American Association of the Deaf-Blind

A New Beginning


Contacting Us

For more information about AADB, you can contact our office.


May 2007 Issue

In This Issue:

AADB in Action

News about AADB's Magazine: We are proud to present our "new, improved" magazine, The Deaf-Blind American, coming soon! Our magazine will undergo a major makeover with exciting layout and graphic designs, and interesting articles printed on really nice paper for an attractive look. The April-June issue is a special feature on interpreting for deaf-blind people and will spotlight tips on how to use interpreters, the different interpreting methods used with deaf-blind people, video relay interpreting and more.

If you are environmentally conscious, you can get The Deaf-Blind American by email attachment or CD/disk. It is available in PDF format with pictures and plain text without pictures. You can change your preference to email or CD/disk by contacting the AADB Office.

Hispanic/Latino Committee: AADB is mindful about reaching out to people of diverse cultures. As a start, the Board of Directors approved setting up the Hispanic/Latino committee with Board member Emily Vera as Chair. The purposes of this committee are threefold: 1) recruit Hispanic/Latino individuals and businesses to join AADB, 2) seek out donations from Hispanic/Latino businesses, and 3) assist with Spanish translation of AADB publications and webpage. Committee members are being identified and the first meeting will be sometime this summer.

New Look for AADB Website: The AADB website has a completely new look! We also have lots of new information available: a resource directory, excerpts from AADB magazine articles, and information on listservs related to deaf-blind people. It is attractive, accessible and easy to navigate. Take a look at

What's New at AADB

Board of Directors Election Results: AADB is pleased to announce the 2007-2011 Board of Directors: Mark Gasaway, Jill Gaus, Patti Lago-Avery, Maricar Marquez, Janet Sand, Tom Sprinkle, Emily Vera, and Dorothy Walt. One hundred ninety-nine ballots were received out of 392 and counted by the Election Committee. The new AADB board will begin on July 1, 2007. Please join us in congratulating these people as they serve on AADB's new Board of Directors!

Strategic Planning: AADB is going through strategic planning to identify three program and service goals for the next five years. This is needed because potential donors and funders prefer to see their money go to making a difference in the lives of deaf-blind people. This past April, the AADB Board of Directors and Staff identified eight possible goals: Support Service Providers, Leadership, Advocacy and Awareness, Senior Citizens, Youth, Information and Referral, Interpreting and Technology.

These eight goals were sent to AADB deaf-blind members for their help to pick the top three goals they think are important. The results will be published in the AADB E-News this summer.

Position Announcement: Director of Development: As AADB grows in national visibility and expands its services and programs to impact the quality of life of Americans with dual hearing and vision loss, it is necessary to do more fundraising. The Board of Directors has approved the creation of a director of development position to focus on increasing funds so AADB can carry out its mission through multiple activities, including hosting national conferences. For more information, please contact the AADB Office.

Introducing Our Summer Intern: Welcome to Rosalyn Ramos, a Business Administration major at Gallaudet University, who is assisting us this summer with design and layout for our publications. We are excited to have her help in designing attractive and professional materials.

Individual Membership Dues Increase: Because of rising costs in printing and Brailling of AADB's publications for members, the Board of Directors approved a $5 increase in individual membership fees (Active, Associate, and International) to help defray some of the costs. Individual memberships are now $25 per year, effective immediately.

Lifetime Memberships Now Available! Tired of wondering when your AADB membership is up for renewal and want to avoid future annual dues increases? Worry no more with AADB lifetime memberships. Available for a limited time only, a lifetime membership is $500 per person for all individual membership types: Active (deaf-blind), Associate (non deaf-blind), and International (outside of the USA). If you are interested in being a lifetime member, please go to to print out a lifetime membership application. You can also contact the AADB Office to get a form.

Notable News

National Task Force on Deaf-Blind Interpreting: Good news! The National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers (NCIEC) has agreed to give $12,500 this fiscal year to support the activities of the National Task Force on Deaf-Blind Interpreting (formerly known as the RID-AADB Task Force on Deaf-Blind Interpreting). A Memo of Understanding is currently being developed between Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID), NCIEC, and AADB. A big "Thank You!" to NCIEC for their strong support to make the important work of the task force possible.

Hawk Relay Deaf-Blind Relay Service: Hawk Relay recently submitted a proposal to the Federal Communications Commission for a new Deaf Blind Relay Service (DBRS). If this proposal is approved, Hawk Relay's DBRS will work by using Communication Facilitators who are physically present with the deaf-blind user and act as the go-between for the deaf-blind person and the hearing person they are conversing with on the telephone.

Schedule of Events:

Emergency Preparation: The Community Emergency Preparedness Information Network (CEPIN), a project under Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc, will provide six workshops for emergency managers and responders as well as deaf, deaf-blind and hard of hearing consumers across the country. For more information, contact Neil McDevitt at, or at Telecommunications for the Deaf, Inc., 8630 Fenton Street, Suite 604, Silver Spring, MD 20910. TTY: 301-589-3006; Voice: 301-589-3786. Email:

Summer Institute on Deaf-Blindness: Connections Beyond Sight and Sound, a project for deaf-blind children and youth in Maryland, will hold a Summer Institute on Deaf-Blindness on June 27-29. For more information, contact Diane Kelly, Project Director, Connections Beyond Sight and Sound, 1308 Benjamin Building, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742. Email:; 301-405-7915 Voice.

Shop and Support AADB! We temporarily took out the shopping fundraiser from our website, but it is now back with our redesigned web. Please do your online shopping through the Marketplace via AADB's web, so that a percentage of your purchases goes towards supporting AADB. This Marketplace has over 1,000 stores, including such stores as, Eddie Bauer, and Bath and Body. Thanks for supporting AADB!

Contact AADB!

We are always anxious to hear from you! AADB is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization and depends on the generosity of donors to keep its services and programs running. We accept donations in memory of a loved one, in honor of someone’s special occasion, and for specific AADB services. All donations are tax-deductible. Please consider making a donation today. Thank you for your support! For more information, please contact us at:

American Association of the Deaf-Blind
8630 Fenton Street, Suite 121
Silver Spring, MD 20910

301-495-4402 TTY/VP
301-495-4403 Voice
301-495-4404 Fax


Past AADB E-News Issues

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Editor: Elizabeth Spiers; Layout and Design: Chad Metcalf