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FROM THE CEO

Wood and Martin Price, developed a National Deaf Youth Day program that is being promoted throughout the country in an effort to engage all deaf and hard of hearing youth in deaf schools and mainstreamed programs. National Deaf Youth Day has been set for March 6th each year starting in 2017, and a toolkit is available for all state and local communities to develop programs for this day. This program is modeled after the one developed by the Pennsylvania Society for the Advancement of the Deaf (PSAD).

Telecommunications for deaf and hard of hearing people. Further, both Mr. Phillips and Zainab Alkebsi, our current NAD policy counsel, have represented our community well in working with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on all relay issues including the preservation of IP relay services. Moreover, over the last two years and continuing, we have met repeatedly with FCC staff, General Accounting Office staff, telecommunications industry representatives, and legislators to find ways to improve the quality of relay services and be

President Draganac-Hawk’s presidency represents not an end, but a new advancement in the quest for equality by the NAD. The Education Strategy Team (EST), led by NAD education policy counsel Tawny Holmes, took on the many goals of the education priority and responded with her team of experts. The EST completed the following assigned tasks: creating a strategy to keep deaf schools open; developing a program for outreach to deaf and hard of hearing youth who are in mainstreamed programs; devising a plan to increase employment of deaf and hard of hearing individuals in all levels of deaf schools and programs; updating the model Deaf Child Bill of Rights; collaborating with national organizations to address diversity issues in education; collaborating with LEAD-K on a bill to ensure improved pre-kindergarten development in deaf infants; advancing parent advocacy training throughout the states; and establishing a clearinghouse on best practices in deaf education. The fifth and last priority required the NAD to advocate for preserving and advancing relay services for deaf and hard of hearing individuals. For this priority, Andrew Phillips who was the NAD policy counsel began the work that led to a comprehensive position statement on Functionally Equivalent

vigilant against any harmful cuts or misguided policies. This work continues given the importance of a highly reliable and consistent relay system for all deaf and hard of hearing people to be able to lead independent and productive lives and gainful employment. These priorities were accomplished only through hard work from everyone involved with the NAD—staff, board members, and volunteer committee members. The same level of dedication and perseverance will be necessary to complete the new five priorities set for the next two years. These priorities are an important part of our ongoing efforts to achieve true equality for all deaf and hard of hearing people in the United States.

Howard A. Rosenblum, Esq. has served as the NAD Chief Executive Officer since 2011.

NADmag | Winter 2016

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NADmag 2016 Vol. 16 Iss. 2  

NADmag 2016 Vol. 16 Iss. 2  

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