Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Welcome From the New National Chapters and States Coordinator - March 2010

In This Issue:
• Hello From New National Chapters and States Coordinator
• New HLAA/Chapter Membership Brochure Available
• Awards Nominations Deadline Extended to April 10
• Chapter Delegate Convention Registration Due May 1

Hello, Chapters and States!

First, I want to say “thank you” to all of you that have sent me greetings and best wishes. I am delighted to serve in this newly-created capacity at HLAA headquarters. I understand that we – you and I – have a lot of work ahead of us. I am looking forward to getting to know each of you and learning how we can work together best for the benefit of people with hearing loss.

As I explained to several of you that have emailed me already, thanks for your patience as I get acquainted with the organization. I have worked with Chapters in the past 20 years that I have been in association management and find it is one of the most rewarding aspects of my career. You are the ones that people see and turn to for support, camaraderie and friendship. The national office provides support for the work that you do. I view our partnership as a body: the national association provides an overall framework that acts as a sort of spine, if you will. You are in the field representing the national organization, providing the limbs, feet, hands, and eyes that the national office could never do. You will hear much more about that partnership in the coming weeks and months as I work with you to strengthen the bond between all of our organizations.

I feel blessed to be counted in your number, having experienced hearing loss in my forties. My father became deaf at about the same age as did his father. My dad now wears two, in-the-ear hearing aids and I (perhaps the vain one in the family!) wear the behind-the-ear style hearing aids. My hearing loss became an issue when I was unable to hear what my toddler was saying from the back seat of the car and so I sought the advice of my physician who referred me to an audiologist. I am amazed at how well I hear now, and what I had been missing for several years. I am only now beginning to appreciate what all of you know so well, that adapting to hearing loss is an on-going process.

Enough about me. I want to learn about you. I plan to contact all of you over the course of the next month or two to get your ideas for services that we/I can offer to support you and help your organization thrive. I will also, of course, attend all of the Chapter and State functions at the upcoming convention and look forward to meeting many of you then.

Speaking of convention, we want –and need – your input for the Awards. (We’ve even extended the deadline to next Saturday, April 10.) We also need to know whom you have chosen as a delegate to represent your Chapter at convention. Please see more about these two, important items below.

I am also continuing our drive to get all Chapters covered under our national IRS tax exemption and for each Chapter to get their own Employer Identification Number (EIN) and registration with their state IRS for tax exemption. For more information about what’s required please click on this link. and select "Does your chapter need Group Exemption? Click here....."

Hot off the press – in response to your request, we have a brand-new membership brochure with more space to promote your chapter. Please click to see a copy of the brochure. We plan to mail a packet of 25 copies to each Chapter president. The brochure is also available unfolded (flat) for Chapters that want to use a printer to imprint their chapter information. They are also available for order; we ask that your chapter pay for shipping and handling. Please discard any old HLAA membership brochures you have.

Lastly, I want to thank my colleagues here at the HLAA for their encouragement, particularly Brenda Battat, Toni Barrient, Barbara Kelley and Nancy Macklin. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the hearing loss community in this role and look forward to getting to know you. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to call me (301-657-2248) or send me an email me at I look forward to working with you.


Elizabeth LeBarron
National Coordinator
for States and Chapters


Award Nominations – Deadline April 10 (ahead a week for your convenience!)
Find the Awards nomination information on the Wiki home page. Please nominate those individuals who have worked so hard to make their Chapter and community a better place!

Chapter Delegate Registration – Deadline May 1
Find the information you need about qualifications and how to register on the Wiki in the National Convention Section:

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