ATIA 2021: AT Connected

ATIA is hosting ATIA 2021: AT Connected, the annual event focused on learning about Assistive Technology across age, disability, and environments, January 25-28 and February 1-4, 2021. They have a powerful strand focused on Vision/Hearing Technologies. As you know, the power of AT can be dramatic in a person’s life who has a visual impairment.
ATIA infograph
Their event is designed to support your organization’s goals around professional development. The sessions will be both live and recorded and available until the end of June. ATIA is offering CEUs through ACVREP and AOTA. They have many cross-disability sessions. The best part is the program is delivered by professionals in the field and our members, whom you have all come to know.

Visit the ATIA 2201: AT Connect homepage


ACB Annual DC Leadership Conference

Registration is now open for the annual DC Leadership Conference. The event will be held virtually from February 21st-23rd.

This year’s event will be held virtually, bringing together affiliate leaders and advocates from across the country. Programming for the conference is split into two main events, a day-long presidents meeting, open to all, which provides best practices to strengthen affiliates, and a two day legislative seminar, which educates attendees on key issues facing our community and prepares attendees for meeting with Members of Congress and their staff for the remainder of the week.

This year, the Presidents Meeting will include sessions on diversity & inclusion, leveraging new members, fundraising, and effective communications. Participants will also hear from prominent leaders in industry and the field of blindness.


Leaders Added to the APH Hall of Fame Plaque

Recent VisionServe awardee recipients of the Excellence in Leadership Award Elly du Pre (Florida ASB), and John Mitchell (Former CEO of Cincinnati Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired) have been added to our plaque in the APH Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the blindness field. We are proud to work with these tremendous leaders. 


VSA Member Works With Local Officials to Create an Accessible Vaccine Distribution Plan

LBB logo

Here’s how one of our member CEO’s Kim Galban-Countryman of Lighthouse of the Big Bend (LBB), worked with her county’s officials to ensure the process for vaccine distribution is accessible: “Our local association of human service organizations hosted a Zoom meeting with the Health Director in charge of vaccinations for one of our counites. On the call, she reviewed the current process for getting the vaccine which involves being in a vehicle and moving from station to station. Our local paratransit services cannot accommodate this type of service – they are strickly a pick up and drop off service. I emailed her, along with two of our state legislators and a member of our Transit Advisory Council to explain that the current vaccination process creates a major barrier for any citizen with mobility issues, including 200 of my senior clients.
I proposed two solutions. The first was to create satellite vaccination sites at organizations like mine and have our staff serve as sighted guides for our clients to safely get them off the bus, help them with paperwork, get them through the various stations until they receive the vaccine, and get them back on their bus. My second suggestion was to vaccinate the employees I have listed on my auto insurance policy so we can pick up clients and bring them to the vaccination site ourselves…The member of the Transit Advisory Council immediately looped in the director of StarMetro and within two weeks the City of Tallahassee announced that the paratransit guidelines were being changed and paratransit clients would now be able to use the service to ride through the drive-through vaccination clinic.” Contact Kim Galban Countryman at

Blog News

Call for Presentation Proposals Spring 2021

VSA is currently accepting presentation proposals for its spring 2021 virtual conference until Feb. 12, 2021. Attendance at the VisionServe Alliance Executive Leadership Conference is open to any and all leaders in the field of blindness, low vision, and visual impairments. The Conference Committee is especially but not exclusively interested in proposals on the following subjects:

Speaker standing in front of a crowd
  • Innovative program ideas
  • Innovative fundraising ideas including running virtual fundraising events
  • Facilitating culture change towards more diversity or other Diversity/Equity/Inclusion topic presentations
  • Team Building and ensuring your employees’ mental health
  • Remote service delivery especially mental health and delivery to rural communities
  • Designing accessible programs at your organization (internally and externally)

Guidelines: Because presentations will be pre-recorded, presenters should be comfortable presenting virtually. Please include links to previous virtual presentations if possible. Please also include the following:

  • Name(s) of presenter(s) (Panel discussions will be considered) along with title and email:
  • Title of proposed presentation (100 characters or less):
  • Description of presentation (500 characters or less):
  • Attach headshot and bio for all presenters
  • Include online links to relevant media

Submit your proposal: Email to with the subject line: ELC 2021 PRESENTATION PROPOSAL. Deadline to submit proposals: Friday, Feb. 12, 2021 by 5pm CST. If your proposal is not selected for this event, it may also be considered for an additional VSA virtual event.


Vision Loss Community Professionals and Private Service Provider Groups Forge Historic Public Policy Alliance to Lead the Field in National Systems Change

Aging and Vision Loss to Take Center Stage; Services to Students and Working-Age Adults to Have Starring Roles


Executive Leadership Conference – Spring 2021

Dates: April 27 – 29, 2021 (Tues-Thurs)

Registration is now open! Check out the agenda, see who is attending, and learn more now! Join us at the Executive Leadership Conference hosted by VisionServe Alliance April 27-29. Meet hundreds of leaders in the field of blindness, low vision, and visual impairments for this three-day conference focused on networking, learning, and collaboration. Gain CEU credits, expand your network, and learn how to make a bigger impact in 2021. Watch your inbox and the conference page for when registration goes live. 
Keynote speakers:

  • Vu Le, internationally-known and experienced keynote speaker and nonprofit leader – A Time for Boldness: Unlocking Nonprofit Full Power to Advance Justice
  • Kevin O’Connor, CSP, LCPC, LMFT, CCMHC – Apart and Together Then Apart Again! The Challenge of Cooperation
  • Tai Tomasi, Director, Accessibility, Diversity, and Inclusion at APH – The Myth of Functionality: COVID-19 and The Vindication of Universal Design
Board Meeting

Board Meeting – June 30, 2020


June 30, 2020 11:30 AM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 769 483 221
Password: 853374

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Documents for the Meeting:

  • Meeting Agenda 6.30.20
  • Consent agenda items:
    • Minutes from April 28 2020 BOD Meeting
    • 2019 Audit Report, SAS 114 & SAS 115
    • 2019 990
    • May Financial Statements
    • Morgan Stanley May 31 Statement
  • VSA Virtual Events 2020
  • Finance Committee Mtg MINUTES June 19 2020
  • VSA Revenue and Cash Flow Projections 2020 Revised June 17 2020
  • Charity Charge Info
  • Conflict of Interest Policy 2020 (Please sign and send to Wendy asap if you have not already)
  • BOARD OF DIRECTORS 2020 – Terms
  • BYLAWS Nov 2014
  • VisionServeAlliance Employee Handbook June 2020 DRAFT
  • Fund Development Committee Mtg MINUTES June 16 2020
  • Summer Fundraising Campaign Overview
  • VSA Public Policy Committee Minutes 05-19-2020
  • Aging & Vision Loss National Coalition Report
  • National Policy Collaborative report for BOD
  • May 22 2020 Membership Committee Meeting MINUTES
  • Proposed Revisions to Membership Categories and VSA Member & Associate Benefits 2020
  • Conference Committee Meeting 6.2.20 Minutes
  • Highlights of Proposed Virtual Conference: 2020 FALL ELC Pro forma, Virtual Platform (Dryfta) Overview, Proposed Speakers and Topics
  • What’s Next Time for a New Biz Model Presentation by Mark Brewer Notes for VSA
  • VSA Staff Q2 Rock Report