Published by Feeding Matters on Feb 15, 2019

Feeding Matters’ 2019 International Pediatric Feeding Disorder Conference (IPFDC) was a huge success! With 346 in person attendees, 118 virtual participants, and 145 symposium participants, Feeding Matters is set to advance pediatric feeding disorder (PFD) care through ongoing initiatives and our newly formed PFD Alliance. The PFD Alliance is comprised of three pillars, each led by an expert level innovator in feeding:
  • Research Pillar Chair-Hayley Henrikson Estrem, RN, PhD
    • A registered nurse since 2002, Dr. Haley Estrem earned her MSN in nursing education at Duke University in 2009 and her PhD in nursing from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2015. Inspired to improve family-centered care for children with feeding problems and developmental disabilities following the birth of her son, Dr. Estrem’s research interest combines measure development, multi-method integration, and family-centered care for infants and children with special health care needs. Since 2009, Haley has been a member of UNC’s Feeding Flock, an interdisciplinary research team with a mission to partner with families to nurture young children with feeding difficulties. In 2018, Dr. Estrem became an assistant professor with UNC-Wilmington’s School of Nursing.
  • Advocacy Pillar Chair-Erin Sundseth Ross, PhD, CCC-SLP
    • Erin Ross is a post-doctoral fellow in the School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Section of Nutrition, at the University of Colorado Denver, Dr. Ross specializes clinically in the development of feeding skills and the etiology and treatment of feeding and growth problems in infants and very young children. Dr. Ross’ research interests focus on understanding typical feeding and growth and on identifying and treating infants and young children who are not developing typically in these areas. Her contributions to Feeding Matters include pediatric feeding consortiums participant; International Pediatric Feeding Disorder Conference (IPFDC) and continuing education workshop presenter; serving on the Local Initiatives, Advocacy, IPFDC, PFD Alliance Expansion, and Executive committees; Infant and Child Feeding Questionnaire (ICFQ) Treatment and Research Committee lead and co-author.
  • Education Pillar Chair-Pamela Dodrill, PhD, CCC-SLP
    • Dr. Pamela Dodrill has broad clinical and research interest in feeding and swallowing problems, nutrition, and growth in young children. Her experience includes the feeding and swallowing program at Boston Children’s Hospital and 12 years at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Brisbane, Australia. In addition to her numerous published works on pediatric feeding disorder (PFD), Dr. Dodrill regularly presents at national and international scientific conferences, and teaches courses and workshops on managing PFD to students and practicing health professionals. Dr. Dodrill is a regular participant in Feeding Matters’ pediatric feeding consortiums and consensus meeting, popular International Pediatric Feeding Disorder Conference (IPFDC) and continuing education workshop presenter, PFD consensus paper author, Infant and Child Feeding Questionnaire (ICFQ) committee member, and PFD Dissemination Committee co-lead.
To join a coalition driven to expand community perspectives on PFD, sign up for pillar communication. You will receive updates from your pillar chair, be able to access resources, and have a forum to pose your questions and connect with other feeding professionals and advocates. You can sign up for a single pillar or all three!


What’s Next?
  • Now that Feeding Matters’ Leadership and thought leaders have converged at the 2019 IPFDC, the Feeding Matters’ Strategic Plan will be finalized for publication and public viewing. We will maintain our commitment to the community to be completely transparent as we apply your voice to our strategic priorities.
  • The PFD Alliance announces an Open Call for Committee Members. The following Committees have opportunities available to qualified applicants. This opportunity is for professionals and community members seeking a more in-depth leadership experience with the ability to contribute their time and talents within a formal commitment.
  • Education Pillar: Conference Committee
    • The conference committee works to determine the conference agenda topics and speakers along with choosing presentations featured during our poster session. During the year, the committee works to ensure that the planning of the conference goes well and educational opportunities are of the highest caliber for attendees
  • Education Pillar: Resources Committee
    • The resources committee works to determine what partnerships need to be built with existing groups to provide more information around pediatric feeding disorder and how Feeding Matters can be the conduit of information. The committee also works to maintain usability of our website as we investigate areas of improvements within our existing virtual health resource platform.
  • Research Pillar: Granting Research
    • The research and granting committee assess research needs, reviews applications, and grants dollars to researchers interested in moving the field of pediatric feeding disorder forward.

Applications will be reviewed based on fulfillment of one of the following qualification areas:

  • Healthcare Professional Qualifications: submission form, which includes discipline (MD, RD, SLP, OT, PT, Psych, Nurse, Nurse Practitioner, PA, Social Worker, or others who care for children with pediatric feeding disorder), years of experience in the pediatric feeding disorder field, and qualifications.
  • Qualification as a Family Member/Caregiver Qualifications: submission form with family member or caregiver’s description of his or her experience with a child with a pediatric feeding disorder and years of experience.
  • Public Member Qualifications: submission form with the description of years of experience in the field.

All applicants must have a minimum of 5 years of experience in the area they are representing and be able to submit evidence that they hold established volunteer experience. Committee members participate in monthly or bimonthly committee calls, as well as committee specific actions. Please click the committee link below to apply.


  • Each Pilar will host a Town Hall in the summer of 2019. Town Halls provide our PFD Alliance community with a strategic update on pillar initiatives. Sign up to receive Pillar communication to ensure you do not overlook this valuable update.