deafweekly

 

November 28, 2007
Vol. 4, No. 3

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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NEWS OF CLINTON ‘SNUB’ MET WITH SKEPTICISM

A blog post on DeafDC.com by Shane Feldman claims Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton “snubbed” the Maryland Association of the Deaf by canceling plans to speak at this weekend’s MDAD convention. Quoting from an MDAD announcement, Feldman said the organization planned to have Clinton speak “at a high class venue with top quality food,” but returned to its original plan to meet elsewhere after learning that Clinton would not be attending. Readers reacted with skepticism, noting a lack of evidence that Clinton had ever accepted the invitation.

WISCONSIN MAN MAY GET NEW TRIAL

A deaf Wisconsin man serving 11-1/2 years in prison for stealing a motorcycle may get a new trial because he says he could not communicate with his court-appointed attorney. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Dwight Glen Jones was provided with interpreters in court but not for his only meeting with his lawyer, who “spoke too fast, had a mustache and frequently looked at his notes.” The 1st District Court of Appeals last month ordered a hearing to decide if Jones was able to communicate with his lawyer; if not, a new trial will be held.

SUPREME COURT REJECTS ALABAMA KILLER’S APPEAL

An Alabama inmate who has been on death row for 20 years lost an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court on November 5, reported UPI. Daniel Lee Siebert was convicted of killing four people – Linda Jarman, Sherri Weathers, and Weathers’ sons, Chad, 5, and Joey, 4 – in February 1986. He met the victims at the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and the Blind in Talladega, where he worked as a theater set designer. The Associated Press reported that Siebert was scheduled to be executed October 25 but won a stay by claiming the medication he takes for terminal cancer would conflict with the lethal injection and cause unnecessary pain.

‘ENROLLMENT BOOM’ SEEN AT ILLINOIS SCHOOL

The Illinois School for the Deaf is experiencing an enrollment boom, said the Jacksonville Journal Courier. This year the school has 63 new students, including 46 in the high school. The boom is typified by Rachel Sweigart, 15, whose dad learned of ISD by typing “deaf school” in an Internet search after the teen came home from her old school in tears. “She was just a fish out of water,” said her mom. ISD Superintendent Mary Beth Lauderdale noted that more than half of deaf students are the only deaf kid in their school. “They are looking for other kids like them,” she said.

RHODE ISLAND DEAF PROTEST OFFICE MERGER

Deaf activists in Rhode Island are protesting a plan to merge five advocacy offices, including the Commission of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, into a new Department of Advocacy. According to The Providence Journal, the General Assembly proposed the plan as a cost-cutting measure to help close a large budget deficit. But the Rhode Island Association for the Deaf complained that the move will create a hardship for deaf citizens. Columnist Bob Kerr agreed, calling the proposal “a pointless display of belt-tightening.”

FCC PLAN OFFERS STABILITY TO VRS PROVIDERS

The Federal Communications Commission has approved a plan to set a multi-year reimbursement rate for relay service providers. The new plan provides stability and predictability that will allow VRS providers to make longer-term investments, train new interpreters and improve VRS technology, said Sorenson Communications President/CEO Pat Nola in a news release. The plan calls for reimbursement rates to decline each of the next three years under a formula created by the FCC. “This is a major step forward,” said Sorenson’s Ron Burdett.

NEW COALITION APPLAUDS CONGRESS ON CAPTIONING

A U.S. House Subcommittee captioned its webcast of a recent hearing on digital television, leading to praise from a coalition of disability activists. The House Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet’s actions “should be a model for all public hearings and events,” said Rosaline Crawford of the National Association of the Deaf. The NAD is one of more than 130 affiliates of the Coalition of Organizations for Accessible Technology (COAT), which was formed in March to ensure full access by people with disabilities to Internet technologies.

APPLE IPHONE EXEMPTED FROM HEARING AID RULES

The Apple iPhone has been given an exemption to Federal Communication Commission rules that require cell phones to be compatible with hearing aids. “The situation does not sit well with the Hearing Loss Association of America,” reported RCR Wireless News. Apple claims it is exempt under the “de minimis” provision, which waives hearing-aid compatibility rules for companies that offer two or fewer handsets. But this provision “was designed to take into account small startup companies with two or less products,” said the HLAA’s Brenda Battat, “certainly not the Apples of the world.”

CSUN STUDENT TELLS TALE OF DISCRIMINATION

Sheena McFeely, a deaf student at the California State University, Northridge, had her personal story of discrimination published last week in the Daily Sundial. McFeely wrote of her experience at Burbank (Calif.) High School, where she applied for a position in the Associated Student Body. Despite meeting the requirements, she was rejected. A teacher told her it was because she was deaf and would have to speak on a microphone “and how was [she] supposed to do that?” In the end, said McFeely, the teacher “got a slap on the wrist and a warning.”


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INTERNATIONAL
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EMMA AGNEW FOUND MURDERED, SUSPECT ARRESTED

The search for Emma Agnew, who was last seen leaving for work on November 15, reached a tragic end Monday night when the deaf New Zealand woman’s body was found in a park outside Christchurch by a man walking his dog. Yesterday, police raided an apartment complex and arrested Liam Reid, 35, described by the New Zealand Herald as “a slight, shaven-headed and unemployed man.” A fight broke out during Reid’s first court appearance, with onlookers swearing and shouting at the suspect. Louise Agnew, the victim’s mother, thanked the community for its support and asked that people “conduct themselves with care.” A Google news search revealed hundreds of articles on the case.

CANADIAN WORKERS SET TO STRIKE ON SATURDAY

Workers at the Deaf Centre Manitoba and DC Café Inc. in Canada are prepared to walk off the job Saturday if they can’t reach a fair contract settlement, reported the National Union of Public and General Employees. The employees have had no contract for six months and “there has been no attempt on the employer’s part to change their position,” said the Manitoba Government and General Employees’ Union. With wages and benefits considered substandard, workers “should be prepared to walk the picket line on Dec. 1,” said the union.

PERFORMER SHARES MESSAGE WITH CANADIAN AUDIENCE

Canadian performer Gael Hannan brought her one-woman show, Unheard Voices, to the Northern Arts and Cultural Centre in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories last Tuesday, said Northern News Service. Hannan used poetry, skits and a rap song in a performance that was sponsored by the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association’s Yellowknife branch and funded by a $3,000 grant from the Yellowknife Community Foundation. Hannan, who is hard of hearing, also visited three schools, where she warned students that loud music on MP3 players can damage their hearing.

BRITISH AUTHOR ARTHUR DIMMOCK DIES AT 89

Arthur F. Dimmock, a key figure in the British deaf community, died Sunday, November 25, at the age of 89. Mr. Dimmock, described on the Deaf-UK Yahoo Group as “a literary giant [and] a pioneer fighter for Deaf Rights,” was known for his “Girdle Around the Earth” column in the British Deaf News. According to Grumpy Old Deafies, he authored and co-authored several publications and was president of the National Union of the Deaf and the British Deaf History Society.

BUS DRIVER LEAVES TEEN STRANDED AT SCHOOL

An 18-year-old deaf student in England was left stranded at school after a bus driver refused to accept her disability pass. Rebekah Fairhurst was “so shocked and embarrassed by what the driver said” that she stepped off the bus and watched it drive away, her father told The Bolton News. “As you can imagine, we are very unhappy about this,” said Geoff Fairhurst. Rebekah, who has been riding the same bus for six years, had to contact her mother to get home. A spokesman for the bus company offered an apology and said the incident would be “thoroughly investigated.”

NEW RESIDENCE NAMED FOR LATE SOCIAL WORKER

An eight-unit apartment building for deaf people has opened in Bristol, England. According to BBC News, the new Buckley Court was named after Ciaran Buckley, a social worker who died last year. Buckley’s widow, Geraldine, and parents Maura and Hugh, both deaf, were on hand to unveil a plaque in his honor. The building includes a support office that is open every day to help residents with independent living skills, education and employment.

PLANNING UNDERWAY FOR DEAF COLLEGE IN INDIA

Mumbai, a city of 13 million in India, will be getting its first college for the deaf, reports the Daily News & Analysis. The college, a collaboration between the local Ishara Foundation and the UK’s University of Central Lancashire, will offer a three-year B.A. program in Applied Sign Linguistics. The college will also offer a “zero year” program for students who need extra work in reading, writing and computer skills before they can enter the three-year program. The goal is to create teachers from and for the deaf community who can teach in sign language, said Prof. Ulrike Zeshan.

IRAN REMEMBERS FOUNDER OF FIRST DEAF SCHOOL

Forty-one years after his death at age 82, Jabbar Baghcheban was recognized in Iran as founder of the country’s first school for the deaf and pioneer of Persian sign language. Baghcheban was born to Iranian parents in Armenia and moved to Iran after World War I, where he founded the deaf school in Tabriz in 1924. When the school opened, he changed his name from Asgharzadeh to Baghcheban, which means “gardener” in Persian – “a metaphor for his devotion to his country’s little deaf flowers,” said Press TV.

REPORT: ONLY 15 INTERPRETERS IN ALL OF MALAYSIA

Malaysia has only 15 sign language interpreters for 30,000 deaf people, said a report Sunday in The New Straits Times. The figures represent “a gross disparity,” said Sazali Abd Hamid, director of a sign language training center, during a visit by government official Datuk Dr Ng Yen Yen. The center was built with funds given to the Malaysian Federation of the Deaf, which hopes to see 500 interpreters trained by 2020. Meeting this goal, however, will require “speedy accreditation of courses and government support,” said the report.


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LIFE & LEISURE
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TENNESSEE SCHOOL WORKERS’ ROOTS RUN DEEP

WBIR-TV in Knoxville, Tenn. last week profiled two Tennessee School for the Deaf employees whose families have been linked to the school for decades. Barry Swafford, a teacher and coach for 32 years, said his grandparents graduated in 1912 and returned later as teachers. His father, Nolan, graduated in 1947, and now Swafford’s son is a 7th grader at the school. Principal Mark Battle’s family history at TSD began around 1935 with his father, Neil, who remains involved as the school museum’s curator. Battle’s mother and grandmother also worked at the school. “It’s been a very satisfying life,” he said.

DEAF, BLIND COUPLE SERVE AS THANKSGIVING INSPIRATION

Robert “Bob” J. Smithdas and wife Michelle, a deaf and blind couple who “live their life in silence and darkness,” were the subjects of an essay last week in the Orangeburg (S.C.) Times and Democrat. The essay, by Claflin University instructor Mandakini Hiremath, appeared on Thanksgiving Day under the headline, “Count our blessings thankfully.” It told the story of the Smithdas, “a remarkable testament to the resilience of the human spirit.” Bob and Michelle both work as teachers at the Helen Keller National Center in Sands Point, N.Y., where they “prepare their pupils to live organized, independently happy lives,” while leading lives “full of love, work, hobbies and humor.” The lesson? “A sense of gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.”

CHICAGO PLANETARIUM ADDS CLOSED CAPTIONING

Karen Meyer, a disability issues reporter for ABC7 News in Chicago, revealed earlier this month that Adler Planetarium has installed closed captioning in their theaters. In doing so, said Meyer, Adler has become the first and only planetarium in the world to adapt their shows for deaf and hard-of-hearing visitors. The planetarium uses a system called I-Caption, which features a device mounted at the theater seats that picks up signals and displays captions in sync with shows being viewed on domed ceilings. It takes only a couple of minutes to set up the system on request, said theater manager Mark Webb.


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WORKING WORLD
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FLORIDA TREATMENT CENTER GETS NEW CEO

The National Deaf Academy, a residential mental health treatment center in Mount Dora, Fla., has a new CEO. Steven Fahey took over in October for Alan Cohen, M.D., who founded the academy in 2000. According to a news release, Fahey has about 20 years of experience in health care administration along with a background in social work. He wants to maintain NDA’s relationship with the deaf community and is dedicated to learning sign language and deaf culture. He also hopes to expand the academy’s offerings, such as adding group homes and community integration programs.

HOSPITAL WORKERS COMPLETE ASL COURSE

Seven employees at Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis, Md. have completed a 10-week course in American Sign Language, reported Capital Gazette. The course, which has been offered to AAMC workers for the past five years, is taught at Anne Arundel Community College by Charles Pennington, who learned the language growing up with a deaf father and stepfather. Steve Applegate, a medical equipment repairman who took the recent course, is now used by hospital staff to interpret in emergency situations. “It’s not that hard,” said Applegate.

CAPTIONING PROVIDER PROFILED IN WISCONSIN

The La Crosse Tribune on Monday profiled Sue Veres, who provides captioning for dozens of TV and Internet programs from the basement of her home in Viroqua, Wisc. Veres learned the trade in 1980 and worked as a freelance court reporter for 14 years. Her opportunities increased when she became certified a few years ago, and she now spends her time as a court reporter and as an independent contractor hired by firms to provide closed-captioning. “God gave me this skill,” she said, “and I want to use it to the best of my ability.”

VIABLEVRS LAUNCHES LIVE SUPPORT FEATURES

ViableVRS, a deaf-owned Video Relay Service based in Rockville, Md., announced this week that it has begun to offer live support for its customers. ViableVRS users can now contact the company for immediate assistance via live text chat, videophone, Viable Vision softphone (free videoconferencing software), email and web-based contact form, in addition to a FAQs page with answers to common questions. “We are committed to ensuring that our customers have the very best user experience,” said Viable President and founder John T.C. Yeh.


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Storewide Equipment Sale Ends Soon

For a limited time only, Harris Communications has 15% savings on all their equipment products.* Products include signaling systems, alarm clock/wake-up systems and assistive listening devices from manufacturers like Sonic Alert, Clarity/Ameriphone, Williams Sound, Silent Call, and Ultratec.

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Attention: ASL and Deaf Culture Teachers...

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5. Worksheets to compare deaf culture with American mainstream"hearing" culture;
6. Reaction sheets to help your students process their feelings about attending deaf community events;
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8. Tips on how to locate appropriate deaf community events to attend, how to meet deaf people , and how to initiate and develop friendships with deaf individuals;
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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
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SHOW OPENS FOR GU’S FIRST ARTIST IN RESIDENCE

A reception will take place this afternoon at Gallaudet University for an exhibit of paintings by Muthukrishnan Ramalingam, the school’s first official artist in residence. Ramalingam, a deaf artist from Chennai, India, was one of 67 artists who exhibited at Deaf Way II in 2002. He was invited to return this fall to teach printmaking and painting while pursuing his own work. The residency has resulted in a series of paintings that combine images from Gallaudet’s campus and the artist’s life in India, said Inside Gallaudet.

OHIO SINGING GROUP RAISES MONEY FOR DEAF

This Saturday, for the 25th straight year, The Singing Angels will perform at the Lorain (Ohio) Palace Theatre to raise money for the deaf community. The Cleveland-based singing troupe, featuring more than 350 children from northeast Ohio, has performed in 32 countries since its founding in 1964. The Lorain show was originally planned as a one-time fundraiser, said The Morning Journal, but has become a cherished tradition. Funds go to the local chapter of Quota International, which uses the money to buy smoke detectors and hearing aids for the deaf and help the Easter Seals of Northern Ohio’s speech therapy department.

DEAF ACTOR PLAYS BLIND PROPHET IN ‘ANTIGONE’

A Buffalo (N.Y.) State College acting major “overcame his deafness” to play the blind prophet Teiresias in Sophocles’ Greek tragedy Antigone, reported The Buffalo News. A hush came over the audience when Sam Hemphill walked onto the stage for a 12-minute appearance that demanded “a confident and commanding voice,” said the report. Hemphill tackled the feat “without uttering a single word,” with fellow acting student Andrew Lee, playing Teiresias’ guide, voicing what Hemphill was expressing in sign language. Said Associate Professor Drew Kahn, who directed the play: “He has to look by not looking, hear by not hearing, and make it seem as though he hears what he’s saying.”


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Let WCI help with your holiday shopping needs. Through November choose from a variety of items online or in our catalog and get FREE SHIPPING on orders of $50.00 or more. Call 1-800-233-9130 (V/TTY) or visit online at http://www.weitbrecht.com. For a copy of our catalog, email: sales@weitbrecht.com.

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America's funniest ASL comedian!

You have seen him all over the internet with short clips featuring - Ice Ice Baby, VRS comedy, Deaf Driver, and the most popular "Deaf Technology Ruined Pizza Night"...and now you can own the full 80 minute DVD. Keith Wann performs "Watching Two Worlds Collide" with a voice interpreter for deaf-impaired. Own this DVD and share the laughter with your Deaf and Hearing family and friends. Paypal payments through the website http://www.keithwann.com/ and also sign up for the newsletter. Email Keith@KeithWann.com for more information and performing requests. To see more clips www.myspace.com/keithwann.

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SPORTS
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BEST SEASON EVER FOR INDIANA FOOTBALL TEAM

The Indiana School for the Deaf football team just completed its greatest season in school history, but “it wasn’t enough for the players,” said The Indianapolis Star. The team won a best-ever nine games but fell to Cardinal Ritter 27-8 in the sectional title. “Our boys took it really hard,” said coach Michael Paulone. It’s been 18 years since the Deaf Hoosiers had a winning record, and four years ago the team won just one game due to a lack of players. The goal now is “just continuing what we have established,” said Paulone. “We look forward to next year.”

‘MR. HAPPY’ LEADS FOOTBALL TEAM TO SUCCESS

Edmonds-Woodway (Wash.) High School senior Mose Fuga is hard of hearing and will likely be deaf by age 21, “but it hasn’t stopped him” from succeeding on the football field, said The Seattle Times. Fuga, 17, known to teammates as “Sunshine,” “Mr. Friendly” and “Mr. Happy,” has been an important part of the Warriors’ (12-0) run to the Class 4A state semifinals, said the report. “I think of him as a brother,” said teammate Tony Heard. “If he needs our help and support, we’re there for him.” Fuga echoed the sentiment: “They really do care about me, and I care about them too.”


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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 7,200 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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Job Description Sego Lily Center for the Abused Deaf
Program Director

Department of Justice- OVW Rural Grant Project

Check the web site for more information about Sego Lily Center: WWW.SLCAD.ORG

Summary: This is an exciting two year position (possibility permanent). This grant will target Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Deaf/Blind living in rural areas of Utah. The objective of the grant is to provide awareness; outreach to the Deaf/HH/Deaf-Blind community; direct services to Deaf/HH/Deaf-Blind victims; train community and partnering agencies; develop and provide law enforcement training and develop and provide a specialized interpreter workshop training to enhance interpreter skills in the area of abuse and the Deaf/HH community. The Program Director will be responsible for guiding and for the success of these grant objectives and goals.
Utah is a beautiful and exciting state! Checkout this web site for more information on Utah at http://www.utah.gov/

OVW Rural Grant Program Director


Responsibilities
– Provides overall administration of the Department of Justice - Office of Violence against Women, Rural Grant per Executive Director’s directives
– Supervises program staff, also recruits and hires program staff as needed
– Develops, monitors and evaluates program goals
– Oversees non-profit budget, billing and accounting procedures
– Assists Community Advocate/Trainer in developing and providing workshops and trainings
– Establish and maintain collaborative relationships with appropriate community services, agencies and programs
– Establishes and maintains a good relationship with the Deaf/HH community
– Promotes public awareness and prevention
– Provides direct advocacy services as needed to Deaf/HH and Deaf/Blind victims of abuse, sexual assault and stalking

Desired Qualifications
– Education: Preference - Masters Degree; OR BA and 3 years experience in the social service field; OR 2 to 3 years of college with several years of experience in related fields.
– Experience in working with non-profit organizations and a clear understanding non-profit budgets and ability processes
– Experience in the field of domestic violence and sexual assault
– Minimum three years managerial/administrative/supervisory experience
– Fluent in American Sign Language
– Good interpersonal skills; flexibility and openness
– Good organizational skills and basic computer skills
– Good English and writing skills
– Ability to work with a culturally diverse clientele and staff
– Good public speaking/presenting skills
– Must have a current driver’s license; excellent driving record and posses the ability to travel the State of Utah (some over night trips will be required) and have reliable transportation (reimbursement will be given)
– Must pass a criminal background check

Reports to: Executive Director
Salary: Excellent salary range - based on skills and experience (Health insurance included)

DEADLINE DECEMBER 7, 2007. Send cover letter, resume and three references to SLCAD, P.O. Box 71279, Salt Lake City, Utah, 84171 or Email: info@slcad.org.

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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.

-- Hard of Hearing Specialist – Riverside, CA
-- Community Advocate – Ventura, CA
-- Community Advocate – Riverside, CA
-- Community Advocate – Los Angeles, CA
-- Administrative Assistant – Los Angeles, CA
-- Community Interpreter – Bakersfield, CA
-- Community Interpreter –Los Angeles, CA

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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Program Coordinator

National Deaf Academy, a state of the art residential treatment facility serving Deaf children, adolescents and adults in a behavioral health setting, has an immediate opening for a Program Coordinator. A Master’s degree in counseling, Deaf education, social work and/or a related field is required. Must be licensed in Florida or license eligible from another state. This candidate must be fluent in ASL, English and have a strong knowledge of Deafness and Deaf Culture, as well as have good resources within the Deaf and/or Hard of Hearing community.

The Program Coordinator will carry a caseload of 5 and oversee our adult enhancement program, independent living skills program and expand our vocational program.

Competitive salary and excellent benefit package.

Send resume to:
Director of Human Resources, National Deaf Academy, 19650 US Hwy 441, Mt. Dora, FL 32757
Email: btashlein@nda.com
V: 352-735-9500 TTY 352-735-9570 Fax 352-735-4939 EOE

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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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