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AFBAmerican Foundation®
for the Blind

Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss

Susan Spungin Elected Treasurer World Blind Union

NEW YORK (December 20, 2004)—Dr. Susan Spungin, vice president of International Programs and Special Projects at the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB), was elected to the post of World Blind Union (WBU) Treasurer on December 9, at the WBU General Assembly in Cape Town, South Africa.

During her four year post, Spungin hopes to ensure continued vitality and growth for the WBU by raising additional funds to support individuals and programs from developing countries—where an overwhelming majority of people who are blind live. In addition, she plans to raise funds for the 60 countries that are currently not represented by the WBU because they are unable to meet the financial requirements for membership.

"As treasurer I will do all I can to increase WBU revenue so we can continue to promote the prevention and treatment of blindness and advance the well-being of the180 million blind and visually impaired people worldwide," said Spungin.

Spungin previously served as the vice president for the WBU North America/Caribbean Region. She has worked in the field of blindness and visual impairment for her entire career, first as a teacher of the blind and partially sighted, and for the last 32 years in various capacities with AFB. Her many important contributions to the blindness field internationally include identifying and beginning to resolve the crisis of Braille literacy.

"Susan's leadership and work with individuals throughout the world who are blind and the professionals who work with them is truly exemplary," said Carl R. Augusto, AFB president and CEO. "We are extremely proud of Susan, and I am confident she will make incredible strides for the WBU."

The prestigious WBU is the only organization that speaks on behalf of blind and partially sighted persons of the world, representing 180 million blind and visually impaired persons from about 600 different organizations in 158 countries and having consultative status within the UN Agencies.

Financial support for Spungin's position as treasurer comes from the American Foundation for the Blind, the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, the National Federation of the Blind and the American Council of the Blind.

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Contact:
Carrie Fernandez
AFB Communications
212-502-7674
cfernandez@afb.net

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