Christie Block, MA, MS, CCC-SLP is a licensed and board-certified Speech-Language Pathologist with over 25 years of experience as a clinical specialist, teacher, and trainer of speech-language pathology, ESL, public speaking, and linguistics. Her clinical expertise includes voice disorders, transgender voice, professional voice, stuttering, speech/accent, neurological disorders, upper airway disorders, swallowing, and public speaking.
Christie collaborates with a number of otolaryngologists, transgender health providers, head & neck surgeons, and singing/acting specialists to provide comprehensive assessment, treatment, and training. She has official affiliations with BlueSleep and ENT and Allergy Associates, and she works closely with the NYU Voice Center among other practices. She conducts state-of-the-art testing, including videostroboscopy, acoustic analysis, and flexible endoscopic evaluation of swallowing.
Christie is a committed advocate of the transgender community. She is one of the few SLPs in private practice who dedicates a large portion of her practice to voice and communication training for transgender people. Christie’s interest in transgender voice and gender expression developed out of her background in language and gender studies as a linguistics student. In addition to providing one-on-one voice testing/training, Christie actively gives presentations, classes, workshops, and clinician trainings (see details below).
Christie’s history of service extends across a wide variety of linguistic and cultural backgrounds in business, outpatient, rehabilitation, hospital, home, and academic settings. Client languages include but are not limited to the following: Chinese, French, French-Creole, German, Greek, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Serbo-Croatian, Spanish, Tagalog, Thai, Turkish, Urdu, Vietnamese, and non-standard American English dialects.
Christie holds a B.A. in Linguistics and Asian Languages and Literature (Mandarin Chinese) from the University of Iowa, an M.A. in Linguistics from the Ohio State University, and an M.S. in Communication Disorders from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
She is a certified provider of the Lee Silverman Treatment Program (LSVT) and a provider of the SpeechEasy fluency device. She is also trained in LMRVT, VFE, SOVT exercises, and Estill. Current memberships include the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), New York Voice Study Group, Extramural Laryngeal Rounds, Working Group on Gender, and World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH).
Christie is an internationally known speaker who regularly gives presentations and workshops at conferences and associations, including the following: ASHA, Asian and Pacific Islander Coalition on HIV/AIDS (APICHA) Community Health Center, Bronx Community Pride Center, Callen-Lorde Community Health Center, Crossdressers International, Empire Conference (TransEvents USA), FemmeFever, Fifth North American Conference on Chinese Linguistics, Hetrick-Martin Institute, Illinois Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)-Bilingual Education State Convention, LeFemme Finishing School, Lululemon, Mid-South Conference on Communication Disorders, Midwest Regional TESOL Convention, Mt. Sinai – Beth Israel, The New School, New York Otolaryngology Group, New York Voice Study Group, New York University, Queens Pride House, Roosevelt University, Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), Southern Comfort Conference, Total Woman Business Conference, Trans* Behavioral Healthcare Training/Philadelphia Trans Wellness Conference, the United States Professional Association for Transgender Health (USPATH), Voice Foundation Symposium, Voice Institute of New York, Working Group on Gender, and WPATH.
Christie’s recent teaching includes courses in transgender care to other voice clinicians and trans health providers, specifically, an annual CEU course entitled Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Speakers: A Course for Voice Clinicians in Chicago with Sandy Hirsch and Leah Helou, as well as various WPATH Global Education Initiative (GEI) courses as part of a team at the WPATH Symposium in Buenos Aires in November 2018, the WPATH Live Surgery Training Course in March 2019, and the USPATH Foundations Course in Washington DC in September 2019.
Block, C. (in press). Transfeminine voice training. In Branski, R., & Monfenter, S. (Eds.) Speech-Language Pathology Casebook. New York, NY: Thieme.
Block, C. (2019). Chant your pitch (voice feminization). Count big (voice masculinization). In Behrman, A., & Haskell, J. (Eds.) Exercises for Voice Therapy, 3rd Edition. (2nd Edition, 2013). San Diego, CA: Plural Publishing.
Block, C., Papp, V., & Adler, R. (2019). Transmasculine voice and communication. In Adler, R., Hirsch, S., & Pickering, J. (Eds.) Voice and Communication Therapy for the Transgender/Gender Diverse Client: A Comprehensive Clinical Guide, 3rd Edition. San Diego, CA: Plural Publishing.
Block, C. (2018). Voice care for the transgender speaker. The Voice, The Voice Foundation Newsletter, 23(3).
Block, C. (2017). Making a case for transmasculine voice and communication training. Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, 2 (SIG3), 33-41.
Block, C. (2014). Finding our voices, literally. In Erickson-Schroth, L. (Ed.) Trans Bodies Trans Selves. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Koufman, J., & Block, C. (2008). Differential diagnosis of paradoxical vocal fold movement. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 17.
Block, C. (1993). Null objects in Mandarin Chinese. Kathol, A., & Pollard, C. (Eds.) Papers in Syntax: Working Papers in Linguistics, 42. Columbus, OH: The Ohio State University.
PRINT – “In the media,” The ASHA Leader, Vol. 24, No. 8, August 2019.
ONLINE – Daniari, Serena. "What does a woman sound like? Vocal training helps trans women find their voices," The Guardian, May 20, 2019. https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/may/20/what-does-a-woman-sound-like-vocal-training-helps-trans-women-find-their-voices
AUDIO PODCAST / ONLINE – Low, Tobin. "Does it bring you joy?," Nancy, WNYC, National Public Radio, April 8, 2019. https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/nancy-podcast-does-it-bring-you-joy
ONLINE – Expertise. "Best speech pathologists in New York City 2018 and 2019." https://www.expertise.com/ny/nyc/speech-therapists
RADIO / ONLINE – Pfleger, Paige. “Vocal therapy helps transgender people find their voice,” Our Bodies, Our Gender on The Pulse, WHYY, National Public Radio, September 7-8, 2017. http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/thepulse/item/106952-vocal-therapy-helps-transgender-people-find-their-voice; The Lily, The Washington Post, September 7, 2017. https://thelily.com/vocal-therapy-helps-some-transgender-people-find-their-voice-48154d873f4b
PRINT – “In the media,” The ASHA Leader, Vol. 22, No. 7, July 2017.
PRINT / ONLINE – Saint Louis, Catherine. “Finding their voices: Speech training smooths the transition to a new identity,” The New York Times, May 2, 2017, print; “Learning to talk like a woman (or man),” The New York Times, April 25, 2017, online. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/25/well/live/learning-to-talk-like-a-woman-or-man.html
PRINT – “In the media,” The ASHA Leader, Vol. 21, No. 11, November 2016.
ONLINE – Prakash, Nidhi. “How voice therapists are helping trans people sound like their true selves,” Fusion, August 17, 2016. http://fusion.net/story/327356/christie-block-transgender-speech-therapist/
VIDEO – Lumsden, Lauren. “Helping trans people find their voices,” Cosmopolitan, February 18, 2016. https://youtu.be/LpMiqCmRNOU
PRINT – Preston, Katherine. “Voicing the real self,” The ASHA Leader, Vol. 21, No. 2, February 2016.
AUDIO PODCAST / ONLINE – Nedelman, Michael with Jordan Jakomin. “Stanford J-School: Transgender Voice Therapy,” Cinemedical, December 15, 2015. https://soundcloud.com/cinemedical/trans-voice
ONLINE – Chen, Angela. “How transgender women are training their voices to sound more feminine,” Smithsonian, December 15, 2015. http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/how-transgender-women-are-training-their-voices-sound-more-feminine-180957537/?no-ist
ONLINE – Miller, Korin. “Male voice, female body: How transgender women like Caitlin Jenner can feminize their tone,” Yahoo Health, July 31, 2015. https://www.yahoo.com/health/male-voice-female-body-how-transgender-women-125525715732.html
PRINT – “In the news,” The ASHA Leader, Vol. 20, No. 6, June 2015.
PRINT - Jackson, Sharyn. "Expert coaches help transgender people find a new voice," Minneapolis Star-Tribune, March 25, 2015.
RADIO – Starecheski, Laura. “Can changing how you sound help you find your voice?” Changing Lives of Women Series, All Things Considered, National Public Radio, October 14, 2014. http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/10/14/354858420/can-changing-how-you-sound-help-you-find-your-voice
FILM – Ruiz Tofano, Natalie. “Giving voice.” School of Visual Arts MFA Social Documentary Film (SOCDOC). A Gnat Production, 2013.