Richard Saniga, a retired professor from the University of Southern Mississippi’s Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, died Dec. 7. He was 71. A private graveside service was held prior to his interment in Prairie Cemetery in Harrisville, Pa.
Dr. Saniga earned his doctorate at Southern Illinois University in speech pathology and became an expert on the remediation of voice problems. He received his undergraduate degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and his master’s degree from the University of Oklahoma.
His career included positions with Oelwein Public Schools, the University of Arkansas, Arkansas State University and for more than 25 years at Southern Miss. He received numerous awards for his work with undergraduate students, while presenting a multitude of lectures nationally and publishing a book and numerous articles in the field of speech pathology.
Saniga was awarded the prestigious Fellow of the American Speech Language Association and was president of the Mississippi Speech and Hearing Association twice. He was known for including his students in his professional activities and associations. In retirement, he was a consultant to Ellisville State School as well as to local physicians for their clients with voice problems.
“Dr. Saniga was a professor who was very highly respected by his students and by his colleagues,” said Dr. Steven Cloud, professor in the USM Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences. “He will be greatly missed by the university’s Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, the state association, and the Hattiesburg community."
Memorials to Saniga may be made to the Children's Center for Communication and Development at Southern Miss, local animal shelters, or to a charity of the donor's choice.