Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Friday, February 29, 2008

Leaders and Legends: Durward K. McDaniel

Durward K. McDaniel
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Durward McDaniel (1915-1994) was born in Oklahoma and lost his sight at the age of 14 as the result of an oil field accident. He attended the Oklahoma School for the Blind, the University of Oklahoma and its law school. He opened a law office in Oklahoma City and qualified to practice before the Supreme Court. He was married to Aileen and they had one daughter. In 1949 he co-founded the Oklahoma League for the Blind and served as president of the Oklahoma Council of the Blind from 1947 to 1950.

Durwood McDaniel has been credited with being one of the primary forces in the movement to found the American Council of the Blind. Notwithstanding the status of a fledgling organization with limited resources, he persuaded ACB's National Board to create the office of a national representative to provide a presence on Capitol Hill. He served as its first national representative in Washington (occasionally without a full pay check) from 1968 to 1981 and at one time as its vice president. In 1969 the first special interest affiliates were formed, and ACB was off and running. For a time he was editor of The Braille Forum. Recognizing the commonality of problems of blind people with other minorities, he sought for and obtained admission of the American Council of the Blind into the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights.

Durward McDaniel believed that through skillful influence on state and federal legislative processes, hard work in state and federal governmental regulatory processes, and fervent advocacy at local, state and national levels, the quality of life for all blind persons could be improved. He was an expert on the Randolph-Sheppard vending program and starting in 1981 served as legal counsel for RSVA, an affiliate of ACB. He chaired the Affiliated Leadership League of and for the Blind of America and was a founding member of the American Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities. He was one of the leading exponents of the provision in the Wagner-O'Day Act mandating the 75/25 percent ration of blind to sighted workers in workshops. He worked diligently for the Fully Insured Rule of Title II of the Social Security Act which qualified blind persons for benefits. He was well versed in and an effective shaper of legislation that affected blind Americans.

In 1991 Durward McDaniel received the Migel Medal for outstanding services to the blind from the American Foundation for the Blind. In 1993 he was honored with the Distinguished Service Award of the President of the United States. He was especially passionate about and dedicated to the betterment of the lives of average or small-town blind Americans. He was a man of ideas, a man of action, and a man of tireless energy. Few names are better known among the blind in this country than that of Durward McDaniel. He was known for his self-sacrificial deeds, his unwavering principles, and his deep concern for his fellow blind.

Durward McDaniel Durward McDaniel's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by: Alliance of and for Visually Impaired Texans, American Council of the Blind of Texas, Inc., Austin Council of the Blind, Inc., Texas AER

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Anne Sullivan Macy

Anne Sullivan Macy
Inducted 2006
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Anne Sullivan Macy (1866 - 1936) was born in Massachusetts and although she was called Anne or Annie from the very beginning, her baptismal certificate identifies her as Johanna Mansfield Sullivan. Her parents were poor, illiterate Irish immigrants. By age seven she was unschooled, hot tempered, and nearly blind from untreated trachoma. Her mother was frail and died of tuberculosis when Anne was eight years old and her abusive, alcoholic father abandoned his family when Anne was ten years old. She and her brother were sent to the state almshouse in Tewksbury, Massachusetts where Jimmie died a short time later. Anne spent four unhappy years at Tewksbury, grieving over her brother's death and the disappointment of two unsuccessful eye operations.

As a result of her direct plea to a state official who had come to inspect the Tewksbury almshouse, she was allowed to leave and enroll in the Perkins School for the Blind in Boston in 1880. Here she quickly learned to read and write and to use the manual alphabet to communicate with a deaf/blind friend. While at Perkins, Anne had several successful eye operations, which improved her sight significantly. In 1886 she graduated from Perkins as valedictorian of her class. A short time later, Anne accepted the Keller family's offer to come to Tuscumbia, Alabama, to tutor their blind, deaf, mute seven year-old daughter, Helen.

In March of 1887 Anne began her lifelong role as Helen Keller's teacher, a true pioneer in the field of education of deaf-blind. In 1894 Anne was to deliver a speech at the American Association to Promote the Teaching of Speech to the Deaf in Chautauqua, New York. She was too shy to speak and had her friend and mentor, Alexander G. Bell, speak for her. Anne was Helen's educator for thirteen years and, in 1900, accompanied her to Radcliffe College. Anne went with Helen to every class, spelling into her hand all the lectures, demonstrations, and assignments. When Helen received her Bachelor of Arts degree, it was a triumph for both women. Annie and John Macy married in 1905 and maintained a relationship through 1914.

Despite Anne's declining health, she and Helen traveled widely in the United States and later in other countries. They gave lectures, vaudeville performances, and even appeared in a film titled "Deliverance." In 1924, Anne and Helen began to work for the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) as advocates, counselors, and fundraisers. By 1927 they had addressed 250,000 people in 249 meetings on the subject of blindness.

In 1930-31 Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania wished to recognize Anne and Helen's achievements with honorary degrees. Helen accepted but Anne refused until a year later when she reluctantly accepted the honor. In 2003 she was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame.

Anne Sullivan Macy Anne Sullivan Macy's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the Perkins School for the Blind

Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan (1930 Newsreel Footage)

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Berthold Lowenfeld

Berthold Lowenfeld
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Berthold Lowenfeld (1901-1994) was born in Linz, Austria. He graduated from the University of Vienna in 1927 with a Ph.D. in Psychology. In 1922, while still a student, he began teaching at the Jewish School for the Blind, Hohe Warte, in Vienna where he worked until 1930, when he was awarded a Rockefeller Fellowship to study the education of blind children in the United States. Prior to leaving for the U.S., he married his beloved Greta, and they often referred to their year abroad as their "honeymoon."

In 1938, the Lowenfelds move permanently to the United States with Kathryn Maxfield, an educator working for the American Foundation for the Blind, as their sponsor. They settled in New York, and soon both the Lowenfelds were working part-time for the New York Institute for the Education of the Blind, a residential school in the Bronx.

Shortly thereafter, Robert Irwin, the Director of the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB), offered Berthold Lowenfeld a research position in order to study the feasibility of "talking books" for the blind. Subsequently, he became the Director of Research for AFB, a position he held from 1939 until 1949. His research into talking books, needs of preschool blind children, and the attributes of local day school programs for blind children were among his most profound and lasting contributions during this time. From 1944 until 1949, he was also teaching university courses in education of blind children for Teacher's College, Columbia University. In 1948 he served as president of the National Braille Club.

From 1949 until his retirement in 1964, Berthold Lowenfeld served as the Superintendent of the California School for the Blind. He made a deep and lasting impression on the characteristics and responsibilities of schools for the blind which is still very evident today. He also became the most vocal and persistent advocate for blind children having the opportunity to attend their local schools. He never viewed his role with a school for the blind and his advocacy for local school placements as being contradictory. Rather, he constantly reminded his colleagues that if they assessed children well, determined the environment in which they would best learn, and provided the appropriate resources, local schools and residential schools would both flourish.

Berthold Lowenfeld's contributions to the literature on blindness are known and deeply respected throughout the world. Two of his books, Our Blind Children, and The Changing Status of the Blind, are classics in the field and timeless in relevance. This exceptional writer has additionally given us three other books, over 100 articles, numerous book chapters, and many other documents. At the 1992 AER International Conference, he was the recipient of the distinguished C. Warren Bledsoe Award to recognize a lifetime achievement of outstanding contribution to the blindness professional literature.

Berthold Lowenfeld Berthold Lowenfeld's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Fastest, Simplest, Most Accessible Dictionary Online

Ninjas are three things:

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Combine the lightning fast reflexes of ninja with the vast information of a dictionary and what do you get? NinjaWords. This is an online dictionary which outperforms the rest. Your usual dictionary floods you with ads and a bunch of stuff, everything besides a definition, which probably doesn't interest you in the very least. What's more you can't look up different words on one page, you have to redo your search or open a new page, what a pain with a screen reader.

Ninja Words allows you to look up multiple words in the same search, separated by commas, and in the url, just type them in the address bar. It comes with a spell check and for those who need to boost their vocab, you can aggregate words into a list, bookmark or send it to your word-challenged friends. NinjaWords can also be added to your Firefox and IE toolbars.

Click this link to use the power of a ninja to look up your next words at http://www.NinjaWords.com.

Definr

Here's another incredibly fast online dictionary. It only takes a few seconds to lookup a word and its very accessible.

Click this link to visit http://definr.com.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Leaders and Legends: Roy Kumpe

Roy Kumpe
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Roy Kumpe, founder, Lions World Services for the Blind, 1909 - 1987

Roy Kumpe (1910-1987) was born in Arkansas. After the onset of blindness at the age of eight, he attended the Arkansas School for the Blind. He graduated from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock completing his law degree in 1938.

Soon thereafter, he started a job placement service called Arkansas Employment Services which linked federal vending stand sites with competent operators who were blind. The realization that not enough people were independent enough to be successfully employed kindled his dream to create a training center for people who are blind or visually impaired.

Roy Kumpe stands with the historic Lion statue that guards the Lions World Services for the Blind (LWSB) campus. at the corner of 28th Street

One of the first steps toward the fulfillment of Roy Kumpe's dream was to persuade a statewide convention of Lions Clubs to sponsor a civilian rehabilitation center and to raise $10,000 for its first quarters. Thus, the first rehabilitation center to open under non-governmental auspices in the country was incorporated in 1947 as Arkansas Enterprises for the Blind. AEB shared honors with a rehabilitation program in the district of Columbia in pioneering effective vending stand programs under the Randolph-Sheppard Act. The center pioneered in many other areas, receiving training grants through the Social and Rehabilitation Services Administration for developing the optical aids clinic, for training blind persons as taxpayer service representatives, for testing the effectiveness and use of newly developed ultrasonic binaural sensors, and for new methods of training blind computer programmers.

President Dwight D. Eisenhower is shown with Roy Kumpe in the White House Rose Garden.

He established the International Services for the Blind in 1971 and subsequently served as consultant to governmental agencies for the blind in El Salvador, Columbia, Uruguay and Bolivia. To reflect this world wide scope, the name officially changed to Lions World Services for the Blind in 1989. Since the early beginnings in 1947, LWSB has served more than 10,000 individuals from 50 states and 54 countries. Under Roy Kumpe's quiet yet persuasive leadership and with that indomitable pioneer spirit, the agency grew into one of the most comprehensive rehabilitation centers in the world, offering a complete personal adjustment program, 13 vocational courses, a vision rehabilitation clinic, an assistive technology laboratory, and a college preparatory program. He was a tireless advocate for specialized training programs and separate agencies for the blind.

Roy Kumpe, Daisy Rogers, Helen Keller, Polly Thompson, and T.J. Watson, Sr.

Roy Kumpe was active in AAWB, serving as its president from 1951-1953. He served on the board of trustees of AFB in the mid 50's. In 1972 he was the founder-president of the National Council of Rehabilitation Centers for the Blind. He was the recipient of many honors and awards: an appointment by President Truman to the President's Committee on Employment of the Handicapped in 1949; the Merit Citation from the National Rehabilitation Association in 1962; the Migel Medal from AFB in 1970; and was appointed Ambassador of Goodwill by the President of Lions International in 1974. He received an honorary doctorate of law degree from the University of Arkansas in 1972.

Roy Kumpe Roy Kumpe's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the Lions World Services for the Blind

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Leaders and Legends: Ruth Kaarlela

Ruth Kaarlela
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Photo 1. See captions below

Ruth Kaarlela was born in Michigan in 1919. She received her bachelors and masters degrees in social work (1947) from Wayne State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan in gerontology (1978). She took courses at Syracuse University and Columbia University Teachers College which resulted in certification in special education to teach blind children. She is currently living in Michigan.

Ruth Kaarlela was employed as a social worker in the Family Service Agency in Lansing for five years and then at the University of Michigan hospital for 4 years. During a three year period at the Industrial Home for the Blind at the Mineola campus, she developed plans for integration of blind children into public schools. For two years she was an itinerant teacher of blind children in a Long Island school system. She was then asked to take charge of a Nassau County day school for emotionally disturbed children, supervising 21 teachers and 90 children.

Photo 2. See captions below

In 1963 Ruth Kaarlela joined the faculty at Western Michigan University to initiate a Rehabilitation Teaching Program. This involved developing the curriculum, acquiring equipment, selecting students, locating internship settings and building a library of literature. For the next 23 years, she was involved in offering graduate courses, refining program content to include low vision, multihandicapping conditions, gerontology and technology, and in the latter years she served as chairperson of the Department of Blind Rehabilitation. Because of her pioneer work in the profession of rehabilitation teaching and the development of a university curriculum, she has been referred to as the "Founder of Rehabilitation Teaching."

Photo 3. See captions below

Ruth Kaarlela was also known as a significant leader in the gerontology movement of the 70's and 80's. She taught the first gerontology course at Western Michigan University, which later led to the establishment of a complete gerontology degree program. She felt strongly about incorporating the principles and practices of aging into the training program for rehabilitation teachers of the blind. After her retirement from WMU in 1986, she worked on a special project for the American Foundation for the Blind educating native Americans with respect to visual problems.

Photo 4. See captions below

Ruth Kaarlela authored many publications that served as the basis for educating rehabilitation teachers and made countless presentations extolling the need for and virtues of the profession. She served on the accreditation board for the National Accreditation Council (NAC). She was active in Division 11 of AER, the Michigan Association of Certified Rehabilitation Teachers (MACRT), and the gerontological society. In 1990 she received the Josephine Taylor Award from AER's Division 17. In 1999 at the rehabilitation teachers' gathering in Kalamazoo she was the guest of honor and received the Millennium Award in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the rehabilitation teaching profession. She recently won the 2001 Migel Medal Award from the AFB, in the "Professional" category.

Photos: 1) BA degree at Wayne University (Detroit, 1952); 2) Visiting with Dr. Paul Ponchillia during Hall of Fame gathering in Louisville (October, 2002); 3) Retirement party as chair of the department, with Dr. William Wiener, successor chair, and Donald Blasch, predecessor (1986); 4) Presented the Millennium Award at the Rehabilitation Teacher's Conference in Kalamazoo--Nancy Parkin, former student, speaks kind words (July, 1999)

Ruth Kaarlela Ruth Kaarlela's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Kenneth Jernigan

Kenneth Jernigan
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Kenneth Jernigan (1926-1998) grew up on a farm in central Tennessee. He graduated with honors from Tennessee Technological University in 1948 with a bachelor's degree in social science. In 1949 he received a master's degree in English from Peabody College in Nashville, where he subsequently completed additional graduate study. He received the Captain Charles W. Browne Award presented by the American Foundation for the Blind to the nation's outstanding blind student. He was married to Mary Ellen who was also active in NFB activities.

Kenneth Jernigan then spent four years as a teacher of English at the Tennessee School for the Blind. In 1953 he was appointed to the faculty of the California Orientation Center for the Blind in Oakland, where he played a major role in program development.

From 1958 until 1978, he served as Director of the Iowa State Commission for the Blind. In this capacity he was responsible for administering state programs of rehabilitation, home teaching, home industries, an orientation and adjustment center, and library services for the blind and physically handicapped. Under his dynamic and forceful leadership, he made many improvements in services to the blind of Iowa.

In 1978 Kenneth Jernigan moved to Baltimore to become Executive Director of the American Brotherhood for the Blind and Director of the National Center for the Blind. As President of the National Federation of the Blind, he led the organization through the most impressive period of growth in its history. The creation and development of the National Center for the Blind and the expansion of NFB's influential voice and force in the affairs of the blind stand as the culmination of his lifework and a tribute to his brilliance and commitment to the blind of this nation.

Kenneth Jernigan has received too many honors and awards to enumerate individually, including honorary doctorates from three institutions of higher education. In 1960 the Federation presented him with its Newell Perry Award for outstanding accomplishment in services for the blind. In 1968 and again in 1990 he was given a Special Citation and award by the President of the United States for distinguished service. He served as a special consultant to or member of numerous boards and advisory bodies.

Kenneth Jernigan will be best remembered for his passionate and visionary leadership in the National Federation of the Blind for more than thirty-five years. He was President (with one brief interruption) from 1968 until July, 1986. The eloquent and articulate Kenneth Jernigan has touched countless lives both nationally and internationally through his writings and speeches on blindness. There has never been a more vocal or effective advocate for the blind.

Kenneth Jernigan Kenneth Jernigan's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Robert B. Irwin

Robert B. Irwin
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Robert Irwin (1883-1951) was born in Iowa. When he was five years old he became blind as a result of an eye inflammation. He attended and graduated from a "School for Defective Youth" which was later renamed the Washington State School for the Blind. After graduating from the University of Washington, he attended graduate school at Harvard University where he received an M.A. in 1907 and stayed for two more years to concentrate on the education and welfare of the blind as well as on government and history.

Robert Irwin began his career in 1910 as supervisor of the classes for the blind in the Cleveland Public Schools, where he also organized classes for partially seeing children in 1913. Assisted by Dr. Goddard in 1914, he was the first to adapt Binet intelligence tests so that they "might be used more appropriately with the blind."

In 1923, Robert Irwin was called to New York to become the Director of Research and Education of the American Foundation for the Blind. During this time, he developed an efficient interpoint braille printing machine which reduced the bulk and cost of braille books by about 40 percent. Another significant contribution was to bring Edison's idea to fruition by using 33rpm long-playing records, long before they became commercially accepted, as Talking Books and by promoting a nationwide system of library services to supply them to the blind in the United States.

During Robert Irwin's tenure as Executive Director of AFB from 1929 to 1949, he built it into one of the most important agencies in work for the blind. An early concern of his was the achievement of better international cooperation on behalf of all the blind in the world. To promote this cause, he organized the World Conference on Work for the Blind which met in New York in 1931. In 1946 Irwin's interest in international work for the blind resulted in organizing the American Foundation for Overseas Blind, later renamed Helen Keller International.

His legislative efforts led to the program of Aid to the Needy Blind under Title X of the Social Security Act and a bill allowing the blind an additional exemption on their Federal Income Tax. He was instrumental in the passage of three laws which became a great stimulus to the employment of the blind: the Barden-La Follette Act, the Randolph-Sheppard Act, and the Wagner-O'Day Act. When World War II required special provisions for war-blinded, he wrote and secured the passage of the bill recognized as "a bill of rights for blinded veterans."

Many honors have been bestowed on Robert Irwin: President of AAWB for four years, named Alumnus Summa Laude Dignatus by the University of Washington, made a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor by the French Government, and awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Western Reserve University in Cleveland "in recognition of his local, national, and international service in behalf of the blind."

Robert Irwin Robert Irwin's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the American Foundation for the Blind

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Second Chance to Live Blog

I received the following email and wanted to share this site with you.

Hello Fred's Head,

I am interested in providing encouragement to our veterans and the soldiers who have been wounded while protecting our great country. Additionally, I am interested in providing practical information and insight to assist their families. My name is Craig J. Phillips. I am an alumnus of Oral Robert's University Class of 1985, an alumnus of the University of Kentucky, graduate program in Rehabilitation Counseling Class of 1990, and a traumatic brain injury survivor.

I sustained an open skull fracture with right frontal lobe damage and remained in a coma for 3 weeks at the age of 10 in August of 1967. I underwent brain and skull surgery after waking from the coma. Follow-up cognitive and psyche / social testing revealed that I would not be able to succeed academically beyond high school. In 1967 Neurological Rehabilitation was not available to me, so I had to teach myself how to walk, talk, read, write and speak in complete sentences. I completed high school on time and went on to obtain both my undergraduate and graduate degrees. For an in depth view of my process please read my blog post My Journey Thus Far.

Through out my life, I've developed strategies to overcome many obstacles and in so doing I have achieved far beyond all reasonable expectations. On February 6, 2007 at the encouragement of a friend, I created Second Chance to Live: http://secondchancetolive.wordpress.com, which presents topics in such a way to encourage, motivate and empower the reader to live life on life's terms. I believe our circumstances are not meant to keep us down, but to build us up. As a traumatic brain injury survivor, I speak from my experience, strength and hope. As a professional, I provide information to encourage, motivate and empower both disabled and non-disabled individuals to not give up on their process. Please read my post The Power of Identification for more on this topic.

My interest is to provide encouragement, hope, motivation and empowerment to survivors and their families. Please encourage your readers to visit Second Chance to Live at http://secondchancetolive.wordpress.com.

Thank you for your time and kindness,
Craig J. Phillips MRC, BA

Friday, February 22, 2008

Leaders and Legends: Douglas Inkster

Douglas Inkster
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Doug Inkster (1925-1993) was born in Michigan. He received a bachelor's degree from the University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL and a masters in counseling, testing and guidance and a doctorate from Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI in rehabilitation administration. He was wounded in World War II. Doug was married and they had two daughters and a son, all of whom were married before his death in 1993.

Doug Inkster has served with a number of agencies throughout his illustrious career. Early in his career, he served from 1950 to 1960 as the Vocational Rehabilitation Coordinator for the Michigan Rehabilitation Services, Lansing. Then in 1960 he assumed the position of Assistant Regional Representative for the US Department of Health Education and Welfare, Rehabilitation Services Administration, Region V. He was Superintendent of the Illinois Visually Handicapped Institute from 1963 to 1967. For three years he served as Assistant Superintendent of the Chicago State Hospital. Then he broadened his base of experience with shorter terms of employment with a variety of agencies, serving as Director of Vocational Independence Program for the Foundation for the Junior Blind in Los Angeles, as Assistant Executive Director for the National Accreditation Council, as Assistant Director of the Home for Aged Blind in Yonkers, as Executive Director of Vision Enrichment Services, Grand Rapids, and also serving as consultant for REHAB CONCEPTS, Jackson, Michigan.

Doug Inkster will be remembered most for his dynamic leadership and innovative approaches while serving as the Executive Director at the Center for Independent Living in New York from 1972 until his retirement in 1985. He became a national pioneer in the development of adjustment training programs for the older blind and visually impaired population when no other programs of this type existed. During a time in our country when there was a paucity of materials, he developed a set of training manuals for the instruction of independent living skills. Additionally, he strengthened the training and enhanced the acceptability of rehabilitation teacher assistants as a part of the service delivery model.

Many organizations and state services sought his expertise particularly in the areas of rehabilitation administration, program design and evaluation, grant applications, and accreditation. Some of the agencies with whom he consulted included the American Foundation for the Blind, Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities, National Accreditation Council for Agencies Serving the Blind, and state services in New Jersey, South Carolina, Wisconsin, New York, and Puerto Rico. He played a lead role in crafting the first NAC accreditation criteria.

Douglas Inkster Douglas Inkster's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the family and friends of Douglas Inkster

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Samuel Gridley Howe

Samuel Gridley Howe
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Samuel Gridley Howe (1801-1876) was born in Boston. He graduated from Brown University in 1821 and from the Harvard Medical School in 1824. After serving as a soldier and doctor in the Greek War of Independence, he returned to Boston in 1831. He married Julia Ward and they had six children.

One day, shortly after his return, Samuel Howe met an old friend from Brown University, Dr. John Dix Fisher. Fisher was the principal founder in 1829 of what at that time was known as The New England Asylum for the Blind. Fisher offered him the directorship and even though the school had no students and no buildings, he accepted.

Since there were no schools for the blind in America, Samuel Howe was directed by the trustees to visit schools for the blind in Europe to observe their programs and to obtain educational aids and appliances. He was also instructed to hire two teachers to assist him. After his trip he was determined to avoid the tendencies he observed in Europe of overprotecting their pupils and treating them as objects of charity.

He opened the school in his father's home with two young sisters, Sophia and Abigail Carter from Andover, Massachusetts. Within a month the enrollment had reached six students, ranging in age from six to twenty years old. Since he needed a larger place, Thomas H. Perkins, a wealthy Bostonian and one of the School's trustees, offered his house. The school moved again in 1839 to the Mt. Washington House Hotel in South Boston and changed its name to the Perkins Institution for the Blind.

During those early years, Samuel Howe developed his philosophy of education of the blind. He believed they should no longer be "doomed to inequality," to becoming only "mere objects of pity" and he believed that blind children could learn as much as other children. During his first years as director he visited 15 states, getting schools started in Ohio, Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia. He also developed an embossed letter system for the blind to read, first known as Howe Type and later as Boston Line Type. It was used at Perkins until braille came into common usage at the turn of the century.

In 1837, Samuel Howe began an experiment in education that would bring him to the attention of the world. His success in educating Laura Bridgman, a girl who became deaf-blind from scarlet fever at the age of two proved it was possible. His interest in promoting the education of children with disabilities went beyond the blind and deaf-blind. He also helped to initiate schools for mentally retarded children (1848) and deaf children (1867). Howe has rightly been called the most significant and foresighted figure in the American history of special education.

Samuel Gridley Howe Samuel Gridley Howe's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Everett "Butch" Hill

Everett "Butch" Hill
Inducted 2007
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Everett W. Hill, Jr. (1943-1994) grew up in Pine City, Minnesota. He was a gifted drummer and basketball player, lettering in high school and at Northland College in Wisconsin, where he did his first two years of undergraduate work. He graduated from the University of Minnesota with a B.S. in Physical Education in 1966. He had three children with his wife Joan. After his divorce Butch and Mary Maureen were married in 1979.

Butch Hill contributed significantly in a variety of ways to the field of Orientation and Mobility. In 1966 at the age of 23, he accepted a job teaching mobility at the Minneapolis Society for the Blind. Realizing that very little about the field of O&M had been documented at that time, he pursued his formal education in O&M at Western Michigan University. After graduation he returned to the Minneapolis Society for the Blind as director of O&M and then to the Missouri School for the Blind also as director of O&M from 1968 until 1970

In 1970 he accepted a position at Florida State University as a faculty member and while there collaborated with Purvis Ponder on the first methodological textbook on Orientation and Mobility Techniques: A Guide for the Practitioner published by the American Foundation for the Blind.

Butch returned to Western Michigan University in 1974 to complete a Masters degree in special education and a doctorate in special education in 1979. He remained there as an assistant professor until 1976. He is especially noted for his significant research and publications in the area of positional/spatial orientation and developed the Hill Test of Selected Positional Concepts, which became the first norm-referenced assessment tool in O&M.

In 1979 he joined the faculty at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University as a professor of Special Education and Kennedy Center Investigator. He was a prolific author with 29 peer reviewed journal publications, 18 of which he was sole author. He authored three books, seven book chapters, three monographs and countless conference papers and presentations nationally and internationally. Up to this point most programs in O&M were modeled after those developed for adults who were blind. Butch committed himself to the reconceptualization of the standard adult model of O&M instruction to the specific needs of young preschool children. He was awarded a federal research grant that enabled his team to create a specific assessment tool and training program for O&M entitled the Preschool Orientation and Mobility Project - POMP. Thousands of children nationally and internationally have been assessed using the Hill Performance Test of Selected Positional Concepts and have benefited from the outgrowth of POMP. In March of 1994, the field was shocked to learn that Butch had died, at the age of 51, on the basketball court playing the game he loved so much.

He received numerous awards. In 1986 he received the Outstanding Teaching Award from Peabody College. From 1988 to 1990 he served as the chair of Division Nine of AER. Because of his significant contributions to Division Nine, the Newcomer-Hill Award was established in 1992. At the AER conference in 1992 he was awarded the highest honor in O&M, the Lawrence E. Blaha Award. Throughout his life he inspired a generation of practitioners through his courageous leadership, his passion and purpose for the field of O&M, his inquisitiveness and infectious love of O&M.

"In his all too short 28 years with us, he single-handedly accomplished what he set-out to do when he entered the field of O&M, which was to heighten the awareness and recognition of the field of O&M by creating a well defined base of research literature." -- George Zimmerman

"Through his early work on concept development with children who were congenitally blind, Dr. Hill helped to build the bridge between the approach to the systematic delivery of orientation and mobility training as it was developed for adventitiously blinded adults and O&M services for congenitally blind children." -- Rick Welsh

Butch Hill Butch Hill's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by Western Michigan University and Vanderbilt University

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Silent Keyboard Controls Two Computers

Do you ever get tired of hearing the sound of yourself typing? Honestly, it's never really bothered me, but I'm sure that if you work near other people, they might get annoyed with it after some time. Next time you go shopping for a new keyboard, you might look for one that's a bit quieter than the rest. Take this one from Thanko which is not only silent, but works on two PCs.

While it's pretty obvious what it means for a keyboard to be silent, I don't often hear of one that boasts the ability to work on two computers at the same time. I guess that it's really not the same time, but a flip of a switch just above your arrow keys will allow you to operate on a second computer. Click this link to purchase the Silent Keyboard from the geekstuff4u website.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Leaders and Legends: William Allen Hadley

William Allen Hadley
Inducted 2005
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

William Hadley (1860-1941) was born in Indiana and graduated from Earlham College in 1881. He was married to Jessie and they had two daughters. After receiving a masters degree from the University of Minnesota he taught in Minnesota, was Superintendent of Schools in Wilmar, MN. For one year he was a student at the University of Berlin, then taught at Marietta College in Ohio. Later he taught in Peoria, IL and at a Chicago High School for 15 years.

William Hadley

His favorite hobby was reading books in English, German, Latin and Greek. He was described as a devout Quaker, a strong, quiet man with a capacity for courage, able to stand up to problems and adversities and enjoying intellectual adventures and possessing a deep concern for human beings.

In 1915 at the age of 55 he suddenly went blind from a detached retina. His ophthalmologist and friend, Dr. E.V.L. Brown, suggested that he teach himself Braille, which he did. William Hadley soon discovered that there were few educational opportunities for blind adults and he felt compelled to assist others to acquire communication skills. In 1920 he established The Hadley School for the Blind, thus fulfilling a dream of teaching other blind persons by correspondence. He served as its President for more than 15 years and remained active on the Board of Trustees until his death.

William Hadley sitting at his desk

Dr. Hadley's first student was a farmer's wife in Kansas who had suddenly lost her vision and wished to regain her ability to read and write. Teaching most of the early courses himself, he began by brailling each individual volume of textbooks by hand and personally answering lessons with letters of correction and encouragement. Within a year he was teaching about ninety students in the United States, Canada and China at no charge to the students. A variety of courses included reading and writing Braille, English grammar, business correspondence and Biblical literature.

Over the years the school's role and mission have evolved until today there are over 90 courses available in Braille, large print, audiocassette or online. The almost 10,000 students in over 100 countries include blind persons, their family members and professionals working in the blindness field. All who have benefited from these courses owe a debt of gratitude to William Hadley and his visionary outlook.

He received an honorary Doctor of Laws in 1931 and a Doctor of Humanities in 1933 from Beloit College. The Bosma Industries for the Blind honored him as the 2004 recipient of the Hasbrook award, given to a true pioneer in the blindness field.

William Hadley William Hadley's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the Hadley School for the Blind

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Kathern Frances Gruber

Kathern Frances Gruber
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Kathern Frances Gruber (1905-1998) was born in Minnesota, a descendant of Franz Gruber, the composer of "Silent Night." She graduated from the University of Minnesota in education of blind children. As a resource teacher for blind children in Minneapolis and New York she introduced innovative teaching methods especially in the areas of independence and self-reliance. In her retirement she moved to California where she lived until her death in 1998.

In 1945 Kay Gruber was appointed the Director of War Blind Veteran Services for the American Foundation for the Blind and in 1949 as Assistant Director for Professional Services of AFB, positions she held simultaneously until her retirement in 1963. Much of her life was dedicated to providing maximum independence for the blind and rebuilding the pride, dignity and self-esteem of blinded veterans.

Kay Gruber was instrumental in working with Warren Bledsoe and Russ Williams to launch the Hines Blind Rehabilitation Center, especially in the area of securing the necessary materials and equipment. She stayed at Hines for six weeks and helped choose many of the first staff members. She held many training sessions with the staff during those early weeks infusing the philosophy which dominated that center for many years.

Kay Gruber has been described as a remarkable, highly respected, brilliant woman who gave exemplary leadership in the work for the blind in spite of occasional criticism of her advanced techniques and standards. The Bureau of Veterans Administration has named a scholarship program in her honor, with at least sixteen scholarships given annually. She had a way of making each blinded veteran she met feel valued and in 1998 she was saluted as the official "Sweetheart of the BVA." In 1995, Kay Gruber was presented the BVA Medal, the highest honor it can bestow.

In her capacity as Assistant Director for Professional Services at AFB, Kay Gruber arranged and conducted many summer school courses and workshops for teachers of blind children. Together with Pauline Moor, she edited AFB's publication No Place to Go, a book on the education of severely disturbed blind children which in 1963 was ahead of its time.

Video

Kathern Gruber Kathern Gruber's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the Blinded Veterans Association

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Eleanor E. Faye, MD

Eleanor E. Faye, MD
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Eleanor E. Faye is the Ophthalmological Advisor to the Lighthouse Center for Education. She was born and raised in Hawaii. She was awarded her BA degree from Stanford University and her MD degree in 1950 from Stanford University School of Medicine.

From 1965-1993 Eleanor Faye served as the Director of the Lighthouse Low Vision Services. A founder and lead instructor with the Lighthouse Continuing Education Program in low vision care, Eleanor Faye also lectures at universities, hospitals and agencies for the blind and visually impaired. She is an emeritus ophthalmic surgeon with the Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Hospital and with the New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center.

Eleanor Faye was formerly a member of the Board of Trustees of the American Foundation for the Blind, Chair of the American Academy of Ophthalmology's Low Vision Standing Committee (now the Vision Rehabilitation Committee) and is Chair of the Low Vision Clinical Society. She maintains an ophthalmic practice in New York City.

Eleanor Faye's work has been widely published. Her book, Clinical Low Vision (1994), went into its second edition and was praised as a "classic work" by the New England Journal of Optometry. She has also collaborated on several books and film and videotape productions about low vision with Lighthouse Low Vision Services, the Lighthouse National Center for Vision and Aging, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Foundation for the Blind.

Eleanor Faye is widely recognized as a leader in low vision. In 1981, she received the first annual Pisart Vision Award from the New York Association for the Blind as well as the American Foundation for the Blind's Migel Medal for Outstanding Service to Blind Persons. Other awards include a Doctor of Humane Letters from Illinois College of Optometry and two Merit Awards from the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

More recently, Eleanor Faye has been conferred a Doctor of Science degree from the State University of New York (1991), received the Distinguished Service Award from the American Optometric Association (1994), was named Honorary Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry (1994), and received the Statesmanship Award conferred by the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology (1995). In July 1996, Eleanor Faye was awarded the International Meritorious Award for Lifetime Contribution to Low Vision by AER, the Association for the Education and Rehabilitation of Blind and Visually Impaired Persons.

Eleanor E. Faye, MD Eleanor E. Faye's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by AER Division 7: Low Vision

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: William H. "Bill" English

William H. "Bill" English
Inducted 2005
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Bill English was born in 1929 in Chicago. He received his Bachelors from Cornell in Iowa and his Masters from Iowa State University. He is married to Janet and they have one daughter and two grandchildren.

Mr. English's entire career was devoted to the education of blind and visually impaired children and youth. From 1952-1954 he was at the Kentucky School for the Blind as a teacher and coach and, from 1954-1957, at the Ohio State School for the Blind as Principal, teacher and wrestling coach. He and his family then moved to Virginia where he served as Principal of the Virginia School for the Blind from 1957 until 1970. Sensing the need for a teacher preparation program within the state, he initiated preparations for and later helped to establish the vision program at the University of Virginia. In 1970 he moved to the Wisconsin School for the Visually Handicapped, where he was Superintendent until his retirement in 1994.

Bill English has been described as a visionary leader who expanded services to all students with vision impairment within the state of Wisconsin through innovative outreach programs and a model service delivery system. Children were identified by the outreach program, invited to the WSVH and given a comprehensive evaluation by the specialists on the staff to help parents look at options for their child. He also began a low vision screening of preschool visually impaired children in Wisconsin. Another program he initiated was a cooperative school program with the Janesville Public schools, K-12 for those students who would benefit from being mainstreamed during the school day.

Mr. English developed quite a reputation among his colleagues for his sage advice and counsel and for his ability to motivate others to be better teachers and leaders. His terrific sense of humor helped smooth over many tense and potentially volatile situations. He was known for his ability to convey his dreams to others and for his willingness to take risks for the benefit of the students he served.

Bill English served as President of the Association of Education of Visually Handicapped. His many honors include the Migel Medal presented by the American Foundation for the Blind in 1988 and the First Annual Distinguished Service Award the same year from the Wisconsin AER. Also in 1988 the Council of Schools for the Blind awarded him the Distinguished Service Award. In 1989 he received the first annual award for Distinguished Access to Services from the American Foundation for the Blind. In 1991 he was awarded the first Wings of Freedom presented by the American Printing House for the Blind and the same year, the William H. English Award, given by the Council of Schools for the Blind and named in his honor. In 1994 he received the Mary K. Bauman award given by AERBVI.

Bill English Bill English's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the Alumni Association of the Wisconsin School for the Visually Handicapped; Family and Friends

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Cleo Dolan

Cleo Dolan
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Cleo Dolan was born in 1918 in Ohio, was awarded a bachelors degree in 1941 and masters degree in Social Administration in 1945 from Ohio State University. He also attended Franklin Law School and did post graduate work at Ohio State University. He and his wife Elinore have 2 children and 4 grandchildren.

From 1952 to 1956 Cleo Dolan served as Social Service Supervisor and then as Assistant Superintendent for the Boys Industrial School in Lancaster, Ohio. He was the Director of State Services for the Blind from 1957 to 1958.

Cleo Dolan served 30 years (1958-87) as Executive Director of the Cleveland Society for the Blind. Under his dynamic and capable leadership this agency became the third largest private multi-purpose agency in the nation serving blind persons. He was an innovative thinker, a man ahead of his time. The following serve to illustrate this point: in 1959 a low vision clinic was established; in 1961 children's services were established; in 1962 the Aids and Appliances Department opened; in 1969 an intensive rehabilitation program designed especially for teenagers was initiated; in 1971 the Cleveland Society became the first agency to field test the Optacon; in 1972 a Food Service Training Program for snack bar managers was established, a first in the country; in 1975 the Society was designated as a regional center for deaf-blind students; and in 1978 the first Independent Living Residence Training Center in the United States was opened. Keeping step with the electronic age and thus, opening a whole new world of employment, the Society opened the Saint Ann Foundation Electronic Training Center, the first of its kind for blind persons and the Storer Center, one of the finest computer access centers in the country for blind people. He started planned giving in the 1950's and left the agency in good financial health when he retired. Many would agree that the Cleveland Society was a pace setter particularly in job training that others sought to emulate.

Cleo Dolan's professional organizational affiliations are numerous: National Rehabilitation Association, Life Member; American Association of Workers for the Blind, Life Member and President (1971-1973) with Cleveland hosting the national convention twice; board member for National Industries for the Blind, National Accreditation Council for Agencies Serving Blind and Visually Handicapped, and the American Foundation for the Blind. He was active in the World Council for the Welfare of the Blind, Affiliated Leadership League for the Blind of America, National Presidents' Association of Agencies Serving Blind and Visually Handicapped Persons, Lancaster Masonic bodies, Lancaster Rotary International, Heights Lions Club, and Garfield Memorial Church. Cleo Dolan represented the United States at international conventions in Russia (1973) and Brazil (1974). In 1988 he was the distinguished recipient of the National Association of Rehabilitation Facilities (NARF) award.

Cleo Dolan Cleo Dolan's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Father Thomas Carroll

Father Thomas Carroll
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Thomas Carroll, Jr. was born in Gloucester, Massachusetts in 1909 and studied Greek, Latin, and Philosophy at Holy Cross College in Worcester, MA, graduating in 1932. Deciding to become a priest, he attended St. John's Seminary, and was ordained in 1938. He died suddenly in 1971.

Father Carroll's first assignment was to the Catholic Guild for all the Blind as Assistant Director. During World War II he worked extensively with blinded veterans, serving from 1944-1947 as auxiliary chaplain of Avon Old Farms Convalescent Hospital, the U.S. Army's Experimental Rehabilitation Center in Connecticut. He also held a similar post at Valley Forge General Hospital in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania from 1944-1949.

Fr. Carroll became Director of the Catholic Guild for the Blind in 1947. In 1952 he brought the idea of safe cane travel skills to the Center in the form of the first mobility program. The following year he conducted the first National Mobility Institute to link the war blind and civilian programs of orientation and mobility.

St. Paul's Rehabilitation Center for the Blind, which Fr. Carroll established in 1954, was the first civilian facility offering comprehensive rehabilitation for the newly blinded. This was renamed the Carroll Center in 1972.

Always seeking to apply the latest in research to the needs of the blind, Fr. Carroll founded the American Center for Research in Blindness and Rehabilitation in 1963. In 1965, underscoring his pioneer spirit and dedication to the problems of research and blindness, he convinced the archdiocese of Boston to close a home for Aged Blind Women and transformed it into a geriatric rehabilitation center which merged with the St. Paul's Center in 1973.

In 1961, Fr. Carroll published a book on the rehabilitation of the blind that won international recognition: Blindness: What it is, What it Does, and How to Live with it (Little, Brown & Co.). Translated into many languages, it has served to provide a model for many centers throughout the world.

Fr. Carroll served on many national and international committees, including the President's Committee on Employment of the Handicapped, and the Special Legislative Commission, which studied problems of blind children and their families in Massachusetts. He was the recipient of nearly 100 national and international honors in work for the blind, including an honorary L.L.D. degree from Holy Cross in 1966, the Bell Greve Memorial award of the National Rehabilitation Association in 1960, and the Miguel Medal of AFB. He was the National Chaplain of the Blinded Veterans Association for 25 years, a member of the Presidents' Committee on Employment of the Physically Handicapped, the National Advisory Neurological Diseases and Blindness Council, and the World Commission of Research in Rehabilitation.

Fr. Thomas Carroll Father Thomas Carroll's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Copy and Paste Scattered Files with Piky Basket

Copy and move files from across your system with Piky Basket, a free Windows utility that runs as an Explorer right-click extension. The basic use is a "basket" where you compile a range of files from different locations and folders through right-clicking.

Head to where you want to paste or move those files, and Piky dumps them all. You can also copy all the file paths from your basket contents to the clipboard for use in other utilities, and a bonus feature lets you open a command line window pointed at any location.

Click this link to download Piky Basket from Conceptworld.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Leaders and Legends: Charles F.F. Campbell

Charles F.F. Campbell
Inducted 2007
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Charles Campbell, known as Charlie, (1876-1935) grew up on the London campus of the Royal Normal College for the Blind (RNC), established in 1872 by his father, Sir Francis Campbell, who was an adventitiously blinded American. After completing his degree at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he returned briefly to the RNC to work on vocational training programs for the blind.

He soon returned to Massachusetts and through his innovative work became a leader in the development of modern vocational rehabilitation for blind adults by demonstrating to blind people and the public the many and varied jobs that could be done without sight. In 1904 he established an "experiment station" to train and place blind workers in industry at the Massachusetts Association for the Adult Blind. This successful program was continued by the newly established Massachusetts Commission for the Blind in 1906 and represented the beginning of pioneering innovations in employment, training and placement of adult blind in the United States.

In 1907 Charlie launched the field's first professional journal, titled Outlook for the Blind, later renamed the Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness. With the help of his first wife, Wilhemina and her sister, Mary, who became his second wife after Wilhemina died, Charlie edited the Outlook for its first 16 years without remuneration. The publication was a forum for the free and open discussion of topics connected with work for the blind and supported the development of professions and disciplines serving these individuals and their families.

Charlie Campbell was also a leader in the movement to evolve the Blind People's Higher Education and Improvement Association, started in 1895 by graduates of schools for the blind as a counterpoint to the American Association of Instructors for the Blind (AAIB), the organization run by the Superintendents of the Schools for the Blind. In 1905, under the leadership of Charlie Campbell and Ambrose Shotwell, this organization was reconstituted as the American Association of Workers for the Blind (AAWB). Charlie served as the volunteer Secretary until 1919. This organization helped to professionalize service for adults who are blind.

Charlie served as the Executive director of the Pennsylvania Association for the Blind and then the Ohio Commission for the Blind in Columbus. He also served as the Superintendent of the Ohio State School for the Blind and in a leadership role at the Detroit League for the Handicapped. In 1931 he was a key figure in the 1931 World Conference of Work for the Blind which began the development of a unified code for Braille in the English-speaking world.

He was considered by his peers to be the most effective advocate for the establishment of the American Foundation for the Blind in 1923 which became a strong voice advocating for quality services for blind children and adults and their family members. He was influential in convincing Helen Keller to participate in AFB's mission of advancing the cause of blind persons throughout the world. Upon his death, Dr. Edward Allen wrote of him that "he was America's best friend of the blind."

"While I was still at Radcliffe College, his eloquent pleadings convinced my teacher and me that there was something we could do to better the condition of the adult blind." -- Helen Keller, 1936

"The modern conception of work for the adult blind throughout the entire country owes more to his inspirational, vivacious initiative than to any other single factor." -- C. W. Holmes 1936

Charles Campbell Charles Campbell's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: C. Warren Bledsoe

C. Warren Bledsoe
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Warren Bledsoe (1912-2005) was born at the Maryland School for the Blind where his father was serving as superintendent. He and his wife Anne had two daughters. He graduated from Princeton University, the Harvard course for teachers of the blind and did graduate work at Johns Hopkins. He taught at the Maryland School for the Blind until he was drafted in World War II.

Warren Bledsoe speaking at the 1990 APH Annual Meeting

In 1947 Warren Bledsoe was appointed by General Omar Bradley as the Coordinator of the Blinded Veterans Affairs and played an important role in setting up the program for blinded military personnel at Valley Forge. Because of his determination and development of a training curriculum, the long cane method of travel which was developed by Dr. Richard Hoover was implemented to prepare blinded veterans for return to civilian life. It is now used around the world to enable visually impaired people to travel independently. He was influential in the establishment of the blind Center at Hines VA Hospital in Illinois.

After World War II Warren Bledsoe joined the staff of the American Foundation for the Blind to serve as editor of the New Outlook. He then joined the staff of the Veteran's Administration, where he was in charge of the Blind Rehabilitation Service for all veterans. In the late 1950's he was reassigned from the VA to the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, where he fought to preserve the position of Director of Blind Rehabilitation, including writing a letter to President Eisenhower with positive results. He retired as principal consultant on blindness to the Rehabilitation Services Administration of the US Department of Health, Education and Welfare, having served in the Division for the Blind from 1958 to 1966.

Warren Bledsoe's many publications include a novel which was unrelated to blindness; frequent contributions to the Blindness Annual; "Credo Ascribed to Certain Masters of the Art of Teaching Blind People"; "Originators of Orientation and Mobility Training" in Foundations of Orientation and Mobility by Welsh and Blasch; "Social and Rehabilitation Services for the Blind" in Hardy & Cull's Social and Rehabilitation Services for the Blind. He has been instrumental in preserving historical literature concerning work with blind and visually impaired persons.

Warren Bledsoe was awarded the Alfred Allen Award by AAWB in 1977 for his awareness and understanding of the problems of blindness, of its limitations and of what to do about it; Wings of Freedom Award in 1996 from the American Printing House for the Blind for his outstanding commitment to the advancement of rehabilitation programs for the blind. He has been referred to as a master at teaching blind persons how to manage their blindness, knowing when to help and when not to.

Warren Bledsoe Warren Bledsoe's Hall of Fame Plaque
About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

Leaders and Legends: Donald Blasch

Donald Blasch
Inducted 2002
Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field

Donald Blasch (1914-1993) was born in Illinois, the seventh in a family of eight children whose parents emigrated from Lithuania. He graduated with a B.E. from Northern Illinois University in 1937 and from the University of Chicago with an M.A. in 1949 and postgraduate work at Ohio State University, University of Chicago and Northwestern University. In 1942 he married Virginia who currently lives outside of Chicago and they had two children.

Dr. William Wiener, Ruth Kaarlela, and Donald Blasch at Ruth Kaarlela's retirement party as chair of the WMU department (1986)

Donald Blasch worked as a psychologist at Illinois State Training School and a counselor at St. Charles School for Boys. He served in the army during World War II in Africa, Sicily and Italy, as a consultant in personnel and was promoted to Lieutenant. Prior to working at Hines he was employed as a child psychologist between 1948 and 1951.

In 1951 Donald Blasch was hired by Russ Williams as a counselor at the Hines V. A. Center. While there he exhibited a wholesome belief in what the blind person could aspire to and a genuine interest in his patients long after they had completed their training. After serving nearly eight years as a counselor, he assumed the position of acting Chief of the Blind Rehabilitation Center at Hines. He was influential in applying the "Hines Blind Center Philosophy" to a civilian program for blind children in Chicago.

In 1961 when Western Michigan University secured a federal grant to begin a training program in Orientation and Mobility, the first of its kind in the country and, indeed, the world, Donald Blasch accepted the challenge to become its director,. The establishment of the M.A. degree in O&M was soon followed by a degree in rehabilitation teaching. These two degrees were the corner stones of the department of blind rehabilitation. Among his accomplishments as Director of the Blind Rehabilitation and Mobility Institute at the university were the development of a low vision clinic, an emphasis on low vision training, and development of an electronic travel aids program. Under his leadership the department grew into one of the largest programs in the country.

After retirement in 1984 Donald Blasch served as President of the Michigan Foundation for the Blind and Visually Impaired. Through the Foundation he established an outreach program to introduce individuals to rehabilitation and encourage them to enter a comprehensive rehabilitation program.

Over the years his contributions have been recognized by organizations throughout the blindness field. He was a member of the executive board of AAWB and the recipient of more than a dozen awards including the Lawrence E. Blaha Award in 1977, the Migel Medal from AFB in 1977, the Alfred E. Allen Memorial Award from AAWB in 1979, and the Ambrose Shotwell Award from AAWB in 1981.

Donald Blasch Donald Blasch's Hall of Fame Plaque

Plaque sponsored by the Michigan Foundation for the Blind and Visually Impaired; Blind Low Vision Studio

About the Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is dedicated to preserving, honoring, and promoting the tradition of excellence manifested by the specific individuals inducted into the Hall of Fame and through the history of outstanding services provided to people who are blind or visually impaired.

These significant professional colleagues of the recent and distant past are a fascinating cross-section of heroes and pioneers who not only shaped our rich history, philosophy, knowledge and skills, but also give us insights into current and future challenges. These giants shared their personal lives and showed us strategies to ensure that services for blind persons remain unique and specialized. Enjoy their lives and contributions and reflect upon your own list of heroes.

Hall of Fame: Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is a project of the entire field of blindness. It is curated by the American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.

Visit the virtual Hall of Fame for the inspiring stories of many more heroes of the field of blindness.

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