Our History

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Kathryn Shelley, Founder

A Timeline of Our History

On A Mission

The Scarborough-Linebery Foundation, Midland Memorial Hospital Foundation, and Manor Park joined forces. The Abell-Hanger Foundation and Permian Basin Area Foundation invested along with others. They sought to address the gap in care for one in every 250 people coping with aphasia in West Texas. 

Sept 2001
Case Study
first three members of the aphasia center

The Aphasia Center of West Texas began with a case study of a small group of stroke survivors. Even though they knew what they wanted to say, they could not state their most basic need or reliably state their own names. At ages 51, 52, and 70, all had been discharged from traditional speech therapy and a dramatically changed life lay ahead.

March 2002
Experienced Board of Directors Recruited

Well respected community leader, the late Nancy Anguish, enthusiastically agreed to be the founding Board President.

Start Up
February 2003
Achieved Official 501(c)(3) Status

Finally, aphasia education, resources and on-going communication therapy was accessible for those living with aphasia. The Aphasia Center of West Texas was the second independent aphasia center in the country to open its doors and continues to be a national leader. 

December 2003
Aphasia Institute Training

After receiving a grant from the Helen Greathouse Charitable Trust, Aphasia Center staff made a trip to Toronto, Canada for training at the renowned Aphasia Institute. They joined representatives from multiple countries, all learning the Life Participation Approach to Aphasia (LPAA).

Expanded Programming

After working for almost two years, the very first all about aphasia course was offered and 22 survivors and families attended. Four new program classes were launched with more than 50 people served.

May 2005
Service Location Moved

ACWT moved its operations to the campus of Community & Senior Services to be able to better serve those coping with aphasia. 

First Chocolate Decadence

Our first ever annual fundraising gala, Chocolate Decadence, was held to do delicious good for stroke survivors and still continues as our biggest fundraiser.

Current Facilities Reach Capacity

Odessa New Car Dealers donated a 10-passenger van while service requests for help doubled and the capacity of the current campus was exceeded. 

Relocation & Capital Campaign

Moved to present location at 5214 Thomason Drive and began a capital campaign.

New Executive Director Hired

Kitty Binek was hired as the Executive Director to carry the torch of the Founder, Kathryn Shelley. This same year, weekly tours began to demonstrate the needs for the capital campaign and the loan from WTNB for the acquisition of the building was paid off in six months!

Capital Campaign Reaches Goal

$1.8 million in capital contributions were raised for building renovations necessary to serve people living with aphasia.

Maturity & Paying It Forward
ACWT Hosts Leaders in Aphasia

ACWT hosted 24 leaders from 13 states and two Canadian provinces to learn and collaborate with each other. 

ACWT Becomes Fiscal Agent for Aphasia Access

Aphasia Access serves as a network of healthcare, business, and community leaders to advance lifelong communication access for people with aphasia.

Spreading Awareness
2021 awareness concert volunteers

Celebrated the 10th Aphasia Awareness Concert fundraiser bringing live tribute bands and aphasia education to the Permian Basin.

Perseverance in Uncertain Times

Adapted programming by implementing zoom groups and letter writing campaigns to continue to serve clients through the COVID-19 pandemic.

New Offerings and Adapted Events

Introduced a new shop program with a local collaboration from the Boy Scouts, held first ever virtual Chocolate Decadence, offered a live stream of the Aphasia Awareness Concert.

ACWT Celebrates 20 Years
Onward & Forward
The Mission Continues

The Aphasia Center of West Texas continues to lead with evidence-based innovative programming, individual outcomes, and strong leadership. At the heart of our mission are the individuals with aphasia who inspire us by their courage, motivation, and resilience – proving that there is LIFE after aphasia.

2000+ Aphasia Survivors Served!

Thank you for visiting our site. Please consider getting involved and helping  those with aphasia live their best life. 

Program Fees

Fees are $150/month for unlimited groups per week and $75/month for up to two groups per week. Program fees are billed on a monthly basis and sliding scale scholarships are also available. We are committed to serving those who need our services.

Contact Us for More info!


Individuals may pay a per-ride or monthly fee for transportation to and from the Aphasia Center in Midland on our mobility van. We also partner with Mission Center Adult Day Service to provide transportation to and from Odessa.

Contact us for details!



Contact Us for More info!