The team

Jon Hunt – Speech & Language Therapist

I’m a UK-based speech and language therapist specialising in aphasia. I was privileged to work in the NHS for 20 years, leaving in 2012 to begin work on Cuespeak, while continuing to work independently with people with aphasia.

My aphasia journey began in Bristol in 1987 when I met a man called Richard, who had aphasia. After meeting Richard’s speech therapist I knew that I wanted to become one myself, and that I wanted to specialise in aphasia. For someone who was (and remains) fascinated by language, the thought of trying to penetrate the mysteries of what is going on when someone loses their language, as happens in aphasia, seemed like an irresistible odyssey.

During my four years at City University of London I was lucky enough to land a clinical placement with Eirian Jones, an inspirational and highly innovative therapist, at Addenbrokes Hospital in Cambridge. The spirit of her work lives on in mine today.

I had long been interested in the potential of computers to contribute to the therapy process, but this potential became obviously greater with the arrival of the iPad, and it was this that prompted the beginnings of Cuespeak. The inital process was long, involving five years of trialling, testing, adapting and refining before the first version of Cuespeak was released in 2017. The app continues to develop. I would like to thank all the people with aphasia who so enthusiastically participated in the early trials, and who continue to help in shaping the app as it develops further.

There’s so much more that we want to do, and we can’t wait to bring you more innovative and effective therapies.

Robin Keech – Developer

I’ve been trying to make computers do what I want since 1983 when I finally managed to pester my long suffering parents to buy me a ZX Spectrum.

Most of my working life has been focused on technology. I’ve worked in many tech industries over the years and finally fulfilled a lifelong ambition of working for myself in 2010 when I became a consultant. I love the sense of achievement of breaking complex problems into small solvable chunks and building those back up into really useful tools. It’s incredible to think how far technology has progressed since those early days. There are now so many languages, platforms and frameworks to know. It’s a lot to keep track of, but the possibilities are endless.

I’ve also had some fascinating diversions into archaeology, music, environmental conservation and art. I really draw on those experiences to make our technical products more human. It’s been a wild ride!

The best thing to come out of my consultancy practice was meeting Jon. He had a crazy vision for a seriously complex speech therapy application. We worked closely together for around 3 years, transforming early prototypes and ideas into a working product, until the first version of Cuespeak was released in September, 2017. Jon was one of the best clients I had ever worked with, he is hard working, switched on, an expert in his field and has so much passion for improving people’s lives by bringing back their power of communication. With the first release of Cuespeak complete, we knew we wanted to take the app further. It’s come a long way since that first release, and there is so much more to come….

I’m really proud of the work Jon and I have created – it really is the culmination of more than one life’s work. I hope you find it easy to use, beautiful, intuitive and rewarding.

Jenni Crisp – Speech & Language Therapist

I am a UK-based Speech & Language Therapist specialising in stroke and aphasia. I’ve worked in the NHS for over 30 years, and across a wide range of clinical, teaching and research contexts. 

What’s kept me on this journey is the appreciation that language is our most remarkable and complex skill; it is beautiful, powerful and fundamental to human connection and identity. Language loss or limitation can be devastating. I really value the privilege of forming connections with so many people who are rising to the difficult challenge of living with aphasia with resilience and humour.

I use Cuespeak daily in my NHS role and it has expanded and improved what I can easily, in the context of ever increasing workload and caseload, offer the people with aphasia I work with and for. I often observe patients “leaning in” as they recognise that working in this way is making a significant difference to their language recovery. I have a strong conviction that “dose” is critical and that patients are often not getting anything like enough therapy to achieve meaningful change: I think the provision of personalised, app-based therapy offers the best chance of achieving the amount and intensity required.

I’ve always loved both developing therapy resources and delivering training. I am so pleased to bring these skills to this context and contribute to the positive impact Cuespeak is having, both on the science and art of aphasia therapy, and for those at the sharp end of living with aphasia.