A major update of the ErgData app from Concept2 is now available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store for Android. The app has many new features, including audio guidance in both Apple and Android versions to increase accessibility. Morrisville, VT — July 8, 2022. Leading sport and fitness equipment manufacturer Concept2 has released a major new update for their popular ErgData app. The app connects to the Concept2 RowErg, SkiErg or BikeErg to provide additional functionality. During development, Concept2 worked with the American Council of the Blind (ACB) to help ensure the app was accessible to people who are blind or have low vision. Concept2 founder Peter Dreissigacker was heavily involved in the development of the app. “One of the things with Concept2 products is we know they are used by a wide variety of people. Our rowing machines are used by athletes training for the Olympics and Paralympics, but we also have plenty of people of all ages and abilities using them for everything from general fitness to rehabilitation. It was very important when we were developing the app that we focused on making it as readable as possible while people were rowing. We also wanted to make sure that we had best in class audio guidance so that blind or low vision users were able to have full access to the app. We’re very grateful for the assistance and feedback we received from the American Council of the Blind that helped us to achieve this goal.” ACB’s Executive Director Eric Bridges said “The COVID-19 pandemic has shined a spotlight on the health inequities faced by people who are blind and low vision, including access to exercise and fitness equipment. Now, more than ever, it is critical for our members and the broader community to Get Up and Get Moving and take control of our health. ACB commends Concept2 for their leadership to make their products accessible and for engaging with the disability community to ensure their products meet the needs of people who are blind and low vision. ACB urges all other exercise and fitness manufacturers to engage with the disability community and follow Concept2’s lead”. As well as improved accessibility, other new features in the app include the ability to create workouts on the app and store them as favorites, loading the Concept2 Workout of the Day with a single tap, in-depth workout analysis, as well as additional display options and more. To download the app, go to concept2.com/ergdata. If you would like further information on ErgData or Concept2, please email [email protected] To contact the American Council of the Blind, please email ACB’s Director of Advocacy and Governmental Affairs, Clark Rachfal, at [email protected]. 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. About Concept2 Concept2 began in 1976 in the back of a bread truck when Dick and Peter Dreissigacker, fresh from Olympic training, started making composite racing oars. Concept2 oars have since gone on to become the oar of choice among the world’s rowers. We continue to innovate in rowing and other sports. Our product line now includes oars, RowErgs™, the SkiErg® and the Concept2 BikeErg®
On June 22, 2022, the federal government announced a new initiative to expand the availability of testing options that are more accessible for people who are blind or low vision and who use a smartphone. When connected to a smartphone application, these tests are capable of providing audible testing instructions and results to make the COVID-19 testing process more private and independent for people who are blind or low vision. Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has announced the number of tests people will receive with each order of the more-accessible tests has been increased from two to 12. They will ship in six separate packages of two, each with its own tracking number. People who placed orders before this change took effect will need to place a new order to receive the additional tests. Shipping information from orders is not being saved, in accordance with the privacy/security policies of the USPS website, so there is no way for additional tests to be shipped automatically.
Greetings from the Durward K. McDaniel (DKM) Fund Committee: “Home of the Durward K. McDaniel (DKM) Leadership Select Honor Society, DKM First-Timers award and the ACB/JPMorgan Chase Leadership Fellows award” We are happy to present to you, the Class of 2022 ACB/JPMorgan Chase Leadership Fellows who have met all requirements to be considered for and selected as recipients of this prestigious honor. Since 2016, the Durward K. McDaniel (DKM) Fund Committee seeks to identify and honor five ACB members who demonstrate leadership potential, with the ACB/JPMorgan Chase Leadership Fellows Award on an annual basis, provided that funding is granted. To be considered for the award, interested members must meet the following criteria: Age 18 or older Blind or visually impaired A member in good standing (current on membership dues) Agree to attend the entire convention Participate in daily general sessions and designated leadership-related sessions Applicants also undergo an interview with members of the DKM committee. To apply for the ACB/JPMorgan Chase Leadership Fellows Award, applicants must submit a letter of application and have a state or special-interest affiliate president submit a letter of recommendation by the announced deadline. Recipients are selected in late April and are recognized during the annual opening general session of the ACB Conference and Convention. Recipients receive such amenities as complimentary registration fee, travel expenses, lodging (double occupancy), an Invitation only Leadership Fellows Reception, tickets to attend the ACB Banquet, other special events and a stipend for incidentals. Congratulations to Judy Brown, Danette Dixon, Kristen Kelling, Byron Lee and Cecily Nipper! Introducing the Class of 2022 ACB/JPMorgan Chase Leadership Fellows! Judy Brown Judith (Judy) E. Brown, RN, BSN of Shoreline, Washington is an enthusiastic and passionate member and advocate of Washington Council of the Blind (WCB) who courageously shares her time and abilities as a member of the Government Affairs Committee and Co-Chair of the Advocacy Committee. She serves as Vice President of her local chapter, United Blind of Seattle. Judy is the only legally blind, full-time working nurse at the University of Washington Medical Center – Northwest in Seattle. She has a degree in nursing and a degree in biology with a minor in microbiology. She was a certified critical care nurse for 22 years and worked cardiac surgery, trauma, recovery room, pre-op and now, discharge planning. Judy has taken the lead on efforts to ensure that pharmacies in the state of Washington make prescription labels accessible to blind, low vision, and print chalenged people. She was instrumental in getting members of the House and Senate to sponsor a bill in support of achieving success. She formally requested the Pharmacy Board to pursue rule making for this issue, and the Board agreed to do so. Judy began to collaborate with other groups to support the initiative and wrote an amendment to the bill that was accepted. Unfortunately, this bill which made it all the way to the Senate floor calendar, was not called to be voted upon before the legislative session ended. Judy, WCB and other citizens are confident that it will be a success in the next session. As part of Judy’s work on accessible voting issues, she is an active member of the King County Voting Disability Advisory Committee (DAC). Due to the work Judy has done with the King County Voting DAC, she has been invited to participate on the Washington Secretary of State’s Voting DAC. This group advises the Secretary of State on disability voting issues. Danette Dixon Danette Dixon resides in Lynnwood, Washington and she has been a member of the Washington Council of the Blind (WCB) since 2010. She currently serves as President of South King Council of the Blind (SKB), Secretary of Snohomish County Council of the Blind (SCCB), Chair of WCB First Timer Committee, a member of the WCB Leadership Committee and more. Danette serves on the national level in various capacities, including service on the ACB Women and ACB Membership committees. Moreover, she works to assist several ACB special-interest affiliates. In 2021, she was elected as First Vice President of ACB Diabetics in Action (ACBDA). In 2020, Danette initiated and made all necessary arrangements to launch the approved Washington Council of the Blind Diabetics affiliate and was recently elected as president for a second term. It was and remains to be her desire to educate and empower WCB members who are diabetics. This year, Danette was selected as a Co-hort of the esteemed American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Blind Leaders Development Program (BLDP), which is a nine month fellowship program. She views this opportunity to be a fellow as a way to develop and fine tune her leadership skills. Each fellow receives a mentor to provide personalized support toward the growth of the fellow. During a recent interview with the Director of the BLDP, Danette was characterized as one of the best participants in the program. As an active member of the Alliance on Aging and Vision Loss (AAVL), Danette has been appointed to represent the affiliate as delegate to the ACB Nominating Committee in 2022. Danette volunteers her time and energy to host ACB Community calls and is a member of the special membership of the “Providing Outreach Supporting Sharing and Engaging” (POSSE), under the leadership of Cindy Hollis, ACB Manager of Member Engagement. Kristen Kelling Kristen Kelling of Grand Rapids, Michigan is the secretary of Michigan Council of the Blind and Visually Impaired (MCBVI) and Chair of the affiliate membership committee. She serves as membership Chair of her local chapter as well. Kristen holds membership in ACB Next Generation and appreciates sharing her personal knowledge and experience to ensure that she is a contributing member of the board of directors. Her committee service extends to convention, membership and Co-Chair of the Programs committee. Kristen is known to be a team player, extremely attentive, understanding, and dependable. She is also a terrific zoom host, and serves both the ACB Next Generation affiliate and the ACB Community well. Kristen obtained her Bachelor’s degree in social work from Grand Valley State University. She has volunteered with Disability Advocates as a receptionist and then with the advocacy department where she enhanced her ability to advocate more effectively. Kristen delightedly serves as president of her local Lions Club; as a youth leader at her church and as Chair of the Consumer Advisory Committee for Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities, which is the advisory committee for the local transportation authority. She is eager to identify areas in which she can serve best. Byron Lee Byron Lee of Minneapolis, Minnesota began his ACB adventure in 2003 when he was asked to air his comedy music show, The Fun Zone on ACB Radio. Shortly thereafter, he became a member and attended his first ACB of Illinois State Convention, where he assisted with capturing and recording the festivities. He then attended his first ACB National Convention in 2005, where he assisted the ACB Radio team in gathering interviews and recordings from around the exhibit hall. Since then, Byron has energetically and enthusiastically served in countless areas within the American Council of the Blind, including providing his skills and expertise to support a number of affiliates; his service as an ACB Next Generation board member, along with being responsible for many of their successful programming and outreach campaigns. He is a member of Blind LGBT Pride International (BPI) board of directors, and serves on various committees. He demonstrates commitment and passion for advocacy and mentoring. He is a Co-Producer of Sunday Edition, Pride Connection, Community Call Streamer and Host, and ACB Media team member. Byron is currently employed at ServiceNow as part of the Accessibility Engineering team. Previously, he was an Assistive Technology Specialist with Minnesota State Services for the Blind in the Senior Services Unit. Cecily Laney Nipper Cecily Laney Nipper resides in Covington, Georgia and she is the president of Georgia Council of the Blind (GCB). Cecily has graciously served to assist the ACB Media team in producing conventions for affiliates. She has participated in producing over ten affiliate conventions. Her roles have included filling in the master convention calendar to help allocate ACB Media resources, monitoring the Webinar/Zoom Room during the convention, coordinating hosts and streamers, meeting with the affiliate in advance to help prepare them, and compiling invitations and supporting documents to help the conventions to be a success. She is a long time member of the East Georgia Chapter of GCB in which she reports that her service areas have included being on the GCB board of directors, hospitality, program, and membership committees. She continues chapter service as Chair of the program and membership committees. In addition, Cecily has served as chapter secretary, several times as Vice President and became president as well. She demonstrates her commitment by remaining active and participating in local and statewide endeavors. While working as a teacher and missionary, she earned her Associate’s degree in Secretarial Studies and she acquired employment as an Administrative Assistant in a periodontal office Cecily aspires to become secretary of the American Council of the Blind.
Greetings from the Durward K. McDaniel (DKM) Fund Committee: We are happy to present to you, the Class of 2022 DKM First-Timers who have met all requirements to be considered for and selected as recipients of this prestigious honor. While honoring the legacy of ACB’s founding father, Durward K. McDaniel, since 1996, the Durward K. McDaniel (DKM) Fund Committee seeks to identify and honor two ACB members who demonstrate leadership potential, with the DKM First-Timers award on an annual basis, one from east and one from west of the Mississippi River. To be considered for the award, interested members must meet the following criteria: • Age 18 or older • Blind or visually impaired • A member in good standing (current on membership dues) • Never attended an in-person ACB conference and convention • Agree to attend the entire convention • Participate in daily general sessions and designated leadership related sessions • Applicants also undergo a 30 minute interview with members of the DKM committee. To apply for this award, applicants must submit a letter of application and have a state or special-interest affiliate president submit a letter of recommendation by the announced deadline. Recipients are selected in late April and are recognized during the opening general session of the ACB conference and Convention and honored during the annual DKM First-Timers Reception. Be sure to include us in your plans as you register for the convention. The 2022 DKM First-Timers Reception will be held from 5:30PM-6:45PM Central on Wednesday July 6, 2022. Recipients receive amenities, such as complimentary registration fee, travel expenses, lodging (double occupancy), tickets to attend the DKM First-Timers Reception, ACB Banquet, other special events and a stipend for incidentals. Congratulations Joe Derrick Green and Gregg Wandsneider! Introducing the Class of 2022 DKM First-Timers Joe Derrick Green Joe Derrick Green resides in Sacramento, California and he represents the west as the 2022 DKM First-Timer. He is a dedicated father, husband and active member of California Council of the Blind (CCB). He serves within the Capitol Chapter as chair of the access and technology committee with focused efforts to improve access to voting equipment, websites and more. As a founding member of the Inclusive Diversity of California affiliate (IDC), he serves on the board of directors, chair of the constitution and bylaws committee and Co-Chair of the membership committee. His employment as a reservationist for the Marriott and Disney continues to aid as a vehicle for strengthening his communication skills and knowledge of adaptive technology. In support of his desire to learn and grow within ACB, Joe extends his volunteer service to the national level by serving as a host for the ACB Community and streams content for ACB Media. The CCB president expresses interest in having Joe to play a significant role in hosting webinars and serving as Chair of the CCB Membership committee. Gregg Wandsneider Gregg Wandsneider resides in Waukesha, Wisconsin and he represents the east as the 2022 DKM First-Timer. He is an active and committed member of ACB Next Generation and currently serves as chair of the public relations committee, along with service on the convention committee. Gregg has shared his abilities with the program committee and remains an encourager to affiliate members. As a member of ACB Students, Gregg sits on the board of directors and utilizes his professional background in communication and strength of working well with others to be an asset. As a full-time student, Gregg is pursuing an Associate’s degree in studying the Bible from Ethnos 360 Bible Institute of Waukesha, Wisconsin. His volunteer work includes teaching elementary age children at his local church. Gregg has a Bachelor’s degree in communication from Carroll University in Waukesha and serves on the Carroll University Alumni Council. Gregg feels empowered to serve within the ACB Community as a trained Zoom meetings and webinar host, as well as having the privilege of meeting other ACB members while serving as a community meeting facilitator.
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 together 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 adaptive technology. Congratulations to our 2022 scholarship recipients! 2022 Scholarship Recipients Specialized Studies & States Qualls –$5,000 – Chantale Zuzi, Holden, Massachusetts Schecter/Buckley – $4,250 – Madilyn Grose, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania Gillette, Anderson & Carsel – $3,500 – Carmen Guzman, Celebration, Florida Bay State Council of the Blind (Massachusetts Resident) – $4,000 – John Geraci, Waban, Massachusetts Social Work, Rehabilitation & Teaching Sadler & Dillman – $4,500 – Gabriel Gates, Thornton, Colorado Fiorito & Dillman – $5,000 – Brodie Enoch, New York, New York Qualls – $5,000 – Julia Murray, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Dillman – $5,000 – Grace Patterson, Saint Petersburg, Florida Dillman – $5,000 – Qusay Hussein, Austin, Texas Dillman – $5,000 – Tatyana Tolliver-Hughes, Dunbar, West Virginia Business & Accounting Olsen – $2,500 – Krishna Bodawala, Jersey City, New Jersey Pangere – $7,500 – Kevin Cohen, Hewlett, New York Qualls – $5,000 – Camille O’Neill, Gretna, Nebraska Qualls – $5,000 – Malia Thibado, Pell City, Alabama Engineering, Science & Technology Cannon & Ruckes – $4,000 – Brandon Swallow, Rockingham, North Carolina Qualls – $5,000 – Maureen Hayden, College Station, Texas Ruckes & Burson – $3,200 – Avery Sallean, Cary, North Carolina Tech For All – $4,500 – Robert Lamm, Fort Collins, Colorado Pangere – $7,500 – Bhavya Shah, Stanford, California Pangere – $7,500 – Ghania Oussaci, San Antonio, Texas
By Kenneth Semien, Sr. The Durward K. McDaniel (DKM) Fund Committee marks 2022 as a remarkable and historical year, with 3 classes of DKM First-Timers and ACB/JPMorgan Chase Leadership Fellows being given the privilege of attending the first-ever Hybrid ACB Conference and Convention and the first-ever induction ceremony of the Durward K. McDaniel (DKM) Leadership Select Honor Society officiated by Cindy Hollis, ACB Manager of Member Engagement. Members of all classes created memories by joining together from here, there and everywhere to participate in leadership development sessions, exclusive receptions, a variety of affiliate and committee activities, educational general sessions, tours and more. If asked, this group of current and future leaders would be willing to share personal memories that they will cherish forever. Presenting the classes of 2020, 2021 and 2022 DKM First-Timers: Class of 2020 Sara Freeman-Smith of Houston, Texas (West) Merisa Musemic of Sterling Heights, Michigan (East) Class of 2021 Kaila Allen of Mesa, Arizona (West) Belinda Collins of St Pauls, North Carolina (East) Class of 2022 Joe Green of Sacremento, California (West) Gregg Wandsneider of Waukesha, Wisconsin (East) Presenting the classes of 2020, 2021 and 2022 ACB/JPMorgan Chase Leadership Fellows: Class of 2020 Regina M. Brink of Sacramento, California Sajja Koirala of Fairborn, Ohio Meryl Ann Shecter of Windsor Mill, Maryland Koni Sims of Sioux Falls, South Dakoda Wanda Williford of Trenton, New Jersey Class of 2021 Anthony Corona of Miami Lakes, Florida Natalie Couch of Louisville Kentucky Becky Dunkerson of Des Moines, Iowa Greg Lindberg of Wesley Chapel, Florida Winter Renfrow of Owensboro, Kentucky Class of 2022 Judy Brown of Shoreline, Washington Danette Dixon of Lynnwood, Washington Kristen Kelling of Grand Rapids, Michigan Byron Lee of Minneapolis, Minnesota Cecily Laney Nipper of Covington, Georgia
On June 22, 2022, the federal government announced a new initiative to expand the availability of testing options that are more accessible for people who are blind or low vision and who use a smartphone. Now, people who are blind or low vision may order more accessible COVID-19 at-home tests. When connected to a smartphone application, these tests are capable of providing audible testing instructions and results to make the COVID-19 testing process more private and independent for people who are blind or low vision. “ACB and our members have long fought for accessibility improvements to our nation’s healthcare system, including accessible home diagnostic tests and durable medical equipment”, said ACB President Dan Spoone. “This announcement and program marks an important first step to provide more accessible COVID-19 at-home tests for people who are blind or low vision.” “Similar to other aspects of our lives and advocacy work, we realize that the accessibility of at-home medical testing is a journey, not a destination, and that these improved offerings from the federal COVID-19 at-home testing service will reduce but not eliminate accessibility barriers for people who are blind or low vision, especially for ACB members and the broader community of people who do not use a smartphone and who do not have access to broadband services”, said ACB Executive Director Eric Bridges. “ACB remains resolute in our advocacy efforts to make all forms of at-home medical testing, remote monitoring, and diagnostic equipment and services independently and privately accessible for people who are blind or low vision.” To receive the more accessible COVID-19 at-home tests from the federal government, consumers may click here to order online or call 1-800-232-0233. Each order will include two rapid-antigen tests that are more accessible for people who are blind or low vision. Orders will ship free, while supplies last. The tests work with the free Ellume COVID-19 Home Test app for Apple or Android smartphones to provide users with audible instructions and test results. For additional information regarding this more accessible at-home testing option, including additional resources from the Department of Health and Human Services, please visit: https://acb.org/accessible-COVID-tests. If these more accessible tests will not meet your at-home testing needs, please contact the Disability Information and Access Line of the Administration on Community Living for additional COVID-19 testing resources: 1-888-677-1199.
Testing is a critical part of the fight against COVID-19, but some people who are blind or have low vision face barriers using many of the COVID-19 tests on the market. On June 22, 2022, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a new initiative to expand the availability of testing options that are more accessible for people who are blind or have low vision. This initiative complements the Administration’s efforts to expand production of more accessible tests and work with private sector partners on the development of new accessible tests. Please read this update about obtaining accessible COVID-19 tests before ordering. How to get the tests: Order by calling 1-800-232-0233. Each order will include 2 rapid-antigen tests that are more accessible for people who are blind or have low vision. Orders will ship free, while supplies last. What's needed to use the tests: To use the tests, you must: Have a compatible Bluetooth-enabled smartphone. Download and install the free Ellume COVID-19 Home Test app from the Apple App Store (for iOS) or Google Play Store (for Android). What makes the tests more accessible: The test works with the app to provide: Audio step-by-step instructions for administering the test. Audio test results. Who should order these tests: Because of limited supply, we ask that you only order the more accessible tests if you do not have other options for using the standard COVID-19 tests, such as: Receiving help from a household member, family, or trusted friend (in person, or through video calling platforms like FaceTime or Zoom). Using assistive technology, such as AIRA or Be My Eyes, to help you take the test and obtain results. Need more assistance? The trained staff at the Disability Information and Access Line (DIAL) can provide additional assistance with: Ordering tests. Understanding instructions for test administration and test results. Providing alternative instructions for traditional at-home tests for people who are unable to access, read, or understand the manufacturer’s version. For those who cannot use an at-home test, DIAL operations can: Assist with ordering “swab and send” kits to collect a sample and mail it back for results. Connect callers to local organizations for assistance locating other testing options in their community, including in-home testing programs or transportation or companion support to visit a community-based testing site. Call 888-677-1199 Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Eastern) or email [email protected]. Need more tests? If you are covered by Medicare: Medicare will pay for up to eight free over-the-counter COVID-19 tests per month, including tests that are more accessible. This includes people with Medicare Advantage plans. Call ahead to make sure your local retailer has the tests you need in stock. Call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) with any questions. If you have private insurance, your insurer may provide reimbursement for more accessible tests: Call your plan to learn more about how they will reimburse you for the cost of tests. Call ahead to make sure your local retailer has them in stock.
The American Council of the Blind (ACB) is proud to announce the winners of the 2022 BADIE Awards (Benefits of Audio Description In Education), a “Listening Is Learning” initiative of the Council’s Audio Description Project (ADP) and the Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP). The winners of this year’s honors (all young people who are blind) are: Grand Prize Winner: Brennan Lamarra – Huntington Beach High School, Huntington Beach, CA, – Review of The Debaters Senior Category (ages 16 to 21): First Place: Brennan Lamarra – Huntington Beach High School, Huntington Beach, CA, – Review of The Debaters Second Place – Katelyn Divis – Huntington Beach High School, Huntington Beach, CA – Review of Against the Odds: the Rise of Mary Fisher Junior Category (ages 11 to 15): First Place – Jurnee Rust – North Dakota School for the Blind, Grand Forks, ND – Review of Dog Trainer Second Place – Tateana Sampson– North Dakota School for the Blind, Grand Forks, ND – Review of Kindness Counts Sophomore Category (ages 7 to 10): First Place – Aaron Martel – Arapaho Classical Magnet School, Richardson, TX – Review of Archie the Brave Second Place – Achilleus Budgen – Agnes L. Smith Elementary School, Huntington Beach, CA – Review of The Case of the Missing Day The premise of the BADIE program is simple: kids love movies. If a young person can’t see or can’t see well, audio description provides access to all the visual images of the movies that their sighted peers enjoy. Description benefits children who are blind and others who have learning disabilities and it has been shown to boost literacy for all children. The BADIE program asked young people who are blind or have low vision to submit short reviews of any described movie. “Audio Description uses words that are succinct, vivid, and imaginative to convey the visual image from television, film, DVDs, theater, museums and many other settings,” stated Dan Spoone, president of the American Council of the Blind. "The young people honored with these awards not only appreciate the ability to enjoy films and television right along with their peers—description helps them, and their sighted friends, develop language skills through exposure to varied word choice, synonyms, metaphors and similes. I love audio description, and wish I’d had access to it when I was growing up!” Additional information about ACB’s Audio Description Project is available at: www.adp.acb.org; more information about the Described and Captioned Media Program is at: www.dcmp.org. About the American Council of the Blind The American Council of the Blind (ACB) is a national member-driven consumer organization representing Americans who are blind and visually impaired. During the organization’s 60-year history, 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 about the American Council of the Blind, contact: Eric Bridges, ACB Executive Director, 1-800-424-8666, or visit www.acb.org. About the Described and Captioned Media Program The Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) provides premium media designed for students with disabilities and leads as a resource for families and teachers, supported by the Department of Education. Originally known as Captioned Films for the Deaf, Inc. and later known as Captioned Films and Videos and the Captioned Media Program, DCMP is a national nonprofit founded in 1950 and is managed by the National Association of the Deaf. The DCMP provides services designed to support and improve the academic achievement of students who are blind, visually impaired, deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf-blind. For more information about the Described and Captioned Media Program, contact: Jason Stark, Director, 1447 E. Main Street, Spartanburg, SC 29307, Voice: 864-585-1778, visit the web site, www.dcmp.org.
Held Virtually Monday, August 8 to Friday, August 12, 2022 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Eastern each day Audio Description (AD) makes visual images accessible for people who are blind or have low vision. Using words that are succinct, vivid, and imaginative, media describers convey the visual image from television and film that is not fully accessible to a significant segment of the population (more than 32 million Americans experience significant vision loss). The 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act has spawned a virtual cottage industry for the development of description for broadcast television. Be a part of it! Visit this link for the 2022 Audio Description Institute agenda. This should interest you if you are: Working as freelance description writers for broadcast television Working as a describer in a local performing arts program Working as a describer for visual art exhibitions and/or Experienced audio describers desiring an updated refresher course. Institute topics include: 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 Program Five afternoons of intensive, interactive training Each registrant will receive a PDF copy of Dr. Joel Snyder's ACB-published The Visual Made Verbal: A Comprehensive Training Manual and Guide to the History and Applications of Audio Description. The interactive sessions (limited use of lecture, questions/discussion throughout, generous use of media, and individual and group writing exercises) are designed to provide immediate feedback and "give and take," allowing for adaptation according to a sense of participants' grasp of the material. In addition, experienced users of description are a part of the Institute's faculty, providing an important perspective throughout the sessions. This Institute will begin at 1:00 pm Eastern on Monday, August 8, 2022, and conclude Friday, August 12, 2022 at 5:00 pm. Participation is strictly limited. ACB-sponsored certificates will be issued to all successful participants confirming completion of this professional description training program. NOTE: Freelance writers for broadcast television projects can often be based anywhere in the world—computer equipment capable of accommodating high-speed downloads is a must. Institute registration is $495 (registration is limited). Registration will close on July 29, 2022, and the invitation to attend the institute will be emailed on August 4, 2022 to the email address provided on the form. NOTE: 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 and include your reason for needing financial assistance at this time. Please send an email requesting consideration to [email protected] by July 15, 2022. The scholarship awardees will be notified by July 22, 2022. Scholarships are courtesy of Michele Spitz-Woman of Her Word. Institute Director Joel Snyder, Ph.D. — One of the first audio describers, Dr. Snyder began describing theater events and media in 1981; he is the President of Audio Description Associates, LLC with clients world-wide and Founder/Senior Consultant of ACB's Audio Description Project an initiative he founded in 2009. For six years, he led a staff that produced description for feature films and nationally broadcast series including "Sesame Street" broadcasts and DVDs. Snyder has worked with description and trained describers in more than 40 states and in over 60 countries. Faculty Joyce Adams — Joyce has been producing/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. Both Ms. Adams and Dr. Snyder serve on the ACVREP Subject Matter Expert Committee 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 over 700 Microsoft videos. Elisa 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. In addition, audio description consumer consultants (audio description enthusiasts who are blind or have low vision) will offer their perspectives. Susan Glass — Susan Glass is a free-lance writer and poet whose forthcoming chapbook The Wild Language of Deer, will be released by Slate Roof Press later this spring. A retired English professor from San Jose State University and West Valley Community College, Susan 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. Chris Snyder — Chris has been in the video description industry for over 12 years and is the chief engineer at Audio Eyes. He has produced hundreds of hours of description for network television, cinema, DVDs and independent film. He is also 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. Special Guests Roy Samuelson — For over two decades, Roy's voiced thousands of audio description series and blockbuster films, including NCIS, Star Trek: Discovery and Spiderman: No Way Home. He advocates for quality and excellence in all aspects of AD to be in parity to sighted audiences, and makes sure blind professionals are compensated for the value they bring to this work. Satauna Howery — Blind since birth, Satauna Howery is an award-winning American voice actor. Satauna has done quality control and voiced audio description for "Bill Nye Saves the World", "How to Build a Girl" and many others. She voiced all seasons of audio description on "Seinfeld".