Gill Townend heads up Rett UK’s Communication and Education team. She is also a researcher at the Rett Expertise Centre Netherlands, Maastricht University, NL. Her background is in Speech and Language Therapy, initially specialising in augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) and more recently Rett syndrome. She worked for Sheffield SLT service for nearly 20 years before moving to the Netherlands in 2008.
She was responsible for organising the communication track of the 3rd European Rett Syndrome Conference Maastricht in 2013; is co-founder of two national networks for Communication Professionals working with individuals with Rett syndrome (NL and UK); is the European representative on the North American Rett Clinics Network; and is currently working with Rett Syndrome Europe to establish a European Scientific Advisory Board. She led the international project that recently published consensus-based communication guidelines for Rett syndrome.
In 2019 she gained her Ph.D. from Maastricht University, with a thesis entitled "Rett Syndrome: Recognising the Communication Challenges, Needs and Potential of Individuals Living with a Rare Disease".
Gill's conference talks will remain available as replays until 20th November 2021.