St. Louis, Missouri – June 19, 2018  –  In partnership with the National Industries for the Blind (NIB) and the National Association for the Employment of People Who Are Blind (NAEPB), VisionServe Alliance announces that the results of the 5th Biennial Compensation & Benefits Survey are now available to all participating members. This survey is the only comprehensive survey performed in the field for vision rehabilitation professionals, manufacturing positions, and executives.

The Compensation & Benefits Survey was created in response to numerous requests for comparative salary information specifically about organizations “of and for” the blind and visually impaired. Completed during even calendar years, this year’s survey collected data from a record 93 member agencies of NIB, NAEPB and VisionServe Alliance. Online responses were submitted and held in the survey database and reviewed only by the survey consultant.

Participation in the Compensation and Benefits Survey helps organizations to: set fair salaries and benefits to attract and retain the best employees; evaluate industry standards for compensation for a range of positions; analyze each agency’s own jobs and compensation; compare agency salaries and benefits with others in the blind and visual impairment industry; and document each agency organization’s rationale for setting executive salaries, as now required by the IRS form 990.

Results are currently being sent without cost to all participating agencies. These results are reported in the aggregate so that no survey information can be traced to any particular organization. Data published in each recipient’s copy of the final report will be customized to labor statistics in the recipient’s geographic location.

Members of VisionServe Alliance, NIB or NAEPB who did not answer the survey, may purchase a report specific to local labor statistics for $250 by contacting Lindsay Lutz at VisionServe Alliance, at (314) 961-8235 or by emailing llutz@visionservealliance.org. Nonmembers may purchase an individualized report for $500.

Originally founded in 1987 as the National Council of Private Agencies for the Blind and Visually Impaired (NCPABVI) and renamed in 2008, VisionServe Alliance is a consortium of 112 nonprofits located throughout the United States and Canada that provide unique and specialized services to people who are blind or with severe vision loss.  Members include organizations focusing on national advocacy and/or service issues, employment and manufacturing, adult vision rehabilitation, K-12 residential and on-line schools, early intervention and pre-school, dog guides, low vision clinics, and braille production.  Our members engage leaders in building a better world through services to people with vision loss by promoting leadership development, ethical management, quality services, and professional growth.

The Compensation and Benefits Survey is just one of many benefits of being a member of VisionServe Alliance.  To learn more about our member benefits and how to join VisionServe Alliance, visit www.visionservealliance.org/why-join-vsa/

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Tanque Verde Ranch signThe setting for our 2018 CEO Summit was unique with the aroma of horses, no televisions, and astounding views at every turn. The Tanque Verde Ranch also offered attendees an opportunity to let go of the day-to-day stress of organizational leadership; and to network, relax, and learn.

The goals for VisionServe’s CEO Summit included providing focused high-level learning that keeps you thinking, sending each attending leader back to their organizations refreshed and ready to lead, and providing extensive opportunities for networking and information sharing.  The ranch location was successful in achieving these goals even more so than a city hotel location.

“VisionServe is the “go-to” conference for high-level learning for me,” remarked Elly du Pre, Executive Director of Florida Agencies Serving the Blind.  “In addition to the presentations, that learning comes from the networking and sharing.  This conference had the best networking opportunities of any other conference I have attended.  As far as “refreshed” goes, I had a great time…”

 

US Trust presenters
Board Chair, Mark Ackermann and President, Roxann Mayros, with Glen MacDonald, William Jarvis, and Joseph Danowsky from US Trust

The conference offered a pre-conference symposium: “The 2018 Tax Bill and Financial Management Challenges Facing Nonprofit Institutions,” hosted by three experts from corporate partner, US Trust, William Jarvis, Managing Director of US Trust and forger Executive Director of the Commonfund Institute, Joseph Danowsky, Managing Director, and Glen MacDonald, Senior Vice President & Institutional Client Advisor.  The presentation offered advice to nonprofit leaders on how the new tax law passed in late 2017 would be anticipated to affect nonprofit finances such as tax implications and future donations to nonprofits in the coming year.

Doug Stevenson, featured speaker
Doug Stevenson, master storyteller and featured speaker

The CEO Summit offered attendees two keynote speakers. Day 1 focused on storytelling for CEO’s with master storyteller, Doug Stevenson, CSP, Founder and President of Story Theater International. Doug’s session didn’t just show us how to tell stories, but instead taught us the techniques to make our own stories more effective and persuasive for fundraising, legislative visits, and more.

 

 

Small group exercises at the 3rd Annual CEO Summit 2018
Small group exercises at the 3rd Annual CEO Summit 2018

“The storytelling exercises were great ways to deepen the relationships between CEOs as well as valuable skills for so many aspects of CEO communication,” remarked Dan Needham.

 

 

Jane Wei-Skillern, speaker
Jane Wei-Skillern presents, “The New Network Leader”

Day 2 our featured speaker was Jane Wei-Skillern, Senior Fellow at the Center for Social Sector Leadership at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, who presented the essence on how to foster successful collaborations in the nonprofit sector.  Jane left us all thinking as she presented a new approach to collaborations that is timely and important to our field. Her Network Principles include: 1) Mission, not organization. 2) Trust, not control. 3) Humility, not brand. 4) Network, not hub.

attendees at CEO Summit 2018
Board members Mark Ackermann and Mike Bina

Miki Jordan, President of Wayfinder Family Services in Los Angeles, California, remarked that the summit was the “perfect setting and blend of networking and speakers.”

Other attendees expressed similar reactions.  “Thank you so much for the amazingly wonderful conference! I think it’s the best I can remember in 20+ years of attending them,” said Pam Brandin, President of the Vista Center in Palo Alto, California.

Horse riders Lou Tutt and Pete Benavidez
Horse riders Lou Tutt and Pete Benavidez

The opportunity to connect with peers in the field was ranked the most important aspect of attending the CEO Summit, and attendees had ample opportunities to network with other national leaders and discuss issues pertinent to the blindness and vision impairment nonprofit sector.  Along with sharing all our meals together, attendees signed up for activities every afternoon where new friendships were made.

 

Board member Thomas Panek with 1st-time attendee Joe Bogart
Board member Thomas Panek with 1st-time attendee Joe Bogart

 

Another unique VisionServe Alliance tradition: assigning a meeting mentor to all first-time attendees.  Mentors connected with their mentees before the conference and also made sure that new attendees felt included during all the conference activities.

 

Spiel and Steal session
Spiel and Steal

The final morning of our summit ended with a breakfast ride up to the Old Homestead, where we enjoyed the ranch’s famous blueberry pancakes and held our ever-popular Spiel and Steal session, an open forum where attendees shared news from their organizations, a replicable program idea, or asked a question of their leader peers.

 

Even if you couldn’t attend the summit, members can access all conference materials including speaker PowerPoints, handouts, and links to the videos of the speakers’ presentations by logging into our members only portal.

We hope you’ll make plans to attend our next conference, the fall Executive Leadership Conference in Portland, Oregon, October 28 – 31, 2018.

 

St. Louis, Missouri – February 5, 2018 – Roxann Mayros, the first CEO and President of VisionServe Alliance, has announced that she will retire from her position effective December 31, 2018.

VisionServe Alliance’s Chairman of the Board, Mark Ackermann, remarked on Mayros’s strong leadership saying, “It is fair to say, without any hyperbole, that VisionServe Alliance would not be anywhere near the organization it is today, were it not for Roxann’s dedication, intellect, and professionalism.”

VisionServe Alliance was founded in 1987 as the National Council of Private Agencies for the Blind and Visually Impaired (NCPABVI) and is a consortium of Executive Directors/CEOs of 501(c)(3) nonprofits throughout the United States that provide unique and specialized services to people who are blind or with severe vision loss. Members include organizations focusing on national advocacy and/or service issues, employment and manufacturing, adult vision rehabilitation, K-12 residential and on-line schools, early intervention and pre-school, dog guides, low vision clinics, and braille production.

VisionServe Alliance was volunteer-driven until 2005, when Mayros was hired to become its first President and CEO. Prior to joining NCPABVI, Mayros was the Executive Director/CEO of three major vision rehabilitation agencies serving clients of all ages and served in leadership roles on several national boards of directors and advisory councils that focus on vision loss.

Mayros spearheaded important leadership in and advocacy for the field of vision impairment. Several highlights of her achievements at VisionServe Alliance include:
• In 2006, NCPABVI merged with the National Vision Rehabilitation Association and became the pre-eminent leader in promoting Medicare reimbursement for certified vision rehabilitation professionals, i.e., Low Vision Therapists, Orientation and Mobility Specialists, and Vision Rehabilitation Therapists.
• In 2007, NCPABVI engaged in a re-branding process which resulted in NCPABVI changing its name to VisionServe Alliance to better represent the commonality amongst its diverse membership – an alliance of organizations providing vision rehabilitation related services.
• In 2012, VisionServe Alliance celebrated its 25th Anniversary, received the “Chairman’s Award” from First Nonprofit Insurance Company for 25 years of accomplishments, and received its first matching grant in the amount of $100,000 from the Gibney Family Foundation of South Burlington, Vermont and First Nonprofit Foundation of Chicago, Illinois to expand the vision rehabilitation workforce.

The Board of Directors has formed a search committee, chaired by Mr. Ackermann, to find a suitable successor and plans to name the new CEO of VisionServe by the late fall. If interested, please send your inquiry and resume/CV to mackermann@lighthouseguild.org

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Colleagues,
Each year, VisionServe Alliance and National Industries for the Blind (NIB)—in partnership with the National Association for the Employment of People Who Are Blind (NAEPB)—host national events bringing together leaders among organizations serving people who are blind.

You may have noticed that the 2018 VisionServe Annual Executive Leadership Conference and the NIB/NAEPB Training Conference and Expo overlapped slightly. After discovering this scheduling conflict, VisionServe and NIB coordinated on a solution to allow our respective members the opportunity to attend both events comfortably.

The VisionServe Annual Executive Leadership Conference has been rescheduled to October 28-31, 2018. The location will remain in Portland, Oregon.

The date for the NIB/NAEPB Training Conference and Expo will not change. The event is still scheduled for the week of November 12, 2018 in Arlington, Virginia.

VisionServe and NIB have enjoyed a decades-long partnership to help improve the lives of those with vision loss. We’re confident this shift in date will allow both organizations to better serve our stakeholders, and we look forward to delivering productive events in 2018.

For questions about the VisionServe Annual Executive Leadership Conference, email info@visionservealliance.org. For questions about the NIB/NAEPB Training Conference and Expo, email conferences@nib.org.

Thank you for your patience and understanding,

Roxann Mayros, MS, CNPM
President and CEO
VisionServe Alliance

Kevin Lynch
President and CEO
NIB

March 28, 2017, St. Louis, Missouri

VisionServe Alliance is celebrating 30 years of incorporation in 2017. Originally named the National Council of Private Agencies for the Blind and Visually Impaired (more commonly known as NCPABVI), the non-profit was incorporated in Washington D.C. in 1987. The original founders were a group of eight executive leaders who met July 17, 1979 in Oklahoma City motivated by the desire to “form an organization to speak for the interests of the private sector.”

Joe Ripp photoWatch Video of Keynote Address by Joseph A. Ripp, Executive Chairman, Time, Inc.

Joseph A. Ripp, Executive Chairman of Time, Inc., gave the keynote address at our 2nd Annual CEO Summit  May 7 – 10 in Charleston, S.C. titled “Transformational Leadership in the Digital Age.” Watch his presentation by clicking HERE.