Karen  Flynn
Associate Professor
School of Health Professions
Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders
2129 CHS Building 2

Karen Flynn joined Samford University in 2014 as an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.  Dr. Flynn recalls the decision to move to Birmingham and join the Samford faculty as an “easy” one.  “I felt the presence of something more when I first came to Samford for my interview,” she said. “The passion that faculty and staff have for their students was evident.  I wanted to be a part of that.  I feel blessed to wake up every day and do what I love – teach my students about speech-language pathology.” A native of Indiana, Thatcher taught at Ball State University for 13 years.  Dr. Flynn enjoys traveling and spending time with her husband Brian, family, and especially her three grandchildren, Tyler, Tank, and Amelia. 

Degrees and Certifications

  • Ed.D., special education, Ball State University
  • M.S., speech pathology, Ball State University
  • B.S., speech pathology and audiology, Ball State University


  • Early Intervention and Literacy
  • Dementia
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Universal Design Instruction

Awards and Honors

  • Excellence in Teaching Award, Ball State University, 2009
  • Accessible Teacher Award, Ball State University Office of Disabled Student Development, 2012


  • Thatcher, K. (2017).  Fun with literacy.  100s of Activities, Exercises, and Tips for the Classroom & Therapy (Birth-Preschool).  PESI Publishing, Eau Claire, Wisconsin
  • Thatcher, K. (2010). The development of phonological awareness with specific language impaired and typical children.  Psychology in the Schools, 47,(5), 467-480.
  • Thatcher, K.L., Fletcher, K. (2008). Professionals’ perceptions of the role of literacy in early intervention services. Psychology in the Schools, 45,(7),600-608.
  • Thatcher, K.L., Fletcher, K., Decker, B. (2008). Communication disorders in the school: Perspectives on academic and social success:  An introduction.  Psychology in the Schools, 45,(47), 579-581.


  • Thatcher, KL, Johnson, MJ, Koch, C. & Bagby, K.  (2018). Constructing Professionalism:  A Developmental Progression towards a Standard of Excellence.  Poster Presentation at Annual Speech-Language and Hearing Association convention, Boston, MA, November, 2018.
  • Koch, C. & Thatcher, KL.  (2017). Integrating Faith Into Pre-Professional Training Programs.  Presentation accepted to the Health and Human Flourishing:  Multidisciplinary Perspectives Conference, LCC International University, Lithuania, March, 2017.
  • Thatcher, KL, Roberson, J. & Crawford, S.  (2016). Using Simulation as a Teaching Strategy Towards Student Interprofessional Collaboration.  Presentation at the Teaching Professor Conference, Washington, D.C., June, 2016.
  • Johnson, ML, Thatcher, KL, Berry, C, Pence, J.  (2015). Introducing Interprofessional Education with Undergraduate Students Utilizing Disaster Simulation.  Poster Presentation at Annual Speech-Language and Hearing Association convention, Denver, CO, November, 2015.


  • American Speech Language Hearing Association
  • Speech and Hearing Association of Alabama
  • Alabama Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology