Q&A with Clinical Audiologist Judy Peterein

photo of Bob and Judy Peterein in Hawaii
Judy Peterein and husband Bob enjoy a vacation in Hawaii.

Judy Peterein shares what has motivated her 40-year career as an audiologist and how she enjoys her free time.

What is your current title and how long have you been with the Department of Otolaryngology?

I am a clinical audiologist, and I have been with the department 40 years.  Prior to that, I worked briefly as a speech-language pathologist in public schools. I always wanted to work in a medically-related field.  I came across the field of audiology, and it has been a great fit for me.

Photo of Petereins with new grandson
Bob and Judy Peterein meet their new grandson Malcolm.

What do you like most about your work here?

I love working with people.  I have been seeing some of my patients for many years now, and I really enjoy that ongoing relationship.  I also enjoy the diagnostic aspect of audiology and get great satisfaction following the progress my patients make with their hearing aids.  In years past, I spent quite a bit of time in the operating room monitoring cranial nerve function.  That was a great way to see anatomy, and I always encourage my students to spend time in the OR if they get a chance.  And, of course, I enjoy working with our great audiology team.  They are the best!

What was your childhood like?

I grew up just south of St. Louis.  Both of my parents were teachers and encouraged my sister and me to further our education.  They were great parents and wonderful role models. My sister became a music educator.  In fact, I am the only person in the family without a degree in music.  However, I did play the flute and the piano and also sang in several choral groups.

photo of Peterein's daughters
The Peterein daughters, Melissa (left) and Kelly.

What spare time activities bring you the most joy?

I like spending time with family.  My husband Bob and I have two daughters, Melissa and Kelly, and a new grandson Malcolm born last May.  Melissa is an engineer and Kelly is a nurse. I am so proud of both of them.  I also enjoy reading whenever I get some spare time. But, whatever I’m doing, I try to remain positive.  I don’t always achieve this, but I try to remind myself to find the positive aspect of any situation. Working in a medical field helps to keep life in perspective.

Is there a special something at the top of your bucket list, and why?

I hope to travel more, but that will likely have to wait for retirement, and I will have to talk my husband into this.  I love the beach.  There is nothing more relaxing than spending time on the beach watching and listening to the ocean. I also want to spend as much time with my children and grandchildren as possible.  I see lots of baby sitting in our future.

What would most surprise your colleagues to learn about you? I love horses and rode a lot in the past.  I have not ridden recently due to lack of time and access.