edited by Sharon Strzalkowski
The announcement of products and services in this column does not represent an endorsement by the American Council of the Blind, its officers, or staff. Listings are free of charge for the benefit of our readers. “The ACB E-Forum” cannot be held responsible for the reliability of the products and services mentioned. To submit items for this column, send a message to [email protected], or phone the national office at 1-800-424-8666, and leave a message in Sharon Lovering’s mailbox. Information must be received at least two months ahead of publication date.
Breaking News from Oregon
Thanks to the hard work of the Oregon Council of the Blind, pharmacies in Oregon will soon be required to notify patients about the availability of a prescription reader, provide the reader to individuals who are blind or visually impaired and make sure labels are compatible with the reader. The state legislature passed the bill on June 6th; it is on its way to the governor’s desk to be signed into law!
Oregon is now the second state to have passed a law requiring accessible prescriptions. To read the text of the new law, visit https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2019R1/Downloads/MeasureDocument/HB2935/B-Engrossed.
If you’d like your state to be next, contact En-Vision America at 1-800-890-1180 to find out how.
NLS Name Change
NLS has received final approval from the Librarian of Congress to change its name. Beginning on Oct. 1, its name will change officially to “National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled,” though it will continue to be referred to by the abbreviation NLS. Visit https://www.loc.gov/strategic-plan/ to learn more about the Library’s “user-centered” goal in the strategic plan.
Lighthouse Guild recently announced that Dr. Vladimir Kefalov is the recipient of the 2019 Bressler Prize for his outstanding advances in vision science research. Dr. Kefalov’s work has generated new insights into mechanisms of multiple human vision disorders, including the causes of photoreceptor dysfunction and degeneration, which affect color and night vision, that are spurring treatments for vision loss.
Dr. Kefalov is a Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences, and the Department of Neuroscience, at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Mo.
Tiffany Schmidt, PhD, is the recipient of the 2019 Pisart Award for her significant contributions to the field of vision science. Her work in sensory research and circadian biology is advancing the understanding of adult retinal function and retinal development.
Dr. Schmidt is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurobiology and Associate Director of the Neurobiology Master’s Program at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.
Xavier Society Goes Digital
The Xavier Society for the Blind has just completed the conversion to digital talking book format. And the society has added some popular titles on cartridge to its library! Its catalog contains more than 1,700 braille and audio titles. One of Xavier’s primary objectives is to choose new titles which will appeal to a larger audience. Adding titles in Spanish is a key objective as well. For more information, including how to register for our materials, go to xaviersocietyfortheblind.org or call 1-800-637-9193.
AFB Honors Two
Two Mississippi State University leaders are being recognized with prestigious honors from the American Foundation for the Blind for their impactful work in the blindness and low vision field.
Elton Moore, retired MSU College of Education associate dean and professor who also is a former director of the MSU-based National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision, and Michele McDonnall, current NRTC director and MSU research professor, accepted two of the organization’s highest awards.
Moore said receiving the Migel Medal — the highest honor in the blindness field — is among the most significant achievements of his career.
A pre-eminent leader in the blindness field over the last quarter century, Moore’s leadership of MSU’s then Rehabilitation Research and Training Center included oversight of considerable research related to the employment of people with vision loss.
The Corinne Kirchner Research Award honors individuals whose leadership and dedication illuminate the most pressing needs of people with vision loss through timely, innovative and authoritative research.
McDonnall, who has been NRTC director for eight years, serves as the principal investigator of multiple projects for the 2015-2020 Rehabilitation Research and Training Center grant on Employment for Individuals with Blindness or Other Visual Impairments from NIDILRR.
AAPD’s New President and CEO
Maria Town has been selected as AAPD’s new president & CEO. Ms. Town, a well-recognized disability rights advocate, began her new job on July 15, 2019. She previously served as the Director of the City of Houston Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities.
New from NBP
Newly available from National Braille Press is “The Sound of Silence,” by Katrina Goldsaito and Julia Kuo. It comes in contracted UEB braille for preschoolers and up.
“Grumpy Monkey” by Suzanne Lang and Max Lang is the newest book in the Great Expectations series. It comes as a print-and-braille book for ages 3 to 8. Jim Panzee – the chimpanzee – is in a terrible mood, and his friends can’t understand why. See if you can figure out why by the end of this book.
Also available is “Days Like This” by Simon James. It’s a print-and-braille picture book celebrating such things as the fun of sleeping outdoors, picnicking on the beach, bouncing on the bed, etc.
Newly available is “She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World,” by Chelsea Clinton and Alexandra Boiger. It’s available in contracted UEB for ages 4 to 10. The book celebrates 13 American women who helped shape our country by speaking out, by staying seated, and sometimes by captivating an audience: Harriet Tubman, Helen Keller, Clara Lemlich, Nellie Bly, Virginia Apgar, Maria Tallchief, Claudette Colvin, Ruby Bridges, Margaret Chase Smith, Sally Ride, Florence Griffith Joyner, Oprah Winfrey, and Sonia Sotomayor.