Grand Rapids Public Museum Partners to Host When I Stutter Film Screening and Panel in February 2020

The Grand Rapids Public Museum (GRPM) just announced that it is partnering with Camp Shout Out to host a special film screening and panel discussion of the award-winning documentary, When I Stutter, this February.

This event will bring awareness to stuttering by addressing how the community can be cognizant of the challenges individuals face on a daily basis. Following the screening of When I Stutter, panelists will discuss stuttering, as well as open up the floor to the audience to ask questions.

When I Stutter is a documentary that reveals the profound emotional impact that stuttering has had on a diverse group of individuals. The film’s storyline follows a young man on his journey through stuttering therapy, the relationship he forms with the speech pathologist and the heartwarming progress he makes along the way. Ultimately, the film showcases the wonder and beauty that can occur when an individual meets the right person at the right stage in life.

Panelists include mediator John Gomez, director and writer of When I Stutter; Kristin Chmela, director of Chmela Fluency Center and co-founder and co-director of Camp Shout Out; Derek Daniels, associate professor in the Department of Communication sciences and Disorders at Wayne State University; Scott Palasik, musician, novelist and professor of Speech Language Pathology at the University of Akron; Julie Raynor, co-founder and co-director of Camp Shout Out and licensed speech pathologist and Leland Robertson, inaugural camper at Camp Shout Out and current student at Calvin University, pursuing a master’s degree in Speech Pathology.

“The Grand Rapids Public Museum is honored to host this event to bring light to challenges faced daily by our community. Being aware of differences among us is just the beginning to adapting experiences to be inclusive of all,” said Dale Robertson, President & CEO of the GRPM. “The Museum continuously works to be a place of inclusivity and belonging.”

There will be two opportunities for the community to view the film and hear from the panelists, Thursday, February 20 from 7 to 9 p.m. and Saturday, February 22 from 1 to 3 p.m. This event is free to attend and open to the public; registration is required as seating is limited. Film merchandise will be available for purchase. To register visit


John Gomez I Director, Producer and Writer 

John Gomez was born and raised in Northern New Mexico. He attended Colorado College, where he earned a degree in Philosophy and American Ethnic Studies. At the age of 24, he pursued an acting career, but decided to return to school to become a speech-language pathologist. He then graduated from California State University, with a Masters degree in Communication Disorders in 2009. His first feature film, When I Stutter had its world premiere at the Cleveland International Film Festival on April 2, 2017 and has earned seven awards at film festivals across the world since then. Currently, he works as a speech pathologist for the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Kristin Chmela I M.A., CCC-SLP BCS-F 

Kristin is director of Chmela Fluency Center and co-founder and co-director of Camp Shout Out. She is a licensed, certified speech-language pathologist and Board Certified Specialist in Fluency and Fluency Disorders. She received her Master of Art Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from Northwestern University. In addition, she lectures and consults locally, nationally and internationally, is a lead author for two books, publishes practical fluency therapy materials, has collaborated extensively with the Stuttering Foundation, and served as Chair of the American Board of Fluency and Fluency Disorders. Kristin is a certified yoga instructor and avid mindfulness practitioner. She spends the majority of her time helping those who stutter of all ages, a passion strongly fueled she feels by her own experiences stuttering.

Derek E. Daniels I Ph.D.,CCC-SLP 

Derek is an associate professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Wayne State University in Detroit, MI. He received his master’s degree in Communication Disorders from the University of Houston (2002), and PhD in Communication Disorders from Bowling Green State University (2007). Derek has been a licensed and certified speech-language pathologist since 2002, and has presented locally, nationally, and internationally on stuttering. He also serves as an associate editor for the Journal of Fluency Disorders. Derek is a person who stutters, provides clinical services for people who stutter, and supervises graduate student training in stuttering through Wayne State University’s Speech and Language Outpatient Clinic. He has participated in many self-help events, workshops, and clinical training programs for people who stutter. Derek’s research focuses on public perceptions of people who stutter, identity construction and self-image, and psychosocial experiences, and he is widely published in these areas. Derek serves as a Facilitator at Camp Shout Out.

Scott Palasik I Ph.D., CCC-SLP 

Scott is a musician, novelist and professor at the University of Akron, who specializes in teaching Speech-Language Pathology. He has been a licensed speech-language pathologist for over 15 years and presents nationwide about the application of Mindfulness and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) to people who stutter. He dreams of a day when he completely understands his own stuttering, so he can provide more context on a universal level to reveal the unique communication qualities stuttering presents. Scott serves as a facilitator at Camp Shout Out.

Julie Raynor I M.A., CCC-SLP 

Julie has been a speech-language pathologist since 1986, working in a variety of settings. She currently is employed throughReeths-Puffer Public Schools in Muskegon, MI. She serves as co-founder and co-director of Camp Shout Out. Julie has participated in numerous workshops and conferences dealing specifically with fluency. She has an extensive history of experience with summer camps first as an enthusiastic camper, camp staff member and volunteer for a variety of summer residential and day camp programs. Julie was chosen to participate in the American Express Leadership Academy in 2015 and the American Express Alumni Global Summit in 2016. She has been the recipient of multiple awards throughout her professional career including: Best Buy Teach Award, MEA Exceptional Person in Community Service, Michigan Lottery Excellence in Education, and National Life Group LifeChanger of the Year.

Leland Robertson

Leland was an inaugural camper at Camp Shout Out, and has been serving as a counselor since aging out as an attendee. He’s currently pursuing a master’s degree in the Speech Pathology program at Calvin University. While attending Valparaiso University as an undergrad, where he ran cross country and track, Leland was awarded the Pillar of Excellence for Community Service Award in part for mentoring a local elementary school student who stuttered. The award is given annually to one member of the Greek Life community on Valparaiso University campus.

Camp Shout Out: Youth Who Stutter

Camp Shout Out, a 501(c)3 organization takes place every August at Pioneer Trails Camp on Big Blue Lake in Holton, Michigan. The program, embedded within a traditional recreational overnight summer camp environment, contains a special therapeutic focus evolving communicative competence for youth who stutter. The Camp Shout Out program is developed and directed by internationally recognized author, speaker, trainer, and clinician Kristin Chmela M.A. CCC-SLP BCS-F, who along with her highly qualified team of Faculty and Facilitators lead a hands-on professional training opportunity for speech-language pathologists and graduate students. Participants have attended from throughout the United States and around the world. Since its first session in 2011, Camp Shout Out has provided more than 10,000 hours of speech therapy to youth who stutter and over 18,000 hours of continuing education to professionals.

Grand Rapids Public Museum

The Grand Rapids Public Museum is an invaluable, publicly-owned institution that is home to more than 250,000 unique artifacts that tell the history of Kent County and beyond, houses the only planetarium in the region, and is responsible for protecting The Mounds, a national historic landmark. The Grand Rapids Public Museum is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, with its main location in downtown Grand Rapids, MI at 272 Pearl Street, NW. For additional information including hours of operation, admission fees and exhibit/event listings, please visit