Affiliate News

Teachers’ Features Will Spark Your Interest at the 2017 Convention
Convention week may have been shortened, but the American Association of Blind Teachers (AABT) is not short on informative and fun activities for you to attend this year.  If you read on, I am sure that you will find something that will spark your interest at this year’s convention in Sparks, Nev.!
We kick off convention week with our annual AABT breakfast and program on Sunday, July 2 from 7 to 8:15 a.m.  After a delicious breakfast and fellowship with colleagues and friends, Steve Dresser, CEO of Jennco Productions, will give us a presentation titled, “Customer Support: Another Kind of Classroom.” Based on Steve’s experiences in his data processing career, this will be a brief discussion of what constitutes effective customer support and some techniques that he has used to make it work.
Monday, July 3, will also be a very busy day for AABT, with three events in a row. The title of our 1:15 workshop will be, “Teaching Then and Now: How Has Teaching Changed Since the Beginning of Your Teaching Career?” Our program presenters will be AABT president Kate Crohan and board member Donna Brown, who are both experienced teachers. Issues that will be addressed include: changes regarding problem-solving to access reports, record-keeping, material for online classes, communication among colleagues in public and private schools, and changes in technology that affect our teaching.  Our business meeting will take place at 2:45. Come and share your ideas and help make important decisions for AABT.  Finally, we end our day on a light note at 4:15 when we join Friends-In-Art for a Round and Harmony Sing.  Tune up your voices and prepare to sing familiar songs and learn new ones!
As you can see, AABT has some great activities planned for you at this year’s convention.  We hope to see you there.
Spend Independence Day with the Independent Visually Impaired Entrepreneurs
The 4th of July is the day that we Americans annually set aside to celebrate the independence of our great nation. A very fitting way to celebrate Independence Day would be to spend part of your day with the Independent Visually Impaired Entrepreneurs, because IVIE has some exciting activities planned for the 4th of July at this year’s convention!
IVIE’s annual luncheon, program and business meeting will take place on Tuesday, July 4th from 12:15 to 2:30 p.m. After enjoying a sumptuous meal and some time for fellowship, we will have a presentation titled, “Let’s Change the Numbers,” by Gabe Vega, CEO of Commtech USA, a company that provides remote technology consulting, training and support services to consumers with a specialty in assistive technology for people who are disabled.  Using the latest in video, VOIP and telephone technologies, Commtech USA can provide these services to those who may use the services based on need or convenience from the comfort of their homes.  Gabe is excited to share with us some recent developments, including expanding operations to employ people who are disabled and an interest in searching out strategic partners in the Tucson area.  Immediately following this presentation will be the annual business meeting, including the election of officers, and an opportunity to make important decisions for our organization.
The IVIE Business Expo will take place after the business meeting from 2:45 to 5:30 p.m.  Here, blind and visually impaired business owners will showcase their products and services and answer your questions.  Of course, browsing is free and no ticket will be necessary to be admitted.  However, if you would like to have a booth at the IVIE Business Expo, you must reserve it in advance.  The cost will be $10 for IVIE members and $25 for non-members, with the option of applying $15 of this cost toward annual IVIE dues.  By the way, IVIE’s calendar year runs from July 1st to June 30, so this would be an excellent time to pay your dues.  Annual dues for IVIE are only $15.  You can reserve your expo booth and/or pay your annual dues online by visiting IVIE’s online at Or you can make a check payable to IVIE, and send it to our president, Ardis Bazyn, 2121 Scott Rd. Apt. 105, Burbank, CA 91504.  Please designate whether your check is for annual dues, an expo booth or both.  If you are submitting your dues, be sure to fill out and include the IVIE membership form, which can be found on our web site. You can also learn more about IVIE by browsing our web site.
In addition to our Independence Day activities, don’t forget about the annual RSVA/IVIE Mixer! This year, it will take place Saturday evening, July 1st, immediately following the opening general session. Attending this mixer would be an excellent way to wind down after a long evening in the convention hall, have refreshments and fellowship with friends, and get convention week off to a great start!
We hope that you will attend IVIE’s activities this year. A lot of hard work and planning has gone into our program, and we promise that you will not be disappointed.  If you have any questions about the IVIE Expo or this year’s program offerings, contact Carla Hayes at (724) 941-8184 or email her at
ACB of Ohio Offers Scholarships
ACB-Ohio offers six scholarships to an Ohio resident or someone attending an Ohio college or university. All information can be found on The deadline is Aug. 1, so start getting your materials together!