TOP 25 WOMEN IN BUSINESS: Erica Gallagher

Dr. Erica Schoenberg Gallagher is a firm believer that what is meant to be will always find its way. The young woman has worked hard, following this philosophy to success.

As the practice owner and sole practitioner of Abington Audiology and Balance Center in South Abington Township, she sees her patients as her greatest responsibility, but is also responsible for her employees, equipment, marketing, bookkeeping and virtually everything that goes with the provisions of high-quality service and products in her business.

As an audiologist, she evaluates hearing loss and related disorders including vestibular (balance) disorders and tinnitus (ringing in the ears) with the help of a variety of tests and procedures. She also performs counseling of patients and helps them through the rehabilitation process.

Interested in learning sign language, Dr. Gallagher enrolled in a course of audiology on a whim in college, and the rest was history.

"I love the feeling of reconnecting someone with their friends and family," she said. "They get to participate in life effectively again. Working in a private practice provides me with flexibility and autonomy on a daily basis. Seeing different patients, each presenting with their own unique challenge to address is what's exciting."

Dr. Gallagher earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Pittsburgh, her master's degree from Syracuse University and her doctorate degree in audiology from the University of Florida. After working a few years for Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, the young doctor felt prepared to pursue her dream opening her own independently owned private practice. In 2007, that dream was turned into reality when she opened the doors of Abington Audiology and Balance Center.

"Incorporating caring and individual patient focus to everyone that comes though my doors is my focus," she said.

When she is not busy working with patients and performing duties associated with owning her own practice, she also volunteers her time at her children's school through the PTA. She is a PTA board member and is instrumental in fundraising for the school. She also enjoys watching her children playing sports and volunteers on the board of the Abington Attack Lacrosse League.

Her children have been the driving force in her life. Her 11-year-old son and eight-year-old daughter have taught her the meaning of patience.

While she believes success can mean different things to different people, professionally, her success has come by the way of her family.

"Their support and open-mindedness pushed me hard to do well in school," she added.

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