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AFBAmerican Foundation®
for the Blind

Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss

AFB Leadership Conference 2018 Topics

Welcome to the 2018 American Foundation for the Blind Leadership Conference. The conference is perfect for professionals who want to provide high-quality education and rehabilitation services to children and adults with visual impairments, promote employment opportunities, learn to effectively use current technologies, develop as impactful leaders, and network and collaborate with the experts. Participants will find time at the conference to be informative, energizing, inspiring and relevant.

The program is evolving, and will be updated frequently to reflect the most current information. Presentations, dates and times are subject to change.

Up to sixteen hours of professional development credits will be offered for those seeking continuing education credits for recertification through the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals (ACVREP) and approval is being sought to offer credits through the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC).

The Helen Keller Achievement Awards dinner and ceremony will be held on the evening of April 4th at the conference hotel. The conference will begin on Thursday morning, April 5th, and run through 4:30 PM on Saturday, April 7th.

The conference will begin each morning with a general session, followed by concurrent sessions for the remainder of the day. The Migel Medal luncheon will take place on Saturday, April 7th. Various evening events and receptions will be announced closer to the conference.

The Thursday general session will feature a technology panel discussion on how leading technology companies are raising the bar for blind and visually impaired users, moderated by Jennison Asuncion, Engineering Manager, Accessibility, LinkedIn. Panelists will include Sarah Herrlinger, Director, Global Accessibility Policy and Initiatives, Apple; Megan Lawrence, Accessibility Technical Evangelist, Microsoft; and Jeffrey Wieland, Director of Accessibility, Facebook.

The world’s leading technology companies will share insights on how they operationalize accessibility, engage with assistive technology users and improve opportunities for persons with visual impairments.

The Friday general session will feature a panel on employment, moderated by Russell Shaffer, Director, Global Culture, Diversity and Inclusion, Walmart. Panelists will include Jennison Asuncion, Engineering Manager, Accessibility, LinkedIn; Jen Guadagno, Senior Program Manager, Inclusive Hiring, Microsoft; and others to be announced.

The discussion will focus on the hiring and promotion of people with visual impairments in corporate America.

Details on the Saturday general session will be forthcoming.

Leadership

The AFB Leadership Conference will feature a robust, comprehensive and highly engaging leadership track from Thursday, April 5th, through Saturday, April 7th. Nationally known thought leaders, writers, researchers and presenters will lead interactive sessions as they discuss generational dynamics and their impact on the workplace, how to direct professional development, organizational succession planning, manage change and more. The track culminates in the creation of a leadership action agenda intended to establish actions to be undertaken that will result in people with visual impairments enhancing their knowledge, skills and abilities to assume greater leadership roles.

Following are the leadership presentations planned so far:

Thursday, April 5


Setting the Tone and Framework for the Leadership Track, with Emphasis on Generational Dynamics in the Workplace (Two hours)
Speakers: Anna Liotta, President and CEO, Consultance; and Sylvia Stinson Perez, CEO, Executive Director, Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind

Overcoming Your Immunity to Change (Three hours)
Speakers: Amy Climer, Ph.D., Climber Consulting; and Megan Dodd, Director, AFB Center on Vision Loss
Description: We often move forward on goals with the best of intentions, but soon find ourselves stuck and nothing has changed. The reason: we have hidden motivations and beliefs that prevent us from changing. Harvard researchers Robert Kegan and Lisa Lahey discovered a powerful process called Immunity to Change that deciphers how we get in our own way when we try to change. Learn this process by applying it to a change you are trying to make in your life.

Friday, April 6

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each.)

Leadership Storytelling and Emotional Intelligence (Parts 1 and 2)
Speakers: Jeremy Robinson, MSW, MCC, Executive Coach and Management Consultant, and President, Robinson Capital Corporation; and Tanner Gers, Motivational Speaker and Success Coach
Description: Participants will be empowered to help them find their voices and begin to practice the art of good storytelling as a core component of becoming leaders and managers. This session will be experiential storytelling journeys for each of the participants. Participants will learn elements of good storytelling, including how to use emotional intelligence domains, personal biography and vulnerability to practice what good storytelling sounds and feels like. The ultimate goal is to give participants more confidence and self-compassion in finding their own voices to further both career and personal development goals.

Exceptional Leadership: Overcoming Challenges, Inspiring Others, Achieving Success(Panel)
Moderator: George Abbott, Chief Knowledge Advancement Officer, AFB
Speakers: Anita Aaron, Executive Director, World Institute on Disability; Helaine Blumenthal, Ph.D., Classroom Program Manager, Wiki Education Foundation; and Jack Chen, Product Counsel, Google
Description: These leaders, who are visually impaired, will discuss how they have overcome challenges, assumed leadership roles and helped others develop as leaders. They will also explore characteristics and opportunities that helped them achieve career and other goals and discover the impactful projects they are leading.

Succession Planning for All Levels
Speakers: Constance Engelstad, President, The Shaman Group; and Sharon Z. Sacks, Ph.D., Educational Consultant, SZS Educational Consulting

Saturday, April 7

(All concurrent sessions before the Migel Medal luncheon are one hour each. The session after lunch is two hours.)

Professional Development through Self-reviews and Performance Reviews
Speakers: Constance Engelstad, President, The Shaman Group; and Sharon Z. Sacks, Ph.D., Educational Consultant, SZS Educational Consulting

Developing Leadership in Youth (Panel)
Moderator: Megan Dodd, Director, AFB Center on Vision Loss

Creating an Action Agenda for the Development of Leaders Who Are Blind (Two-hours)
Speakers: Kirk Adams, President and CEO, AFB; Ron Morey, President, Profound Results Consulting; and Jeremy Robinson, MSW, MCC, Executive Coach and Management Consultant, and President, Robinson Capital Corporation
Description: This session will serve as the capstone for the leadership track. In the coming year, we want to ensure we maintain solid momentum by engaging participants in a highly interactive session that will inspire attendees to help create a vision that will prepare blind leaders for a variety of roles across sectors. Our intent is to clarify what we have achieved over this three-day leadership conference, while spurring action in the coming year through creation of an action agenda to improve leadership development opportunities for people who are blind or visually impaired and identifying how we will reconvene and map out next steps for this initiative.

21st Century Agenda on Aging and Vision

Several hours of content on older adults and visual impairments will be available throughout the conference. An invitation-only all-day workshop for administrators of the Older Individuals Who Are Blind Programs is being held on Thursday, April 5th. Please be send an email to B. J. LeJeune of Mississippi State University at bjlejeune@colled.msstate.edu for details.

Friday, April 6

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each.)

Update on the 21st Century Agenda on Aging and Vision Loss
Facilitator: Mark Richert, Esq., Director, Public Policy and Senior Advisor, Strategic Initiatives AFB
Speakers: Megan Dodd, Director, AFB Center on Vision Loss; Neva Fairchild, National Independent Living and Employment Specialist, AFB; Priscilla Rogers, Acting Director, Web Programs, AFB; and Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, AFB
Description: The 21st Century Agenda on Aging and Vision Loss is a collaboration between experts in the many fields relating to aging and vision loss with a goal to raise awareness, facilitate increased and improved services, and protect and promote the rights of seniors with low vision. During this session, hear an update on the agenda’s four goals from AFB staff who facilitate this national effort.

Goal 1 Spotlight: Who Is the Older Individual with Vision Loss?
Facilitator: Mark Richert, Esq., Director, Public Policy and Senior Advisor, Strategic Initiatives, AFB
Description: What do we know about older individuals with vision loss and how has this population changed over time? What are the key challenges and opportunities facing this population? Learn the answers to these questions and more during this informative session, which is broken up into two segments:
  • Demographics on Aging and Vision Loss. What about the 60-Plus Adult?
    Speaker: Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, AFB
  • Research on Aging, Vision Loss, Co-morbidities and Implications
    Speaker: Anne Riddering, Ph.D., OTR, CLVT, COMS, Director of Rehabilitation Services for Henry Ford Health System’s Visual Rehabilitation and Research Center of Michigan, Research on Aging, Vision Loss, Co-morbidities and Implications

Goal 2 Spotlight: Best Practices in the Administration of the OIB Program
Facilitator: Priscilla Rogers, Acting Director, Web Programs, AFB
Speakers: Adele Crudden, Ph.D., Researcher, National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, Mississippi State University; Kendra Farrow, M.A., National Research and Training Associate, Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, Mississippi State University; and B. J. LeJeune, M.Ed., Training Supervisor, National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, Mississippi State University
Description: A task force to address best practices in the administration and implementation of the Older Individuals who are Blind Program was formed in 2017. The Best Practices Task Force considered 16 topic areas impacting the efficient delivery of services in state OIB Programs. Sponsored by the OIB-TAC at Mississippi State University, fourteen subject matter experts convened to address these sixteen topic areas. This presentation is a summary of their work to reach consensus.

Fall Prevention
Facilitator: Megan Dodd, Director, AFB Center on Vision Loss
Speakers: Christy Lau, MSSW, Program Director, Partners in Care Foundation; and Ed Lecher, Older Individuals Who Are Blind Program Manager, Minnesota State Services for the Blind
Description: In this session, learn about the Fall Coalition in California headed by Christy Lau, and the steps they have taken to include individuals with vision loss. Christy will discuss the NCOA fall prevention program and opportunities for state agencies to get involved. Ed Lecher will discuss how his agency has addressed fall prevention, the collaborative the agency has done with other agencies, and possible funding sources such as leveraging monies available from home and community-based services.

Saturday, April 7

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each unless otherwise noted.)

Goal 3 Spotlight: Engaging our Communities to Think about Livability
Facilitator: Megan Dodd, Director, AFB Center on Vision Loss
Speakers: Sharon Baggett, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of Indianapolis, Center for Aging & Community; and Anne Riddering, Ph.D., OTR, CLVT, COMS, Director of Rehabilitation Services for Henry Ford Health System’s Visual Rehabilitation and Research Center of Michigan, Research on Aging, Vision Loss, Co-morbidities and Implications
Description: During this session, learn about SiteWise, the publication of Henry Ford Health System’s research on adapting public spaces to increase inclusiveness and accessibility. Hear about how the University of Indianapolis’s Center for Aging & Community engaged locals and created an active group of livability advocates, and their step-by-step guide to creating an advocacy movement in your community.

Goal 4 Spotlight: Coping with Low Vision, the Emotional Impact
Speaker: Audrey Demmitt, R.N., VisionAware Peer Advisor
Description: Audrey Demmitt will discuss the emotional impact of vision loss in older adults including depression, anxiety, isolation and loneliness. She will present a tool that can be used to screen clients for depression and to monitor depression symptoms so appropriate referrals can be made. A panel of consumers will engage in a Q & A discussion of their needs for resources, potential solutions during this time of limited services, and the important role support groups play in adjusting to vision loss.

The 2nd National Conversation on Issues Related to Aging and Vision Loss—Consumer Voices (Two hours)
Facilitator: Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, AFB
Speakers: Amber Carroll, Director, Partnership with Senior Center Without Walls; Mike Cole; Megan Dodd, Director, AFB Center on Vision Loss; Neva Fairchild, National Independent Living and Employment Specialist, AFB; Mark Richert, Esq., Director, Public Policy and Senior Advisor, Strategic Initiatives, AFB; Priscilla Rogers, Acting Director, Web Programs, AFB; and San Francisco Lighthouse consumers as well as consumers from the SF Bay area and from across the country via the Senior Center Without Walls interface
Description: During the 1st National Conversation on Aging and Vision Loss (2015), we highlighted four key challenges facing this population: elder justice, long term services and support, healthy aging, and retirement security. In this session, Senior Center Without Walls partners with AFB to broadcast this event live, so individuals across the nation can participate in the conversation. Hear an update on the four key challenges from AFB staff and directly from consumers about the issues that are most important to them. Don’t miss your opportunity to weigh in and engage in the conversation during this landmark session!

Technology

Technology for youth and adults in the education, work, community or home settings will be highlighted throughout the conference.

Thursday, April 5


How Leading Tech Companies Are Raising the Bar for Blind and Visually Impaired Users
Moderator: Jennison Asuncion, Engineering Manager, Accessibility, LinkedIn
Panelists: Sarah Herrlinger, Director, Global Accessibility Policy and Initiatives, Apple; Megan Lawrence, Accessibility Technical Evangelist, Microsoft; and Jeffrey Wieland, Director of Accessibility, Facebook
Description:The world’s leading technology companies will share insights on how they operationalize accessibility, engage with assistive technology users and improve opportunities for persons with visual impairments.

AccessWorld Technology Summit
Facilitator: Lee Huffman, AccessWorld, Editor and Manager, Technology Information, AFB
Description: This five-hour session, kicked off by Google, will feature practical, pertinent information about new accessibility developments in key technologies and offer opportunities for attendees to interact with mainstream technology and accessibility experts.

Friday, April 6

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each.)

Guidelines for Giving an Accessible and Interesting PowerPoint Presentation Speaker: Ike Presley, TVI, CLVT, CATIS, National Program Manager, AFB
Description: Professionals in visual impairments often share knowledge and information about technology with individuals with disabilities, family members and professionals. Presenters use PowerPoint to organize and display their content. Often presenters are unaware that content will not be accessible to all audience members. Careful development of the presentation can ensure that it will be accessible to everyone. This session will provide guidelines for making PowerPoint presentations accessible and interesting.

TMAP—Tactile Maps Automated Production
Speakers: Greg Kehret, Director, Media and Accessible Design Lab, Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired; and Naomi Rosenberg, Senior Designer, Media and Accessible Design Lab, Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Description: The significant implications of TMAP, a web-based app for rapid production of tactile street maps of any location in the U.S, for education and orientation and mobility of blind and visually impaired travelers will be discussed. TMAP as an aid for teaching tactile literacy, the ease with which TMAP can enter curriculum, and the ease with which TMAPs are generated will also be discussed.

Accessibyte: Fun and funky AT Speaker: Joseph Jorgenson, MSEd., COMS, CVRT, CATIS, Lead Developer, Accessibyte, Assistive Technology Instructor
Description: Learn how you and your students can benefit from Accessibyte software. Developer insights, teacher recommendations and student experiences will be shared. Accessibyte Online, a cloud-based AT service, will be introduced, in addition to discussions on Typio, the accessible typing tutor, Quick Cards, Accessibyte Arcade and the Teacher Dashboard.

Saturday, April 7

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each unless otherwise noted.)

Coping Through Technology: Tools for Seniors with Combined Loss of Vision and Hearing
Speaker: Mark Armstrong, CVRT, Senior Adult Program Specialist, Helen Keller National Center; ACVREP VRT Subject-Matter Expert; and Adjunct Lecturer, Hunter College Department of Special Education
Description: This session will highlight alerting, communication, and mobile technologies that assist persons with dual vision and hearing loss maintain independence.

Accessible Interactive Math with Desmos Speakers: Jason Merrill, Lead Calculator Engineer, Desmos; Stephen Clower, Accessibility Engineer, Desmos; and Jennifer Wales, Lead Designer, Desmos
Description: The speakers will discuss software designed to make it easier for anyone to author interactive mathematical material that is accessible to sighted, visually impaired, and blind teachers and students, including braille- and screen reader-accessible and editable math notations and audio representations of mathematical graphs.

Accessibility and VI Professionals: How the Modern Practitioner Becomes an Accessibility Facilitator for Students with Visual Impairments
Speaker: Yue-Ting Siu, Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments and Assistant Professor, Department of Special Education, Program in Visual Impairments, San Francisco State University
Description: As classroom and community information has evolved to include digital information and multimedia, much of our students' instructional materials now include online curriculum, mobile apps, and interactive technologies. The scope of practitioners' responsibilities are no longer just about providing our students with large print and braille copies; rather, the savvy practitioner must understand how to evaluate educational products for accessibility, know how to advocate for accessible digital media, remediate materials as needed for low vision or nonvisual learning, and deliver materials in a digital workflow. This session will focus on how the busy practitioner can empower IEP teams to support a digital workflow and empower students to be in charge of their own accessibility needs. Handouts will provide resources for how to ensure accessible multimedia are provided to students.

Employment

Successful employment and career advancement remain unacceptably elusive for most people who are visually impaired. Over a dozen hours will be devoted to preparation for work, finding employment and career advancement.

Thursday, April 5


Employment Empowerment—Make It Work: A Course for Career Success! (Two hours)
Speaker: Paul Hippolitus, Director, Employment and Disability Benefits Initiative, World Institute on Disability
Description: This presentation will provide an overview of a core section of WID E3, a groundbreaking course of study that teaches competitive employment skills to people with disabilities. The E3 course content helps job seekers build and develop employment self-confidence and better understand the intricacies of today’s evolving world of work. Evidence-based outcomes from our efforts will be shared and time will be provided for questions.

Economic Empowerment: From ABLE Accounts to Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act Financial Education Requirements (Three hours)
Speakers: Thomas Foley J.D., World Institute on Disability, and Anita Aaron, Executive Director, World Institute on Disability
Description: This presentation will explore a set of new financial empowerment tools and information to encourage employment, savings, budgeting, credit and paying down debt. Discover the power of new ABLE Accounts for saving without jeopardizing benefits, and make benefits programs work in one’s favor through state-specific disability benefits planning, training and resources from WID’s Disability Benefits 101 website.

Friday, April 6

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each.)

General Session: Employment Diversity and Inclusion
Moderator: Russell Shaffer, Director, Global Culture, Diversity and Inclusion, Walmart
Panelists: Jennison Asuncion, Engineering Manager, Accessibility, LinkedIn; Jen Guadagno, Senior Program Manager, Inclusive Hiring, Microsoft; and others to be announced
Description: The discussion will focus on the hiring and promotion of people with visual impairments in corporate America.

Youth Transition (Panel)
Moderator: Russell Shaffer, Director, Global Culture, Diversity and Inclusion, Walmart

Job Retention: Characteristics and Services Associated with Maintaining Employment
Speakers: Adele Crudden, Ph.D., Researcher, National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, Mississippi State University; and Anne Steverson, Research Associate, National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, Mississippi State University
Description: Recent WIOA legislation reaffirms the role of state/federal vocational rehabilitation agencies in assisting persons with disabilities in retaining employment and pursuing career advancement. The speakers examined the personal characteristics and services received by employed persons with vision loss seeking vocational rehabilitation services and looked for similarities and differences in employed and unemployed applicants, how persons who retained employment differed from those who did not, and strategies that appear conducive to promoting job retention and advancement.

Putting Your Best Foot Forward: A Job Search Intervention for Transition-Age Youth
Speakers: Jennifer Cmar, Assistant Research Professor, National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, Mississippi State University; and Michele McDonnall, Ph.D., CRC, Director and Research Professor, National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, Mississippi State university
Description: Early paid work experiences are associated with future employment outcomes for youth who are blind or visually impaired, particularly for those who find their jobs independently. To examine the effectiveness of adding a guided job search program to a summer work experience program, researchers at the National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision are conducting a study with transition-age youth who are blind or visually impaired. The intensive 5-day job search program uses a group training model based on principles of active learning and includes activities designed to strengthen youths’ job search skills and enhance their self-efficacy. In this session, presenters will introduce the job search program and share preliminary results of the program’s effects on short-term outcomes.

Saturday, April 7

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each unless otherwise noted.)

The Pearson Mentoring Experiment: How a New Corporate Mentoring Program is Raising Career Expectations and Empowering Blind College Students and Young Adults Throughout the Globe
Speakers: Elizabeth Delfs, Esq., Vice President, Global Accessibility Counsel and Director, Changing the Channel Corporate Mentoring Program, Pearson; and Bjarne Tellman, Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel, Pearson
Description: The corporate world has a new tool to repair low expectations and "career avoidance" that hold back young adults from pursuing professional careers. Pearson, Inc., a large global company, developed an innovative virtual mentoring program for the benefit of college students and young adults who are seeking to identify and pursue careers that match their skills and interests. Evaluation results point to demonstrable growth and change for both mentors and mentees. The program can be easily duplicated by other corporations and continues to accept applications from blind young adults throughout the globe.

Implications of the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act
Speaker: To Be Announced

Education

Sessions on matters related to educating youth who are blind or visually impaired will be provided throughout the conference.

Thursday, April 5


Education Policy and Practice Summit (Three-and-a-half-hour afternoon session)
Facilitators: Mark Richert, Esq., Director, Public Policy and Senior Advisor, Strategic Initiatives, AFB; and Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, AFB

Friday, April 6

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each.)

Accessible Media for Students Who Are Blind and Low Vision
Speakers: Cindy Camp, Marketing and Communications Specialist, Described and Captioned Media Program; and Jason Stark, Director, Described and Captioned Media Program
Description: Multimedia is beneficial to all students. However, teachers of visually impaired students may not use video, may not be familiar with audiodescription or cannot locate accessible media. The Described and Captioned Media Program is a free, federally funded program that provides accessible educational media.

State Education Policy Updates: Focus on California
Speakers: Mark Richert, Esq., Director, Public Policy and Senior Advisor, Strategic Initiatives, AFB; Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, AFB; and Yue-Ting Siu, Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments and Assistant Professor, Department of Special Education, Program in Visual Impairments, San Francisco State University

Cerebral Visual Impairment, Cerebral Visual Disorders, and Cerebral Visual Deficiencies: Discussion on Definitions
Speakers: Lea Hyvarinen, M.D., Ph.D., Prof. H.C., Faculty of Rehabilitation Sciences, Technical University, Dortmund, Germany; and John Ravenscroft, Professor and Chair, Childhood Visual Impairment and Head and Director, Scottish Sensory Centre, The Moray House, School of Education, The University of Edinburgh, and Editor in Chief, British Journal of Visual Impairment
Description: A shared understanding of what CVI/CVD/CVDs mean across international borders is important. IDC-11 may help to clarify the existence of two different groups of children with disorders in the visual brain when defined for educational purposes, yet uses Cerebral Visual Disorders as the medical diagnose that combines both groups. The speakers propose that definitions for Cerebral Visual Impairment and Cerebral Visual Deficiencies suggested by the International Council of Ophthalmology be considered.

Determining Effective Print Size for Students with Low Vision: An Evidenced-based Evaluation Program
Speaker: Amanda Hall Lueck, Ph.D., Professor Emerita, Department of Special Education, San Francisco State University
Description: A new evidenced-based evaluation program to determine appropriate print size for students who have low vision is now available through the American Printing House for the Blind. This program provides a set of materials applicable to students through all grade levels, beginning at the pre-primer stage, to help students, educators and parents quickly find the optimum print size for various educational and leisure tasks. It includes sentence and text reading cards at different reading levels along with a guidebook for evaluators. This presentation will discuss the development of the tool and how to use it with students who have low vision. Additionally, ways in which it can be used to uncover some of the unique reading requirements of students who have cerebral visual impairment will be discussed so that the tool can be applied effectively to this population.

Saturday, April 7

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each unless otherwise noted.)

Braille Literacy Statistics Research Study
Speakers: Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, AFB; and Frances Mary D'Andrea, Independent Educational Consultant in Visual Impairments, Greater Pittsburgh Area

State of the States Research Update
Speakers: Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, AFB; and doctoral scholars (TBA)

Other important topics will be covered during the conference as well. Listed below is a sampling of what are planned so far.

Friday, April 6

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each.)

Research, Writing and the Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness
Speakers: Rebecca Burrichter, Senior Editor; Sandra Lewis, Ed.D., Editor in Chief; and, Rona Pogrund, Practice Editor, Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness (JVIB)

Enhancing Independence with a Low Vision Focus: A Field Guide for Caregivers and Professionals
Speaker: Ed Haines, Vision Rehabilitation Therapist, Program Leader, Low Vision Focus, Hadley Institute for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Description: The purpose of this initiative is to address the needs of the rapidly growing population of older adults with low vision who have not been served by traditional rehabilitation entities. Caregivers and professionals responsible for this population are also customarily not part of the traditional vision rehabilitation field, and include such persons as spouses, children, and professionals in nursing homes or assisted living facilities. "Enhancing Independence with a Low Vision Focus" is a multimedia reference tool that is targeted to sighted caregivers and professionals unfamiliar with vision loss so that they might quickly identify rehabilitation solutions for those under their care without undue research or effort.

Saturday, April 7

(All concurrent sessions are one hour each unless otherwise noted.)

Powerful Partnerships: Benefits of Collaboration between Eye Care Providers and Educators When Serving Students with Low Vision
Speakers: Lizbeth Barclay, TVI/Orientation and Mobility Specialist, Low Vision Clinic, University of California, Berkeley School of Optometry; and Marlena Chu, O.D., FAAO Low Vision Diplomate, American Academy of Optometry, and Chief, Low Vision Services, University of California, Berkeley School of Optometry
Description: We all know of the importance of information provided by vision specialists to inform the assessment and teaching practices for our students with low vision. Too often TVIs and orientation and mobility specialists must proceed with incomplete, incomprehensible or out-of-date vision reports that make it challenging to confidently engage in best teaching practices. This workshop highlights the importance of pro-active collaboration between educators and vision specialists. Essential elements of a low vision exam for school-aged children will be described and implications for classroom recommendations will be included. Strategies for teacher/doctor collaboration will be discussed.

Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness Peer Reviewer Workshop
Speakers: Rebecca Burrichter, Senior Editor; and Sandra Lewis, Ed.D., Editor in Chief, Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness (JVIB)

National Disability Insurance Scheme: A New Australian Focus on Support
Speaker: Maribel Steel, VisionAware Peer Advisor, Author, Speaker and Positive Vision Educator
Description: Learn about The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), a new Australian funding system for people with a disability that is designed to give participants more choice and control of the services they require. Is this true? Decide for yourself and be part of the audience where you can gain an inside perspective as a participant on the new scheme and discover why the funding model in its infancy is being received with mixed reactions. The speaker will deliver a creative presentation based on her personal experience and her research on the new system.

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