timeless contributions to research, service, and teaching. Her research is of stellar quality and deep, sustained impact. Her doctoral research on categorical perception called into question the prevailing wisdom of the time and remains frequently cited and highly influential to this day. 

Dr. Carney’s life’s work was dedicated to understanding the causes and consequences of childhood hearing impairment. Her efforts improved the lives of many children with hearing impairment and inspired a generation of clinicians to think differently about aural rehabilitation. 
To this day, Dr. Carney’s clinical work continues to influence clinical practice. 

Dr. Carney’s record of service to academia and to the profession of audiology is immense. She has been highly active and influential in the operations of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, having served on numerous posts related to professional ethics. She is currently vice president for standards and ethics in audiology and a member of ASHA’s board of directors. 

Dr. Carney’s local service work has involved tasks as diverse as being a member of the human research protection program, to evaluating academic programs across the University. Her work in the University of Minnesota Office of the Provost was focused on improving the success of faculty members from their first day on the job to their retirement. Dr. Carney has also been a classroom teacher and research mentor of the highest caliber. Her doctoral advisees hold positions at top research universities and in clinical leadership roles. 

To me, Dr. Carney is a mentor and a friend. As I navigate this unfamiliar and daunting job as chair, Dr. Carney is always willing to lend an ear and to provide advice that has stood the test of time. She has been generous with her time and her expertise in the 45+ years since she first stepped foot on our campus. Her influence in our department will be felt always, and we will miss her dearly. 

Congratulations, Dr. Arlene Carney, for a life and a career well-lived.