Convention Notes

Note 1: Information Desk

A Federation information desk is in the registration area from Wednesday morning through Sunday in case you have questions or need assistance.

Note 2: Hotel Rates

Rosen Shingle Creek room rates are: singles and doubles, $88; triples and quads, $93. In addition to the room rates, there is a 12.5 percent tax. There is no charge for children under seventeen in the room with parents as long as no extra bed is required. Proof of convention registration is necessary, including the showing of an NFB registration badge, if requested. Otherwise, regular hotel rates must be paid. This is a non-smoking hotel; smoking is permitted only in specified areas outside.

Note 3: Guide Dog Relief Areas

There are two guide dog relief areas at the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel. The one closest to the sleeping room section is located outside lower lobby level at the rear side of the hotel, toward the outdoor function space and pool area. The one closest to the meeting room section is located in the Panzacola-Sebastian wing on level one. Go past the Sebastian Ballrooms K and L (Exhibit Hall and Independence Market), exit through the doors across the end of the wing that lead to the event parking lot, and turn left.

Note 4: Requests for Announcements

All requests for announcements by President Riccobono during General Sessions must be submitted in Braille.

Note 5: Raffles

Raffle tickets will not be sold in the registration area, and no raffles or other such drawings will take place during convention sessions or at the banquet. The single exception will be that national divisions may (if they request it in advance) conduct drawings during the sessions or at the banquet. Groups or affiliates wishing to conduct their drawings (or any person wishing to know the winners) may go at noon on Sunday to Wekiwa 5, Level 2.

Note 6: Child Care

Child care for children between the ages of six weeks and twelve years is available during convention sessions, most meetings, and the banquet. Preregistration and payment by June 15 are required for child care. Child care is organized and supervised by Carla McQuillan, the executive director of Main Street Montessori Association. Duncan McQuillan serves as the activities and staff coordinator. Please note that child-care services provides morning and afternoon snacks, but parents are required to provide lunch for their child(ren) every day. Times listed are the opening and closing times. A late fee of $10 per quarter-hour per child will be assessed for late pickups. Child-care services hours are:

  • Tuesday, July 3: 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM and 1:30 to 5:30 PM
  • Wednesday, July 4: Closed
  • Thursday, July 5: 8:30 AM to noon and 12:45 to 5:30 PM
  • Friday, July 6: 9:00 AM to 12:30 PM and 1:30 to 5:30 PM
  • Saturday, July 7: 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM and 1:30 to 5:30 PM
  • Sunday, July 8: 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM and 1:30 to 5:30 PM
  • Banquet, July 8: 6:30 PM to 30 minutes after the banquet ends

Note 7: Divisions, Committees, and Groups

The Federation carries on its business through the affiliated divisions, committees, and groups listed below.


Divisions of the National Federation of the Blind are organized around a specialized interest area usually related to employment or a major stage in life (e.g. parents or students). Divisions serve as a formal vehicle for building the organization at the national level.

  • Amateur Radio: Rachel Olivero (AD9O), President
  • Assistive Technology Trainers: Nancy Coffman, President
  • Communities of Faith: Tom Anderson, President
  • Computer Science: Brian Buhrow, President
  • Community Service: Darian Smith, President
  • Deaf-Blind: Alice Eaddy, President
  • Diabetes Action Network: Bernadette Jacobs, President
  • Human Services: Candice Chapman, President
  • Educators: Cayte Mendez, President
  • Guide Dog Users: Marion Gwizdala, President
  • Krafters: Joyce Kane, President
  • Lawyers: Scott LaBarre, President
  • Merchants: Nicky Gacos, President
  • Promote the Use of Braille: Steve Booth, President
  • Office Professionals: Lisa Hall, President
  • Parents of Blind Children: Kim Cunningham, President
  • Performing Arts: Julie McGinnity, President
  • Professionals in Blindness Education: Eric Guillory, President
  • Public Employees: Ivan Weich, President
  • Rehabilitation Professionals: Melody Roane, President
  • Science and Engineering: John Miller, President
  • Seniors: Ruth Sager, President
  • Sports and Recreation: Jessica Beecham, President
  • Students: Kathryn Webster, President
  • Veterans: Dwight Sayer, President
  • Writers: Eve Sanchez, President


Committees of the National Federation of the Blind are appointed by the President, with the exception of the nominating committee, and serve to advise the organization’s leadership on important matters and to carry out projects to build the organization at all levels.

  • Ambassadors: Dan Burke, Chairperson
  • Automobile and Pedestrian Safety: Maurice Peret, Chairperson
  • Autonomous Vehicles and Innovations in Transportation: Sachin Pavithran, Chairperson
  • Blind Educator of the Year Award: Edward Bell, Chairperson
  • Blind Federal Employment: Ronza Othman, Chairperson
  • Cash and Caring: Ramona Walhof, Chairperson
  • Communications: Jessica Beecham, Chairperson
  • Distinguished Educator of Blind Children Award: Carla McQuillan, Chairperson
  • Diversity and Inclusion: Ron Brown, Chairperson
  • Employment: Dick Davis, Chairperson
  • Genetic Education: Ronit Ovadia Mazzoni, Chairperson
  • Imagination Fund: Everette Bacon, Chairperson
  • Jacobus tenBroek Award: Marc Maurer, Chairperson
  • Jacobus tenBroek Memorial Fund: Tracy Soforenko, Chairperson
  • Kenneth Jernigan Fund: Allen Harris, Chairperson
  • Library Services: David Hyde and Marci Carpenter, Co-Chairpersons
  • Membership: Jeannie Massay, Chairperson
  • PAC Plan: Scott LaBarre, Chairperson
  • Research and Development: Brian Buhrow, Chairperson
  • Resolutions: Sharon Maneki, Chairperson
  • Scholarship: Cayte Mendez, Chairperson
  • Shares Unlimited in NFB (SUN): Sandy Halverson, Chairperson
  • Spanish Translation: Conchita Hernandez, Chairperson
  • Technology Evaluation: Mark Jones, Chairperson
  • White Cane and Affiliate Finance: Alpidio Rolón, Chairperson


Groups of the National Federation of the Blind serve as a resource to members around specific topic areas. Groups are coordinated by a chairperson appointed by the President and are intended to connect members across the country to strengthen the resource network of the organization.

  • Blind Cancer Survivors Support: Isaiah Nelson, Chairperson
  • Blind Musicians: Linda Mentink, Chairperson
  • Blind Parents: Stacy Cervenka, Chairperson
  • Blind Professional Journalists: Elizabeth Campbell and Bryan Bashin,
  • Co-Chairpersons
  • Careers in Automotive Related Specialties: Marcus Simmons, Chairperson
  • Legislative Initiatives: Don Burns, Chairperson
  • Living History: Michael Freholm, Chairperson
  • NFB in Judaism: David Stayer, Chairperson
  • NFB LGBT Group: Tai Tomasi, Chairperson
  • NFB Lions: Ramona Walhof and Milton Ota, Co-Chairpersons
  • Orientation and Mobility: Edward Bell, Chairperson
  • Piano Technology: Don Mitchell, Chairperson
  • Travel and Tourism: Amy Baron, President
  • Webmasters: Gary Wunder, Chairperson