I attended the 52nd Biennial National Association of the Deaf (NAD) Conference last week in Atlanta, Georgia. During this conference, I had the amazing opportunity of representing Communication Service for the Deaf (CSD) as a delegate and exhibitor, and also presented a workshop on maximizing social media for businesses (click here for a link to my PPT on SlideShare). Even though I attended and presented at the 2012 NAD Conference in Louisville, Kentucky, my experience at the recent conference blew the 2012 experience out of the water.
In sum, the experience was simply amazing and transforming. Throughout the conference, I gained a better appreciation and understanding for what the NAD does on a daily basis, and that is simply to preserve, protect and promote the civil, human and linguistic rights of deaf and hard of hearing people in the United States of America. Additionally, I was privileged to represent CSD as a delegate as I was able to work with other delegates to help set the NAD’s priorities for the next two years (at the time of this writing, the 2014-2016 priorities have yet to be posted, but will be available here: http://nad.org/about-us/priorities).
Throughout the conference, I had many wonderful conversations with exceptional and dedicated people who share the same passion I have for the deaf and hard of hearing community, and essentially NAD. There are so many to name, but for each and every one of you who took the time to impart wisdom, thank you!
Additionally, as some of you may know, I joined the NAD’s Employment Task Force (ETF) with the objective of leveraging my marketing background and experiences to ensure the successful implementation and promotion of the ETF, and I look forward to the ETF serving a pivotal resource for deaf and hard of hearing individuals in their journey of being employed. The ETF is a great example of how you can get involved at the national level, and I strongly encourage you to consider getting involved.
But actively being involved is not the only way you can make an impact – there were numerous efforts at raising funds during last week’s conference, including efforts to raise funds for the Nancy J. Bloch Leadership & Advocacy Scholarship fund and for Jr. NAD. I’m proud to say I donated to both funds, and I welcome you to join me in creating opportunities for future generations of individuals who are deaf and hard of hearing.
Last, but not least, thank you to all who are involved with the NAD – keep up the great work in ensuring the civic, human and linguistic rights for all deaf and hard of hearing people in the United States of America are preserved, protected and promoted!