Congratulations to the newest members of the DWU Board
Tamara Suiter Ocuto
Along with current members
Also joining as the chair for the DWU 2015 California conference
A Big thanks goes to the wonderful outgoing old board members
Adele Ann Eberwein
A BIG CONGRATULATIONS TO THE RECIPIENT OF THE DEAF WOMEN OF ACHIEVEMENT(DWOA) AWARD
ALLIE “AJ’ JOINER
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Article on DWU in Kiss-Fist Magazine Issue #10 Posted on January 20th, 2012.
Deaf Women United—2 5 years old and still going strong!
Deaf Women United is an organization of, by, and for Deaf women. Founded in 1985, its goals are to provide tools, information, a system of communal support, and training in the areas of organizational management, personal growth, and empowerment. Prior to DWU’s birth in 1984, Marcella Meyer, then the Executive Director of the Greater Los Angeles Council on Deafness in California, and other individuals, formed a committee whose efforts resulted in the highly successful 1985 Deaf women’s conference, “Deaf Women United.” At this conference, the concept of a national Deaf women’s organization was born and the name, Deaf Women United, Inc. was adopted.
Over the years, DWU has evolved to meet the needs of its membership. A national conference is held every two years to bring Deaf women together for the purpose of networking and sharing resources through workshops and group activities. A mentorship program was developed to provide Deaf, Deaf-blind, hard of hearing and late-deafened women with the opportunity to pair up with an expert in the area where growth was desired. This mentor would provide support in the areas of professional development or personal goals (including tips for single or stay at home mothers) and help the mentee succeed.
In addition, DWU worked closely with Gallaudet Leadership Institute (GLI) to develop the first ever Deaf Women Leadership program, a successful and popular endeavor that continues today. This one-week program, taught by Deaf women who are current or past DWU officers and community leaders, provides participants with tools to enhance their leadership abilities in an environment that facilitates input from their peers as well as other experienced professional Deaf women.
Recognizing that Deaf women need to be acknowledged for their contributions to the community, two distinct awards were developed by DWU. Modeled after the National Women’s Hall of Fame in New York, DWU established the Deaf Women Wall of Fame. Anyone can be nominated to the Wall of Fame for $50 and receive a plaque with their name. Nominators can be anyone in the community as well. Wall of Fame nominations make great Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and birthday gifts from those who want to give the gift of recognition to a special Deaf woman who has contributed much to the community.
Deaf Women of Achievement (DWOA) is a lifetime recognition award given to a Deaf woman who has gone above and beyond to support and advocate for the empowerment needs of Deaf women. These awards are prestigious and only one Deaf woman is selected every two years. Past recipients include:
1999—Marie Philip, 2001—Mabs Holcomb, 2003—Sharon Kay Wood, 2005—Gertrude Galloway
2007—Vicki Hurwitz, 2009—Damara Paris, and 2011-Laurene Simms.
Nominations are still being accepted for the DWOA award, so please contact DWU if you would like to nominate a Deaf woman for this award. You may contact Keri Darling, DWU Vice President at email@example.com.
DWU is proud of the diversity within the DWU board officers. The backgrounds of these officers include a Japanese-Canadian, Indian, Jewish-Italian, Latina as well as working mothers, financial consultants, counselors, national managers in corporate positions, and educators. Board officers for the 2011-2013 years are: Alana Beal, President; Keri Darling, Vice-President; Adele Ann Eberwein, Secretary; Shelley Oishi, Treasurer; Shilpa Hanumantha, Public Relations Officer; Sheli Barber, Fund Raising Coordinator; and Arlene Gunderson, DWU 2013 Conference Chair.
Recently, DWU held a 25th anniversary gala in Northern California to celebrate the organization’s accomplishments over the years. It was a wonderful event with many prominent Deaf women, including Marilyn Smith, Genie Gertz, Nathie Marbury, Ella Mae Lentz, Bridgetta Bourne-Firl, and many more!
Our 2011 conference was held in Portland, Maine from June 29-July 3, 2011. You can view the pictures of the conference at our website, www.dwu.org.
See you at our 2013 conference which will take place in San Antonio, Texas!