FROM THE ACB 1998 NATIONAL CONVENTION
by Alice Jackson
From July 4-11, the American Council of the Blind held its Convention
in Orlando, Florida. Because of the extensive fires caused by a
serious drought, I wasn't sure what condition Orlando would be in when
we arrived. Fortunately, everything was quite fine.
The convention is always packed with activities, programs and other
interesting things to do. Among the speakers were a panel discussing
transportation, Terry Hayes Sales, a talking book narrator, and Lynn
Cooper, an image consultant who has been featured on the tape version
of the Braille Forum in "ACB Reports."
Elections were held for five board positions--three to the ACB Board,
and two to the Board of Publications. M.J. Schmitt, Jenine Stanley,
and Winifred Downing were elected by acclamation. The other two
positions, one on the Board of Publications and one on the Board of
Directors, were contested with nominations from the convention floor.
Debbie Grubb, also a member of GDUI, was elected to a four-year term
on the Board of Directors. Charles S. P. Hodge replaced Tom Mitchell on
the Board of Publications where he will serve for two years.
It was exciting to see the growing number of life memberships awarded
at this convention. Oral Miller, ACB's Executive Director who will be
retiring, was one of the recipients. Janiece Peterson, of Friends in
Art, was another.
Many of us from Connecticut who attended the convention were kept busy
throughout the week. John Mattioli, the program chairman for VIDPI
(Visually Impaired Data Processors International), set up training
sessions with vendors of adaptive equipment. Your delegate, currently
serving on the undergraduate Scholarship Committee and the National
Audio Equipment Advisory Committee for the National Library Service,
was also kept quite busy. Marcia and Steve Dresser worked hard in the
Press Room; Steve also worked on the Constitution and Bylaws Committee.
Marcia also was the alternate delegate and attended the Nominating
Committee meeting as I was unable to be there due to other commitments.
We also managed to sell a good deal of candy while there, as well as a
few audio books.
Despite all our hard work, we still found time for fun. The
Connecticut group, along with former CCB members Rosie and Paul Morline
who have relocated to Florida, plus two other friends, spent an evening
together over a very lively, laughter-filled dinner.
Next year's convention will be in Los Angeles, home of movie stars and
Disneyland. If you haven't been to a national convention, I hope you
will consider attending one in the future. They are a lot of fun; there
are interesting people to meet and lots of activities to please almost
anyone's taste. The exhibit hall is a popular place to visit to see
new and not so new technology. Many of us will be going back next year
to represent CCB, to work hard again for all of those things which are
important to all of us. Come, join us.
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