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President Melissa shares a brief recap about the NAD Board and Staff Retreat, explains about the International Week of the Deaf. She also reminds you to join the NAD committees and to register to vote!

Submit your interest by Sept. 30, 2018: www.nad.org/join-2018-2020-committee/

VIDEO DESC & TRANSCRIPT: Melissa Draganac-Hawk is standing outside with the famous Camp Isola Bella Tower in the background. The NAD logo appears on bottom right corner as a watermark.

MELISSA: Hi, I’m Melissa. I have much to share with you in this video update. During the past weekend, the 2018-2020 Board members got together for a retreat at Camp Isola Bella in Salisbury, Connecticut. The purpose of this retreat was to review our roles, responsibilities, and to get to know each other. We did some team building activities, practiced conflict resolution principles, and brainstormed on strategy ideas. The staff joined us for part of the retreat. The board was able to more familiar with their roles with respect to each other. And the staff was able to become familiar with each of the board members as well. Our facilitator for the retreat was Stacy Nowak — I’d like to take a quick moment to thank her for joining us! Next, I’d like to talk about the top five priorities that were voted upon by the delegates at the last conference. We went through each priority to discuss how we will address each, including whether it’d be assigned to a committee, headquarters, or if a new committee needed to be formed. We also discussed specific metrics to help us measure progress on each priority including ensuring that we complete it in the timeline expected, when we need to communicate each level of progress, and more. We were also able to swear in three board members for this term: Steve Hamerdinger for Region III and two appointed board members Alicia Lane-Outlaw and Benro Ogunyipe. We’re thrilled they’re on board with us! I also wanted to discuss what’s happening during the last week of this month — International Week of the Deaf (IWD). IWD is an important event led by the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD), an international organization of the deaf that encourages the use of sign language. This year’s theme for IWD is “With sign language, everyone is included” which means for all people, no matter who they are or their age — from young children to adults, sign language is important. This means not only deaf people, but also includes the parents of deaf children who are learning sign language, advocates in the field, and others who join us in solidarity as well. The goal is to include everyone in the learning of sign language. Now, I’d like to remind you that the deadline for applying to join a committee is September 30th. We released the call for committee members awhile ago, but I wanted to remind you of the deadline. If you are interested in joining a committee or if you know someone who is an expert in a specific area, please make sure you fill out your interest by September 30th. Another important encouragement I’d like to share is to please vote! It is important to vote at the next eletion soon because it will show legislators and representatives what is important to us, as deaf people. There’s power in numbers. The more deaf people vote, the more they’ll listen to us. The earliest deadline to register is October 7th — every state has its own deadline of when to register to vote. Please check your state to find out when your deadline is if you haven’t registered to vote yet. As a registered voter, you can participate by voting in the upcoming elections in November — so, don’t forget to register! Thank you.

Video fades to a soft white background with several different font types showing “NAD” very quickly. Copyright video ends with the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) logo centered. Blue text below the logo appears, “The National Association of the Deaf / (copyright) 2018 All Rights Reserved / www.nad.org”; a yellow highlight of the URL appears at the end.

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