deafweekly

 

June 6, 2007
Vol. 3 No. 16

Editor: Tom Willard

Deafweekly is an independent news report for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community that is mailed to subscribers every Wednesday and available to read at www.deafweekly.com. Please visit our website to read current and back issues, sign up for a subscription and advertise. Deafweekly is copyrighted 2007 and any unauthorized use, including reprinting of news, is prohibited. Please support our advertisers; they make it possible for you to receive Deafweekly at no charge.


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NATIONAL
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TWO KILLED RETURNING FROM DEAF AWARENESS DAY

An early morning car accident May 20 claimed the lives of two deaf men who were returning from Deaf Awareness Day at Six Flags Over Georgia. Kyle G. Redd, 18, of Jefferson, Ga., and Destin James Hattaway, 24, of Colbert, Ga. were killed when a pickup driven by Hattaway hit a tree on Georgia Highway 335 about 3 a.m. A third deaf man, Brian Anthony Taylor, 30, of Hixson, Tenn., survived the crash with critical injuries. Police believe Hattaway fell asleep at the wheel, said the Athens Banner-Herald. There was no evidence that alcohol or drug use contributed to the wreck.

MAN GETS 4-1/2 YEARS FOR MORTGAGE SCHEME

Scott Ashley, 40, of Canton Township, Mich., was sentenced May 16 to 4-1/2 years in prison after pleading guilty in November to defrauding three banks of $3.8 million in a get-rich-quick mortgage scheme. Ashley, described by the Detroit Free Press as being deaf and having an alcohol problem, told the court that an unidentified homeowner and a bank employee also should have been charged, but Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul Burakoff said there was no evidence that anyone else was involved. Ashley, who was allowed to remain free until assigned to a prison, was also ordered to repay $1.6 million to the banks.

CSDR SUPERINTENDENT GETS JOB PERMANENTLY

After 10 months as interim superintendent of the California School for the Deaf, Riverside, Mal Grossinger has been appointed to the permanent position. State officials cited increased morale and improved operations in making the move, reported The Press-Enterprise. Grossinger, 50, who is deaf, said the school’s atmosphere has improved, in part, because he encourages people “to talk about the good things.” He hopes to boost enrollment, currently 410, to 1,000 by the time he retires, reaching out to roughly 6,000 deaf and hard-of-hearing children in Southern California.

OREGON SCHOOL NAMES NEW DIRECTOR

Patti Togioka has been named director of the Oregon School for the Deaf, state education officials said May 24. Togioka, who will begin her new job August 1, taught sign language and developed curriculum at the school from 1980 to 1998 and has been involved in deaf education since 1974. According to the Statesman Journal, Togioka earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Gannon University in Erie, Penn. and a master’s degree in special education of the deaf from Gallaudet University. She succeeds Jane Mulholland, whose abrupt termination in December angered many in the deaf community.

OREGON ACTIVISTS RALLY AGAINST SCHOOL PLAN

Activists rallied at the Oregon state capitol last Friday to protest a decision to sell the campus of the Oregon School for the Blind and move the blind students to the Oregon School for the Deaf in Salem. Superintendent of Public Schools Susan Castillo announced the oft-discussed plan May 18, said the Statesman Journal. The two schools would operate independently, with buildings on the deaf school campus redesigned for the move. The protesters were joined by about half a dozen neighbors of the blind school, who said the students “had become part of their community.”

 

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SETTLEMENT ANNOUNCED IN UNIVERSITY LAWSUIT

A discrimination lawsuit filed a year ago by 12 deaf students against Utah State University has been settled, reported The Salt Lake Tribune. The school has promised to have three full-time interpreters on staff to cover classes, meetings and extracurricular activities. Angie Olsen, the school’s deaf services coordinator, blamed a nationwide shortage of interpreters for the problem and said the goal is to have one staff interpreter for every two students needing those services.

TEXAS WOMAN BEATEN WITH BASEBALL BAT

Two teenagers have been arrested in connection with the brutal beating of a deaf woman on the front porch of her Alvin, Texas home, said KTRK-TV in Houston. Lucia LaFuente, 41, was struck several times on the head with a baseball bat the evening of May 23. The suspects, ages 15 and 17, were charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, a first-degree felony. “I think the hardest part about this is trying to find a motive or a reason that this happened,” said Alvin Police Chief Mike Merkel.

RALLY IN TEXAS TARGETS ACCESS TO INTERPRETERS

A rally outside the Brazoria County (Texas) Courthouse two weeks ago attracted about 50 deaf people and advocates, said the Houston Chronicle. The activists complained that deaf people are often denied sign-language interpreters when they are arrested or appear in court. The rally was prompted by an incident in April, when Amber DeLeon, of Alvin, called 911 after allegedly being hit by her brother. DeLeon, 19, ended up being arrested herself and jailed for eight days without access to an interpreter before all charges were dropped. Angleton Police Chief David Ashburn said the protest would help police be more aware of the problem.

DEAF SENIOR RESIDENCE PROPOSED IN MICHIGAN

A nonprofit agency serving senior citizens in six Michigan counties says it wants to develop a residential complex for deaf seniors, reported the Detroit Free Press last week. The Area Agency on Aging 1-B included the complex in its proposed plan for a $21.1 million budget for 2008 and is working with the Deaf Senior Housing Coalition to identify potential sites. Nothing is expected to happen until the end of the year, said the report, but if successful it would be the first such residence in Michigan.


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Sorenson IP Relay™ expands communication possibilities for deaf and hard-of hearing individuals by enabling free text-to-speech relay calls with any standard telephone user in the U.S. Sorenson IP Relay calls can be initiated by visiting the Web site at www.siprelay.com from a personal computer, or can be made with a Sidekick, Blackberry, Trço or other mobile device. A trusted Sorenson Communications Assistant (CA) instantaneously facilitates the conversation between the Sorenson IP Relay user and a friend, doctor or business associate. Sorenson IP Relay calls are free for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals.

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DeafYoga is an Austin-based company that believes in sharing the traditional teachings of yoga with the Deaf community. Yoga is known for its ability to heal the body, calm the mind and tap into the voice of the soul. A yogi receives the most benefits when one chooses to practice yoga everyday. The less you practice, the slower you reap the benefits - the more you practice, the quicker the benefits. The beauty of yoga is that there is no judgment in either case -- it's simply a choice.

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INTERNATIONAL
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SCHOOL OFFICIAL CHARGED WITH SELLING STUDENTS

The vice-principal of a school for the deaf in China and four other suspects have been detained by police for selling 10 students to a gang that trained them to become pickpockets, reported Reuters this week. The victims, ages 12 and up, were rescued by police after they went missing from their school last month. They had been required to steal and turn in 500 yuan ($65 US) each day. Police vowed to crack down on gangs that exploit deaf youth and recently broke up a gang of deaf robbers who they said were behind hundreds of armed robberies throughout China.

AUSTRALIAN AUTHORITIES TO SCRUTINIZE GROUP

Government officials in Australia said last week they will investigate the Whangarei Hearing Association over complaints of extravagant spending. The investigation focuses on president Erika Kemp and her husband, Mark Whitfield, who, with about 30 newly signed-up members, staged a “coup” at the group’s 2005 annual meeting. The new members took over the association’s building, sold it in 2006, bought another one and sold it at a reduced price to Whitfield, who now leases it back to the group. Questionable expenditures include $18,000 ($15,069 US) worth of furniture and a brand new $80,000 ($66,962 US) Toyota Landcruiser.

FIRE TRUCK HITS, KILLS DEAF DRIVER IN SCOTLAND

A deaf man in Scotland was killed May 24 when his Ford Escort was struck at a Falkirk intersection by a fire truck responding to an emergency call. The driver, who a witness said “didn’t stand a chance,” was pronounced dead upon arrival at a nearby hospital. He was not identified until his relatives could be informed, reported The Scotsman, but “everyone just knew him as Old Jock,” said the onlooker. “The circumstances of this tragedy will be investigated,” a fire department official said.

U.K. MAN FINDS HOME WRECKED BY BURGLARS

A deaf U.K. man was devastated to return home after a night out to find his house was ransacked and flooded by burglars, said the Worksop (England) Guardian. The May 19 incident occurred after Jamie Potts dropped his daughter, Carla, 10, off with her grandmother and went into town with friends to enjoy a sporting event. Arriving home at 1 a.m., he found his door kicked in, the family’s property stolen and water all over the kitchen floor after a tap was left running with the drain blocked. “Whoever did this had some real violence in them,” said his uncle, John Potts. “I hope whoever did this gets caught.”

COUPLE GOES MONTHS WITHOUT INTERNET ACCESS

The Solihull Times in England reported last week on a deaf couple who have gone without Internet access since February 23. Peter and Gaynor Allen “went to night school to learn how to use e-mail and the Internet,” daughter Julie said, “and now they have to rely on us to keep in touch with relatives for them.” The Allens, both railroad enthusiasts, also missed a trip to the York Railway Museum because they could not book tickets online before the event sold out. Supplier Tiscali “doesn’t seem the slightest bit interested in sorting it out,” said Julie, and refuses to speak with her or her sister because they are not the account holder.


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28th World's Largest Silent Weekend

Beginning thru advanced ASL students, along with ITP students can enjoy three days of no talking and choose from 100 hours of classes in a no-talking environment June 21-24, 2007 in Orlando, Florida. Interpreters can get 2.0 CEUs from RID. See DrSign.com for more details.

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NEVER WAIT AGAIN!

Lifelinks VRS will make a donation to The Deaf and Hard of Hearing Service Center, Inc. for any call if you ever have to wait more than 60 seconds to reach a LifeLinks VRS personal communications assistant.

We are so certain that you never have to wait when placing a VRS call that we are making this offer to all LifeLinks users. If you do not reach a live Communications Assistant within 60 seconds, e-mail LifeLinks at nowaiting@lifelinks.net, and we will send a donation to The Deaf and Hard of Hearing Service Center, Inc. (http://www.dhhsc.org/home.html) in your name and send you a Paypal receipt by e-mail. Just tell us the date, time of day, and how long you waited.

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LIFE & LEISURE
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DEAF PILOT, WHEELCHAIR USER PLAN SPECIAL FLIGHT

Stephen Hopson, the first deaf pilot to earn an instrument rating from the Federal Aviation Administration, plans to fly from Akron, Ohio to Hartford, Conn. later this month with passenger Ryan Matthews, a 23-year-old man who uses a 300-pound motorized wheelchair to get around. According to the Akron Beacon Journal, Hopson and Matthews plan to attend the 50th anniversary celebration of the Cleveland-based United Church of Christ’s General Synod. The event is expected to attract 12,000 attendees, with a list of speakers that includes presidential candidate Barack Obama. The project is called “Flight to Hartford,” and more information can be found here.

ADOPTED FROM HONDURAS, SHE GIVES GRADUATION SPEECH

Nori Rittenhouse of West High School in Knoxville, Tenn. became the first deaf commencement speaker at a local high school (aside from Tennessee School for the Deaf students) when she spoke at a May 19 graduation ceremony. According to WVLT-TV, Nori’s success story goes back to 1996 when she was adopted at age 8 after a mission trip in Honduras. Her mother, also deaf, said she “flew back home [and] told my husband, I found our daughter.” Nori’s confidence “grew much larger than her 4'11" frame,” said the report, culminating in her graduation speech. “I would like to show that the deaf can speak and that we can do a lot of things,” said Nori.

FOLDA COMPILING LIST OF SPEAKERS, STORYTELLERS

A directory of deaf and hearing speakers and storytellers who are interested in making sign-language presentations at public libraries is being compiled by Janice Rosen of the D.C. Public Library on behalf of FOLDA (Friends of Libraries for Deaf Action). Interested speakers and storytellers can fill out a form located here to be included. FOLDA also announced it would have a booth at the American Library Association conference in Washington, D.C., June 21-27, with a theme of “Got Deaf Culture @ Your Library?” FOLDA President Alice Hagemeyer says donations are needed to help with expenses and can be sent to FOLDA, 2930 Craiglawn Road, Silver Spring, MD 20904.


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SELECT YOUR VRS INTERPRETER WITH LIFELINKS VRS

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WORKING WORLD
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ILLINOIS TEACHER RECEIVES WHITE HOUSE AWARD

Illinois School for the Deaf science teacher Sheryl Humphries was in Washington, D.C. last month to be honored as science teacher of the year in Illinois, part of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching Program. “I was overwhelmed and totally shocked” by the award, Humphries told the Springfield State Journal-Register. She was nominated by colleague Judy Williams, who said Humphries makes science understandable for her students. Humphries, 40, enjoyed a VIP tour of the White House, posed for pictures with President Bush and received $10,000, which she plans to use to “travel a little, use some in my classroom and help get out of debt.”

SNAPVRS NAMES JEFF ROSEN TO STAFF POSITION

SnapVRS, a New York-based video relay services company, has announced the appointment of Jeff Rosen as General Counsel and Vice President of Government Affairs. According to a news release, Rosen will “work with Congress, the Administration and the Federal Communications Commission to promote laws and policies that will expand opportunities for the Deaf community through improved telecommunications technology.” Rosen has spent the past seven years as a Presidential appointee of the National Council on Disability and for 13 years was a senior attorney at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

TEXAS STATE BAR UNVEILS FUND FOR INTERPRETING

The State Bar of Texas announced May 24 at Advocacy Incorporated in Austin that it has created the “Sign-Up Fund,” a sign language interpreter fund to assist Texas lawyers with meeting the legal needs of deaf citizens. It is the first state bar to set up a fund to cover interpreting costs, said KEYE-TV. A $20,000 grant was used to jump start the fund, one of two grants the State Bar of Texas provides every year to assist underserved populations in Texas.

FORD RETIREE PLANS TO LAUNCH PHOTO BUSINESS

The Detroit Free Press recently profiled John McFarlin, 52, a deaf Dearborn, Mich. resident who retired in February after 29 years at Ford Motor Co. McFarlin, who supervised a photo lab and managed a staff of five, “never used his deafness as an excuse for not reaching his goals or attempting new adventures,” said the report. “I’m deaf as a doorknob,” said McFarlin, who enjoyed a three-week, post-retirement trip with wife Arcelie and their 2-year-old son Matthew to Arcelie’s native Philippines. The amateur bodybuilder, manager of local wrestlers and photographer now looks ahead to starting his own photography business and continues to serve on the Dearborn Commission on Disability Concerns.


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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
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UTAH STUDENT CHOSEN FOR WASHINGTON EXHIBIT

Utah fifth-grader Jose Prado is in Washington, D.C. this week, one of 13 children nationwide chosen to help open the Congressional Gallery Exhibit at Union Station Gallery. Jose, who is deaf, had his artwork, “Family B-B-Q” selected among 95 other visual arts created by children around the world for the Start with the Arts Family Festival, part of the VSA arts “Art Link” program for students with disabilities. The art program “gives [students] an opportunity to be very equal with their peers, and in some cases, more equal, because they’re very visual to begin with,” said teacher Bill Worner. “I want to go to Washington and see all the stuff,” Jose told the Salt Lake City Deseret News.

ARTISTIC CHAIRS HIGHLIGHT BALTIMORE FUNDRAISER

Classroom chairs that were destined for a dumpster were salvaged, decorated and auctioned off in Baltimore, Md. to raise funds for people who are deaf or hard of hearing or who have speech/language disorders, autism or other communication difficulties. The chairs, used by children in the Hearing and Speech Agency’s Gateway School, were no longer needed when the program relocated in 2003. The agency invited local athletes, artists, students and friends to decorate the chairs with their own special touches, resulting in creations that are “playful and colorful [and] humorous in theme or sophisticated in design,” said a news release. The “Take a Seat” program highlighted Vibe ‘07, HASA’s annual fundraiser, which attracted more than 300 people to the American Visionary Art Museum on May 11.


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Save 10% off VibraLITE from WCI!

Look no further for that special Father’s Day or Graduation gift. VibraLITE Watches are 10% off during June. Special features include a stopwatch and dual alarms. The bright blue “night light” helps you to see the time, even in the dark. Call now at 1-800-233-9130 (V/TTY) or visit online at http://www.weitbrecht.com (use code WCI607D for special pricing). Get our full catalog by emailing your request to: sales@weitbrecht.com.

WCI. Your Single Source for Assistive Technology

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A perfect gift for everyone, the gift of laughter!

A keith wann asl comedy dvd 'watching two worlds collide' will make any asl student happy! Deaf parents with hearing children will want this dvd to know the things codas try to get away with and often do. 'Watching two worlds' is a 70-minute comedy dvd performed in asl with voice over. $25.00. Pg-13. About a coda growing up in both the deaf and hearing world. Order forms on www.keithwann.com. Or email keith@keithwann.com for bookings and performing requests.

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NEW! SONY TECHNOLOGY FOR TEACHING AND LEARNING ASL

SANS Inc. is the exclusive licensor and developer of the Sony Virtuoso™ and Soloist Language Learning Instructional Software. With our software plug-ins for ASL and video camera, teachers and students can now easily communicate visually in an instructional classroom. Students are able to view lessons and digitally record their responses. Each student’s work can be saved in a LAN folder, reviewed, and assessed by the instructor at any time --- eliminating the need to lug stacks of video tapes! Contact us at sales@sansinc.com to arrange an on-site demo or visit at www.sansinc.com.

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SPORTS
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AFTER 38 YEARS, TRACK COACH PLANS TO RETIRE

Bill Ramborger, track and field coach at the South Carolina School for the Deaf and the Blind for the past 38 years, announced during an awards ceremony last month that he is retiring after this season. Ramborger, 64, actually planned to retire two years ago, “but I couldn’t leave,” he told the Spartanburg Herald-Journal. “But now, I feel it’s time.” Ramborger, a 1968 Gallaudet alumnus and competitor in three Deaf Olympics who also coached football and boys basketball at SCSDB, plans to travel with his wife and visit a different place each year, starting with a trip to China with a deaf group next year.

MISSOURI SPRINTER GRABS TITLES ONCE AGAIN

For the second straight year, Missouri School for the Deaf junior Chetara Watkins won the Class 1 state championships in the 100 and 200 meters. “She was dominating,” MSD head coach Ella Washington told The Fulton Sun, “there was no doubt about it.” Watkins won the 100 title with a time of 12.70 seconds and then broke her own school record in the 200 with a time of :25.95, besting the previous mark of :26.0. Watkins has a year of eligibility left and hopes to break the state records in the 100 and 200 – :12.27 and :25.34, which were both set by Albany’s Heather Jones in 1988.


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MILESTONES
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JEAN W. ROTHENBERG, 98, ADVOCATE FOR THE DEAF

Jean W. Rothenberg, a longtime advocate for the deaf and hard of hearing, died May 17 in Oakley, Ohio. She was 98. Mrs. Rothenberg lost some hearing from ear infections and began using hearing aids in 1937, her daughter, Jo Anne Travis, told the Cincinnati Enquirer. In 1948, she worked with the League for the Hard of Hearing to establish the Cincinnati Speech & Hearing Center, which opened in 1950. She was named one of the Enquirer’s Women of the Year in 1980 and received an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from the University of Cincinnati in 1994. In 2000, a library at the university established the Jean W. Rothenberg Collection in Hearing, Deafness and Language Acquisition. “I would do anything for people to recognize the isolation of a person with a break in communication,” she said at the dedication ceremony. Her husband, Robert, died in 1997, and she is survived by two daughters, seven grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Donations may be made to the Greater Cincinnati Foundtion, 200 W. Fourth St., Cincinnati, OH 45202.


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EMPLOYMENT
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You can advertise your job openings here for just $20 a week (up to 100 words, 10 cents each add'l word) and reach nearly 7,000 Deafweekly subscribers. Our website gets an additional 3,000+ page views each week. Start spreading the news! To place your ad, send the announcement to mail@deafweekly.com.

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Sign Language
New York Society for the Deaf Services


Job Description:

Assistant Residence Manager will assist the Residence Manager in supervising staff and overseeing daily operations of residential facility for emotionally disabled and deaf individuals. Acts as the first line Supervisor in the absence of senior manager to ensures the safe operation of the facility and maximize the functioning of emotionally disabled adults in order to prevent hospitalization . Responsible for coordinating staff schedules to ensure adequate coverage at all times consistent with budgetary constraints. Provides case management services and functions as part of the inter-disciplinary team.

Skills and/or Experience Required:


Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work, Psychology or related human service field from an accredited college or university. An equivalent combination of education and experience and experience will be considered in lieu of degree.

A minimum of 2 years experience in social service setting, preferably related to homelessness, and in a residential facility.

Bilingual in Spanish preferred.

Fluency in American Sign Language required.

To Apply:


To apply for this position, please visit our FEGS Career page at http://www.fegs.org/careers or go to http://www.fegs.org/ and click on Career Services and enter PO3631 or the title Assistant Residence Manager in the Text Search field.

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Teaching Positions Available
The Charter School at National Deaf Academy
Mount Dora, FL


* Elementary/Middle School (all subjects)
* K-12 Physical Education
* K-12 Special Needs/Autism

Qualifications:
* Degree in Deaf Education. Content area degree a plus
* Proficiency in American Sign Language
* Willingness to become highly qualified

Closing Date for applications: July 1, 2007

Send letter of interest, resume, official transcripts and 3 letters of reference to:

Rebecca Hilding, Director
The Charter School at National Deaf Academy
19650 US Highway 441
Mount Dora, FL 32757

352-385-3019

For more information, please visit our website at: http://www.csnda.com

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JOB OPPORTUNITIES AT GLAD

GLAD is an Affirmative Action Employer with equal opportunity for men, women and people with disabilities. For more information on the following positions, please go to: www.gladinc.org. The status of all positions is: Regular, Full-time, Non-Exempt, Full Fringe Benefits unless otherwise noted. All positions are open until filled.

Regional Director – Riverside
Director of LIFESIGNS – Los Angeles
Community Interpreter 1 – Riverside
Community Interpreter 2 (2 positions open) – Riverside
Community Advocate – Los Angeles
Placement Coordinator – Crenshaw
Lead Dispatcher – Los Angeles
Hard of Hearing Specialist (Temporary) – Los Angeles and Riverside
Community Advocate (Temporary) – Riverside
Community Advocate – Riverside

If interested for any of these positions then please submit resume and application to:

Jeff Fetterman
Human Resources Specialist
Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness, Inc.
2222 Laverna Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90041
V/TDD: (323) 550-4207
Fax #: (323)550-4204
E-mail: jfetterman@gladinc.org

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Client Support Specialist, Position Announcement
Deaf Counseling, Advocacy and Referral Agency – Fremont, CA

The Client Support Specialist will work with deaf, hard of hearing, deafened individuals and deaf senior citizens and provide services including peer counseling, advocacy, and community education on health issues, senior citizen issues, entitlement benefits and daily living issues. DCARA offers extremely competitive benefits such as 4-day work week schedule (40 hours), 12 days of holiday leave plus one week paid winter holiday, and full medical, dental, vision and life insurances. For more details, see www.dcara.org.

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TRS OUTREACH SPECIALIST – DC Metro Area

As a TRS OUTREACH SPECIALIST, you will be responsible for marketing and promoting Verizon's TRS/VRS products in the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities. This position will be based in Verizon’s Washington DC office and travel will be required 90% of time.

Key Responsibilities:

– Conduct outreach/education/sales activities (formal and informal) to eligible population groups, vendors and community organizations in the targeted service area
– Examine current outreach/sales methodologies and materials, recommend strategic enhancements to marketing and technical groups
– Keep abreast of external competitive, legislative & industry developments
– Provide sales and product support for Verizon’s DC TRS and Regional IP/VRS products
– Participate in training and survey activities
– Track/report outreach activities and performance

Minimum Requirements:


– Bachelor’s degree in related field or equivalent
– Exceptional presentation skills & polished communication skills
– Fluent in American Sign Language and experience with telecommunications relay
– 3-5 years experience working with Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities
– Knowledge of Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities within the Washington DC Metropolitan/Virginia/Maryland areas preferred
– Additional experience working in PR, Marketing, Media, Outreach or Sales environment desired
– Must be able to pass a criminal background check and drug screen prior to hire

In addition to a competitive base salary and annual performance bonus, we offer an outstanding benefits package that includes Medical, Dental, 401k matching, Health/Dependent/Commuter Savings Accounts, Employee Discounts & Educational Assistance.

To apply for this position, please go to the corporate job site at http://www.verizonbusiness.jobs/ and search for Reference XX58843 under U.S. openings.

We Live Diversity and Equal Opportunity

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EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY

Position: Product Manager, Relay Services
Location: Hackensack, NJ

This position is responsible for managing the company’s product portfolio of new and existing Internet-based relay products, services, features and platforms, in timely response to customer, market, competitive, and operational requirements.

This position includes the following responsibilities: (i) manage new and existing relay product/service offerings for deaf and hard-of-hearing customers; (ii) drive product/service development/management process within the company and with outside vendors, producing and iterating specifications throughout; (iii) develop and implement customer research and cultivate first-hand understanding of customers; (iv) monitor product/service performance and drive product/service lifecycle changes as required; (v) participate in development and management of overall customer communications strategy and customer/trade promotion strategy; (vi) develop pricing/offers and pursue initiatives for new business development. This position reports to the Vice President of Product Management.

QUALIFICATIONS:

Technical or marketing degree with 4-6 years of product management experience; telecommunications or hearing/speech industry experience desirable
Ideal candidate must enjoy technology and its use in building bridges among the Deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing communities
PC literate for analyses and forecasts/budgets
Able to juggle multiple projects & changing priorities with enthusiasm; be able to give clear direction to ensure deadlines are met and quality results are achieved
Excellent verbal, written and presentation skills
Attention to detail and accuracy
Work with minimal supervision to coordinate activities with internal departmental staff and contractors
Knowledge of or interest in people with hearing loss; American Sign Language conversational abilities very desirable, or willingness to learn required
Ability to travel, especially on weekends, required

Application deadline: Until filled

Please submit your resume or application to: hr@goamerica.com

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EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY

Position: Product Manager, Hard of Hearing Products & Services
Location: Hackensack, NJ

This position is responsible for managing the company’s portfolio of new and existing products and services geared to, but not limited to, the Hard of Hearing market (e.g., hearing-aid compatible mobile phones, Internet-based captioned telephone service, voice carry over services), in timely response to customer, market, competitive, and operational requirements.

This position includes the following responsibilities: (i) develop, recommend, and implement strategic/tactical product/service offerings primarily targeting (but not limited to) the Hard of Hearing Market; (ii) manage new and existing product/service offerings for hard-of-hearing customers; (iii) drive Hard of Hearing product/service development/management process within the company and with outside vendors, producing and iterating specifications throughout; (iv) develop and implement customer research and cultivate first-hand understanding of customers; (v) monitor Hard of Hearing product/service performance and drive product/service lifecycle changes as required; (vi) participate in development and management of overall customer communications strategy and customer/trade promotion strategy; (vii) develop pricing/offers and pursue initiatives for new business development. This position reports to the Vice President of Product Management.

QUALIFICATIONS:

Technical or marketing degree with 4-6 years of product management experience; telecommunications or hearing/speech industry experience desirable
Ideal candidate must enjoy technology and its use in building bridges among the Deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing communities
PC literate for analyses and forecasts/budgets
Able to juggle multiple projects & changing priorities with enthusiasm; be able to give clear direction to ensure deadlines are met and quality results are achieved
Excellent verbal, written and presentation skills
Attention to detail and accuracy
Work with minimal supervision to coordinate activities with internal departmental staff and contractors
Knowledge of or interest in people with hearing loss; American Sign Language conversational abilities very desirable, or willingness to learn required
Ability to travel, especially on weekends, required

Application deadline: Until filled

Please submit your resume or application to: hr@goamerica.com

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INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS NEEDED

Position: i711 Relay Specialist
Location: Hackensack, NJ

We are seeking independent contractors to help drive i711 relay services revenue by assisting customers with installing required hardware and/or software and by providing remote and/or onsite customer training to ensure positive, sustained, and increasing customer usage of i711 relay services.

i711 Relay Specialists have the following responsibilities, among others: (1) complete an assigned number of remote installations of i711 VRS per month; (2) review and approve customer applications for webcams, and conduct follow up interactions with customers until installation and usage is confirmed; (3) provide technical assistance to customers requiring help in setting up webcams, updating their videophone directories, and placing VRS calls; (4) participate in trade shows and community events, with an emphasis on qualifying prospects, capturing installation leads, and arranging for fulfillment; (5) provide remote and/or onsite customer education and training on using i711 relay services; and (6) provide, on an escalation basis, second-tier customer support and/or technical assistance to relay users, in collaboration with the Customer Support team.

QUALIFICATIONS:

4-year college degree or equivalent experience in a sales-, technical-, or community-related field
Self-starter with firsthand experience and knowledge of what it takes to “sell” relay services in a highly-competitive marketplace
Able to work effectively both in a team environment and independently, with minimal supervision
Demonstrates strong interpersonal, communication, and presentation/teaching skills
Able to multi-task effectively in a fast paced environment, with strong follow-through on a wide variety of details
Demonstrates strong analytical, problem-solving, and decision-making skills
Able to travel to and from customer premises by private car and/or public transit
Able to work on a flexible schedule in order to meet sales and customer needs (some weekend and evening work time required)
Able to read and write large volumes of email and instant messages (IM)
Knowledge of or interest in people with hearing loss and communication challenges
Conversational fluency in American Sign Language (ASL)
3 years experience with Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office applications, and with using the Internet
Troubleshooting experience on PC and Macintosh; desktop support certification a plus
Technical experience with videophones, webcams, videoconferencing software, residential firewalls/routers, and wireless devices, or willingness and aptitude to learn
Experience presenting product information directly to end-user customers
Experience working in a customer service role preferred

Application deadline: Until filled

Please submit your resume or application to: hr@goamerica.com

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