by Janet Dickelman
This article is always fun to write! Saying thank you doesn't seem sufficient; however, there are so many people for whom I am so grateful.
The excellent staff of the Hyatt Regency was always ready and willing to help. They were everywhere and always friendly and pleasant. The same can be said for the staff of the convention center. Staff from Visit Columbus volunteered at the airport and sponsored production of food court menus and business and restaurant lists in braille, large print and electronic formats.
I'm so fortunate to have such a wonderful convention committee. Without their assistance and support I couldn't do this job! Margarine Beaman worked tirelessly to obtain corporate sponsorships, make sure there were volunteers at the airport to make our arrivals and departures run smoothly, and made certain everything in the hotel was labeled accurately in large print and braille. Sally Benjamin, volunteer coordinator, worked so hard to schedule and maintain our wonderful group of volunteers. As always, the volunteers help to make our convention experience better, and this year we had a great group of volunteers!
Michael Fulghum planned and orchestrated a wide variety of tours. I've received many messages from attendees saying how much they enjoyed the tours. Deb Lewis did a great job of making sure the information desk ran smoothly. No one can ever replace Jim Shaw copying files; however, our information desk volunteers handled that task and so many others. Bruce Radtke did a myriad of tasks throughout the convention.
Michael Smitherman once again did a great job setting up our exhibit hall and keeping things running efficiently. Thanks to Michael for taking me around the hall Tuesday afternoon so I could personally thank all our vendors for being a part of the 2013 conference and convention. Committee vice chair Carla Ruschival helped in so many ways, offering suggestions, encouragement, and assistance with the pre-registration form and the program.
No convention is successful without the work of the host committee. This year's committee was so ably chaired by Vicky Prahin. Vicky I can't thank you enough for your hard work, dedication, can-do attitude and enthusiasm. You and your committee, comprised of Irwin Hott, Katie Frederick, Carl Kienzle, Chris Schumacher, Rob Rogers, Karen Cayse, Ann Gazelle, Mickey Prahin, Sue Wesley, and Linda Wyman, were everywhere and willing to do anything!
Thanks also to Larry Turnbull and ACB Radio for ensuring that so many programs were broadcast live or recorded for later broadcast on ACB Radio. If you weren't in Columbus or missed sessions, visit www.acbradio.org/acb and select the 2013 link to download the session(s).
A special thank you to Sharon Lovering and the communication center and Lane Waters and the registration staff for all their hard work.
The Next Two Years
Our 2014 convention will be in Las Vegas, Nev., at the Riviera Hotel. Reservation information will be available shortly online and via telephone. Please watch our website and the next "ACB Braille Forum" for details.
For those of you who had difficulty with the change of days this year, next year we will be back to our normal schedule. Pre-registration pickup will begin on Thursday, July 10th. Our first tours will be on Friday, July 11th. Opening session will be on Sunday evening, July 13. Our banquet will be on Friday, July 18.
In 2015 we will be at the Sheraton Dallas. Pre-registration pickup will open on Thursday, July 2. Our first tours will be on Friday, July 3. Opening session will be Sunday evening, July 5. Our banquet will be on Friday, July 10, and our final tours on Saturday, July 11.
Stay connected with all things pertaining to the 2014 conference and convention by subscribing to the convention e-mail list. If you have already subscribed to this list, you will continue to receive the convention information. If you have not subscribed, send a blank e-mail to
Feel free to contact me with any questions or comments. You can reach me via e-mail,
firstname.lastname@example.org, or call me at (651) 428-5059. Thank you for joining ACB in Columbus. I look forward to seeing you in Las Vegas!