Friday, October 30, 2015

This Week in Bethesda

This Week in Bethesda (TWIB) is a weekly report from the HLAA National office. It started years ago as an internal bullet point report to the HLAA Board of Trustees and former Board members. Then, TWIB morphed into a more detailed report that was also shared with Chapter leaders to read at their meetings, cut and paste into their newsletters, or post on chapter and state websites.

By popular demand, we are making TWIB more widely available. TWIB will be posted on hearingloss.org on the homepage under “HLAA Updates.” We will also put it on the State and Chapter Development blog, and post it to the Leaders Listserv.  We encourage everyone to share it.

TWIB is not the only news channel from the national office. Be sure to encourage people to sign up for the free, online HLAA e-News. It is published two times monthly with one issue focusing on HLAA advocacy work (“HLAA in Action”) and one on general news. You will also find invaluable news and information in Hearing Loss Magazine (a benefit of joining HLAA) and on hearingloss.org

Please note: There are some occasions where TWIB is not published; for example, holiday periods, HLAA Convention time, and when the Board of Trustees meet.

In the weeks ahead, we will be looking at all the ways we communicate with our members and what reaches people best. TWIB will certainly be part of the discussion. 

Read the October 30, 2015, issue of This Week in Bethesda here.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

HLAA Strongly Supports the PCAST Report on Hearing Aid Access

HLAA Strongly Supports Recommendations of PCAST Report 
“Aging America & Hearing Loss: Imperative of Improved Hearing Technologies”

Bethesda, MD (October 28, 2015) – The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), the nation’s leading organization representing people with hearing loss, enthusiastically endorses  a new report issued by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). The findings of the report, titled “Aging America & Hearing Loss: Imperative of Improved Technologies,” serve to open the market for new innovation in hearing device technologies and also increase choice for consumers of hearing aids, both essential strategies long espoused by HLAA that are necessary to enhance hearing health care.

Read the HLAA media release. This is important news and GREAT progress for people with hearing loss. Please spread the good news.


Friday, October 23, 2015

This Week in Bethesda

This Week in Bethesda (TWIB) is a weekly report from the HLAA National office. It started years ago as an internal bullet point report to the HLAA Board of Trustees and former Board members. Then, TWIB morphed into a more detailed report that was also shared with Chapter leaders to read at their meetings, cut and paste into their newsletters, or post on chapter and state websites.

By popular demand, we are making TWIB more widely available. TWIB will be posted on hearingloss.org on the homepage under “HLAA Updates.” We will also put it on the State and Chapter Development blog, post it to the Leaders Listserv, and send it via email to the leaders we have on record. We encourage everyone to share it.

TWIB is not the only news channel from the national office. Be sure to encourage people to sign up for the free, online HLAA e-News. It is published two times monthly with one issue focusing on HLAA advocacy work (“HLAA in Action”) and one on general news. You will also find invaluable news and information in Hearing Loss Magazine (a benefit of joining HLAA) and on hearingloss.org

Please note: There are some occasions where TWIB is not published; for example, holiday periods, HLAA Convention time, and when the Board of Trustees meet. 

In the months ahead, we will be looking at all the ways we communicate with our members and what reaches people best. TWIB will certainly be part of the discussion. Thanks for reading and have a great week.

Without Further Delay...Here is This Week in Bethesda, click here.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

FAQ's for Chapters and Important News

Thanks for your overwhelming messages of support during this time when we are looking to fill the position of director of chapter development. The employment announcement will be posted on the home page of hearingloss.org in the coming days.

Many of you have had questions. Here are the most frequently asked.

QUESTION: What is the Unified Membership Program and is our chapter supposed to be part of this?

ANSWER: The Unified Membership Program is a joint membership program designed to increase membership at both the national and chapter levels. The new HLAA Unified Membership Program ensures that chapter members understand the benefits and value of both HLAA national and chapter membership so that together we can build our membership and work together as one unified organization. 

This program has been in pilot testing for nearly two years and discussed at HLAA Conventions 2014 and 2015. It is mandatory for new HLAA Chapters and was offered (but not mandatory) to those chapters who were in the old Chapter Rebate Program so that we could work out the logistics and make this as smooth as possible for all chapters to participate. Currently there are 21 chapters participating and several others still completing paperwork. We have encountered a few unexpected challenges, so we are glad that we started small before opening this up to all HLAA Chapters.

For example, how chapters negotiate with each other about zip codes has been more time consuming than we expected. Getting agreements signed by chapter leaders also takes some time, since it is important that everyone understands that this program is about growing our membership, and being clear and transparent on how communication occurs among national, chapters and leaders and, of course, how revenue is shared in the model. 

When the director of chapter development position has been filled, we will provide all details about how the program works and how you can participate. The Unified Membership Program was born out of the idea and proposal from the Sarasota/Manatee Chapter (FL) and the New York City Chapter.

QUESTION: How do I receive TWIB (This Week in Bethesda)?

ANSWER: TWIB is a brief, weekly update of activities. It was originally meant for the Board of Trustees and past Board members although we now freely encourage them to pass it along to leaders as it has information you can share at meetings or cut and paste into your newsletters. We post the document on the HLAA Official Leaders Listserve. However, not everyone belongs to the Listserve (Yahoo Group) so we will put it on this State and Chapter Development Blog

QUESTION: How can I be sure I get all the messages from the national office?

ANSWER: The email list we are using is not perfect. It depends on you returning your chapter updates and keeping us up to date. There are ways to ensure you receive important news:

Please subscribe to this State and Chapter Development Blog for all the latest news. No login required -- news will be delivered directly to your inbox. It’s easy!

If you have any email address changes, please send them to Gaelin Bryant.

Please send in your chapter updates any time there is a change in leadership or meetings. If there are no changes at least send the form once a year by October 1 and indicate no change. Download the update form on the Leader Support page (scroll down to "Updates Due October 1 Annually"). 

QUESTION: What deadlines pertaining to chapters are coming up for the HLAA Convention?

ANSWER: HLAA Awards, Call for Papers and Delegate Registration deadlines are fast approaching.

See the posting on this blog about HLAA Awards, HLAA Convention registration for delegates, and speaker presentations. 

On behalf of the HLAA Board of Trustees, the national office staff and members everywhere, thank you for your work on behalf of people with hearing loss. 

Barbara Kelley
Deputy Executive Director
Editor-in-Chief, Hearing Loss Magazine

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

HLAA Director of Chapter Development Resigns

Dear HLAA State and Chapter Leaders and Members:

We want to let you know that Ed Ogiba has resigned his position as director of chapter development at the HLAA national office. We are moving immediately to fill this critical position. During this transition, Barbara Kelley, deputy executive director, will handle all requests from chapters until the position is filled. 

HLAA is committed to providing high-quality and responsive service to our chapters, so if there are any pending issues you have with joining the Unified Membership Program, commitments for training or education that have been made, starting new chapters, or other issues, please let us know immediately so that we can work with you to meet your needs. 

While we are in this transition, please be assured that all of the HLAA staff will do everything possible to support chapters and help you to meet the needs of our members. 

Please use the email chapters@hearingloss.org for all your chapter correspondence. Barbara Kelley will receive the emails and make sure that she or another staff member responds according to the request.

Best regards,

Anna Gilmore Hall
Executive Director

Friday, October 2, 2015

News, Deadlines and Deals about HLAA Convention 2016

Would You Like to Be a Presenter in the State/Chapter Workshops at HLAA Convention 2016?
Do you have something of value to share with chapter and state leaders and/or those involved in local chapters? Chapter leaders who have found a new and better way to deliver or expand their mission to their membership and communities are encouraged to submit proposals. December 4, 2015, is the deadline to submit. 

Use the Call for Papers form found here on hearingloss.org. Scroll down to State/Chapter Workshops, download the form and email it to Nancy Macklin. Note: the Chapter/State workshops use a separate submission form than for all the other workshops.)

Registration for Convention – Early-Bird Registration is Open!
State and Chapter Leaders, again this year, can receive 4 discounted registrations per chapter for leaders PLUS one delegate registration which you might consider using for someone whom you are grooming for a leadership position. Registrations cannot be processed unless we have received a current State/Chapter Update Form on the Leader Support Section of hearingloss.org.

Honor HLAA’s Finest with an Award – 2016 Award Nominations Ope
Deadline for awards submission is December 4, 2015
HLAA honors individuals, chapters and state organizations that have an impact with their membership and in their communities. Nomination applications are available now. The awards are presented during the Awards Breakfast & Ceremony at HLAA Convention 2016, on Sunday, June 26, 2016.

When Should Your Chapter or State Organization Submit an Update Form?

  • When there is a change of address, leader, meeting place or other changes.
  • When you are requesting the discounted registrations for HLAA Conventions.
  • Always by October 1 each year even if you have no changes. 


Please use the most current Update form. We can serve you better if we have all the information about you.


Thank you to everyone who works their hearts out in HLAA Chapters and States on behalf of people with hearing loss.