President’s Corner

Happy April Fool’s Day! Everything I’ve stated below is true.  🙂

Legislation took up most of our time during the last three months.  We advocated for HB 60 which the governor just signed into law on March 17th! What this bill does is replace the term “hearing impaired” with “deaf and hard of hearing” throughout the state code (law).

We’re the first state in the US to do this so we’ve made history! We’ve gotten word that there’s about four states and possibly more who’s thinking about following suit! This may seem minor but this is something that can have a ripple effect from the top down instead of trying to teach people from the bottom up which takes a lot more energy and work.  This change helps show that we’re not just something needing to be fixed but humans with feelings, emotions and thoughts and that our group has a language and culture of our own that we are proud of.

The other bill we advocated for was HB 414 which will send the referrals to Dept. of Human Services (DHS) AND Utah Schools for the Deaf (USD) when a child has been identified with some hearing loss.  This will allow parents to know much sooner about what services, programs and options there are since language development is critical to the child’s foundation for future success. Hopefully, this will help decrease language deprivation for our children.

In February we had our 2nd Deafhood 101 workshop and it went well! Our 2nd group reported that they have benefitted a lot from this workshop and are encouraging others to take this workshop when it becomes available again. This workshop covers a lot in 20 hours and makes you think! We’re hoping to have another one later this year but that depends on Deafhood Foundation’s schedule.  We need about 3 Deafhood 101 before we can move on to Deafhood 201.  Then 301!  This is great for our deaf community since it builds up our identity, language, culture and increases our awareness of external influences.  We’re very excited about this since it is very thought provoking, empowering and brings us closer together which makes us stronger as a community.

A couple weeks ago we met with Congresswoman Mia Love’s team and discussed HR 1120 Alice Cogswell and Anne Sullivan Macy Act.  This was a good meeting since we were able to bring light to various issues and struggles of deaf education across the USA.  This bill did not make it through last year so there’s an attempt to try again this year and we want to help push to make it happen this year.  This will help strengthen IDEA, make the best use of the money where its actually successful and makes all states accountable by requiring them to send in reports.  So this is definitely a good push ahead for deaf education and for education of children with other disabilities.  We would like to ask you to contact your representatives to support the bill! Here’s the link to more about the bill and what the talking points are:

There’s a townhall meeting on April 8th for deaf people who experienced discrimination in jail and prison.  If you know anyone who went through this, please encourage them to go to the townhall meeting and let the lawyers know.  We’re hoping to get enough people together to be able to move forward on this and getting it resolved as soon as possible. Click here to see the flyer with more information!

Exciting news! We’ve partnered up with Sanderson Center and Utah Schools of the Deaf (USD) to bring a wonderful speaker to Utah! Linsay Darnall! He’ll be spending a day with the kids and employees at USD then providing leadership workshop at Sanderson Center. It’ll be on April 28th and 29th!  Please keep an eye out for an announcement from Sanderson Center about the workshops with further information.

We will also have our FIRST ASL TRU-BIZ Show Saturday night and Linsay Darnall will do a few stories in ASL! We also want to invite YOU, our Deaf Community members to come and share your ASL talents! So mark that down on your calendar! Click here for more information on the ASL TRU-BIZ Show!

As for UAD Announce! There’s been two people taking care of this for a long time now.  They do a lot of work of pre-checking each announcement to make sure it meets the guidelines before it can be sent out.  Those two are Donna Melander and Valerie Kinney. They’ve both done a wonderful job of doing that every day.  Now we’re sad to inform you that Donna stepped down from the role due to family reasons. Thank you Donna for all that you have done for us! (Valerie too!) 🙂 So we brought this to the UAD Board and it was decided that Pamela Mower will take over the role as Editor and Valerie agreed to continue her role as Assistant Editor.  If any of you want to subscribe to the email blast, you can do so on our home page –  Feel free to share to your announcements too, like babies, weddings, honors, and more!  It offers another way for our Deaf community to be aware of what’s going on in the community and various activities.

Did you know that in 1955 UAD membership costs just 0.67 cents a year!? Wow! Yes, you’ve got that right! All of the old UAD Bulletins, all the way back to 1954, have been uploaded to our website and is now available for viewing! Click here to check it out!

Here’s the current list of UAD Board members:

  • Stephen Persinger (President)
  • Pamela Mower (Vice President)
  • Ashli-Marie Grant (Secretary)
  • Philippe Montalette (Treasurer)
  • Roberta Dunlap (Member at Large)
  • Dustin Cutrer (Member at Large)
  • Patricia Lowry (Member at Large)
  • Sari Williams (Member at Large)
  • Laurie Monell (Member at Large)
  • Nathan Underwood (Member at Large)
  • Greg Jones (Member at Large)
  • Brandon Bowden (Member at Large)
  • Wade Hester (Member at Large)

UAD is becoming increasingly busy so I’m glad to have a good team to help out.  Now our next UAD Board meeting will be April 12th at 4:30pm in Sanderson Center conference room.  All are welcome to come watch!

And this concludes my report 🙂

Stephen Persinger, UAD President,

UAD Conference Chairperson’s Corner

Pamela Mower
UAD Conference Chairperson

Hi everyone!

As you may know, we will be having our UAD Conference on September 22-23, 2017 and we are very excited about it!

The theme for this conference is “United We Stand” since we feel it is very important to work together with various organizations for the Deaf and we feel this will help us to continue working together. Our board members are working very hard on this conference AND we will be collaborating with the following organizations and/or clubs:

  • Sego Lily Center for Abused Deaf – (Their gala will be on Sept. 23rd in the evening in the same center as our conference.
  • Utah Deaf Nite – This will be hosted at a location nearby on Sept. 22nd in the evening after the banquet.
  • Coffee Night Out – There will be coffee in the morning before workshops starts where you can socialize while you “wake” up with coffee.
  • Jean Massieu School for the Deaf – Children from JMS will perform during lunch on Sept. 22!

This will be at Viridian Center located in West Jordan just off Redwood Road and 8030 South. There are Trax and bus stops near this center so it will be very easy for everyone to get to.

I know you WANT to register for UAD Conference since it’ll be a fun and educational time where you will get to socialize and network with others!

Did you know that if you are a UAD member, you’ll get a discount when you register for UAD conference?? Become a UAD member now if you haven’t yet and save money registering for the conference!

How to become a UAD member- Click on, click on “Join us”, click on “Individual membership” then follow the instructions. One cool thing about registering online is that from now on, you will get an automated reminder when your membership will soon expire so all you have to do is renew it! Easy, huh?

How to register for the UAD Conference?

We are currently seeking people for the following:

  • Presenters– Interested in becoming a presenter? Deadline for this is April 8th. Click on  to find out more and to apply!
  • Experienced Photographers/videographers– Interested? Email Pamela at
  • Volunteers-Interested in volunteering? Email Ashli-Marie Grant at   to let her know you’re interested, which day (OR BOTH) you can volunteer on and get more information about how to become a volunteer!
  • Sponsors- Do you want to support the conference? If you do, you will get some benefits such as being included on advertising materials, free tickets, etc. depending on which type of sponsorship you select. Interested? Email Philippe at
  • Exhibitors– Want to advertise of your services or businesses and have a booth during the conference? Email Stephen at for more information

If you have any questions about the UAD conference, please email me at and I’ll reply within a few days.

To a Higher Glory

January 8, 2017 – Dennis Anderson passed away just 22 days after he was diagnosed with lung cancer, in Murray at the age of 62. Dennis was a long-time employee of the culinary department of St. Mark’s Hospital. In his spare time he loved to craft some delightfully artistic wall hangings, dolls, holiday decorations and beaded work. His siblings still remember some of the ingenious things he created as a child. He kept that passion through his life. Barbara Clay Anderson, his wife, survives him.

January 21, 2017 – Lydia Garcia passed away at the age of 81 in West Jordan. Burial took place in Cebolla, New Mexico, her birthplace. She is survived by her husband Daniel and a granddaughter, Emily Sill.

Utah School for the Deaf Update

Michelle Tanner

USDB fared very well this legislative session!  Every request that we made was supported and fully funded.  As you may recall USDB made 3 increased funding requests.  Two of the requests were for an increase in the ongoing funding for educator steps and lanes and additional interpreter and educator positions.  Both of these requests were fully funded.  We also asked for one-time funding to design and build a new school in Springville to accommodate our student needs in the Provo/Orem area.  We are extremely pleased that this too was funded.  We were originally told that it would take a miracle for this to happen because there was limited funds available for new buildings this year.  But it happened. 🙂

We also worked closely with Representative Owens to pass a bill that codified what USDB is currently doing for students needing audiological and PIP services, as well as having medical providers notify us when they identify a child with a suspected hearing loss.  Current code limited our involvement with children until their hearing loss was documented.  However, when it comes to audiology and PIP, we have become involved earlier to meet the needs of our deaf and hard of hearing students.  Finally, we are hopeful that by passing this bill we will be notified earlier about students needing our assistance.

None of this would have been possible without Superintendent Coleman.  He has devoted countless hours advocating for these requests by talking with many individuals about our needs.  His skill in handling these matters was key in getting each item passed.  I am very grateful that we have Joel Coleman as our Superintendent.  He adds great value to USDB.

This is probably the best legislative session we have had in many years.  If you have time, please thank your legislators, and specifically Representative Owens, for their support of our student needs.

I am grateful to each of you in the Deaf community, and particularly UAD, who supported our bill and requests for increased funding.  I mean it sincerely when I say we couldn’t be successful without your tremendous support.

Jean Massieu School News

Aimee Breinholt

The month of March has been full of activities and learning!  We started the month with our annual read-a-thon.  It is great to see the students jump into reading.  This year our top readers were Cameron Draper, Aaliyah Milline, John Dietz and Millie Warren.  Our second grade class read a total of 2705 minutes for the week.  We are so proud of all of their accomplishments!  We also enjoyed the production of “The Three Musketeers.”  We hope you took the opportunity to come watch the show.  We would like to thank Sarah Leathers, Jenni Johnson, Blaine Taylor and the students for the tremendous work they did with this production!  The school just held our annual science fair.  Students did a wonderful job with their projects.  Winners will be announced after the break.  Whitney James has continued to plan several engaging after school activities!  Students have and will participate in skiing, STEAM lessons, frisbee, flag football, dodgeball, four squares, hopscotch, cake baking, cake decorating, and gardening.

JMS students and staff have eagerly jumped into spring.  Everyone is looking forward to a much earned spring break.  During the break, we are excited to take some of our juniors and seniors out of country for a visit to Thailand.  We will visit the Deaf school, ride elephants, zipline, play with baby tigers and tour historical sites.  It is promising to be a wonderful trip!

The school year is quickly drawing to a close.  We are starting our fourth quarter.  The month of April we look forward to our annual Stingers (staff vs. students) basketball game.  This will take place at the OEC gym on April 21st from 6-8pm.  We would love to see you all there!  Come cheer on our students and staff.  (GO STAFF!)  We are also eagerly anticipating the visit and presentation of Linsay Darnall Jr.  We are pleased to collaborate with UAD and the deaf center to host Linsay.  The community event will be held on April 28th-29th.  You won’t want to miss it!

The month of May will bring teacher appreciation week, SAGE testing, prom and graduation.  We are currently working to plan and prepare our summer camps.  These camps are open to any school age student who is deaf or hard-of-hearing.  Students do not need to be enrolled with USDB to participate.  If you would like further information on these camps please contact the school at 801-464-2000 (voice) or 385-282-6945 (VP).

We continue to look for substitute teachers for the school.  Please help us spread the word.  If you are interested in working, apply at:

We love our community.  It truly takes a village to educate our students.  Thank you for all you do to support us!


Sorenson Communication – Information Technology (IT) Department

Sorenson is well known for their commitment to the Deaf Community. Sego Lily raises up the Information and Tech Department for donating enough funds to support 4 families during the holidays.  They went the extra mile by committing to do the same again NEXT year!  Thanks, team!



December is known as a time of giving.  We haven’t forgotten the work UTRID did to raise $2000 during Sub for Santa to help 5 families!  We appreciate and love our interpreting community.




This hard working and dedicated club has donated to Sego Lily for the second time.  It is an honor to work with students who recognize the value of community bonds and reciprocity with the Deaf Community.  Thank you for being an example to other programs!



Students from the ASL Honor Society of Fremont High School wanted to support a worthy cause as part of their Honor Society Project.  Thank you for the $241 donation!  Keep up the great work of paying it forward.


 LULAROE – $240

Chole Palethorpe hosted a fundraiser by selling LuLaRoe clothing.  A portion of the proceeds were donated to Sego Lily.  People could also buy clothes to donate to survivors.  Thank you for using your business to support ours!


Ogden Deaf Seniors – $220

Ogden Deaf Seniors donated $220 for 2016.  A tip jar is passed around each month. For the last several years, the money donated at the end of most years has been donated to Sego Lily Center for the Abused Deaf, and applied to wherever need is the greatest.


The UAD Bulletin is available online to everyone. For more information, you may contact the editor, Philippe Montalette, at 801-331-5533 or

We are working to update the Facebook page for Utah Association of the Deaf. To see what is coming up, check the flyers within the UAD Bulletin.  Join us in Facebook, type in search “Utah Association of the Deaf”

Want to learn a little about Utah Deaf history? There is a website, titled Utah Deaf Historical Digital Library, where you can read various articles – Utah Association of the Deaf, National Fraternal Society of the Deaf, Sanderson Community Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Gallaudet University (Utah connection), Deaf Latter-Day Saints, and more. Jodi Kinner spent several years of spare time to develop these articles and is commended for her devotion to the project. If you would like to contribute information or pictures that are missing from any of these articles, please contact Jodi at

UAD Bookstore

Jewelry… Comteks…
Door Knockers… Amplifiers…
Alarm Clocks… Vibrators… Signalers for Doorbell, Phone, Baby Cry and Videophones… Smoke/Fire Alarms…
Books on Sign Language, Deaf Culture, Deaf History…

If you can’t find an item, we can special order it!

Adele Sigoda, Manager

UAD Bookstore Hours

Year Round Tuesdays through Thursdays 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm
Other days/times by appointment (48 hours notice)
Closed on holidays

Located in the Sanderson Community Center for the Deaf & HoH 5709 South 1500 West
Taylorsville, UT 84123-5217

801-657-5207 – work VP 801-938-5083 – home VP
Visit us online at

Notes from Down Under

Bonnie Walker

Bonnie Walker is an interpreter and a daughter of Ronald and Carol Johnston, Plain City; the mother of Mauri Lynn; and a sister of Connie Johnston-Ruberry, Kansas. She, her husband Roland Walker and daughter Emma moved to Canberra, Australia earlier this year where Roland took a job. The following is her Facebook posting.

It has been raining like crazy for nearly two weeks. Almost all day and night with the exception of a few dry hours here and there.

I made it to the beach this week before the rain fell and that was pretty fantastic.

I have to think back on the blessings we have received during our move, where the weather is concerned.

When our house was up for sale the weather was always beautiful on days of inspection/walk throughs. When the tornado hit the vicinity and winds tore through the neighbourhood our electricity stayed on, nothing landed in our yard, our trampoline stayed in place, our fences and trees were unharmed where damage was found all around us.

It was cold and it rained for an entire week before the movers came to pack up our home in December. The day they arrived started out cloudy; the rain didn’t come until after the door shut on the container. Literally raining as it rolled away.

As I mentioned earlier it’s been raining daily here for some time. When our things arrived yesterday the sun came out for a few hours and we had a dry landing. Today it rains again and continues to wash my clothes out on the line right now.

I love the rain, I love dancing in the rain, loved playing soccer in the rain (it was perfect). I’m so grateful though that we’ve been blessed to have a dry, safe and successful journey in our moving here.

I miss my family and friends in America but I love it here. We are all doing so much better in this new environment.

Roland is a different man, a happy man, enjoying his job, his family, his visits to the ocean and his cricket play.

Share and Enjoy !

0 0 0