Braille Monitor April-May 1985
The 1985 officers of the Columbia Chapter of the NFB of South Carolina are: President, Marshall Tucker; Vice President, Frances Messer; Secretary, Gail Coppel, Treasurer, Irene Hudson; and Social Director, Earnest Gallman.
**Portable Tape Player:
We have received the following announcement from Innovative Rehabilitation Technology, Inc., 26699 Snell Lane, Los Altos Hills, California 94022; telephone 415-948-8588:
"IRTI has introduced a new handheld cassette player called 'Talking Tape Player,' which will allow you to listen to the 4-track Library of Congress tapes, 2-track standard cassettes, and your favorite stereo music tapes. You can order the TTP-1 now. "The Talking Tape Player is an adapted Sony Walkman (R) which weighs 11.5 ounces and is about the size of a small paperback book. The unique advantage of the TTP-1 over other Units is that it has a reverse feature. The player automatically changes track and direction at the end of a tape or if desired you can select track or direction during play mode by the press of a button. "Listening is done through high quality stereo earphones or plug external miniature speakers, or connect your TTP1 to. your home system with a patch cord. IRTI is offering a variety of accessories to enhance your listening pleasure. "Your Talking Tape Player comes with stereo earphones, shoulder strap, batteries, and cassette instructions. Every effort has been taken to preserve the Sony quality and performance. We even included speed adjust for Library of Congress playback mode "The IRTI introductory price: $110 plus $3 for shipping and handling. The A.C. adapter is $19. Enquire about our optional accessories such as miniature speakers, battery holder, patch cords, etc. Our hours are 8 to 5 weekdays and 9 to noon on Saturdays California time."
Barbara Pierce writes:
"We in Ohio are rejoicing, and we want everyone to share our good news. On February 25 Bob Eschbach began service as Assistant Director of the Bureau of Services for the Visually Impaired (BSVI). His duties will include representing the Director both outside and around the state. In her absence, he will act for her administratively. The blind of Ohio are truly fortunate to have a man of Bob's caliber and an advocate of his conviction working for us. Bob will continue to serve both on the Board of Directors of the National Federation of the Blind and on the Executive Committee of the NFB of Ohio."
**Blind Tuners National Gathering:
We have been contacted by Stanley Oliver, Chairman of the Visually Impaired Committee of the Piano Technicians Guild, 1965 East Outer Drive, Detroit, Michigan 48234; 313-891-9226. Mr. Oliver says in part:
"July 16th through the 19th, 1985, at the Hyatt Regency, Kansas City, Missouri, the Piano Technicians Guild will hold its international convention with about one thousand expected to attend. An important segment will be the visually impaired with special classes in grand regulation directed by three top Kimball technicians." For further information, contact Mr. Oliver.
**Convention of Deaf-Blind:
We have been asked to carry the following announcement:
"The Tenth Annual Convention of the American Association of the Deaf-Blind
(AADB) will be held at Montclair State College, Upper Montclair, New Jersey, from Sunday evening, June 16th, to Sunday morning, June 23rd. The theme of the Convention is 'Overcoming the Obstacles.' We invite all deaf-blind individuals to register for an outstanding convention.
"The fee for AADB members is $190, $210 for deaf-blind people who are nonmembers, and $260 for all others. This includes room at the college plus a total of 21 meals.
"We anticipate an attendance of over 200 deaf-blind participants, and we need interpreters and guides to volunteer their services. Naturally, we will waive the registration fee for interpreters and guides.
"For further information, please contact Florence Pressman, Conference Coordinator, 1985 AADB Convention, 1188 Raymond Boulevard Room 303, Newark, New Jersey 07102."
Michael Huckaby and Kelly Cummings announce their wedding in Sacramento, California, March 9, 1985. Kelly is Vice President of the Sacramento Chapter. Michael is a member. Congratulations.
"I live in Bakersfield, California. I'm planning on moving to Nashville, Tennessee, in early September of this year. I want information on housing and other important information from those persons living in Nashville. I would like to hear from any of you as soon as possible. You may reach me in the following manner with Braille or cassette only. Please write: Michael Killian, 1000 McDonald Way #44, Bakersfield, California 93309; or phone 805-397-6824 almost any time."
The following people were elected at the January, 1985, meeting of the Jefferson City, Missouri Chapter: President, Rita Lynch; Vice President, Brian Wekamp; Secretary, Betty Walker; Treasurer, Alvin Toebben; Board Member, Dick Schell; and Board Member, Teresa Myers.
**Right on Red:
E.U. Parker sends us the following excerpt from the Pacesetter for January, 1985:
'Right-on red turns: Maybe a wrong idea
"The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports bad reviews on the effect of laws permitting right turns on red lights.
"At nearly 80 percent of signalized intersections where drivers may turn right on red, right-turning crashes increased by 23 percent, impacts with pedestrians rose by 60 percent, and bicyclist crashes with cars rose a hundred fold.
"Between 1974 and 1980 all states adopted statutes permitting right-on-red turns unless prohibited by a sign. Only New York prohibits the law."
Jane Sprague writes:
"The Treasure Coast Chapter in Stuart, Florida, has elected new officers for 1985. They are: President, Harry Collier; Vice President, Sam Sitt; Secretary, Jane Sprague; and Treasurer, Elaine Sweitzer. Harry Collier was a Federationist in West Virginia and president of a chapter."
Karen Mayry, President of the NFB of South Dakota and one of the most energetic leaders of the Federation in the country, recently received the following letter from Dr. Richard A. Schleusener, President of the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology:
"January 18, 1985 "Dear Mrs. Mayry:
"The South Dakota School of Mines and Technology will hold its 34th Annual Honors Recognition Ceremony on Friday, March 15, 1985.
"It is the custom of the college on this occasion to present an award for meritorious achievement to one or more persons in the state for outstanding contributions in education or public service. Our Honors Convocation Committee has selected you to receive special recognition this year for your contributions to public service in the community. It is my pleasure to extend an invitation to you to participate in our Honors Recognition Ceremony and to receive the Mines Service Award for Outstanding Public Service."
Hazel Staley writes to tell us of the death of Ralph Wilkins:
"In the afternoon of January 1 Ralph began to suffer chest pains. An ambulance was called and he went to the hospital. He died that night. Ralph was a former state board member and was always present at our state convention. He also attended several national conventions."
**Diabetic Committee Announces:
Dialysis will be available during the national convention in Louisville. Interested people should contact Eileen O'Brien, 791 Cambridge Avenue, Elmhurst, Illinois 60126; telephone 312-832-5960 by June 1.
At the December, 1984, meeting the following people were elected as officers of the Clark County Chapter of the NFB of Washington: President, Mike Freeman; Vice President, Carol Wedrick; Secretary, Doug Trimble; and Treasurer, Al Sanchez.
The National Braille Press, Inc., 88 St. Stephen Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, announces that it has developed a Speller to be used with the VersaBraille. They say:
"The Speller by Simon and Schuster is a quick and accurate guide to the spelling and syllabification of 33,000 words. Using your VersaBraille and the Speller, you can quickly find any word using a chapter by chapter index, and helpful guide words at the top of each page. Price is $20 (U.S. and Canada) or $30 (foreign.)"
**15th Annual Convention: Sherri Hicks writes: "The 15th annual convention of the National Federation of the Blind of Florida was held January 25, 26, and 27 in Daytona Beach, Florida, at the Whitehall Inn. The convention began with registration and hospitality Friday evening. The convention Saturday featured the report from our national representative Jim Gashel, and several other interesting speakers. The highlight of the convention was the banquet Saturday evening with an inspiring speech by Jim Gashel. Sunday morning the business session was held. At this time two new board members were elected: Sam Sitt from Stuart, Florida, and Marilyn Baldwin from Orlando. The Federation is on the move in Florida, and we look forward to an even bigger and better convention next time."
Laurie Eckery, one of the leaders of the NFB of Nebraska and a graduate student at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, will be included in the next edition of Who's Who in American Universities to be published in June of 1985. Congratulations to you, Laurie.
On December 15, 1984, the Jackson Chapter of the NFB of Mississippi elected the following: President, Samuel Gleese; First Vice President, Hugh Barlow; Second Vice President, Ms. Mary L. Sanders; Secretary, Ms. Sarah White; and Treasurer, Mrs. Mary Reed. Elected to the Board were: Ms. Gwen Stokes and Mrs. Patricia Harris.
**Material in Braille and on Cassette:
Visualtek has issued a news release, which says in part:
Visualtek is now producing products for the blind, and will provide literature for these products in Braille free of charge upon request. In addition, "News and Views" and "RE/News," two Visualtek newsletters mailed to blind and partially sighted individuals, rehabilitation agencies and educational institutions are available on cassette free of charge to blind persons requesting them....Visualtek's first product for the blind is the MBOSS-1 Braille Printer available late January, 1985. MBOSS-1 product literature, including the User's Manual, is offered in print and Braille. Braille product literature and newsletter cassettes can be obtained by calling Visualtek's toll free number (800)345-2256; (800) 521-5605 (in California).
**Keeps on Trucking:
One of the articles in the January, 1985, Blind Missourian says in part:
"St. Joseph Keeps on Trucking. On December 7, 1984, the NFB of St. Joseph visited five libraries in our community. Our purpose was to donate literature and books concerning blindness. These libraries appeared to be thrilled with this information and received our contributions warmly. We also visited a local elementary school, where we spoke with the second and sixth graders."
**Commendation from Governor:
Governor Mario Cuomo of New York recently wrote as follows to Federationist Brad Greenspan:
"On behalf of the people of the State of New York, I express our appreciation for your contributions to the areas of advocacy and service procurement for handicapped persons.
"Your work through the Suffolk County Office for the Aging and as a member of the Coordinated Outreach Advisory Council to the Suffolk Cooperative Library System has helped to improve the quality of life for many senior citizens and handicapped persons.
"As First Vice President of the National Federation of the Blind of Greater Long Island and as an officer of the Central Islip Lions Club you have shared your knowledge of resources and voluntary services available for disabled persons.
"Your dedicated and untiring work on behalf of the blind is appreciated by the recipients, as well as your other friends and neighbors."
For many years a few blind individuals have found employment as court reporters. However, the difficulty in being able to read back testimony immediately upon request has severely limited such employment. Now, Curtis Willoughby, owner and manager of Willoughby Enterprises, Inc., announces a breakthrough. He says that he has developed a system using a paperless Braille machine, a computer, and a computer compatible stenotype machine which enables a blind court reporter to give immediate read- back of testimony. Willoughby Enterprises, Inc., says that it can provide the equipment, software, and training at a competitive price. For further information contact: Willoughby Enterprises, Inc., 2711 54th Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50310; 515-277-8478.
We have just learned of the death of Howard Hanson. Federationists will remember that Hanson was formerly head of services for the blind in South Dakota, a NAC board member, and President of the American Association of Workers for the Blind. At one time he held membership on the board of directors of the American Foundation for the Blind, as well as various other leadership positions in the agency establishment of the nation. In recent years Hanson had lived in Little Rock, Arkansas, where he had reportedly been increasingly in bad health. He was born in 1924 and died in Little Rock February 21, 1985.
Steven Henry and Terry Thibodeau Henry (members of the NFB of Louisiana) have recently become the proud parents of a baby boy. Steven is known to Monitor readers for his historic victory in his complaint against the United States Postal Service. Terry gave birth to James Charles Henry at 8:30 a.m. on March 4, 1985, at Tulane Medical Center in New Orleans. The baby weighed 7 pounds, 15 1/2 ounces, and was 19 inches long. Steven and Terry met at an NFB convention.
Federationist Judy Mares Dixon of Boulder, Colorado, is listed in Esquire's 1984 Register. The editors say that those who are listed constitute "The Best of the New Generation, Men and Women Under Forty Who are Changing America." The editors further say: "The men and women honored in this issue were discovered and selected as the result of an unprecedented national search. For more than two years sixty editors, reporters, and researchers probed deeply into all regions of the nation, looking for those people under forty years of age whose lives and work exemplified America 's highest qualities and values. Courage. Originality Ingenuity. Vision. Selfless service."
Deanna Morss, President of the NFB of Wyoming, writes:
I am writing to inform you of a new chapter in Wyoming and to give you other information about the affiliate. The new chapter is the National Federation of the Blind of Fremont County. Fremont County includes: Shoshoni, Riverton, Hudson, and Lander. The Fremont County Chapter met Sunday, February 23rd at the Fremont County Library in Lander. The chapter voted on a Constitution, elected officers, and voted on a fundraising project. The officers are as follows: Nancy Siebken, President; Reggie Dockham, Treasurer; and Cathy Fernandez, Secretary. The chapter plans to alternate the meetings between Riverton and Lander.
Both our Natrona County Chapter and our Cheyenne Chapter are now one year old. The Natrona Chapter held election of officers at the December meeting. The officers are as follows: Melanie Rudell, President; James Jones, Vice- President; Ernest Hagen, Treasurer; Larry Julian, Secretary; Bob Jackson, Board Member; and Elsie Ricketts, Board Member.
Last year we decided to tackle the DVR and its abuse of the Randolph-Sheppard program. Melanie decided that she wanted to have a career and that vending sounded great. There began the struggle with DVR. There were times when we felt intimidated by them. But we did not quit; and although I am not ready to say that we have absolutely won, or not until Melanie is actually in the Federal Building, we have absolutely won some victories. Today Melanie began her training in Cheyenne, which is something DVR had said they would not let her do. (She must go to Denver.) She is promised the Casper Federal Building when she passes training.
**Braille Cabin Cards:
Carolyn Boak, a member of the Mid- Hudson Chapter of the NFB of New York writes:
"Here at last is an airline that's doing something right. It's a small commuter airline which flies a lot of IBM people. I thought this bright spot on the horizon might be something for the Monitor."
She refers to the fact that Command Airways is now making available Braille informational cards to blind passengers. These cards contain the same type of information as the print cards for sighted passengers.
**Employed and Moving:
For the past three years Michael Floyd has capably served as the President of the NFB of Oklahoma. He and his wife Fatos are now moving to Nebraska, where Michael has been employed as a travel instructor with state services for the blind. There are those who would tell us that blind persons should not be permitted to teach mobility to their fellow blind, but Michael is a living example of the fallacy of this premise. The new President in Oklahoma is Mark Noble, and continued progress can be expected under his leadership. Congratulations to the Floyds and to Mark.
**World Blind Union:
In October of 1984 the International Federation of the Blind and the World Council for the Welfare of the Blind met at Saudi Arabia and combined to form the World Blind Union. The two founding organizations then dissolved. The North American Delegation of the World Blind Union (WBU) met in Washington February 15, 1985. At that time William Gallagher, Director of the American Foundation for the Blind, was elected North American Regional President of the WBU. Gallagher was elected to serve on the WBU executive committee, as were President Jernigan and Grant Mack. Robert Storey, Director of International Services for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, was also elected to the WBU executive committee. Currently in the North American region are six delegates from the United States and four from Canada. The next regional meeting of the North American Delegation will occur in Toronto May 22 and 23, 1985.
**Why Not You:
Tom Anderson is one of the leaders of the NFB of Ohio. He is constantly making opportunities to tell our story to the public. Concerning the recent conflict with USAir, he writes:
"On Friday morning, February 8th, at 2:00 a.m., I heard a news account about our demonstration at Washington National Airport on the ABC radio network. The report was sketchy. I decided that I should check with the other radio news networks to be sure they had the story.
"First, I called the Mutual Broadcasting Company and spoke to the night editor (David Rowland). He was surprised not to know anything about our demonstration and be just two blocks away from the scene of the action. I asked about a possible interview with one of our leaders to be used for 'America in the Morning.' He connected me with the producer (Craig Warner) of the program. Craig Warner was happy to interview me. Actually, I was interviewed by Jim Bohanon, who is the host of the program. This was a live interview.
"Next, I called the National Broadcasting Corporation's radio news department in New York City. Ed Gooch taped a statement from me.
"Finally, I called the radio news department of the Columbia Broadcasting Company in New York City. I spoke to an employee, Richard Adcock, who stated he is a 'Federationist.' Richard wanted to be in contact with someone who was at Washington National Airport for the demonstration. I gave him the home telephone number for Marc Maurer."
**By Their Fruit:
The February, 1985, newsletter of the Warren Toyama group in Hawaii says in part:
"Our Annual Convention. . .March 22, 23, 24, 1985. . .Our guests from the mainland this year will be: Grant Mack, President of the American Council of the Blind; Durword (sic) McDaniel, Vice President of the American Council of the Blind; Robert Acosta, President of the California Council of the Blind; Allen Jenkins, long-time friend and yearly visitor; and Alfred Gil, faculty member at the California Orientation for the Blind (sic)."
The NFB of Louisiana recently formed three new chapters. This means that the affiliate now has eighteen chapters and divisions. The Federation is definitely in a period of growth in Louisiana.
As we go to press, Homer Jackson (who is President of the National Federation of the Blind of Toledo, Ohio) has been hospitalized with a serious illness. He is in the intensive care unit of Riverside Hospital in Toledo. We do not have further details.
Betty Kendall writes:
"Here are the officers of Mutual Federation of the Blind of Cleveland, affiliate of NFB-Ohio: Annette Anderson, President; Susan Franklin, Vice President; Betty Kendall, Secretary; Margaret Knall, Treasurer. Two Board Members, elected for terms of three years: Ethel Card and Joseph Turchan."
From Charles Allen in Frankfort, Kentucky, comes this message about our 1985 Louisville national convention:
"Door prizes are an important part of every national convention. They add to the joy of attending our sessions and encourage us to get to the meetings on time. Cash is especially welcome as a door prize because it helps the winner with his/her convention expenses.
"Remember that each item won as a door prize will have to be carried home by airplane, bus, or car. Any fabulous prize, such as a computer or a stereo system, can, of course, be shipped. So do not turn down a great donation because it will not fit into a suitcase.
"My address is 667 Montclair Road, Frankfort, Kentucky 40601. After 5:00 p.m. my telephone number is 502-875- 1413.
"Whether you send a door prize to me prior to the convention or deliver it to Diane McGeorge at the convention, please label each item in ink print and in Braille-telling what it is and how much it is worth."
**Child Care and Babysitting at National Convention:
Mary Wurtzel is in charge of child care and babysitting activities at the 1985 NFB convention. She writes:
"For many Federation families our national convention is our family's vacation. More and more children are joining us the first week in July. We believe we should provide our children with quality care and also a good time. Each year we are trying to have new activities and events for our children. To be successful we urge, encourage, ask, etc. you, our parents, to help by cooperating with the following. We are doing our part to plan but need your help to be as successful as possible.
"1. As soon as possible I need to know the names and ages of the children you plan to bring to convention. This year ages are even more important as we hope to have some activities for our preteens and for our teenagers.
"2. If you are bringing teens, we propose to make a list ahead of time of teens who would like to contract with parents to do evening babysitting in the hotel rooms giving parents some time out in the evening. Please let me know if you have a child who would like to make a little cash doing babysitting.
"3. If there is enough interest expressed, we hope to have an event for blind teens to get to know one another. Let me know if you are interested.
"4. In order to provide a quality service, there are costs. We have not charged a specific fee. Parents, please plan in your budget to support child care in whatever amount you can handle. Of course, we would accept financial contributions from others, individuals, or even chapters or affiliates, but we ask the people who use the service to support it.
"5. Parents, I have received not one toy for our toy chest. If we all bring at least one 'tough' toy to share (label it if you want it back), we should have plenty. Our kids need something to do up in that room for a week, so bring a toy.
"6. We are working hard to find outside volunteers to work with. our paid personnel. However, we usually have fifty small children, and now several pre-teen children, to care for. If you have a real desire to spend just a couple hours volunteering, let me know. This will help me to not be trying to schedule people as much at convention.
"Write or phone Mary Wurtzel, 7530 Vine Street, Lincoln, Nebraska 68505; phone 402-464-8200."
There is still time if you hurry! You could win $500 by submitting the best name for the THING-a computer project now underway to provide speech output for the IBM personal computer. Review the details in the January, 1985, Monitor, and submit your entry to Tim Cranmer, 523 Pawnee Trail, Frankfort, Kentucky 40601 by May 1, 1985.
**Free Kentucky Derby Glasses:
Each person who registers for the 1985 convention of the National Federation of the blind to be held in Louisville, Kentucky, the week of July 4, 1985, will receive a free Kentucky Derby glass. These glasses, which list all of the winners of the Kentucky Derby dating back to the first Kentucky Derby in 1875, are considered collectors items and are a Louisville, Kentucky, tradition. Don't miss your chance to obtain one of these treasured Louisville souvenirs. Be sure and register for this year's convention in Louisville, Kentucky.
**Kentucky has Law:
After reading the March, 1985, Monitor, leaders of the Kentucky affiliate wrote as follows to the National Office:
"An article in the March, 1985, Monitor discussed the report of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners which was issued in September of 1984. The appendix to that report failed to include Kentucky as a state which had legislation prohibiting discrimination by insurance companies on account of blindness.
"The information contained in that appendix is incorrect. The state of Kentucky, as a result of the National Federation of the Blind of Kentucky, does have a law prohibiting discrimination by insurance companies for all forms of insurance on account of blindness which became effective on July 15, 1984. Kentucky's law prohibits discrimination only on account of blindness and does not include other handicapped persons."
On January 14, 1985, the following people were elected to office in the Chattanooga Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of Tennessee:
President, June A. Grant; First Vice President, Hank LaBonne; Second Vice President, Lester Davenport; Secretary, Carolyn G. Owensby; Treasurer, Judy Bryson; and Board Members: Willie Clay, Brenda Davenport, Dot Dubrow, and Glenn Ledford.
We recently received in the National Office the following letter:
"The IDS/American Express Community Involvement Program gives employees and their families an opportunity to decide where much of IDS/American Express' community support goes.
"I am happy to enclose $1,740.00 which 'double' matches, because of volunteer involvement, the recent contribution of Curtis and Peggy Chong.
"We hope our support through matched gifts and voluntarism will grow and that a significant portion of our corporate contributions will be directed through matched gifts."
**A Federation Wedding:
Pete Donahue of Smithville, Texas, met Mary Jeatran of Jamesville, Wisconsin, at the 1984 NFB convention in Phoenix, Arizona. As Mary put it, "We've been corresponding ever since." Pete and Mary were married after the banquet at the NFB of Texas convention in Dallas March 23, 1985. The ceremony was performed by national Board Member Reverend Ronald Byrd.