Shona has lived her whole life in the Scottish Borders, with a long career locally in hearing healthcare, which is a career she landed in by chance!
With a background in textiles, design and management, at the age of 22 Shona set up two retail businesses locally, before taking a change of direction, and beginning an exciting adventure in audiology, qualifying as a Hearing Aid Dispenser in 2008.
She has been "Highly Commended" in the Rayovac Audiologist of the Year competition, on three occasions.
Shona has been a member of and also the Secretary for The Association of Independent Hearing Healthcare Professionals (AIHHP) for over ten years. AIHHP is a professional association dedicated to promoting excellence within the UK Hearing Care profession.
AIHHP members provide a range of higher quality services including hearing assessments, hearing aid provision, hearing protection and other specialised services such as tinnitus management relating to hearing, than would normally be found on the high street.
'A close family member needs hearing aids, so I know first-hand how much the impact of hearing loss can have on the lives of the individual and their family, and when offered the chance to train as an audiologist, I did not want to miss out on the opportunity!
'Hearing Aid Dispensing must be one of the best jobs in the world – it feels amazing to make such a difference to someone’s life, and of course to the lives of their family, friends and colleagues.
'Through my role with AIHHP I have been in the fortunate position of working with the best independent audiologists in the UK, in an audiological community where I have learned so much, and has allowed me to maintain the very best in professional development within the industry.
‘I am super excited to be back doing the job I love, and can’t wait to see you!'
Andrew was born and brought up in Northern Ireland, before moving to Scotland to attend university in 1992. Graduating with an honours degree in Electronic Engineering, in 1996, he moved straight into audiology, and qualified as a Registered Hearing Aid Dispenser in 1998.
In 2013 he took a career break, and spent a couple of years living in Nashville, TN, before returning to Scotland, where he worked for a while as a barista, a piano teacher, and operations coordinator for his local church.
For over twenty years he has developed a strong interest in audio and sound engineering, mixing live bands and – partly inspired by Covid-related lockdowns – became more involved in recording, mixing and producing music at home.
In 2022 he launched qb earcare – an ear wax removal service in Portobello, Edinburgh.
'My time out of the industry was very enjoyable, but on coming back to the profession I was reminded how much I've missed the human interaction that is such a huge part of hearing aid dispensing.
'Like Shona, I love seeing someone's quality of life transformed by an improvement in their hearing, and find it enormously rewarding to be able to make such a qualitative difference to people's lives.
'I also greatly enjoy – as a musician myself – working with musicians to help protect and maintain their hearing through custom hearing protection and in-ear monitors.
'The technology in hearing devices has moved on and improved since 2013, but the skills of fitting hearing devices well, and testing hearing, have remained largely unchanged. And the requirements to listen well, be empathetic, and take a holistic approach to fitting hearing aids are timeless.
‘I am very much looking forward to working to bring transformation to many through better hearing!'