Q3 AVLNC Full Coalition Meeting

quarterly meeting of the avlnc

The Aging and Vision Loss National Coalition (AVLNC) is gathering for the quarterly meeting in April to discuss goals for Q3. Join the AVLNC on July 12th at 3 pm ET to be part of the one-year plan and get involved with the aging and vision loss efforts. Register to attend the AVLNC meeting


  • Q2 Accomplishments
  • Q3 Objectives w/ discussion
  • Ways to be involved in the growing initiatives

NFB National Convention

Ever Lee Hairston hugs President Riccobono at the 2019 banquet, both are smiling

The National Federation of the Blind National Convention is the largest gathering of blind people in the world. It is the premier event for training, support, and information for the blind community. It also serves as a governing body, democratically electing our leadership and establishing each year’s organizational priorities. 

Although the convention is open to all, our constitution states that only members of the NFB have the right to participate in decision making when it comes to organizational policy. If you are not already a member, join the NFB today

Date and Location

July 6 through July 10, 2021
Anywhere and Everywhere, virtual
More details coming soon.

Please note: the original 2021 national convention announcement in July 2020 indicated that the event would be held in New Orleans, LA. On February 8, 2021, President Riccobono announced that the 2021 national convention would be held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


New CEO Affinity Group


July 26 at 2 pm Central

 This affinity group is for leaders of member organizations who have been in their position for 3 years or less. Open to VSA members only. See your latest eNew or contact to sign up.


Prevent Blindness Focus on Eye Health National Summit

Prevent Blindness Focus on Eye Health National Summit – Register Today!

VisionServe Alliance is a proud sponsor of the 10th annual Prevent Blindness Focus on Eye Health National Summit, on July 14-15, 2021. This year’s Summit will include a variety of presentations related to this year’s theme, “Our Changing Vision.”

The agenda will allow reflection on key vision advancements from the last 10 years and a look ahead at leading advancements, policies, and social issues that will shape how we approach eye health for the coming decade. And, we will recognize the importance of research expansion, shifting political leadership, and the elevation of the patient at the center of care decisions.

Presentations at the 10th Annual Focus on Eye Health National Summit will include:

  • Michael F. Chiang, MD- director of the National Eye Institute (NEI), at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland- will serve as the keynote speaker, on July 14, addressing the key advancements in research, policies and social issues along with NEI’s role in vision and eye health.
  • Amy Dixon- Paralympic Athlete & President, Glaucoma Eyes International- will serve as a keynote speaker on July 15, sharing her personal story of triumph over obstacles and the importance of engaging the patient to reach the goal of a better health outcome.
  • On July 15, Ross C. Brownson, PhD- Lipstein Distinguished Professor of Public Health at Washington University in St. Louis- will serve as the closing keynote speaker, presenting on how public health is evolving to meet the current needs of our society focusing on the topics of health equity, the importance of prevention practices, early detection and care coordination, evolving surveillance needs, and effective public health interventions for vision and overall health. 

VisionServe Alliance’s virtual exhibit hall booth will be open from 11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. ET on July 14, and 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. ET on July 15.


2021 ACB Virtual Conference

Plans are coming together for a great virtual conference and convention to be held July 16 through July 23, 2021.  We learned much from our 2020 virtual conference and convention and we are working hard to apply that knowledge to 2021!

ACB conference logo- Better Together Wherever We Are

Registration will remain open to June 28, 2021, but before you register, there is an important task each of you must undertake if you plan on registering:

  • ACB is moving ever closer to a singular login and password that will apply to all ACB websites and web-based functions.
  • If you intend on registering for the convention this year, please go to to create your ACB account.  Select “CREATE AN ACCOUNT” and complete the profile information requested.  You will need to create a new username and password (if you wish, you can use the same username and password you used for past conventions when creating this new account).
  • There is one exception: If you registered for the ACB Holiday Auction in December 2020, you have already created an account and you do not have to do so again.
  • If you have problems or questions regarding this process, please call the Minnesota Finance Office at 612-332-3242.
  • You will use this new username and password when you register on or after May 20, 2021.

To make sure you receive the most up to date information, subscribe to our convention announce list by sending a blank email to or contact Janet Dickelman, convention coordinator at or by phone at (651) 428-5059.


New CEO Affinity Group – June 28

Claudia Virga headshot

Are your messages getting lost, overlooked, or even misunderstood? Claudia Virga is our guest presenter for this meeting. She will walk us through her CHAT System methodology that will help solve your communication problems. To really connect, you have to speak to others in their language and their style. And the key to that puzzle is the CHAT Communication System where you’ll learn how to maximize your communication with your team, colleagues, and clients, your marketing, and your presentations by leveraging all four distinct communication styles.

If you haven’t already, register for the next New CEO Affinity Group meeting on Monday June 28th at 3:00pm EDT.

Open to members only. See the last eNews for the registration link.


Vision Impairment and Eye Diseases among Nursing Home Residents Data Webinar

AVLNC Data and Research Committee logo

The Prevalence of Vision Impairment and Eye Diseases among Nursing Home Residents: The Delaware Study. 
This webinar, being held on Wednesday, June 16th from 4-5 pm EDT, will present the findings of comprehensive eye examinations of 2019 residents of nursing homes in the state of Delaware. The findings show an exceedingly high prevalence of eye diseases, and nearly 50% of the residents had vision impairment and 15% were blind.  This presentation will compare findings with other nursing home studies, and policy and practice implications of the findings will be discussed. Learn more and register for the data webinar.


Q2 AVLNC Quarterly Coalition Meeting

quarterly meeting of the avlnc

The Aging and Vision Loss National Coalition (AVLNC) is gathering for the quarterly meeting in April to set goals for Q2. Join the AVLNC on April 7th at 4 pm ET to be part of the one-year plan and get involved with the aging and vision loss efforts. Register to attend the AVLNC Quarterly Meeting


  • Brief overview of AVLNC: How new members can get additional info; AVLNC structure
  • Q1 Accomplishments
  • Q2 Objectives w/ discussion

To take a deeper dive into data-driven science, the latest updates, and the great need for data in our field, join the Data & Research committee one hour before the full coalition meeting for the first in a series on data.


Data-Driven Science Webinar Series

Please join Dean VanNasdale, OD, PhD from Ohio State University for a webinar on data from the US Census, Behavioral Risk Factor Survey (BRFS), and the American Communities Survey on April 7th at 3 pm ET.  Analysis of this data allows us to obtain county-level prevalence data for vision loss, by age, ethnicity, and sex.  Understanding this data can assist with grant writing and creating a strong case for support when there are disparities in the need and the available vision rehabilitation services.  The presentation will last about 40 minutes, with an opportunity for questions and answers at the end. Register to attend the Data-driven Science webinar.

Dean VanNasdale headshot

Retirement Reality Check: Making Sure You’re On Track to Get Where You Want to Be

Executive Pathways Series- February

EP series in partnership with Mutual of America

Title: Executive Pathways Series presents “Retirement Reality Check: Making Sure You’re On Track to Get Where You Want to Be” Date/ Time: February 24, 2:30 pm CST


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.


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

2020 Executive Leadership Conference – VSA

Hotel Information:

Westin Tampa Waterside Hotel
(813) 229-5000

November 1-4

Tampa, FL


Flatten Inaccessibility: Using Data to Ensure COVID-19 Responses Are Inclusive of Adults with Vision Loss

5 minute summary of data

This session is a panel discussion of the preliminary findings of the Flatten Inaccessibility study, which investigated the impact of COVID-19 on US adults who are blind or have low vision. The survey was completed by 1,921 individuals and covered technology, healthcare, transportation, employment, education, social experiences, voting, and access to meals, food and supplies.

The researchers highlight some of the study findings and discuss how we can use data from this study to chart a road map to ensure those with vision loss are fully included in the response to COVID-19 and future challenging situations.

To learn more about the study, visit


Now Thats Good News

Live Virtual Celebration Event

Thank you to those that shared your good news and accomplishments over the last few months with us. Join us on August 12th at 3 pm ET/ 12 pm PT for our live event: Now That’s Good News as we highlight good news from our members. This event will be MC’d by Mike Gilliam (CEO of Lighthouse San Antonio) with videos, prizes, lighthearted humor, and fun! Come to celebrate the good work of our members. Join us to share in the good news and the fun. All are welcome to attend.