I hope your summer is going well. I recently returned from two conventions that I attended as ALDA President.
The first was the annual Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) convention in Tampa, Florida. While the HLAA convention had a smaller number of people in attendance than usual due to COVID-19, it was still well attended. ALDA was well-represented with about 25 ALDA members attending. It was good to see many ALDAns and I hope to see them again in October in San Diego.
The second convention was called the NF Summit. NF stands for Neurofibromatosis. In the past, the second convention has recognized two different types of the medical condition: NF1 and NF2. Several of our ALDA members both past and present have NF2 including one of our co-founders, Kathie Hering from Chicago, and myself. NF2 usually causes hearing loss when surgeons remove the acoustic neuroma tumors, which are tumors on the hearing nerve. It was good to learn more about the research they are doing for a cure for both NF1 and NF2. They also discussed how to relabel NF2 with a new name, NF2-related Schwannomatosis. What a mouthful! This label is new so it will take a while to become dispersed in the community. I was invited to speak on a panel related to “self-advocacy and disability rights”. I mentioned ALDA, of course, for those with hearing loss due to the NF2.
Now on to ALDAcon…as ALDAcon Planning Committee Co-Chair with Tina Childress, I wanted to share an update. We are rolling along and have secured our two speakers and have set the line-up for the workshops. We have some GREAT workshops planned thanks to the Program Committee, Carrie Levin and Lisa Harbour. Please check the ALDA website and click on ALDAcon at the top to see the tentative schedule. We also have lined up entertainment during the I. King Jordan Award banquet and are working on our other awards. Please make sure to submit a name (or names) of anyone you feel should be recognized in volunteering for ALDA. Find the nomination form at https://alda.org/call-for-nominations-aldacon-2022-awards-2/. We also are working on finding options for people to enjoy in their free time including possibly the San Diego Zoo and a visit to the USS Midway Museum. You will need to work on your own transportation, but we are working on a reduced GROUP rate (for admission) and accessibility (ASL Interpreters and scripts if possible). I hope to see you there in October!
Last, but not least, I want to recognize and thank our ALDA News Editor, Grace Avila, for the wonderful job she has done for us over the last few years. She has graduated with her B.A. in sociology and will be busy seeking employment opportunities. I applaud her great job as Editor in both her organizational skills and her enthusiasm in seeking articles for the newsletter. She has been a pleasure to work with. She also has been training Elise Bourge to take over as the new Editor and I will let the new Editor introduce herself in the next issue. Thanks again for all you have done Grace and best wishes in your future!
That’s all for this issue.