January 30, 2008
Vol. 4, No. 9
Editor: Tom Willard
Deafweekly is an independent news report for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community that is mailed to subscribers every Wednesday and available to read at www.deafweekly.com. Please visit our website to read current and back issues, sign up for a subscription and advertise. Deafweekly is copyrighted 2008 and any unauthorized use, including reprinting of news, is prohibited. Please support our advertisers; they make it possible for you to receive Deafweekly at no charge.
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ASL TO STAR IN PEPSI SUPER BOWL AD
A 60-second Pepsi commercial set to air Sunday during the Super Bowl will be notable for what it's missing: sound. PepsiCo filmed the commercial in American Sign Language, said a news release, and will show it with open captions to benefit all viewers. "The outpouring of support for this ad, both internally and externally, has been overwhelming," said Clay Broussard, the PepsiCo worker who led the project. Based on a popular deaf joke, "Bob's House" features Broussard and co-workers Sheri Christianson, Darren Therriault and Brian Dowling. "We feel like we've already scored the upset on Super Bowl Sunday," said Broussard.
FLORIDA WOMAN DIES IN HIT-AND-RUN CRASH
Phyllis Peeples, 70, of West Palm Beach, Fla., died early Sunday in a car accident on her way home from a late night out. The driver of the car that struck Peeples' Mitsubishi and another vehicle fled the scene and was being sought by police. Peeples, who was born deaf, had been at a bowling tournament and a deaf social club before the crash, her niece, Nancy Carr, told the Palm Beach Post. The youngest of 11 children (including a twin sister who died in August), Peeples never married and retired three years ago as a county file clerk after an earlier job at an RCA plant. A member of Village Baptist Church, her email name was Heavenly, Carr said, and "that's just what she was like."
RIT PROFESSOR ARRESTED IN CHILD-SEX STING
Rochester Institute of Technology graphic arts professor Michael Krembel was arrested this week in Batavia, N.Y. on felony sex abuse charges involving a minor, reported the Associated Press. A 37-year veteran of RIT's National Technical Institute for the Deaf, Krembel was targeted in a sting after reportedly having sex with a minor last June. FBI agents and detectives arrested the 63-year-old in a parking lot Tuesday afternoon after he arranged a meeting with an officer posing online as a teenage boy. "He thought he was going to meet a 14-year-old boy and engage in sexual activity with him," said Detective Todd Crossett. A Genesee County court judge set bail at $50,000 cash or bond, said the Democrat and Chronicle.
NEW JERSEY HEARING AID BILL MOVES FORWARD
Grace's Law, a New Jersey bill that would require insurance companies to cover hearing aids for children 15 and younger, moved a step closer to state law Monday when it passed 3-0 in the Senate Commerce Committee. Named after Grace Gleba, 8, of Warren County, the bill would require $1,000 in hearing aid coverage every 24 months. Jeanine Gleba, Grace's mom, who has been lobbying for hearing aid coverage since 1999, said no such bill has been posted on the Senate side for the last 10 years, "so it's definitely a step in the right direction." But the bill now awaits Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee action and still needs approval from the full Senate and Assembly. "Hopefully," Gleba told The Record, "it doesn't get stalled again."
STEAK 'N SHAKE FLAP SPARKS INTERNET STORM
A Steak 'n Shake manager in Bolingbroke, Ill, refused to serve milkshakes last week to a deaf mother who bypassed the speaker and tried to order at the pickup window. Karen Putz said she was told to drive around and order at the speaker because "it's our policy," she said in a blog post at A Deaf Mom Shares Her World. The post "touched a nerve," said Putz, and at last count had been picked up by some 60 other blogs and media outlets, including ABC7 in Chicago. The company "very much regrets the misunderstanding," Steak 'n Shake's Bill Harnew said in a statement, and has been made aware "that we must constantly keep our associates focused on customer needs and satisfaction."
EX-FEDEX WORKER PREVAILS IN APPEALS COURT
A federal appeals court in Richmond, Va. last week upheld a jury award of $100,000 in punitive damages and $8,000 in compensatory damages against FedEx for discriminating against a deaf former package handler. Ronald Lockhart, who worked part-time from 2000 to 2003 at FedEx's Baltimore-Washington International Airport facility, claimed the company violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by refusing to provide interpreters for meetings and training sessions, including a post-9/11 anthrax briefing. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ruled in Lockhart's favor in July 2002, reported The Blog of Legal Times, but he was fired six months later, prompting another EEOC complaint that alleged his dismissal was retaliatory.
NEVADA DEAF CAUCUS-GOERS CRY FOUL
Members of the newly formed Clark County Deaf Caucus were feeling left out after the January 19 presidential caucus in Nevada, said the Review-Journal. Denny Voreck, who chairs the group, said in a letter to Nevada Democratic Party Chairwoman Jill Derby that he and his colleagues "unanimously agreed that our experience was pretty unpleasant." Derby said she appreciated Voreck's suggestions and planned to act to improve the system. Party bosses said the Deaf Caucus, which they believe is the first of its kind in the nation, will be accommodated when Clark County holds its convention February 23 at Bally's.
CALIFORNIAN SENTENCED FOR ATTACK ON ELDERLY MAN
Kaomang Saeliaw, who first appeared in Deafweekly on August 17, 2005 (fourth item) after his arrest for allegedly sodomizing and robbing an elderly man in a wheelchair in the victim's garage, "was finally sentenced to a lengthy prison term," said Christopher Bowen of the Contra Costa County Alternate Defender Office in Martinez, Calif. Bowen represented Saeliaw, a Southeast Asian immigrant who was 16 at the time of the December 2003 assault and stood trial as an adult. The defense consulted with numerous experts in deaf issues during the case, said Bowen, as well as "several excellent ASL and Certified Deaf Interpreters."
TENNESSEE MAN CALLED INCOMPETENT FOR MURDER TRIAL
Defense attorneys for Alex Smith, a Chattanooga, Tenn. man described by The Chattanoogan as profoundly deaf and retarded, argued in court this week that their client is not competent to assist in his murder trial. Smith, 31, is charged with gunning down Desmond Foster as the victim got out of his car. Prosecutor Boyd Patterson urged that the trial go forward, saying Smith was able to give a statement to a detective, but Judge Rebecca Stern said it would be hard to explain to Smith his basic legal rights. Most defendants who are found incompetent go to a state mental facility, said Assistant Public Defender Karla Gothard, but she knew of no facility that could help Smith.
MISSING MAN LAST SEEN BY FAMILY DECEMBER 16
A deaf Jersey City, N.J. man who suffers from seizures was reported missing in The Jersey Journal on Saturday. Vincent Paul, 46, 5-foot-11 and about 205 pounds, police said. He was last seen by his family on December 16 and was with his girlfriend at the time. Tips can be phoned in to the Missing Persons Unit (201-547-5427).
DRIVER SAFE AFTER CAR GOES THROUGH ICE
An unidentified deaf teenager was safe after his car broke through ice on Lake Winnebago in Wisconsin, said WBAY. The 18-year-old text-messaged his mother for help after the car went through the ice but was able to climb on to the roof and walk home, his grandmother said. Oshkosh police found the car frozen in Millers Bay the next morning and said the driver would probably not be cited but would have to pay towing costs.
INTERPRETER TO SIGN NATIONAL ANTHEM AT SUPER BOWL
The NFL has chosen A Dreamer to sign the national anthem at this Sunday's Super Bowl, said The Arizona Republic. Dreamer -- his name used to be Jon but "it was easier to sign 'dreamer'" -- said he was "giddy like a schoolgirl" when he got the news and has been preparing with YouTube videos of vocalist Jordin Sparks, who will sing alongside him. Dreamer, a Phoenix College professor of sign-language interpretation, rejects the idea that his selection could create any controversy among the deaf. "I spent a year at Gallaudet and I toured with a national theater for the deaf for two years," he said. "I've paid my dues to the deaf community."
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LEADER'S NAME SIGN PROVOKES CRITICISM
Members of Thailand's People Power Party are upset with the sign language used by deaf people to describe Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej. According to the Bangkok Post, Samak's name sign -- based on his "big, rose apple-shaped nose" -- came to the attention of party leaders watching interpreters during a live TV broadcast of a parliamentary session. Anusorn Rattanasint, former president of the National Association of the Deaf in Thailand, advised them to chill out. "Touching our nose does not mean there is something wrong with Mr. Samak," said Anusorn. "It is just the way deaf people communicate and construct our language."
AUSTRALIAN RAPE VICTIM, 13, GOES MISSING
A 13-year-old deaf rape victim has gone missing in Queensland, Australia, said The Daily Telegraph. The girl, born to a teenaged alcoholic mother and known to the system almost all her life, suffers from cerebral palsy and needs treatment for three sexually transmitted infections contracted when she was allegedly raped by her 19-year-old cousin in December. Doctors called a Department of Child Safety crisis line for assistance, but workers didn't have the girl's contact information. The teen's file contains a foreboding note from pediatrician Richard Heazlewood, who examined her in September 2004. "The first stages of puberty are advancing," he wrote, "and she does not mind who she shows this to."
WAR HERO WHO FEIGNED DEAFNESS DIES AT 85
The Edinburgh Evening News in Scotland reported last week on the death of Bill Knaggs, "a wartime hero who escaped from the Nazis by pretending to be a deaf and dumb Frenchman." Knaggs was shot down by German troops over Normandy in 1944 and spent six days on foot before being taken in by members of the French resistance, where he pretended to be deaf and mute. He spent months moving between safe houses in France before US troops arrived and liberated the area, and later wrote The Easy Trip, a memoir whose title was based on his squadron leader's last words -- that the bombing raid would be a "short, easy trip."
ENGLISH ELECTRONICS FIRM KICKED IN ARSE
An electronics company in England was ordered to pay compensation to a deaf man who was denied a job interview because the company didn't want to hire an interpreter. Keith Wynn, 45, brought 25 years of experience with his application to Multipulse Electronics, said The Guardian, but his job interview was canceled and his attempts to reschedule failed. A South London Employment Tribunal investigation found the company never asked Wynn about his needs and could have accommodated him with very slight adjustments. Multipulse's actions, said the tribunal, "were predicated on ignorant, erroneous, stereotypical assumptions of Mr. Wynn's abilities."
MISS ENGLAND TO ATTEND RUGBY SEASON OPENER
Miss England will be on the scene Sunday when the England Deaf Rugby squad opens its season against Wales. Georgia Horsley, who competed in last month's Miss World pageant in China, will give the players their caps and present a trophy to the winning captain, said a Rugby Football Union report. "Having a hearing impairment myself," said Horsley, "I have the utmost respect for these guys who play a team sport at the level they do." The Wales squad will be defending its title as last season's deaf rugby World champions.
WALES YOUTH REGAINS HEARING AT CHURCH HALL
An 11-year-old Wales, UK boy who has spent most of his life being deaf in one ear discovered the root cause while playing with friends at a church hall, said The Courier-Mail. Jerome Bartens heard a popping sound and, using a finger to investigate, found the tip of a cotton bud. "It was incredible," said his father, Carsten Bartens. "His hearing returned to normal in an instant." Jerome found it strange to have his hearing back, he said, but "it's great that people don't have to shout to me and that I don't have to turn my head all the time."
GHANIAN NEWSPAPER EXPOUNDS ON 'DEAF AND MUTE'
The Ghanian Chronicle ran an article last Friday titled, "Still hope for the deaf and mute." Disabled people "end up not living a normal life," said the article, and deaf people are so limited in their function that "some people prefer a paralyzed person, or people without arms," because such people "can express themselves [more] freely and easily." Some religions consider deafness to be a curse, the Chronicle said, and deaf children "were called monsters and even put to death as soon as their deafness was satisfactorily ascertained." The article posed the question, "Is it necessary to educate the deaf and mute?" and concluded that "deaf and mute are not stupidity and ineffectiveness."
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LIFE & LEISURE
'NEEDIEST CASES FUND' HELPS WOMAN GET GREEN CARD
Ramona Palanco's life is silent, said The New York Times on Tuesday, and "becoming darker, too." Palanco grew up in the Dominican Republic, the only deaf person in her town, and met her husband of nearly 20 years, Gustavo, at boarding school. By 17, she was married and living in Manhattan with Gustavo's family. The couple now have four children, ages 11 to 17, and Ramona, 36, holds a steady job assembling office chairs. Ten years ago she was diagnosed with Usher Syndrome, and three years ago she lost her green card, leaving her unable to visit relatives back home. The Neediest Cases Fund supplied $370 so she could get a new card, and she is now saving for a trip in August.
STATE'S OLDEST DEAF MAN MARKS 105TH
Friends and family threw a surprise party Saturday for Cliff Leach to mark the Rochester, N.Y. resident's 105th birthday. According to RNews, Leach is believed to be the oldest deaf man in New York State. The party, held at the Rochester School for the Deaf, was hosted by Advocate for Housing for Deaf Seniors as a fundraiser for deaf senior housing. Leach attributed his longevity to physical activity (he played semi-pro baseball for many years and regularly bowled and golfed until he was 90) and genetics -- his sister is 98.
LIFELONG SCOUT WINS GROUP'S TOP HONOR
The Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) gave its Robert E. Burt Award for distinguished service to the Boy Scouts of America to Robert R. Fuller last month. Fuller, of Rochester, N.Y., recently marked his 50th year with the Boy Scouts and is one of only 18 people nationwide to receive SAR's top honor for Scouting service. Fuller earned his Eagle rank in 1963 in Evanston, Ill., the only deaf person in his local Council, and in 1972 at the Rochester School for the Deaf, Fuller became one of the country's first deaf Scoutmasters. The SAR was founded in 1888, said a news release, and consists of men descended from a patriot who served in the American Revolution.
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DEAF-OWNED INTERPRETER SERVICE LAUNCHES
A new deaf-owned interpreting service has opened in San Francisco, Calif. ASL Bridge was co-founded by Sam Hawk and Robin Horwitz, said a news release, and aims to stand out by providing a streamlined request process and pricing structure. Flat-rate pricing applies no matter what date or time the service is provided, and an online request form and 800 number allow requests to be filled and confirmed within four hours. Customers nowadays "do not tolerate long wait times and tedious interpreter request processes," said Hawk, and can expect better service from a company owned by people "who understand first-hand the needs of the community."
MASS. MAN CULTIVATES LOVE OF PLANTS
After 10 weeks of preparation, Jude Platteborze opened his new store, The Silent Seed, last Saturday in Magnolia, Mass. Platteborze, who is deaf, taught himself botany and traveled widely to collect different plants and seeds and cultivate new generations, said the Gloucester Daily Times. The store, at 15 Lexington Ave., gives the 31-year-old a chance to expand beyond online sales (www.thesilentseed.com) and share what he has learned from books and hands-on experience. Platteborze's mother attributes his love of plants to his deafness; balance problems caused a delay in learning to sit up and crawl and left Platteborze "belly-side down in the grass, nose-to-nose with plants and bugs."
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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
MATLIN: BLACKBERRY GOOD, IPHONE NOT SO MUCH
Marlee Matlin can't live without her Blackberry, Switched revealed in an interview this week, and doesn't want her kids playing video games -- though she admits to playing Ms. Pac Man in 1988 with Sammy Davis Jr. and Lucille Ball. Matlin isn't interested in an iPhone (she's heard Instant Message doesn't work well and needs to "feel the click of a keyboard") but otherwise is a proud gadget geek who thinks it's "a travesty" that closed-captioning is unavailable in most streaming media. Asked which gadget she'd want if she were stranded on an island, Matlin chose the BlackBerry -- "but first I'd make sure there was coverage!"
'MIRACLE WORKER' IN NEW JERSEY SPOTLIGHT
A new staging of William Gibson's Tony-winning The Miracle Worker opened last week at the Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, N.J. The play, which tells the story of deaf and blind Helen Keller and her teacher, Anne Sullivan, is said to have American theater's longest stage combat scene, said Annika Boras, who plays Sullivan. "I throw water, I kick, I scream, and there actually is a lot of slapping," said Lily Maketansky, 11, who shares the role of Keller with Meredith Lipson. The drama, based on Keller's recollections of 1880s Alabama, won Oscars in 1962 for Patty Duke and Anne Bancroft, and endures, Boras told The Record, because it is "a microcosm of the American dream."
CSD-FREMONT TO PERFORM 'SILENT LAUGHTER'
A play set for February 28 to March 1 at the California School for the Deaf in Fremont promises to offer "a side-splitting, slapstick tribute to great movies of the silent film era." Silent Laughter "has it all," said a news release: "romance, drama, humor, and of course, a pie fight." Brought to life by CSDF's high school students, the play pays homage to deaf actors such as Granville Redmond, who worked with legends like Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton. CSDF plans to put its own twist on the show, offering dialogue in sign language and displaying translations on old-style cards, just like in the old movies. To learn more, visit the CSDF website.
JUDGE DENIES FOXY BROWN'S RELEASE PLEA
Rap singer Foxy Brown's request to leave jail early and go to California for an ear exam and repair of a cochlear implant was denied in New York State Supreme Court last Thursday, said the Associated Press. Brown petitioned the court to go to the House Clinic in Los Angeles, saying she faced serious harm to her hearing if she couldn't make the trip, but Justice Melissa Jackson ruled that Brown could get the treatment she needs in New York. The singer, whose real name is Inga Marchand, began a one-year sentence in September for violating parole in an assault case involving two manicurists in a Manhattan nail salon.
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COLLEGE 'TIGER GIRL' DREAMS OF DANCING IN NBA
Basketball fans at Louisiana State University's Pete Maravich Center in Baton Rouge probably had no idea that one of the Tiger Girls dancing in the halftime show Saturday is deaf in both ears, said The Daily Reveille. Andrea Sonnier, an elementary education major, took up dancing in high school, earning a spot on the dance squad as a junior after being rejected two years earlier and signing up for dance lessons. Sonnier is pursuing a career teaching deaf children and hopes to continue dancing, perhaps even with the NBA. Meanwhile, she sleeps with her hearing aid on ("because her parents are no longer there to wake her up") and said it is not unusual for the battery to die in the middle of a dance performance.
NASCAR DRIVER TO HOST ANNUAL SCHOOL FUNDRAISER
NASCAR driver Darrell Waltrip has agreed to co-host this year's 23rd annual Race Fever dinner and auction, a fundraiser for the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and the Blind. This will be Waltrip's third straight appearance at the event, which last year raised over $204,000 with help from 23 drivers. Race Fever 2008 is set for April 25 from 5 to 9 pm at the Talladega Superspeedway. "It's a great event for an even greater cause," said Waltrip, who will share hosting duties with legendary basketball coach Sonny Smith.
NAD PLANS LEADERSHIP TRAINING CONFERENCE
The National Association of the Deaf said last week that it will host its first annual NAD Leadership Training Conference, April 3-5, in Austin, Texas. The conference is designed for "young up-and-coming deaf leaders," said an NAD news release, and is expected to attract more than 100 participants. The event will take place at the Texas School for the Deaf, a primary sponsor along with the Texas Association of the Deaf. "NLTC '08 demonstrates our commitment to expanding the pool of leaders nationwide," said NAD President Bobbie Beth Scoggins.
SHARED READING PROJECT SETS 5-DAY TRAINING PROGRAM
Gallaudet University is sponsoring a Shared Reading Project training program in Washington, D.C., March 17-21. The Shared Reading Project is a home tutoring program to help families learn from a deaf adult about how to read to their deaf and hard-of-hearing children. The five-day program will equip participants to set up Projects in their own schools or programs. To learn more, contact Patricia.Dabney@gallaudet.edu or visit the Shared Reading Project website.
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National Deaf Academy, a state of the art residential treatment facility in Mount Dora, Florida serving Deaf children, adolescents and adults, as well as hearing children, adolescents and adults with a diagnosis of Autism and/or Mental Retardation in a behavioral health setting, has immediate openings for Clinical Therapist, Clinical Therapist/Behavior Analyst (BCBA) and Certified Recreation Therapist (CTRS).
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A Master’s degree in counseling, social work and/or other related field is required. Must be licensed in Florida or license eligible from another state. A BCBA or BCABA is required. Experience working with autistic and special needs populations is required. Fluent in American Sign Language preferred, however willing to train the right candidate. Experience in utilizing behavior analysis as well as collecting data, analyzing data and coming up with behavior plans is also required. Responsibilities will include; conducting individual therapy using ABA; Conducting family therapy and maintaining family contact; conducting staff training regarding skills that are implemented; develop training programs for the residents (Functional Communication Training; Acquisition Skills Program and behavior plans to reduce target behaviors and identify replacement skills.) Complete treatment plans, psychosocial assessments, notes and programs.
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For positions descriptions & application procedures, please click on:
STAFF ASL INTERPRETER
Society’s Assets, Inc. is seeking a qualified individual to work as a Staff ASL Interpreter at the Wisconsin Telecommunications Relay System in Middleton, WI.
The Staff Interpreter is primarily responsible to interpret between staff members, interpret relay calls and to interpret during meetings and education/outreach activities. The Staff Interpreter also performs a variety of job functions in order to provide an optimum level of relay customer service. This position requires travel and schedule flexibility. Interpreting settings include; on-site, outreach presentations, meetings and training sessions both on and off site.
Minimum of an associate’s degree required
Minimum 3 years of experience in interpreting
Knowledge of Deaf Culture and the Deaf Community
National certification from NAD and/or RID preferred
Observe NAD-RID’s Code of Professional Conduct
Strict adherence to the company’s confidentiality policy
Ability to communicate effectively on the phone and in person
Excellent customer service skills
Strong interpersonal skills
Basic data entry skills and knowledge of a Microsoft Office Suite software preferred
Experience in public speaking
Salary is commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits package!
Submit cover letter and resume to:
Society's Assets Inc
Human Resources Manager
8383 Greenway Blvd., Suite 90
Middleton, WI 53562
Phone: (608) 827-0401 V/TTY
Fax: (608) 827-0402
Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer
Counselor, Deaf Services
Long Term, Temporary Assignment (1/08-9/08)
FEGS, one of the largest health and human agencies in the country, has long provided a comprehensive range of services to individuals who are Deaf, Deaf-blind, or hard-of-hearing.
Join our energetic, talented team of professionals providing comprehensive case management services to adult Deaf or hard-of-hearing individuals who are psychiatrically disabled.
Our Behavioral Health Division seeks experienced professional to join the staff of their Manhattan Continuing Day Treatment program (located in the West Village), to provide group and individual counseling to Deaf adults who are chronically mentally ill.
Must be fluent in American Sign Language. Bachelor or Master degree in Social Work, Psychology, or related human service field preferred. Minimum of 1 year experience working with Deaf or hard-of-hearing psychiatrically disabled individuals.
Long term, temporary assignment (1/08-9/08). Send resume and cover letter, indicating salary requirements, to email@example.com. For more information about FEGS Deaf services, visit: www.fegs.org/deaf. EOE
JOB OPPORTUNITIES AT GLAD
GLAD is an Affirmative Action Employer with equal opportunity for men, women and people with disabilities. For more information on the following positions, please go to: www.gladinc.org. The status of all positions is: Regular, Full-time, Non-Exempt, Full Fringe Benefits unless otherwise noted. All positions are open until filled.
-- Hard of Hearing Specialist
– Riverside, CA
-- Community Advocate – Ventura, Los Angeles, Riverside, CA
-- Community Interpreter – Bakersfield, CA
-- Community Interpreter – Los Angeles, CA
-- Placement Coordinator – Riverside, Anaheim, CA
-- Job Developer/Interpreter – Norwalk, Anaheim, Riverside, CA
If interested in any of these positions then please submit resume and application to:
Human Resources Specialist
Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness, Inc.
2222 Laverna Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90041
V/TDD: (323) 550-4207
Fax #: (323)550-4204
CEO of Nonprofit Agency
CEO position available in a respected Nashville nonprofit organization with an annual operating budget of approximately 1M. Organization has12 employees and 25 contract staff.
Basic requirements for the
Minimum of six years experience in executive management.
BA or BS required; Masters degree preferred.
Sound knowledge of nonprofit business practices required.
Salary commensurate with experience and education. Position open as of 4-1-08. Interested applicants should send cover letter and resume' to:
Search Committee, League for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, 415 Fourth Ave S, Nashville, TN 37201
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