Staff

James W. Dame, HAS, BC-HIS –  Owner, Hearing Aid Specialist

(Heather Leiphart | The News Herald) Mr. Dame has been dispensing hearing aids since 1982 and was first licensed in the state of Georgia, working in Thomasville and Valdosta. In October, 1984, he became licensed in Florida, working in Tallahassee. In March, 1986, he joined Hearing Centers of America, based in Clearwater, FL and managed the store located in the Sarasota Square Mall for three (3) years. In November, 1989, the opportunity to own his own practice presented itself. Thus, in November, 1989, he moved his family to Panama City, FL and purchased Gulf Coast Hearing Centers, Inc.. The past 30+ years has brought many wonderful experiences and the pleasure of helping thousands of hearing impaired individuals lead a more satisfactory life.

Mr. Dame, who is a Florida native, graduated from Florida State University in 1973 with a Bachelors of Science degree in Business, specializing in banking and finance. The next two years were very rewarding while serving as a missionary in Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. Once back in the states, Mr. Dame became employed by the state Comptroller and worked as a bank examiner and later a securities analyst. In the spring of 1982, he entered the hearing aid industry through the urgings of a family member and has been heavily involved ever since. In 1991, Mr. Dame became Board Certified through the National Board Certification for Hearing Instrument Sciences. Over the years, Mr. Dame has attended hundreds of hours of continuing education to stay abreast of the latest in hearing aid technology. Digital hearing aids are becoming the standard for the industry and require constant training to obtain the knowledge necessary to properly program and adjust these instruments to the patients needs. Mr. Dame served on Hearing Centers of America’s Advisory Board for two years, and served for seven (7) years as Director of District 1 for the Florida Society of Hearing Healthcare Professionals, Inc. Mr. Dame is also a member of the Panama City Lions Club and is a past-president.

Mr. Dame is a member of the following professional organizations:

  • Florida Society of Hearing Healthcare Professionals, Inc.
  • International Hearing Society

Outside of the office, Mr. Dame enjoys spending time with his wife, six children and twelve grandchildren; church assignments; golf and gardening.


Timothy B. Smith, HAS, BC-HIS –  VP,  Hearing Aid Specialist, Ft. Walton Beach

(Heather Leiphart | The News Herald) In 2005, Tim Smith received the opportunity to become a part of the family business and joined the Gulf Coast Hearing Centers team.  Through many hours of study and internship, Tim became a licensed Hearing Aid Specialist in July 2006. He received his National Board Certification in July 2015.  He was raised in Panama City and attended Gulf Coast State College. He is married to Erika Dame Smith and they have three children. Tim manages the Ft. Walton office located at 906 Mar Walt Dr., Suite A, and also works at our Niceville location once a week.

Tim is a member of the following professional organizations:

  • Florida Society of Hearing Healthcare Professionals, Inc.
  • International Hearing Society



Tim’s outside interests include coaching his children in baseball; playing golf; kayaking; and riding his motorcycle.


Leslie A. Smith, HAS, BC-HIS –  Manager, Hearing Aid Specialist, Niceville

(Heather Leiphart | The News Herald) Leslie is a life long resident of Panama City. She graduated from Gulf Coast State College and attended Florida State University. She became familiar with the family business by working for her dad (Jim) in 2008 as the Panama City office receptionist. In 2012, she decided to pursue her career in the hearing aid business. After hours of hard work and studying, she completed the training program and achieved her license as a Hearing Aid Specialist in May 2013. She received her National Board Certification in September 2015. She Is married to Andrew Smith. Leslie currently works at our Niceville and Panama City locations.

Leslie is a member of the following professional organizations:

  • Florida Society of Hearing Healthcare Professionals, Inc.
  • International Hearing Society