Imagine, Nurture, Support, Prepare, Influence, Reflect, Evolve Providing Mentorship, Access & Peer Support Calling all ACB members who are interested in becoming an ACB Guide (Mentor) or Explorer (Mentee). We’re excited to launch the official mentoring program of the American Council of the Blind! The ACB INSPIRE mentoring program serves as a roadmap and places an emphasis on aiding and guiding potential leaders to expand their involvement at the local, state and/or national level. Applications will be accepted from July 18, 2023 to August 17, 2023. Selections will be made by August 31, 2023, with an announcement to follow shortly thereafter. The program officially begins September 14, 2023 and concludes on June 14, 2024. Read below to apply to be considered for participation in the program. The cohort will consist of 12 Guides and12 Explorers to become the Class of 2023-2024. Each applicant is required to meet specific criteria and agree to adhere to program guidelines. Non-compliance may result in forfeiture of participation in the program. ACB INSPIRE Applicant Criteria In order to serve as a Guide or mentor, applicants must meet the following criteria: An ACB member for 7 years or more Current on membership dues Have at least 5 years of confirmed leadership experience Submit Name and Contact Information for a letter of Recommendation. Have personal knowledge of ACB’s History, Mission, Purpose, and Core Values Agree to meet with designated Explorer/Mentee at least twice a month Conduct effective goal setting meetings with a designated explorer/mentee. Agree to keep all communication with explorer/mentee private and confidential Agree to attend and participate in scheduled group empowerment sessions, including quarterly Check Point Meetings and Office Hours feedback sessions Agree to submit a monthly report to the ACB Mentoring Team on Guide-Explorer progress Agree to complete end of program evaluations In order to qualify as an Explorer or mentee, applicants must meet the following criteria: An ACB member for at least 2 years Current on membership dues Demonstrate an eagerness to learn and grow Faithfully attend and participate in goal-setting sessions with a designated guide/mentor Agree to meet with Guide/Mentor at least twice a month Agree to attend and participate in group empowerment sessions, including quarterly Check Point Meetings and Office Hours feedback sessions Agree to submit a monthly report to the ACB Mentoring Team on Guide-Explorer progress Agree to complete end of program evaluations How to Apply Visit the links below to find the Mentee/Explorer and Mentor/Guide applications. Mentee/Explorer Application Mentor/Guide Application Contact the ACB INSPIRE Mentoring Team Communicate with the ACB INSPIRE Mentoring Team by sending email to: [email protected]. If it is more feasible to call, dial 409-866-5838. Thanks for your interest in becoming an ACB Guide or Explorer!
Braille, Large Print, and Audio Versions Also Available July 13, 2023 - The Nationwide Credit Reporting Agencies (NCRAs) reaffirmed their commitment to provide access to consumer credit reports for people who are blind or have low vision. The initiative, crafted with the American Council of the Blind and several blind consumers, will help improve the experiences of individuals who cannot read a standard print credit report. Under the plan announced today, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion will make online credit reports and related information more accessible for people with visual impairments through their jointly operated website, AnnualCreditReport.com. This is the official site to help consumers obtain free credit reports. Today’s initiative includes a renewed commitment to make credit reports available in braille, large print, and audio formats this summer. “We are thrilled with the renewed commitment of Equifax, Experian and TransUnion to provide accessible online credit information and large print, braille, and audio formats” said Dan Spoone, Interim Executive Director of the American Council of the Blind. “This initiative allows people with visual impairments to independently monitor and review their credit reports as all members of the public should. These are critical tools for obtaining financial services, managing financial health, avoiding identity theft and protecting the privacy of our financial information,” Spoone said. “As an industry, we are committed to providing a more inclusive financial ecosystem. Providing the tools that help all consumers live their financial best, and improving access to credit reports for the visually impaired, is another step that we are taking to help people better position themselves for strong financial futures,” said Aparna Shah, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Consumer Services at Equifax. “Experian is committed to ensuring all consumers have access to quality credit products and services and driving a more inclusive credit economy. We are pleased to continue improving access for consumers with visual impairments with these important tools,” said Wil Lewis, Global Chief Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Talent Acquisition Officer at Experian. “TransUnion is committed to empowering visually impaired consumers with tools to manage their credit and take control of their financial future, and today’s announcement is another step forward. Inclusion and belonging are at the heart of our work, which is why we are pleased to partner on this important initiative,” said Mike Doherty, Senior Vice President, Consumer Solutions, TransUnion. Renewed Commitment Today’s initiative includes a renewed commitment to provide credit reports in braille, large print, and audio formats, and to design online credit reports and related web pages in accordance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 Level AA, issued by the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). The guidelines help ensure that web sites are accessible to persons with disabilities. The credit reporting agencies first worked with ACB over 15 years ago when free credit reports were first rolled out in the United States. ACB President Deb Cook Lewis commented that “We appreciate the three Nationwide Credit Reporting Agencies and their collaboration over many years and the Structured Negotiation process that brought us to today’s announcement.” Braille, large print, and audio credit reports are available to people who are blind or low vision by calling 1-877-322-8228. Accessible online credit reports are available through annualcreditreport.com. About American Council of the Blind (ACB) American Council of the Blind is a national consumer-based advocacy organization working on behalf of blind and low vision Americans throughout the country, with members organized through seventy state and special interest affiliates. ACB is dedicated to improving the quality of life, equality of opportunity and independence of all people who have visual impairments. Its members and affiliated organizations have a long history of commitment to the advancement of policies and programs which will enhance independence for people who are blind and visually impaired. More information about ACB can be found by visiting the ACB website. About Equifax At Equifax (NYSE: EFX), we believe knowledge drives progress. As a global data, analytics, and technology company, we play an essential role in the global economy by helping financial institutions, companies, employers, and government agencies make critical decisions with greater confidence. Our unique blend of differentiated data, analytics, and cloud technology drives insights to power decisions to move people forward. Headquartered in Atlanta and supported by nearly 14,000 employees worldwide, Equifax operates or has investments in 24 countries in North America, Central and South America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific region. For more information, visit Equifax.com. About Experian Experian is the world’s leading global information services company. During life’s big moments – from buying a home or a car, to sending a child to college, to growing a business by connecting with new customers – we empower consumers and our clients to manage their data with confidence. We help individuals to take financial control and access financial services, businesses to make smarter decisions and thrive, lenders to lend more responsibly, and organizations to prevent identity fraud and crime. We have 21,700 people operating across 30 countries and every day we’re investing in new technologies, talented people, and innovation to help all our clients maximize every opportunity. With corporate headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, we are listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and are a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index. Learn more at www.experianplc.com or visit our global content hub at our global news blog for the latest news and insights from the Group. Experian and the Experian marks used herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of Experian and its affiliates. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners. About TransUnion TransUnion is a global information and insights company with over 12,000 associates operating in more than 30 countries. We make trust possible by ensuring each person is reliably represented in the marketplace. We do this with a Tru™ picture of each person: an actionable view of consumers, stewarded with care. Through our acquisitions and technology investments we have developed innovative solutions that extend beyond our strong foundation in core credit into areas such as marketing, fraud, risk and advanced analytics. As a result, consumers and businesses can transact with more confidence and achieve great things. We call this Information for Good® — and it leads to economic opportunity, great experiences and personal empowerment for millions of people around the world. https://www.transunion.com Contacts American Council of the Blind Dan Spoone, Interim Executive Director [email protected] 407-227-4489 (mobile) Nationwide Credit Reporting Agencies Equifax Tiffany Smith [email protected] Experian Jordan Takeyama 951-733-8768 [email protected] TransUnion Dave Blumberg 312-985-3059 [email protected]
June 28, 2023 The Honorable Cathy McMorris Rodgers Chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee 2125 Rayburn House Office Building 45 Independence Ave SW Washington, DC 20515 Dear Chair McMorris Rodgers: On behalf of the American Council of the Blind and the undersigned organizations, we are writing to voice our support for the continued development and deployment of autonomous vehicles here in the United States, which could significantly enhance the lives of millions of disabled Americans and their loved ones, and ask that Congress take swift action to ensure that ongoing leadership of this industry can occur in this country. For 42.5 million Americans who are living with a disability, inadequate access to transportation can be prohibitive to workforce participation, limit access to critical services, and make it more difficult to travel to the people and things most important to our communities and for whom we advocate. Self-driving technology and the development of accessible autonomous vehicles have the potential to help alleviate these existing transportation barriers, while also creating new opportunities for independence and ease of access that have so far been out of reach for far too many people in the United States. The wide adoption of self-driving technology would benefit all of us by increasing economic opportunity and growing the national economy. According to a recent study by the National Disability Institute, an accessible and widely available autonomous ride hail service would bring an additional 9.15 million people into the American workforce, including 4.4 million jobs for people with disabilities. This same study found that self-driving technology would save the federal government $120.7 billion, through new tax revenue and reductions in spending from Supplemental Security Income and Social Security Disability Insurance programs, and would ultimately grow the U.S. economy by an estimated $867.7 billion over the next 10 years. Of course, these economic benefits may be realized only if autonomous vehicle technology is designed to be accessible to, useable by, and safe for people with disabilities. For the past several years, autonomous vehicle companies have been developing, testing, and now deploying fleets of vehicles. It is time for Congress to continue its leadership by moving legislation forward that facilitates additional testing of self-driving technology, allows for the safe and scaled rollout of autonomous ride hail services, and other beneficial transportation alternatives, including within public transit, here in the United States. This legislation must include provisions involving people with disabilities and other marginalized community leaders in research and development processes, and require safe hardware and software systems development that ensures roadway safety for all users and non-users regardless of height, skin tone, wheelchair and mobility aid usage, or other such factors that must be taken into account as relates to vehicle safety technology. Doing so would ensure autonomous vehicles can be manufactured at scale, rapidly increasing access to this technology for Americans with unmet transportation needs, including those who have a disability. For these reasons, Congress must address the needs of passengers with disabilities, including wheelchair users, when creating a national autonomous vehicle framework. We want to also thank you for your continued support for people with disabilities and for being a leader on accessibility issues in Congress. For these economic benefits, but also for the opportunity self-driving technology has to increase independence for people with disabilities in the United States, we urge you and Congressional leadership to quickly move forward with autonomous vehicle legislation. Sincerely, American Council of the Blind Access Ready American Foundation for the Blind Association of Assistive Technology Act Programs Autistic People of Color Fund Autistic Self Advocacy Network Autistic Women and Non-binary Network Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund Epilepsy Foundation National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities National Disability Rights Network National Disability Institute Paralyzed Veterans of America The Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies United Spinal Association
July 5, 2023 – Alexandria, Virginia – The American Council of the Blind (ACB) announces the 2023 winners of the Audio Description Project Awards. The ADP Awards honor the people and organizations that make outstanding contributions to the quality, availability, and understanding of audio description. The winners are: Achievement in Media (Individual): Debra Erickson, Executive Chef and Founder of The Blind Kitchen. The Blind Kitchen provides accessible cooking tools to help people who are blind or have low vision cook safely, independently, and confidently. Achievement in Museums (Individual): Karen Bergman, for her work at the Guggenheim Museum in New York. Karen’s descriptions include historical context and make visual art accessible in exciting new ways.. Achievement in Museums (Organization): The North Carolina Museum of Art and its “Sensory Journey through Art” program. These virtual events are designed for adults who are blind, have low vision, or have a learning need that would benefit from a sensory-style experience. Special Achievement in Museums: Dr. Michelle Edwards of the National Museum of African American History and Culture for her development of a series of virtual tour programs called History Alive. Achievement in the Performing Arts (Individual): Bonnie Barlow, who has provided live description of more than 258 plays and events, from Amadeus to Wicked, and from ballet to the rodeo. Achievement in Performing Arts (Organization): The Smith Center for the Performing Arts, which provides live audio description at their Broadway series, along with personalized accessibility assistance. Public Sector Award: The Space Telescope Science Institute for its description of the images relayed by the James Webb telescope. International Award: MovieReading, a unique technology that enables audio description (and captioning) to be downloaded to a patron’s individual device. Barry Levine Memorial Award for Career Achievement in Audio Description: Dr. Joshua Miele. This award recognizes outstanding contributions to AD over time by leading, inspiring, or providing service to others. Dr. Miele works as an adaptive technology designer and creates solutions to everyday accessibility problems. About the American Council of the Blind The American Council of the Blind is a national member-driven organization representing Americans who are blind or visually impaired. For more than 60 years, ACB has been a leader in national, state, local, and international advocacy efforts. With 68 affiliates, ACB strives to increase independence, security, and equality of opportunity, and to improve the quality of life for all people who are blind or visually impaired. For more information, visit www.acb.org. Learn more about the Audio Description Project at www.adp.acb.org.
Registration is open for the Audio Description Project‘s twenty-second Audio Description Institute, taking place virtually August 14–18, 1–5pm (EDT). The fee is $550; two scholarships are available (scroll down for details). To ensure a high-quality learning experience, space is limited, so secure your place today! Click here to register. Audio description, or AD, provides access to artistic and educational visual images through succinct and vivid descriptions of elements that are crucial to understanding the creator’s intention. The Audio Description Project (ADP) has been an initiative of the American Council of the Blind since 2010 and has worked to build relationships with content creators, AD producers, and AD consumers to raise the awareness, provision, and standards of audio description. View the 2023 Audio Description Institute Agenda. Who Should Attend the Audio Description Institute? Anyone interested in: working as freelance description writers for film, series, advertising, etc. working as a describer in a local performing arts program working as a describer for visual art exhibitions refreshing their existing AD skills adding value to their own or their employer’s DEI initiatives What Will Be Taught? audio description history and theory the “Four Fundamentals of Audio Description”© active seeing/visual literacy; developing skills in concentration and observation the art of “editing” what you see vivid language: “The Visual Made Verbal”™ “Speak the speech, I pray you” – using the spoken word to make meaning How Will I Learn? Sessions are held virtually from 1pm to 5pm, Monday, August 14, through Friday, August 18. Material is delivered through a mixture lecture, discussions, and collaborative writing sessions. Each registrant will receive a PDF copy of Dr. Joel Snyder's book, The Visual Made Verbal: A Comprehensive Training Manual and Guide to the History and Applications of Audio Description, published by ACB. Participants will receive a certificate of completion. Who Are the Instructors? Joel Snyder, PhD One of the first professional audio describers, Dr. Snyder began describing theater events and media in 1981; he is the President of Audio Description Associates, LLC and the Founder of/Senior Consultant to the Audio Description Project, an initiative he founded with ACB in 2009. For six years, he led a staff that produced description for nationally broadcast films and network series, including Sesame Street broadcasts and DVDs. Dr. Snyder has worked with description and trained describers in more than 40 states and 60 countries. Joyce Adams Joyce has been producing and writing AD scripts for media and museum tours since 2002. She supervised AD script writers for the Described Media program at the National Captioning Institute, is the author of audio described tours for National Park Service visitor centers throughout the U.S. and regularly pens description for promotional videos produced by Microsoft. Ms. Adams serves on the ACVREP Subject Matter Expert Committee, which is developing a certification program for audio describers. Elisa Jansen Elisa is a graduate of the ADP Audio Description Institute. She has written audio description for network and Internet broadcast, such as NBC, CBS, Amazon, Hulu, and Netflix, and for the classic film Citizen Kane. Her work on promotional content includes Walmart, Kimberly-Clark, and thousands of Microsoft videos. Ms. Jansen has provided audio description for museum tours and exhibits, including the Smithsonian, the Nevada State Museum in Las Vegas, and the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Museum. Susan Glass Susan is a freelance writer and poet whose forthcoming chapbook The Wild Language of Deer was recently published by Slate Roof Press. A retired English professor from San Jose State University and West Valley Community College, Ms. Glass, who is blind, taught English Composition, American Multicultural Literature, Creative Writing, and interdisciplinary courses with a Disability Studies emphasis. An active member of the American Council of the Blind since 2013, she advocates passionately for audio description, especially in live venues such as theaters, museums, and parks. She loves hiking with her guide dog Omni and riding her horse Travis. Tristan Snyder Tris has been in the video description industry for more than 12 years and is the chief engineer and voice talent at Imagination Storybooks. Blind himself, Tris has produced hundreds of hours of description for network television, cinema, DVDs, and independent film. He is an award-winning producer of audio drama, including Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes and The Halloween Tree. As a voiceover artist, he has voiced many hours of description, and he is also a character voice actor for audio dramas and animation. Registration and Scholarships Registration will close on August 4, 2023, and the Zoom links to attend the institute will be emailed on August 7, 2023. Space is limited, so click here now to register. Two full scholarships are available; priority will be given to people with disabilities. To be considered for a scholarship, please send an email outlining how and why you are a strong candidate, including your reason for requesting financial assistance. Send the email to [email protected] by July 28, 2023. The scholarship awardees will be notified by August 2, 2023. Scholarships are courtesy of Michele Spitz and Woman of Her Word. Contact Dr. Joel Snyder with questions or concerns: [email protected].
The American Council of the Blind’s (ACB) Scholarship Program was established in 1982. The American Council of the Blind (ACB) and the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) have partnered to offer educational scholarships ranging from $2,500 to $7,500 for legally blind students attending a technical college or who are an entering freshman, undergraduate or a graduate student. This program awards students with scholarships to help with post-secondary education financial needs such as tuition, fees, room and board and other additional costs associated with assistive technology. Congratulations to our 2023 scholarship recipients! Floyd Qualls Memorial (ACB) – Parnita Basnet William H. Corey (ACB) – Eric Marco Ramos John Hebner (ACB) – Andrew De Avilla Norma Schecter (ACB) – Qsay Hussein Duane Buckley (ACB) – Qsay Hussein ACB Oregon (ACB) – Maya Andrick R.I. Gillette, Gladys C. Anderson and Karen D. Carsel Memorial (AFB) – Julia LaGrande Baystate Council of the Blind (ACB) – Chantale Zuzi Arnold Sadler (ACB) – Bailey Thomas Rudolph Dillman (AFB) – Bailey Thomas Eunice Fiorito (ACB) – Matthew Cho Charles Dillman (AFB) – Matthew Cho Floyd Qualls Memorial (ACB) – Charles Miller Rudolph Dillman/Charles Dillman (AFB) – Kathryn Sevier Rudolph Dillman/Charles Dillman (AFB) – Kaitlyn Kellermeyer Rudolph Dillman/Charles Dillman (AFB) – Emily Nelson James R. Olsen Memorial (ACB) – Zayne Hoover Ross N. Pangere Foundation (ACB) – Katelyn Kelel Floyd Qualls Memorial (ACB) – Kevin Cohen Floyd Qualls Memorial (ACB) – Malia Thibado Kellie Cannon (ACB) – Mathew Ard Paul and Ellen Ruckes (AFB) – Mathew Ard Floyd Qualls Memorial (ACB) – Dannielle Schutz Dr. Bradley Burson (ACB) – Jonathan Carver Paul and Ellen Ruckes (AFB) – Jonathan Carver Ross N. Pangere Foundation (ACB) – Bhavya Shah Ross N. Pangere Foundation (ACB) – Brock Kitterman Tech For All (ACB) – Devon Woodfine
The ACB Media team is proud to announce the newly upgraded version of ACB Link. It brings the following enhancements: A newly enhanced app with more modern support for iOS 16 with significantly improved performance and reliability. ACB Link comes to the Mac platform! New revised look and feel for listening to the ACB Media streams and podcasts. Better visual and color contrast support for those with low vision. More robust buffering and reliability when listening to streams and podcasts across ACB Media. More reliable push notification support. Obtaining ACB Link for your iOS device Please download ACB Link from the iOS app store for your iPhone or iPad. Once you run the application it will ask you if you would like to allow notification support. We would encourage you to allow the app to send you notifications. We will be sending announcements, especially during the annual convention. Obtaining ACB Link for your Mac Please download ACB Link for your Mac from the Mac app store. Once you run the application it will ask you if you would like to allow notification support. We would encourage you to allow the app to send you notifications. We will be sending announcements, especially during the annual convention. Using ACB Link ACB Link now consists of five tabs which are described below. The Home Tab Keep up to date on convention activities, all things ACB and be aware of late breaking special announcements that we may promote from within the application. All of these are accessible with the buttons found on the Home tab. Affiliates Tab Do you need to reach out to a state or special interest affiliate? Use the Affiliates tab to locate information about them. This includes the president of an affiliate, their social media contacts and their associated web site if applicable. Streams Tab (New) Listening to a Stream Do you want to listen to any of the 10 ACB Media streams? Tap on the Streams tab and then simply double tap or select the stream of your choice. It will start playing that stream. Switching to a Different Stream You can alternatively switch to another stream at any time by simply double tapping or selecting another stream. We have greatly streamlined this process to make it easier for all of you. Stopping the Playing of a Stream The following techniques can be used to stop the playing of a stream: Use a Magic Tap (two-finger double tap) to stop and restart the stream if you need to do so for any reason. Use the Now Playing button on the top of the window to find out what is playing and to pause the stream. Podcasts Tab We have significantly refreshed the podcasts available from within ACB Link. Select the Podcasts tab to see a listing of all podcasts available from ACB Media. Select a podcast and then select a podcast to start listening to that specific episode. You can control other aspects of the podcast playback by selecting the Now Playing button from within ACB Link. About Tab Learn about ACB and the version number of the application on the About tab. This is important information to note if any issues are encountered with the application. Please make note of the version number and give this information to us when reporting an issue. Conclusion The ACB Media team is hard at work already on the next release of ACB Link and we may even have some surprises for the future for some of you so please stay tuned for that! Happy listening and do let us know if you have any concerns.
ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 6, 2023 – The American Council of the Blind (ACB) announces that the Audio Description People’s Choice Award opens for nominations on June 6, 2023. The winners will be revealed during the 2023 ACB Audio Description Awards Gala, which will take place virtually on November 14th at 7:30 p.m. Eastern. The Audio Description Awards Gala celebrates inclusivity and recognizes the entertainment industry’s role in providing access to film and television through audio description for people who are blind or have low vision. The Audio Description People’s Choice Award, now in its second year, is a unique opportunity for fans to get involved by showing their support for the audio description they love the most. “The 2023 Audio Description People’s Choice Award is truly representative of the people’s voice. We encourage all audio description consumers to make your voice heard and nominate your favorite films and series with outstanding audio description,” said Dan Spoone, ACB’s Interim Executive Director. The selection process for the Audio Description People’s Choice Award takes place in two phases. First, ACB will accept nominations in two categories, film and series, from June 6 through June 26. Second, the top titles in each category will compete for the grand prize during a two-week voting period from July 25 to August 8. Nominee selections must follow the nomination criteria to be eligible for the finalist vote. The Audio Description People’s Choice Award nomination form can be found at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ADAwards-Nominations2023. To submit your nomination by phone, call (202) 596-7041. Join us at the 2023 Audio Description Awards Gala for an exciting evening featuring celebrity guests as we applaud audio description! Learn more at www.ADAwardsGala.org. About the American Council of the Blind The American Council of the Blind is a national member-driven organization representing Americans who are blind and visually impaired. For more than 60 years, ACB has become a leader in national, state, local, and even international advocacy efforts. With 68 affiliates, ACB strives to increase independence, security, equality of opportunity, and to improve the quality of life for all people who are blind and visually impaired. For more information, visit www.acb.org.
The 2023 American Council of the Blind Conference and Convention takes place from June 19-July 7. The virtual portion begins June 19 with the Call to Order. Resolutions will take place from June 20-22, and Constitution and Bylaws will take place on June 23. ACB’s hybrid convention sessions begin on June 30 and end on July 7, with all in-person events taking place in Schaumburg, IL. Convention Registration Registration opened for ACB members on Thursday, May 18 at 7:00 AM Central, and registration for all opened on Thursday, May 25 at 7:00 AM Central. Registration closes on June 16th at 11:59 PM Central. If you register by June 16th, the fee to register is $35 for members and $50 for non-members. For those that register on-site in Shaumburg, IL after June 16, the registration fee will be $45 for members and $60 for non-members. There are two ways to register. You can register online at https://members.acb.org, or via telephone by calling (651) 428-5059. Please thoroughly read the information below to ensure that your registration goes smoothly. Online Registration Log in to the members site with your username and password. If you have forgotten your password, you can reset your password by selecting the “Password Reset” button on the members site login page, or by calling the MN office at (612) 332-3242. Please do not create a new member account if you forget your username or password because your member details will not be available. After logging in, select the link for “Conference and Convention” listed at the top of the page in the main navigation panel. After reading the important introductory information, go to the button that says “Begin With Preferences”. Please make sure your contact information is correct. If it is not correct, update it in the “My Account” section of the member’s site. You will then proceed through the registration form. The only items you need to select on the registration form are items with a cost such as tours and meal functions. If selecting a tour that has a meal, make sure to also select your meal choice. This also applies to the banquet. Once you have completed the merchandise screen you will be shown a waiver, you must acknowledge you have read the waiver before continuing to checkout where you can view your shopping cart and put in your credit card information. Registering by Telephone If you would like assistance registering, please call (651) 428-5059 and leave a message with your name, phone number, and time zone. If you plan to attend the convention in-person and want to ensure you can sign up for a particular tour, you might consider asking a friend or family member to complete the registration for you. We are happy to assist you by phone but there could be a delay in returning your call and we’d hate to see you miss out on a tour. Hotel Reservations The Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel is located at 1551 N. Thoreau Dr., Schaumburg, IL, 60173. The standard room rate at the Renaissance is $98.00 (single or double occupancy) with an additional $20.00 for each additional person. Room tax is currently 15%. Hotel reservations must be completed by June 8, 2023 to guarantee the convention rate. Reservations made after June 8th will cost substantially more than $98.00 per night. Make your hotel reservation online by visiting: https://book.passkey.com/go/AmericanCounciloftheBlind2023. For telephone reservations call (800) 468-3571. This is a central reservations number so please indicate you are with the American Council of the Blind 2023 Conference and Convention at the Renaissance Hotel in Schaumburg, IL.
Opens Thursday, June 15, at 11:00 AM CT/12:00PM ET Closes Friday, June 16, at 11:00 AM CT/12:00PM ET Opening Bids Included Appetizer Auction Rules and Information Contact Leslie Spoone at (407) 678-0075 or (407) 678-4163 or email at [email protected] with your bid. Please provide your name, phone number, email, item number and bid amount. Bids must be in $5.00 increments. Leslie will send out Appetizer Auction information communicating the high bid on each item at 5:00pm ET, 8:00pm ET and 9:00am ET each day. Billing for both the Appetizer Auction and the Summer Auction will take place the weeks of June 26 through July 21 for the total amount of all winning purchases. ACB Auction Disclaimer The American Council of the Blind conducts fundraising auctions with the purpose of providing financial support for our programs and services. We thank those individuals, organizations, and businesses who donate items for our auctions. To participate as a bidder, we ask that you be courteous to one another, to those who are conducting the auction and to those who will be contacting the winning bidders to arrange for payment. It is expected that any winning bidder will, after being contacted by anyone connected to the auction, provide proper billing information prior to the auction item being sent to them. If we do not successfully collect the bid amount, we reserve the right to repurpose the item to the benefit of ACB. We reserve the right to block any individual not following the guidelines during the auction or from participating in any future auction. Appetizer Auction Items Day One 301 Explore 5 Donated by HumanWare Opening Bid $200 The Explore 5 is the smallest and lightest 5-inch video magnifier of its kind. It is ideal for spot reading and features a high-definition image with precise autofocus for up to 22X magnification, plus over eighteen enhancement contrast modes to meet your visual needs. The Explore 5 is one of the most versatile in the 5-inch range. It is a smart choice for variable magnification and customizable reading contrast in daily activities. To be used on the move or for reading documents at home, it is perfect for all situations (standing, reclining in a chair, or sitting at a table) while delivering sharp and clear images at your fingertips. With large, bright buttons, this device is perfect for magnifying restaurant menus, small print in newspapers, product labels, or even airline tickets. Its exceptional portability and ergonomics make Explore 5 the magnifier of choice to take anywhere you go. 302 Handmade Crackle Agate Bracelet Donated by Keri Bishop Opening Bid $25 This beautiful handmade jewelry is an 8-inch macrame bracelet with lobster clasp made with satin baby blue macrame cord and navy-blue crackle agate gemstone beads. 303 Big Texas Style Bowl Donated by MariLyn Piepho Opening Bid $20 This large, wild cherry red, heavy, rigid 15-inch bowl is created by Texas Ware. As we all know, everything is big in Texas. You can put out enough popcorn or chips to feed a large crowd for an evening and probably won’t need to get up to refill it. What a fantastic bowl to have for entertaining! 304 Homemade Double Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies Made by Linda Allison and Donated by Tennessee Council of the Blind Opening Bid $30 These homemade peanut butter cookies have a generous helping of peanut butter and milk chocolate chips and they are very addictive. You will enjoy two dozen cookies, packaged fresh and shipped directly to the winner. What a treat to enjoy yourself or share with friends and family! 305 $50 VISA Gift Card Donated by ACB Board Director Kenneth Semien Sr. Opening Bid $30 Enjoy this card either dining or doing some shopping for you or someone special in your life! 306 Pet Fit Dog Gear Travel Pack Donated by Connie Jacomini Opening Bid $30 This dog travel pack includes: Handles for carrying, two collapsible bowls, a foot water mat, two treat containers, and the pack has zip side pockets, luggage sleeve with mesh storage pockets and a shoulder strap. Also, you will get Poop 400 pet waste bags and two squeaky toys for medium to large dogs that they can play and have fun with their owner! 307 First Book of Poems Written and donated by Ann Harrison Opening Bid $20 The first book of poems delves into her creative journey, given to her by the Holy Spirit. The first section, entitled “A Writer’s Life,” covers her journey from writer to creative dreamer, until she blooms into a published author. The second section, entitled “Seaside Poems,” will take you on a walk along the seashore, where the Holy Spirit and your muse await to fill your heart and mind with inspiration, pulling you out of your creative slump. Allow the Holy Spirit to help you fill page after page with words, pictures or fill your hands with whatever creative task you strive to undertake, as you read these verses, which come straight from the author’s heart. The third and final section entitled “Poems from the Heart,” describes the journey of a lost soul as he gives his heart to Jesus and finds a new beginning. Others describe a narrator’s sorrowful tears melting into joyful music and singing. Some verses touch on the author’s spiritual walk with the Lord and the music God has placed within her soul. Open your heart and let your mind wander as the Holy Spirit speaks to you through each verse within these pages. 308 $50 Subway Gift Card Donated by Roberta McCall Opening Bid $30 Subway is simply the better choice when it comes to freshly made, convenient and affordable food. Whether it’s the bread baked fresh daily, new flavorful signature subs or the classic fan favorites made fresh to order, Subway® delivers a quality, flavorful meal that you can feel good about. 309 Cafe Che Che Coffee Donated by Sheri Richardson Opening Bid $25 Enjoy three pounds of rich and wonderful coffee with your friends or family. Lisa Petke, the owner of Cafe Che Che roasts small batch, single origin, specialty coffee and delivers it to your doorstep. She says, “All of my beans are ethically and sustainably grown and sourced. I’m passionate about good coffee, and about supporting small farmers and workers in developing countries.” This is truly heaven for the coffee lover! 310 Logitech Wired Headset, Stereo Headphones with Noise-Cancelling Microphone Donated by Dan Spoone Opening Bid $30 These stereo headphones are black and have a noise-cancelling microphone, USB connection and In Line Controls. The PC headphones with plush, padded headband and ear cups provide optimum comfort. A rotating microphone minimizes background noise to provide noise-cancelling qualities resulting in clearer calls. 311 Handmade Holiday Lap Blanket Donated by Nancy Mereno Opening Bid $20 You will enjoy snuggling up with this 43- by 34-inch lap blanket in Christmas stripes of red, green, and lighter green and bordered in red. What a fantastic gift for the holidays for yourself or someone special in your life! 312 One 30-ounce can of all-natural Cougar Gold Cheese Donated by Andrea DeKlotz Opening Bid $25 The winner will receive one 30-ounce can of all-natural Cougar Gold Cheese, made inhouse at the Washington State University Creamery, in the flavor of their choice. Flavors include Cougar Gold Cheddar, Natural Cheddar, Smoky Cheddar, Viking (similar to Jack), Dill Garlic, Sweet Basil, Hot Pepper, and Crimson Fire. This delicious cheese is sure to please however you use it, whether in a recipe or for a quick snack with crackers. Cheese is shipped cold and should be refrigerated immediately. It may be frozen but should be removed from the can as soon as possible for maximum quality and enjoyment. 313 The Pocket Bible Donated by Rev. Ray Raysor, President DC Council of the Blind Opening Bid $50 The Pocket Bible is a self-contained digital device that contains the entire Bible. It is about the size of an old cassette tape and has navigation buttons that allow forward and backward movement by both book and chapter. It has no moving parts and is rugged and water resistant. The Pocket Bible has both an internal speaker and an earphone jack. Available in your choice of the following versions: English Standard Version King James Version New King James Version New American Standard Bible New International Version (NIV) New Living Translation ® Audio Bible in Spanish also Available. 314 Mary Kay Pomegranate Satin Hands Set Donated by Nancy Folsom Opening Bid $25 This 3-step process will leave your hands and feet feeling soft, smooth, and luxurious! The Pomegranate Satin Hands set softens, exfoliates, and moisturizes each time you use it. It also leaves a light, clean fragrance and is great for guys and gals to help keep your hands healthy! You will love how great your hands feel! You can use it on your feet as well. 315 $100 Gift Card to Walmart Donated by Mary Haupt Opening Bid $60 Enjoy this opportunity to fill your basket with treats for your family and friends. This $100 gift card could provide a chance for a special gift for yourself! 316 Let’s get cookin’ with Blind Girl Designs Donated by Tricia Waechter Opening Bid $25 You will look fantastic with this classic black 100% cotton apron. It is 37 inches long, and the ties on each side are 35 inches long. It has two handy pouch pockets on the front and the neck strap is adjustable. The slightly tactile print on the front of the apron is of my white cane, twisted at the joints to form a heart shape. We filled the inside of the cane heart with large hand drawn pink and red heart outlines, then scattered little heart outlines all over the print. Your apron will be as sweet as your baking! www.blindgirldesigns.com 317 Three Pounds Homemade Peanut Butter Fudge Donated by Terri Nettles Opening Bid $40 Three pounds of scrumptious homemade peanut butter fudge to savor yourself or share with friends. Wow, this truly is a delicious treat to enjoy! 318 Rory Hoffman Box Set of CDs Donated by Kelly James Opening Bid $20 You will enjoy this set of four CDs by Rory Hoffman, a self-taught, blind multi-instrumentalist from South Dakota. Includes the following: “Blind Faith” - Christian/gospel; “Swing Expedition” - Western Swing; “Fishin” – Country; “Tour De Fourth” – Jazz, Gypsy Jazz, and other genres. This truly will get you up and moving! Enjoy with some friends or by yourself! 319 $50 Gift Card from Moretti's Ristorante and Pizzeria Donated by ACB of Nebraska Opening Bid $30 You can enjoy this $50 gift card to Moretti's Ristorante and Pizzeria while you are at the convention. It is located approximately 5 minutes from the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel. Moretti's was founded in Chicago and is 100% family-owned and exclusive to the Chicago area. Moretti's original family recipes range from traditional to the latest delicious trends. All ingredients are fresh, and everything is handcrafted to order. Wow, what a fantastic treat to share with your friends! 320 Dry Food Storage Tupperware Donated by MariLyn Piepho Opening Bid $20 You will enjoy having these two Tupperware storage containers for dry foods. They have an easy pour spout. The Tupperware containers have a flat side to them and are oval shape and are easy to hold and pour. 321 Designer Michael Germain Black Leather Purse Donated by Tesse Kelly Opening Bid $30 This lovely handbag is black with two solid handles, a zipper in the center and has shoulder bag handles you can connect. The handbag has three pockets inside, one is zippered, and the other two pockets are open. This handbag is from Paris and is approximately 8-½ by 11 inches. It will dress up any ensemble! 322 Eight Foot Computer Cable Donated by Guidelights and Gadgets and Jeanette Kutash Opening Bid $25 Cable with a USB plug that can be connected to a computer or put into a wall charger. On the other end there are three cable connectors: one is a micro-USB; one is a lightning cable, and one is a USB-C connection. This cable is great for to use at home and when traveling in situations where plugs are scarce, and a long cord is needed to plug in your devices. The beauty of this cable is that it is very portable and is easily stored in your computer go-bag. 323 Oster Electric Roaster Donated by MariLyn Piepho Opening Bid $25 You will enjoy having this large new roaster made by Oster for your holiday parties! It is great for those gatherings where you need to prepare big portions or even a large turkey. This 15-inch by 19-inch electric roaster includes an insert and a domed lid. Too much for your oven and stove top? This stand-alone roaster is what you need. Just plug it in and go. Wow, what a fantastic gift for the cook in your life or to use yourself! 324 Home Baked Banana Bread from Andrea Conner’s kitchen Donated by Andrea Conner Opening Bid $30 Enjoy this moist and naturally sweet banana bread made from scratch. The ripest bananas enhance the yummy goodness! Two small loaves; one with walnuts, one without, or both loaves with or without walnuts. Eat it yourself or share this delicious bread with friends or family. 325 Life Coach Session with Dr. Phyllis Burson Donated by Dr. Phyllis Burson Opening Bid $20 Enjoy this 40-minute session with Dr. Phyllis Burson. You will learn some life and wellness lessons to help you reach your goals to improve your life and health. 326 Two Matching Mitsy Kit Plush Fleece Pillows Donated and made by Sheila Young Opening Bid $30 Matching set of two Mitsy Kit 13-inch plush fleece pillows with a beautiful spring/summer pattern of colorful birds perched on tree branches against a soft yellow and white gingham background. The pillows are laced together with soft white fleece ribbons. 327 Cricut Joy Scrapbooking Supplies Gift Box Donated by Keri Bishop Opening Bid $50 Cricut joy 3.5 x 4.9 inch insert cards 3 packs assorted colors with inserts and envelopes 45 sets, 3 packs Cricut joy insert cards 4.5 x 6.25 inch 36 sets total assorted colors, 3 packs insert cards 4.25 x 5.5 inch 36 sets total, glitter gel pens for Cricut joy 10 count assorted colors, pack 3 Cricut joy black pens, roll of royal blue permanent smart vinyl, roll of pink smart iron, roll of teal smart iron on, glitter gel pens for Cricut joy black silver and gold, roll of smart vinyl black, Cricut joy card mat, cricket joy weeding tools. $130 value scrapbooking supplies. 328 $75 Certificate of Yummy Goodies to Hayward Popcorn Donated by Becky Gleason Opening Bid $40 Do you love popcorn, fudge, candy, or even maybe hot chocolate or cappuccino? Well, we have it all just waiting for you to choose. Hayward/Mainstreet Gourmet Popcorn has many assorted flavors to choose from. You and Becky will go through the Hayward website together and she will place your order for you. Your order will be shipped directly from Hayward/Mainstreet Gourmet to you. Your choice of $75.00 worth of yummy goodness! If you have never had Hayward, you are in for a treat! 329 Garden Reflections Bird Feeder Donated by Connie Jacomini Opening Bid $25 You will enjoy this beautiful 14.75-inch mosaic glass and medal bird feeder in bronze. Lift off the lid of the feeder and pour in seed. Be careful not to overfill the bird feeder so the lid will still close. Hang this on a hook and wait for the birds to enjoy. Depending on grain size this bird feeder can hold up to six pounds of bird food. To care for this bird feeder, clean it with a dry cloth. What a fantastic gift for that bird watcher! 330 Adel Portable Light Detector Donated by Payown Media, Michael Babcock Opening Bid $25 This pocket-sized light detector has a key chain ring on the bottom. To the left of the key ring is the power switch. You switch the device on by pressing this switch away from the key ring. The light sensor is on the opposite end of the key ring. The front of the device has a single button. To use, switch the device on and press and hold the button while pointing the light sensor towards the light you're attempting to detect. As the intensity of the light increases, the pitch of the light detector increases. As the intensity of the light decreases, the pitch of the light detector decreases. 331 $50 Amazon Gift Card Donated by New Jersey Council of the Blind Opening Bid $30 It’s time to treat yourself to something special, and here’s a gift card to help you do it. $50 in spending at Amazon! 332 Two Dozen Homemade Shortbread Cookies Donated by Deb Trevino and Delaware Council of the Blind and Visually Impaired Opening Bid $30 We are pleased to offer two dozen fresh-baked mouth-watering authentic shortbread cookies guaranteed to explode on your palate with luscious buttery goodness. These are great with milk, coffee, or your favorite tea. Next to Walker's, these are the best I've ever tasted. If you plan to give a tasty treat to someone you love, don’t miss this opportunity! 333 50-Piece Assorted Karl Bissinger Chocolates Donated by the Missouri Council of the Blind Opening Bid $40 The Bissinger's "Classic” is a timeless collection bearing the name of our founder, Karl Bissinger, because it includes an assortment of our most classically crafted, longstanding recipes. Enjoy these confection-case favorites that our customers have savored from generation to generation. You'll discover signature pieces including Bear Claws Royale, handcrafted Signature Truffles and other best-selling confections of Caramels, French Cremes, Creme Mints, and our iconic Solid Dark Chocolate. 334 Apple TV 4K Media Player Donated by Carl Richardson Opening Bid $60 Do you love audio description? Do you like to watch movies and TV shows? Do you like listening to podcasts and music? Then the Apple TV 4K media player is perfect for you. It is a streaming device that allows you to watch streaming services such as Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video, Max and more. You can also listen to streaming audio and podcasts as well as music on this multipurpose device. The device is fully accessible for both blind and low vision users. It has both voiceover, a built-in screen reader, zoom functionality, and Siri dictation. This is a must for anyone who wants to turn their TV into a fully accessible smart TV that has access to all forms of entertainment!