NAD Virtual Conference 2020
Kathleen Reese, David Fiorillo, Lauren Lercher (alt), and I participated National Association of the Deaf (NAD) Virtual Conference on October 1st to 4th and 24th to represent New Jersey Association of the Deaf, Inc. as delegates. In person conference was supposed to be held last July in Chicago but it was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. According to the NAD’s bylaws, the election, bylaw amendments, proposed priorities and proposed resolutions were required to complete this year. Zoom was where about 180 members from every state association and affiliate met virtually. The difference between “in-person” and virtual conference was that more delegates were participated virtually and that it saved us a lot of money. It went smoothly despite a few technology issues. This was a rewarding experience for all of us. We were impressed how NAD set up their very first virtual conference. Great job to all NAD Board Members and Committees!
During the Council of Representatives agenda, we discussed the bylaws on proposed amendments, proposed priorities, election and resolutions before we casted the vote. Some of us met with regional caucuses, too. Results for 5 top priorities and few others are below. Hand waves to Michelle Cline, formerly NJAD President for being a NAD Treasurer on 2ndterm. Congratulations to all new officers! Special thank you to Steve Lovi who had been our Regional 1 Representative for 8 years!
NAD Officers for 2020-2022:
President – Melissa Draganac-Hawk
Vice-President – Amy Gomme
Treasurer – Michelle Cline
Secretary – Jenny Buechner
Regional 1 Representatives – Milmaglyn Morales & Jacob Leffler
Regional 2 Representatives – Linsay Darnall, Jr. & Kevin Ryan
Regional 3 Representatives – Steve Hamerdinger & Lisa Rosa
Regional 4 Representatives – James Christianson, Jr.
Five (5) Top Priorities:
Achieving Equity in Deaf Education
Campaign to Spotlight the Adverse Impacts of Language Deprivation
Eliminating Barriers to Quality Care for Deaf Seniors
Foster Care Bill of Rights
Dismantling Racism in the Deaf Community
Some other priorities were *merged and referred:
Collaboration with BIPOC Organizations referred to Diversity Strategy Team (DST)
Addressing the Justice System and Law Enforcement referred to Public Safety Committee
Talent Development Program for Deaf Interpreters of Color referred to DST
VRI and CDI referred to CDI Committee
*Two priorities (Emergency Interpreter Service and COVID-19 Pandemic Response) were merged as “Disaster Response Interpreting Access” and I was able to make the motion to refer it to Emergency Management Expert Team in which I am on the committee for.
Annmarie Buraczeski, NJAD President
David Fiorillo, Delegate
Kathleen Reese, Delegate
Lauren Lercher, Alt Delegate