Client Results

(Names of clients served by Dr. Agin are kept confidential. Only a sampling of those expressing interest in publicly sharing their training experience follows.)

Testimonials from Adults

I was unable to pronounce my name when ordering a latte at Starbucks ... I was experiencing a myasthenia gravis flair-up. Dr. Agin helped me understand the muscle(s) that was keeping me from enunciating properly. We worked with a tongue depressor ... I could feel the closed part of my throat ... lift. We worked on vowels and words in an uplifting way. Dr. Agin engages in conversation and listens. She assigns homework and expects you to do your part.

Dr. Agin is a complete joy. Our sessions made my day.

Laurie Mann
VP Dental Practice Management
Returning College Student

I had a voice disorder; a polyp on my vocal cord that prevented me from being heard and made my voice hoarse. Working with Dr. Agin was pleasant and unusual [in that this training was out of my normal behavioral style], although now it seems natural.

Dr. Agin’s training style was personal, friendly, and professional. She found the behavioral issues that led to my voice disorder and corrected them.

Yonit Lustig
Digicent Corporation
San Francisco Bay Area

As an adult seeking my first speech therapist, I was highly impressed with Dr. Agin’s ability to alleviate the insecurities I had around my old [swallowing] habits. … worked really hard to resolve my tongue thrust, and lisp, and many people in my life have noticed the difference.

Dr. Agin is highly, professional funny and supportive. I was given exercises each week … and felt very seen and cared for during my treatments and saw great progress if I was diligent doing my homework.

Dr. Agin is a serious professional. She is focused like a laser on getting results, yet she does so with humor and kindness. She has a million training exercises that include ball bouncing, tongue-twisters and talking into mirrors. I felt as if my best self was showing-up at each session. She is amazing and I feel grateful that I was fortunate to work with someone so talented.

Stormy King
Program Specialist
National Writing Project
San Francisco Bay Area

I had hard time pronouncing some words ending in [th, s, w, and f]. Dr. Agin helped me learn and pronounce [sounds] correctly. She works on one problem at a time and focuses on practice.

She is a great person and a professional. I recommend her highly.

Frough S.
Project Manager, Engineer
BBI Construction

As a non-native English speaker, I was concerned about my ability to effectively communicate thoughts, ideas in formal and informal settings … I wanted to be better in public speaking … to a variety of audiences. Additionally, having a soft voice, I wanted to find ways to improve sound quality and voice strength.

Dr. Agin and I worked on these issues for five months and I had great results; went to a job interview, delivered a talk to 35 people and had a job offer. Dr. Agin is personable. She cares for her clients and and is a delight to work with. She truly listened to me from day one. Dr. Agin encourages you to challenge yourself. I think this is the key to making change/improvement …

She expects consistent commitment to homework. She is patient and carefully observes your development. Dr. Agin stimulated my curiosity to be better at voice projection, pronunciation and communication skills in general.

Zehra T. Guvener, Ph. D.
Project Scientist, Microbiologist

Due to my hearing loss, I wanted to improve the clarity and resonance of my speech. Dr. Agin was enthusiastic, highly motivated and an excellent cheerleader. She was an astute observer with high standards and high expectations. A winning combination and support.

Anonymous Academic
San Francisco Bay Area

My communication concern was stuttering, being soft spoken and not projecting my voice when I spoke or read in front of a group. With Dr. Agin’s help the stuttering has stopped and the projection has been helped a lot.

Dr. Agin is very supportive and has a very high standard for myself to go beyond what I thought I could reach. Over the years I have worked with Dr. Agin there have a significant improvement in my speech and the rhythm of reading. My speech has become more clear and projected out to the audience.

Dr. Agin’s style is very straightforward and has a high standard that push myself to understand what it means to speak well and to pronounce the words correctly.

Graduate Divinity Student
University of California

"Thank you again for an amazing meeting last night. The ladies loved it and had nothing but positive things to say about your stories and charisma! Thanks again!!!"

Dress for Success
San Francisco

"Thank you so much for speaking at our recent Professional Women’s Group meeting on Tuesday evening! Our ladies LOVED you & your presentation!! We’ve received such great feedback!
On behalf of our Board of Directors and the women we serve I would like to express our sincere gratitude for your service. You truly are making difference in the lives of women. We’re so happy to have you as part of our PWG program & hope to have you serve as a speaker again in the future!"
With gratitude, Renee

Renee Surcouf
LCSW| Executive Director
Dress for Success™ San Francisco

DEVELOPMENT and PRESERVATION of the SINGING VOICE Workshop, at Sonoma State University
"Thank you again for presenting such an informative, in depth, and helpful workshop for both us teachers and our students with just the right touch of that great sense of humor of yours and acceptance of all levels of abilities. I have gotten very positive feedback from all those I have spoken with."

Prof. Susan Witt Butler
National Association of Teachers of Singing
Santa Rosa, California

"Loved it. Great encouragement. Due to an infection, my voice was gravelly and too deep. The problem was completely resolved through exercises I was taught. Supportive while pushing me to my limit."

Neil Levy
San Francisco Bay Area

"I found Dr. Agin to be supportive tough, intelligent, and a great help for my stuttering blocks. We identified the problems and came up with a number of actionable plans to address the disfluencies. Her training style is very engaging. She didn't allow me to sit in my chair and be a lump on a log."

Jay Anderson
San Francisco

"I was preparing to speak to 2,000 people and my voice was so weak I couldn't last 10 minutes. Rhoda got me breathing properly, projecting, and drinking lots of water. Her training style is friendly, direct and demonstrative."

Jay Cross

"I had suffered with Parkinsons Disease for eleven years when I began a six week intensive voice treatment series with Dr. Agin. My voice was so diminished that only those closest to me in a courtroom could hear what I said. Dr Agin's skill and enthusiasm were irresistible. Almost immediately, I was shouting words off into the wind and singing my heart out at our sessions. By the end of the series I no longer had a voice problem. I highly recommend Dr. Agin's approach."

Mary Hoppe

"Dr. Agin increased my confidence and skill in public speaking, teaching and presentations. She was quite creative and imaginative in developing exercises and approaches. Her training style was competent, thoughtful, practical and responsive to my needs."

Randall G. Wyatt
San Francisco Bay Area

"Dr. Agin is a patient as well as caring person. I loved working with her. She pinpointed my strengths and my weaknesses in grammar and pronunciation. I am more confident talking to clients on the phone and in the office."

Gwen Robinson
Legal Secretary

"The vocal staff and singers of Sonoma State University cannot thank you enough for your presentation. The information that you shared … is invaluable. How you are able to do that and be entertaining at the same time is a real gift."

Susan Witt Butler
Professor of Voice
Rohnert Park

"Dr. Agin taught me to correct [three] speech behaviors. My experience with her was very positive. My speech has greatly improved co-workers, family and friends have seen it! I am very happy with the outcome. Dr. Agin is very knowledgeable and easy to work with. I would recommend her to anyone who wants to improve their speech and public speaking skills."

Janet S. Boyle
Vice President of Information Technology
Palo Alto

"Dr. Agin is a first-rate diagnostician and particularly skilled at communicating what needs to be done ... and how to it--and with a great sense of humor too!"

Peter S. Boland, Ph.D.
International Healthcare Consultant and Author

"Thanks to Dr. Rhoda Agin, I'm now a radio talk show host! I had the passion and knowledge to excite a radio station owner to consider my proposal of being the "Voice for Health" for his station, Radio Sausalito, but... my delivery left him cold.

In a short time, after working with Dr. Agin, the owner was wowed with my very next demo tape and asked me to come by to record my first show! As a matter of fact, the owner was so impressed that he asked Dr. Agin to work with the rest of his crew to improve their shows. I would highly recommend Dr. Agin for voice coaching so that she can make you a star in your world as she has made me, in mine."

Dr. Linda Berry
Chiropractor and Nutritionist

"I am reluctant to write this because it is so hard to believe. This past year my voice volume decreased to inaudible it [speech] became slurred and less clear. I saw several doctors including two ENT specialists and a [speech] therapist. No one had a diagnosis or knew what to do. One physician referred me to Dr. Agin. Within three days I had my voice back, and after the entire four-week treatment my voice is better than it ever has been. It is the best investment I ever made."

Harry D. Weininger
Attorney, Businessman
San Francisco Bay Area

"I had calluses and vocal nodules and could not speak. [I had] low pitch, and a hard time breathing and speaking many words. Dr. Agin provided me with a series of breathing exercises and changed my pitch. Her training style included positive reinforcement, psychologically uplifting confidence-building, motivation, patience, and a sense of humor that made practice delightful. Her enthusiasm, professionalism and expertise sung out loudly, and the results were impressive."

Stacy Cohn
Vice President and Financial Advisor,
Morgan Stanley Stock Brokerage
San Francisco

"One of the most outstanding and relevant workshops for English teachers that I have ever attended was given by Dr. Rhoda Agin. She peppered her sophisticated topic with fun vocal exercises and humorous words such as phonesia which means dialing a phone number followed by forgetting the party being called!"

Esther Fein
San Francisco Bay Area

"Dr. Agin is thoroughly professional while at the same time encouraging and supportive. She does not drive you, but through her belief in your ability to improve, you are stretched and challenged. Also, she adapts her work to meet your specific communication needs in very practical ways. She really knows her stuff! I highly recommend her for all ages all levels."

Connie Dorn
Lt. Commander, U.S. Armed Forces

"I particularly enjoyed the session on Vocal Dynamics by Dr. Rhoda Agin. She is a real professional with a marvelous sense of humor. It would be wonderful to have more international lecturers of her caliber next year."

Patricia Reifen
ESL Teacher,
Jerusalem, Israel

"My communication difficulty was making myself heard in meetings. Dr. Agin helped me to increase the resonance of my voice. This made a significant difference in my ability to make myself heard in a meeting situation- and increase my effectiveness at work."

Clark Streeter
National Scientific Laboratory

"I was in a bad car accident after which my speech was extremely slow, slurred, monotonous. I also used a lot of slang instead of words. I worked with Dr. Agin to enunciate more clearly, focusing on vowel sounds and minimizing nasal tones. She knew specific drills that minimized my problems and helped me become more confident with my speech. She was able to customize work for me that was enjoyable, integrated into my life well, and has proven to be extremely beneficial. She also helped reduce the jargon I was using by leading me to read more, thus expanding my knowledge and vocabulary."

Amy Moeller
San Francisco Law Firm

"Dr Agin clearly explains the proper voice production methods necessary for relieving strain when singing. The exercise techniques Dr. Agin uses really helped me achieve better vocal habits. Her energy and enthusiasm are contagious."

Margaret Mewes
Teacher/Singer, Church Choir Soloist
San Francisco Bay Area

"As a student working on my degree in voice, a prolonged hoarseness from a virus and medical complications, and breath control [difficulty] stemming from a hemi-functional diaphragm prevented singing. Dr. Agin corrected these problems through vocal exercises, learning the functioning of the respiratory system, and muscle strengthening exercises. It was only after working with Dr. Agin that I felt ready to prepare and sing my senior recital."

Anonymous (A.P.)
San Francisco Bay Area

Testimonials from Juniors

“The orthodontist recommended therapy to correct Malachi’s tongue thrust. Great experience working with Dr. Agin. Attentive and thorough, with regular homework for following -up after therapy. She always shared what they were working-on at the end of each session. Dr. Agin’s training style was fun, active and made Malachi very comfortable. I could see how she challenged him and trusted his resiliency.”

Carrie Katz, LMFT
Berkeley, CA

“My son had complex speech problems related to his anxiety disorder and was unintelligible to most people about 75% of the time. We had tried several speech therapists and none of them knew what to do to help him. He is an exceptional person with high intellect coupled with disabilities so his problems were very atypical and didn't fit most treatment protocols.

Dr. Agin is a highly skilled, exceptional professional who was able to take this very atypical problem and find creative solutions. My son's speech is about 95% intelligible to most people now -- a remarkable turnaround in just under a year's work with her.”

Dr. Melanie Hayes
Director, BigMinds, Inc.

““Menya zovut Jamie.” “Menya zovut Ellie.” I knew that my turn was next, and with quaking legs, stepped up to the podium and said, “Menya zovut Molly.” With more confidence, I continued, “thank you for inviting my school to participate in this conference.” With that I had realized just how far I had come.

When I was younger, I couldn’t talk. Couldn’t talk clearly, that is. My first word at age three was my own name Molly, only it didn’t sound like that. It came out more like “ma-ye.” It became clear that I had a speech problem. By age three I saw a speech therapist, Louise, who played sound and word games and gave me a new kind of candy every week. I continued until I was eight years old, by which time my speech had improved greatly. For a few years I had a break from speech therapy, until I turned eleven. Then I began seeing Rhoda.

Rhoda Agin, Professor of Voice and Speech Disorders. The imposing sign did nothing to calm the dread pooling in my stomach. Rhoda sat at her desk, reading a paper with her glasses far down her nose. As soon as she heard the jingle of the bell, she looked-up and greeted us with a voice as smooth, deep and controlling all at the same time. Despite her warm greeting, I did not want to be there, and as she began doling-out her expectations of me, my feelings were only solidified.

Rhoda was a no nonsense woman. She had a magical power to know instantly, whether I had done all my homework exercises. If an assignment called for me to practice something five times, and I only did it four, she would look at me with eyes so steely, I would squirm in my seat.

All of the tough work paid off in the end. After nearly a year of tongue-twisters, tongue taps, reciting passages, and more, my speech was nearly perfect. No longer did strangers inquire what country I came from, and I finally felt confident when I spoke. There was still one hurdle left: my Bat mitzvah speech, before a congregation of almost 300. For Rhoda, “nearly perfect” was not perfect enough. For months, she taught me the ins and outs of public speaking, from posture to breathing. During the actual event, Rhoda stood at the very back of the sanctuary to remind me to look up, make eye contact, and enunciate. My speech went swimmingly, and Rhoda was beaming with pride in the back of the crowd.

Last year, I participated in a conference on Nuclear Proliferation in Yekaterinburg, Russia. I had not actually expected to give our presentation at the conference. However, my classmates chose me, who had once been unable to pronounce my own name, to present. Once again it went beautifully. Every time I looked up at the crowd, I half-expected to see a smiling Rhoda standing in the back, listening closely.”

Molly Greenberg
Goucher College

“Lucy’s speech was hard to understand especially her “r”s, also some other sounds. Friends and relatives would notice and mention it to me.

Dr. Agin is terrific! She came up with games, creative writing, poems, etc. that kept Lucy interested. Lucy’s speech is vastly more understandable! She says her “r”s all the time now.”

Albany Unified School District

“My son had trouble articulating the “r” sound. After two years of school speech therapy had failed to lead to any improvement, Dr. Agin rectified the situation in a matter of months.

Dr. Agin is very professional, engaging and has high expectations. My son looked forward to his sessions with Dr. Agin. She is passionate about her work and full of energy. Her style is focused on her client, challenging yet not so much that the client is disheartened. Expects clients to do homework. Uses age appropriate exercises and genuinely cares about her clients as people. I highly recommend Dr. Agin …”

Jehan Velji
Portfolio Manager
San Francisco

“My eight-year old daughter saw Dr. Agin for her tongue thrust, anterior overjet malocclusions and bilabial sounds misarticulated. Dr. Agin was wonderful. She was professional, effective in communicating with and treating my daughter. On top of that my daughter looked forward to her sessions each week. Dr. Agin gave her exercises weekly, monitored her progress and checked for mastery. The positive changes that my daughter was able to make exceeded our expectations. I would highly recommend Dr. Agin …”

Pamela Valentine, M.D.
Kaiser Medical Center

“Our son had lost his two front teeth at age three, has a mild hearing loss and had some trouble pronouncing certain sounds. He also experienced some tongue thrust issues. Andreas very much enjoyed working with Dr. Agin and we were pleased with his progress. We were happy that the sessions were productive, efficient and that Andreas was receptive to Dr. Agin’s approach.

Dr. Agin is rigorous and demanding while maintaining a good “touch”/approach. Andreas was challenged but he did find the sessions enjoyable….never protested about going or practicing!”

Maya Chorengel
San Francisco Bay Area

“Both of our daughters were not saying their “r” [sound] and they were fairly resistant to changing their speech patterns. Dr. Agin is wonderful with children. She was very firm yet always positive and upbeat. She gave them a wide variety of exercises, and incorporated books and plays, … Dr. Agin’s style is active and engaging.”

High School Teacher
El Cerrito

“My child was having problems pronouncing his “s” and “t”. His speech was a bit sloppy and sometimes hard to understand … He loved working with Dr. Agin. She was patient and consistent in instructing him how to use his tongue. She’s encouraging and incorporates games into her training so the child is unaware that teaching/training is taking place.”


“My son Peter had been difficult to understand when he spoke- mostly not pronouncing his ”R”s but also something else we could not put our fingers on. After completing speech therapy in our neighborhood we were still not satisfied and came to Dr. Agin.

We think that Dr. Agin is creative and resourceful in her training – she really cares about speech and has passion, and her enthusiasm is contagious. My son got caught up in it and enjoyed his training thoroughly (not one dull moment). We also really like how Dr. Agin asked him to throw a ball or run [in place] while working on his speech and focusing on something else. We miss Dr. Agin’s upbeat enthusiasm now that we are finished! We are truly grateful to have found Dr. Agin.”

Agnes Lord
East Bay

“Max, 11 years old, had varying success with previous speech therapy. [Two years ago] he underwent pharyngeal flap surgery to correct breathing and speech problems. Post-surgery, we needed to finalize his remaining speech problems and correct accommodations made over the years prior to surgery. He really needed help not only in speech but, in self-confidence especially in a group, a presentation and/or school plays. He “just wanted to talk right.” He also developed patterns of not looking one in the eyes and letting sentences trail off, mumbling …while putting his head down.

[Initially] Dr. Agin spent 45 minutes on the phone with me. I knew that Dr. Agin is knowledge able, …and firm in a nurturing and kind way. Dr. Agin also uses humor and this way has the key to helping Max relax so he could learn. Max never had a problem giving-up his after school sports to go to Dr. Agin! I am in awe of how Dr. Agin made it so enjoyable and kept Max’s commitment. This is not easy for an 11 year-old boy who has to give up basketball practice!

[Her training style] is clear, direct, understandable. Sets goals and ensures child knows when sound is correct. Lots of positive reinforcement. Lots of humor and light moments. She got to know who Max is as a person.

Max’s comments: “We had a good relationship…. She was just right. She doesn’t criticize you when you say the words the wrong way. Yes, I would recommend her to any kid for speech.”

S. C.
Mother and Teacher

“My daughter had trouble with various sounds and was diagnosed with a lisp by a local speech therapist. While our work there solved some problems the lisp remained and they recommended Dr. Agin.

Dr. Agin was outstanding in every way -- knowledgeable, enthusiastic, firm yet playful - She knew exactly what to do and what to ask our daughter to do. After about a year of weekly sessions, the problem has been resolved.

Dr. Agin had carefully thought-out each session. She worked-in interesting and engaging exercises and activities that kept our daughter entertained and pushed her learning …thoughtful homework …positive reinforcement.”

L. H.
Private School
East Bay

“My 8 year-old son had difficulty pronouncing the “r” sounds. We worked with Dr. Agin for four months on a weekly basis along with daily homework. [Our experience] was excellent. Dr. Agin is an engaging and fun teacher. She was able to keep my boy excited about his weekly therapy sessions through a diverse range of exercises, games, exercises and drawings. She incorporated written, somatic and oral output … to engage all of his senses.”

Wendy Buffet
Sutter Health

SF Area 510-528-4188
NYC Area 212-537-0577
All Content Copyright 2024 by Rhoda L. Agin, Ph.D.