Braille Monitor                                                    November 2008

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News from the Federation Family

The National Federation of the Blind of Iowa recently elected the following officers and board members: president, Michael Barber; first vice president, April Enderton; second vice president, Darrel Kirby; secretary, Tai Blas; treasurer, Curtis Chong; and board members, Al Bickell, Karen Clayton, Ted Hart, Priscilla McKinley, Miranda Morse, and Bob Ray.

NFB of New Mexico Members March in State Fair Parade:
Members of the NFB of New Mexico march in the parade behind their banner.From the NFB of New Mexico newsletter, Que Passe: On September 6, 2008, approximately eighty blind folks of all ages marched in the annual state fair parade in Albuquerque. We assembled on the fairgrounds, and, when it was our turn, we walked to Central Avenue, where we marched proudly about two miles to Eubank Avenue, where we were picked up to travel to the Manzano Mesa Community Center. Many of us wore NFB T-shirts, and we chanted "NFB, NFB" and "blind vendors rock." We were cheered from the time we left the fairgrounds until the end of our march; it was exhilarating. At the head of our group we had a large banner that read “National Federation of the Blind of New Mexico, Changing What it Means to Be Blind.” Our float was great. It featured blind youngsters in construction outfits, including hard hats. The new preschool at the school for the blind is under construction and should be ready for occupancy in January.

After the parade we assembled at the Manzano Mesa Community Center and had a wonderful chapter interaction meeting. Thanks to Sherry Abraham for coordinating our march and chapter interaction luncheon and meeting. Thanks to Ray Marshall for paying for and coordinating our transportation. Thanks to the students and teachers at the preschool for the blind and visually impaired for putting together the great float. Thanks to Christine Hall, Nancy Burns, Caroline Benavidez, Juan Haro, and others for developing the chapter interaction idea.

Charlotte, the historic cradle of Federationism in North Carolina, served as host city for the 2008 state convention, which occurred from Friday, September 19, through Sunday, September 21. Well over a hundred Federationists attended various seminars, general sessions, and the Saturday night banquet. This year’s convention was dedicated to our grand lady, Hazel Staley, for all she has done for the NFB in general and for the state affiliate in particular.

Our guest speaker and national rep was Joe Ruffalo, member of the NFB board of directors and president of the New Jersey affiliate. The Robert M. Staley Scholarships were awarded to Cindy Bennett and Brice Smith by Hazel Staley.

Sunday’s session included the business meeting with elections for officers and board members. Elected were president, Gary Ray; first vice president, Tim Jones; second vice president, Herman Gruber; secretary, Pat Yarbrough; treasurer, Janis Lynn Stallings; and board members, Boyce Locklear, Art Saunders, Patricia Tessnear, and Booker Winn, filling an unexpired term.

In Memoriam:
We recently learned that on August 18, 2008, Jeannette Eyerly, one of the three members of the Iowa Commission for the Blind during the years when Kenneth Jernigan was its director, died on August 18 at the retirement center in Des Moines, Iowa, where she made her home. Mrs. Eyerly was a prize-winning author of books for children and teens. In fact she was the first author to write books about difficult topics like teen pregnancy, early marriage, shoplifting, and alcoholism. Because of her interest in the rehabilitation of blind people she wrote the book, The Seeing Summer, one of the few books for teens demonstrating healthy attitudes in dealing with blindness. She continued her interest in the National Federation of the Blind even after she retired from the commission. In her will she left a bequest to fund the Jeannette C. Eyerly Memorial Scholarship, which will be awarded for the first time at the 2009 convention of the National Federation of the Blind. Mrs. Eyerly is survived by her two daughters, six grandchildren, and a number of great-grandchildren.

In Brief

Notices and information in this section may be of interest to Monitor readers. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the information; we have edited only for space and clarity.

Touch the Sun Available:
While supplies last, VIEW has copies of Touch the Sun, the book about the sun that includes tactile photographs,by Noreen Grice. The price is $29.95 with shipping by Free Matter. Other shipping can be arranged for an additional charge. For more information contact Robert Jaquiss, executive director, VIEW International Foundation, 230 Peach Tree Drive, West Monroe, Louisiana 71291-8653; phone (318) 396-1853; email <>; Website <>.

Bell Your Baby in Style with Bumblebells:
Bumble Bells are fantastic audible footwear for the newest human beings. These sterling silver baby anklets have bells mounted on them so that you can tell wherever your baby rolls, crawls, or toddles. Just before I got pregnant, I was in Thailand visiting some cousins and noticed their two-year-old son walking around in beautiful sterling silver anklets with little bells on them. Everywhere he wandered we could hear where he was. Thai mothers have put tinkling anklets on their babies for decades to ward off evil, but they are also darned cute and very practical.

When my daughter was born last year, I had my relatives send a pair of the anklets. We put them on her at two months, and we have yet to remove them. They are amazingly practical (Roll over? The bells jingle. Crawl away? Little bells ring. Toddle around? Bells again.). They also make wonderful gifts. After hundreds of inquiries from passers-by about how cute they were and where they could get a pair, I decided to start selling them.

You can find out more at <>. Order a single anklet for $40 or a pair for $75 by contacting Jill at <> or calling (773) 885-2016.

Old-Time Radio Shows for Sale:
Old-time radio shows are available for $5 a disk. Choice of either MP3 or audio CD. Contact Jim Holliday for more information by email at <> or by phone (609) 447-4658. My homepage is <>. Sample shows are provided for listening on the homepage.

Special Offer from En-Vision America:
NFB member Chad Allen, who works for En-Vision America, has passed along the following notice:
From October 1 to December 31 En-Vision America will offer NFB members a Scrip-Talk unit free if they successfully sign up their local pharmacy to implement the Scrip-Talk system. Call En-Vision America at (800) 890-1180 to request printed information on the Scrip-Talk system to give to your local pharmacy. Then visit the store and tell them about Scrip-Talk and your need for nonvisual access to prescription bottle information. The pharmacy must invest $495 in order to get started. This includes a Scrip-Talk Reader/Writer, software, and technical support along with one hundred electronic tags to place on your prescriptions or those of other blind people to make them accessible. Any member who successfully refers a pharmacy to En-Vision America will receive the $325 Scrip-Talk unit for reading the tags, free of charge. Chad Allen can also be reached at (303) 319-6731 to answer any questions you may have.

Monitor Mart

The notices in this section have been edited for clarity, but we can pass along only the information we were given. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the statements made or the quality of the products for sale.

For Sale:

Used professional keyboard synthesizer, ideal for blind user because it has no wrap-around menus and has numerous dedicated task buttons. Easy to use for beginners, but has many advanced features for professionals as well. The Roland XP10 is lightweight with a standard 61-key, full-size keyboard (five-octave) with editable general MIDI-based synthesizer containing 338 sounds, including ethnic instruments and sound effects and sixteen different drum kits. Advanced features include arpegiator, multiple real-time controllers, split and layer function, and both MIDI and PC compatibility. Instruction manual included. Asking $400, including free shipping. If you leave a phone message, please speak slowly and clearly because of my hearing deficit. Contact Steve Waltke, (517) 347-7046.

NFB Pledge

I pledge to participate actively in the efforts of the National Federation of the Blind to achieve equality, opportunity, and security for the blind; to support the policies and programs of the Federation; and to abide by its constitution.  



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