Patient Stories

// Patient Stories // 

We’re Proud To Care for The Hearing Health of So Many Incredible People

// Patient Story

We’re proud to call Ann Hardy a patient: she’s a true Silicon Valley pioneer and a friend.

We’re proud to call Ann Hardy a patient: she’s a true Silicon Valley pioneer and a friend.

As a pioneer in computer programming, Ann joined IBM in New York in 1956.  Among other projects, Ann worked on one of the first Fortran compilers, which was for STRETCH, IBM’s supercomputer of the day. STRETCH can now be seen in the Computer History Museum.

In 1966, Ann was tempted to a startup, Tymshare, because she realized their plans would provide her with the opportunity to have access to a computer from her home.  The founders hadn’t thought about this way of using multi-process computing, but Ann wrote the operating system and made sure it would meet her goals.  Later, as a VP, she managed projects, which used those capabilities to develop and market apps that were at the time revolutionary: pay a bill or make an airline reservation — from home!    

Ann’s hearing loss journey started when she visited her doctor to complain that she couldn’t hear very well.  He referred her to Dr. Deborah Clark at Pacific Hearing Service.

“They were friendly and helpful, and they listened to my problems,” Ann said. “Unlike a lot of places, they paid attention to me. So, if my hearing aids didn’t perform the way they should, they continued to test so that ‘When you walk home, it’s as good as it can get.’ That difference for me was huge!”

As an engineer, Ann could appreciate such attention to detail and quality. She quickly realized that the standard of care at Pacific Hearing Service differs from that of many other hearing services.

Ann tells about her brother who also invested in hearing care. He paid as much as she did, but he still cannot hear to a reasonable standard. When they talk, he struggles to hear if there are multiple people in the room. “They never tested him after he was first fitted.”

“They assume the hearing aids can be set up perfectly when you first get them. But Dr. Clark checked in with me, listened to my needs, retested, and adjusted. That has made a huge difference for me. My brother simply can’t hear, and I can! We go to the same meetings and the same family get-togethers. I hear everything, and he misses half of it.  And he’s 10 years younger than me!

“Most places just don’t care to make certain the technology is working at its best. But Dr. Clark really wants things working optimally for me.  I hear better than most anybody else I know with hearing aids.”

How have hearing aids impacted Ann’s life? She says her life wouldn’t be the same without them. “I am involved in a number of organizations, such as the Computer History Museum, and they all hold meetings. If you can’t hear and understand what people say, you’ll quickly become isolated.  Most importantly, without good hearing, I wouldn’t be able to have conversations with my grandson in his 21st century English. I can’t imagine how awful that would be!”

If you’re considering working with Pacific Hearing Service, Ann says, “Be grateful you heard about them, because I don’t see the same results with friends who’ve tried other places. I was lucky my doctor knew about Pacific Hearing Service, and I’m so glad I followed through on his recommendation. Most people with hearing aids just don’t hear as well as I do.”

We feel incredibly proud to work with Ann and feel incredibly fortunate to have been trusted by so many local physicians for over 40 years.

// Patient Story

How Dr. Deborah Clark saved Tom from Brain Surgery and Why a Pioneer of Silicon Valley Advises You to Visit Pacific Hearing Service

Tom is an incredible person that we’re proud to work with.

Originally from Tennessee, he arrived in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1965 and in his own words “thought he had gone to heaven.” In 1972, he started an executive search firm that helped to put together the original teams for high tech startups, making a significant impact on Silicon Valley throughout his 33-year career.

So much so that he was recognized and featured in a book called Silicon Valley’s Pioneers of Success for his work sourcing the key teams for many famous companies.

Tom’s first experience of hearing loss was during his career when he discovered that he was struggling to hear out of his left ear. At first, he thought it was linked to his time in the army and a noise-induced hearing loss, but after visiting his audiologist at the time, he was diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma and was recommended to have brain surgery.

Tom went to Dr. Deborah Clark at Pacific Hearing Service for a second opinion, and in his own words says, “She saved me from brain surgery.” She advised that he may not need surgery and her help resulted in him getting the advice of a neurologist that advised that he didn’t need brain surgery.

The rest is history and Dr. Deborah has been helping Tom to achieve better hearing and continue to bring his unique and memorable personality to the world.

When asked why he recommends Dr. Deborah Clark at Pacific Hearing Service, Tom said, “She’s very good technically, there’s just no doubt about that. But she’s also a great person and she actually cares about the person she’s talking to. The United States is the only country on the planet where medicine is a for-profit business. This means that most people who have a thing that they do want to do it. If they do knee surgery, they want to do your knee because that’s the only way they can have cash flow. However, Dr. Deborah has very high integrity, is honest, and has a very positive personality. I can’t imagine somebody just sort of not liking her as a person.”

What would Tom’s advice be to you if you’re considering visiting Pacific Hearing Service?

“Get over there as fast as you can. They’re the best. She and her partner Jane are considered by the Mid Peninsula as being the best. They’re very good.”

// Patient Story

I immediately had confidence that this was the place for me.

I first acted on my hearing loss about 30 years ago when I was in my mid 30’s. Being aware that I was missing parts of conversations was the impetus for taking action. But I first visited Pacific Hearing 7 years ago and by that time, I had lots of experience with audiologists and hearing aids. I was looking for an audiologist who was knowledgeable of options, would listen to my needs, and be willing to stick with me to find a solution.

I had been referred by a friend I trusted and I immediately had confidence that this was the place for me.

Wearing hearing aids is a matter of lifestyle for me. It is a given and a huge dependency. The first hearing aids I purchased from Pacific Hearing were a life changer for me. They enabled me to use my mobile phone as a phone, not just a texting machine. The ability to talk on the mobile phone was a massive change for me, in business, my volunteer work and my personal life. It truly was a life changer.

My experience has been nothing but positive. I have an open, ongoing dialogue with Dr. Clark where we have shared information both ways and have learned from each other. This is the kind of relationship I seek in a medical professional.

– Margie P.

// Patient Story

They are committed to getting the best results for each patient

My first experience of a hearing challenge was when I had a sudden and profound hearing loss in my left ear. Prior to visiting Pacific Hearing Service, I didn’t have any concerns but I was anxious to see what Dr. Baxter and her team could do for me.

My first impression was that Dr Baxter and her team were extremely passionate about helping those who have lost their hearing and committed to getting the best results for each patient. They are also very thorough and knowledgeable.

They have improved my hearing so that I am not constantly having to say “What did you say?” or “Sorry, but I can’t hear you.”

My overall verdict of Pacific Hearing Service is that they are excellent.

– Shireen S.

// Patient Story

They did an outstanding job for my father

I first realized that I may have a hearing challenge when I wasn’t able to hear people with soft voices and when I needed the television to be loud.

I knew about Pacific Hearing Service, as they did an outstanding job with my father, and I found them to be professional, capable, compassionate, kind, and sincere.

By working with them, it has improved the quality of my life. I have no need to ask others to repeat things or tolerate the television being too loud.

They are the best service provider of ANY that I have now or had in the past.

Top notch people, products, and processes.

John G.

// Patient Story

Brook is a great listener and worked hard to understand my situation.

I noticed in meetings that I couldn’t hear what women were saying. I felt bad because I was essentially ignoring them since I was too embarrassed to keep making them repeat themselves. I was concerned about making an appointment as I worked at a university with a lot of young people and didn’t want to look like an old guy with hearing aids. (I’m bald so wouldn’t be able to hide them under my hair.)

Pacific Hearing Service is well-equipped to diagnose and treat hearing problems. Brook is a great listener and worked hard to understand my specific situation.  My hearing is very close to normal now. The hearing aids I have are completely invisible. I can hear men’s and women’s voices equally well.

– Michael S. 10 out of 10.

// Patient Story

If you are looking for professionals with initiative, integrity, and intelligence, you will find them working at Pacific Hearing.

Ten years ago, a friend recommended that I should contact Pacific Hearing for my hearing needs. I am glad I did! Since then, I have returned the favor by recommending Pacific Hearing to several of my friends.

If you are looking for a team of professionals who has your best interest at heart, I recommend the Menlo Park office of Pacific Hearing. If you are looking for professionals with initiative, integrity, and intelligence, you will find them working at Pacific Hearing.

Dr. Lisi, supported by an able team, has been my doctor for ten years. I trust her and each member of her team because they treat me as an individual, with full knowledge of my needs. They also keep me abreast of new developments that may be helpful to improve the quality of my hearing and life.

In 2018, I was T-boned by a driver who ran a red light. Immediately after the accident, I had trouble with my hearing. My wife called Pacific Hearing from the scene of the accident, and ten minutes later, I was seen by a professional who tested my hearing and made sure all possible difficulties were addressed. That is the kind of support and attention to customer needs you will get from Pacific Hearing.

Another aspect I appreciate of Pacific Hearing is the friendly family atmosphere that permeates the office. While professional in the discharge of their profession, everyone makes time and space to hear your needs and answer your questions. I feel I am part of the Pacific Hearing family.

Thank you, Pacific Hearing!

– Marcelo Gumucio

// Patient Story

Hearing aids are half way between an assistive device and a superpower!

I had a bad ear infections while in my 20s and my hearing problems worsened over the years. I was concerned that hearing aids wouldn’t work and would be annoying, however my first experience of Pacific Hearing Service was wonderful. Everything was explained, so I understand – we had good discussions about the medical and the technical aspects.

Hearing aids are half way between an assistive device and a superpower! Now I can stand to be in restaurants and I don’t feel isolated in groups of people. Since hearing is a part of balance and knowing where one’s body is in space, I also feel less clumsy.


The audiologists at Pacific Hearing Service are kind, generous, and caring. They make things better.

– Jon C, Sept 2020. 10 out of 10.

// Patient Story

I valued their honest interest in taking the time to answer my questions and help me make the right choice of device.

I first noticed tinnitus about 20 years ago and high frequency loss about 10 years ago. Given that I was new to hearing aids, I didn’t want to go to an audiologist that would rush me in and out and would not provide enough time or help for me to make an informed choice of hearing aid.

I was pleasantly surprised that when I first called, a helpful person answered and set up a free consultation with the co-owner Dr. Baxter. By comparison, I called another audiologist and got a recording from someone who seemed rushed and unhelpful, offering only to schedule an appointment.

I would highly recommend PHS to a friend, because I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of the hearing test and programming of the aids. I also valued their honest interest in taking the time to answer my questions and help me make the right choice of device and their lending program that allowed me to try out different aids before buying.

–  Roger L, Sept 2020. 10 out of 10.

// Patient Story

It was a fabulous experience, the very best and I felt 14 again!

I first noticed I had a problem with my hearing when I realized I was catching every third word when attending a lecture and the other two were mumbled.  I had the same experience at a movie.

If you don’t hear well, it can affect your cognitive ability over time. I didn’t want to be one of those old people who keep asking “What?” or “Pardon Me”!

I visited Pacific Hearing Service and they took so much time in testing with amazing diagnostics and then additional time explaining. They were so professional and caring. It was a fabulous experience, the very best, and I felt 14 again!

–  Helen I, August 2020. 10 out of 10.

// Patient Story

I wanted to have an audiologist who keeps up with all of the latest hearing aid technologies so I visited Pacific Hearing Service.

I was in my late 40’s when I noticed that I was having difficulty hearing people talking – especially in restaurants and similar noisy environments. I wanted to have an audiologist who keeps up with all of the latest hearing-aid technologies so I visited Pacific Hearing Service.

All of the staff are professional, knowledgeable, and friendly, and the office is spacious, modern, and very comfortable. Debbie Clark has made it easy for me to understand and benefit from the latest hearing aid products. I have benefited tremendously from Debbie’s knowledgeable, thoughtful, and friendly help.

– Susan M., August 2020. 10 out of 10.

// Patient Story

I give Dr. Kun my highest commendation and appreciation.

I didn’t realize that I had a hearing loss. I saw an ENT for problems with dizziness, who administered a hearing test.

I visited Pacific Hearing Service, as speech was becoming less clear with my old hearing aids, so I wanted my hearing checked, and to find out if new hearing aids would be better than my old ones.

The staff is professional and friendly. I love the artwork at the Los Altos branch and feel very comfortable there. There were many pamphlets and helpful information in the lobby, which I thought was a good indication of a sincere and serious effort to help people hear.

These hearing aids are much better than my old ones; they process ambient sounds so much better, and the sounds are comfortable to listen to. I wear them all day long and now I am connected to the rest of the house. I can hear my cell phone go off in the next room or hear that I’ve left the fan on. One warm night outside, I heard crickets as loud as I remembered them when I was a kid.

I have a “music” program, so now I can listen to music in the car without making other people feel uncomfortable from the loud volume.

Working from home due to COVID-19, the company conducts meetings via Zoom. Dr. Valerie Kun has setup a “Zoom” program, and now I can follow more of the conversation. This is also the best program for me to watch television.

Hearing aid tuning has always been a problem for me due to the nature of my hearing loss. Dr. Valerie Kun has demonstrated her expertise, patience, concern, and dedication to tune my hearing to the best settings for my hearing and my hearing needs. I give her my highest commendation and appreciation.

– Happy Pacific Hearing Service Customer, Sept 2020. 10 out of 10.

// Patient Story

How past Secretary of Defense William J. Perry found Pacific Hearing Service the right experts for his needs

As a former Secretary of Defense, William J. Perry has lived a life that few could imagine. But just like millions of people across America, he’s also had to contend with a hearing loss.

For over sixteen years, Pacific Hearing Service has been proud to provide William with innovative treatments and excellent care. It’s been fantastic to help him on his journey to better hearing.

In 1946, at age 18, William enlisted in the US Army, serving in the Army Corps of Engineers in Japan and Okinawa. A few years later, he graduated with both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics from Stanford University, and later earned a doctorate degree at Penn State University.

During this period, William retained his position as a reservist army officer. He believes his exposure to artillery detonations during training tours in the 1950s permanently damaged his hearing.

Bill has had a distinguished career in the private sector, education, and government. He founded and served as president of the electronics firm ESL Inc. and was a managing director of the investment banking firm Hambrecht & Quist. He was Undersecretary of Defense during the Carter administration and served on President Reagan’s Commission on Strategic Forces.

In the late 1980s, Bill returned to Stanford as a professor in the School of Engineering and co-director of the Preventive Defense Project. It was here that he and others recognized a decline in his hearing. “[My] friends and family noticed,” he remembers, adding that he struggled to “function” as a teacher and scholar.

In 1994, William became Secretary of Defense in the Clinton administration. Among his landmark achievements, he organized the dismantlement of 8,000 nuclear weapons – half in the US and half in Russia. He left his post in 1997, and on returning to California, he rejoined Stanford University. Today, he is the Michael and Barbara Berberian Professor (emeritus) at Stanford, senior fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute and the Hoover Institution, and director of the Preventive Defense Project.

At the recommendation of a friend, he came to Pacific Hearing Service in 2004. The treatment that the team gave him made a world of difference. “[I was] very satisfied with the service,” he said. “[The] hearing aids made a noticeable improvement over the sound amplifiers I was using.”

 We’re extremely proud that William trusts us to provide him with hearing care services to this day. It’s been truly amazing to assist him over so many years and help him connect with people all around the world.

// Patient Testimonial

I have gone from a negative to a positive approach.

My husband and I would like to thank you for your patience and professionalism in helping us over the difficult hurdle of using hearing aids. I was particularly negative at first. You were sympathetic, but firm in educating and continuing the process of fitting and adjusting the hearing aids to meet our specific requirements. Our first meeting after two weeks of using our new hearing aids was very constructive. Brook listened to our daily trials and experiences and solved the few minor problems that arose. It is a month now and both of us feel quite comfortable wearing our hearing aids a full day. I have gone from a negative to a positive approach and attitude.

// Brian C.

The device was elegant and inconspicuous.

Having spent years now with an 85% hearing loss in my right ear, I decided to consult with Pacific Hearing Service to understand what technology advancements had occurred more recently in hearing devices. From battling through cross-talk during business meetings to straining at the movie theater to hear my kids’ whispers, I was growing increasingly uncomfortable that I was missing important information.

The new device that Dr. Raguskus showed me was so elegant and inconspicuous, it was almost invisible to others.

The moment I put it in my ear, the difference was impressive. I was immediately hearing sounds I wasn’t able to pick up before and the comfort and sound quality was amazing.

Thank you, Dr. Raguskus, for giving me back my hearing!

// Daughter of Patient

Who knew that better hearing could lead to an improved relationship! 

I cannot thank you enough for dramatically improving my mother-in-law’s hearing with the new hearing aid devices you have customized for her. This has drastically improved our relationship as she has become interactive again. She can listen and respond and so she asks questions and inquires more about our lives.

Who knew that better hearing could lead to an improved relationship! Wow! And thank you for improving my hearing by the quarterly ear cleaning that is required almost every time I get on an airplane.

// Ellie Mansfield

Addressing my hearing challenges opened up better communication for me. 

Years ago, I realized that I couldn’t hear normal, everyday noises. As my father wore hearing aids, I had no hesitation in treatment. My first experience of Pacific Hearing Service was favorable and warm. They were willing to answer questions, and someone from Pacific Hearing Service came out to The Forum on a regular basis. The impact of addressing my hearing challenges has opened up better communication for me. They are excellent, caring, and understanding.


// Marcelo A. Gumucio

Hearing clearly has enhanced my quality of life. 

I first realized that I had a hearing challenge 7 years ago when I had to ask people to repeat what they were saying. Upon visiting Pacific Hearing Service,  I found them to be very professional, thorough and a friendly group of people. Hearing is a major need for most of us and hearing clearly has enhanced the quality of my life. I continue to recommend Pacific Hearing Service to many of my friends and some, not all have become patients.

// Patient Testimonial

There has been a huge impact on my business success. 

Pacific Hearing has been a great partner over the years. They always make sure that I get the right hearing instruments for my needs, and then optimize them for my specific hearing profile. This has had a huge impact on my business success, enabling me to hear everything whether in crowded meetings, formal presentations, or on my cell phone.

An extra bonus, my Bluetooth-enabled hearing aids are hands down the coolest personal technology around: I am the envy of all the engineers in my company!

// Patient Testimonial

You have amazed me!

[Pacific Hearing Service] has improved my hearing far more than I could have hoped. You took out the harsh sounds and made hearing almost pleasant. I can even hear the TV, which surprised me. I said “hear,” but I mean understand. I talked to my son on the phone at length, something I had not been able to do….You have amazed me!

// Patient Testimonial

Outstanding personality and customer service!

My wife’s hearing aid quit in AM; she had a stroke in PM. Without the hearing aid, she could not hear doctors or instructions. Natalie Dedrick immediately set me up with a loaner hearing device, which helped my wife dramatically during recovery. Outstanding personality and customer service!

// Joan Wilson

I always receive the most professional care. 

Being able to hear better has helped the depression I was feeling. My new hearing devices have improved my tinnitus, music appreciation, and enjoyment of playing golf. Brook Raguskus has been very patient and understanding. I have been coming to Pacific Hearing Service for many years and always have received the most professional care. The front office staff also is friendly and kind and helpful.

// Maureen Maino

Staff are professional and make visits easy. 

My social interactions are more enjoyable because of the help I received at Pacific Hearing Service. The hearing devices have especially improved my musical appreciation. The staff, including Dr. Debbie Clark and everyone in the front office, are professional and make the visits easy.

// A New Client

Dr. Brook is so helpful. 

I am enjoying conversations with friends and family life, in general, more because of the help I have received at Pacific Hearing Service. The front office staff is great and Dr. Brook is so helpful and patient, we wish we would have come in sooner!

// Floy Marks

Everything I do is more enjoyable!

Just about everything I do has been made more enjoyable because of the help I received at Pacific Hearing Service. I would not manage without my hearing aids and the help I have gotten. Brook Raguskus, Au.D., and all the people who work here, are so helpful. I highly recommend this service.

// Patient Testimonial

I find work more enjoyable!

I find working more enjoyable now because of the efforts of Pacific Hearing Service. My activities have been significantly enhanced through the work of Dr. Rachel Otto.

// Betty C. Schott

Patient and caring. 

I can hear conversations and whispers now. I didn’t realize I was missing so much!

Dr. Rachel Otto was exceptionally good – patient and caring. I never realized I would have so much guidance.

// Ellie M.

Warm and willing to answer my questions. 

Years ago, I couldn’t hear normal, everyday noises. I knew it could be treated, as my father had worn hearing aids. I found Pacific Hearing Service staff warm and willing to answer any questions I had. It’s opened up communication to me again.

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