2016 neRID Conference: Panel Members

THIS YEAR IS DIFFERENT!
I have been to several workshops, but can’t remember how often we are actually given time to process and talk about what we are learning. After the morning workshop, a panel of local stakeholders will participate in a panel, led by presenter Paula Gajewski-Mickelson. The panel discussion starts at 1:00 PM.
We will have the opportunity to hear from, learn and dialogue with these great people:

photoheathHeath Focken, B.S. in Biology and concentration in Deaf Studies. Heath is the current Vice-President for the Nebraska Association of the Deaf. Advocate for the deaf community and interpreters. Grew up in rural Nebraska as only deaf student in public school with educational interpreters. Has been mentoring local interpreters in training and student interpreters for last few years. Work with K – 12 children as a Residential Counselor at Iowa School for the Deaf. Adjunct Instructor for American Sign Language Course at University of Nebraska Omaha.

photojamyJamy Elker, AAS, CI/CT, NIC-Master, is a private-practice Sign Language Interpreter and has over 28 years experience working in the field. The professional settings Jamy has interpreted in variety of situations, however she specializes in Deaf/Blind interpreting, musical productions and the legal interpreting. Additionally, Jamy has taught courses based on the business side of interpreting at a local community college and has also presented a workshop on interpreting music. Her experiences include working in the Video Relay Service industry for over 10 years.

photokimKim Davis has been deaf since birth.  She has provided public speaking, workshops and training for the past fifteen years, has served on several local, regional and state committees and councils, and served as an individual and systematic advocate.  Kim currently works for the Nebraska Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in the Lincoln office as an Advocacy Specialist.  Her passion is collaborating with individuals and groups that seek to explore effective ways to enhance accommodations through the use of technologies and communication services and to promote self-advocacy, self-sufficiency and independent living skills.  On Kim’s free time, she can be found digging her genealogy roots and treasuring precious moments with her two grown daughters, a teenage son and two grandchildren.

photovickiVicki Steinhauer-Campbell has served as the Statewide Coordinator for the Deaf with Nebraska VR in Lincoln office for 13 years.  She received a Bachelor degree in Sociology/Criminology at Gallaudet University in Washington, DC in 2002.  “After graduating, I have experienced the frustration with communication barrier during interview process for a year and later I have landed a job with Nebraska VR as Employment Specialist serving deaf and hard of hearing consumers.  Not only adult service, I also serve transition age students to develop their work skills before they exit high school program to help them prepare their job goal in future.” 
After working over 12 years as Employment Specialist, she recently assumed the Statewide Coordinator for Deaf role to oversee all policies relating to hearing loss, to answer questions from VR staff about eligibility, and any other questions about deaf culture, hearing aids, accommodations, etc.  Vicki ensures that all contracts with community interpreters and VRIs license are up to date, and works to continue collaboration with the Nebraska Commission for the Deaf and Harding of Hearing.  Vicki states,“Working with Nebraska VR has been truly rewarding job experience for me especially for consumers learn how to advocate themselves in job search and in job interview process.”

photoandyAndy Snarr, QAST 5, has been interpreting professionally for 6-1/2 years, the last 4 of those years with Sorenson VRS. Andy’s older brother is Deaf. This allowed him the opportunity to grow up using ASL. Andy has experienced different employment atmospheres, ranging from UPS to construction to sales. Andy has over 20 years of management experience, focusing on customer service.

photobarbBarbara Woodhead. With 29 years of interpreting experience in community and educational settings, Barbara Woodhead holds dual certification from the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID). She has a Bachelors of Arts in Education and her graduate studies include the Certificate of Professional Development in Teaching American Sign Language (ASL) and Teaching Interpreting from the University of Colorado in Boulder (2000) and Conducting Diagnostic Assessments for ASL-English interpreters from the University of Northern Colorado (2012).
Ms. Woodhead is a diagnostic evaluator for the Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment (EIPA) at Boys Town National Research Hospital and conducts skills training workshops locally and nationally. She has held offices in state and local interpreting organizations and has mentored interpreters in community and educational settings.
Barbara Woodhead is currently employed by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln as the Assistant Director of Services for Students with Disabilities where she develops and implements accommodation plans for students with diverse disabilities and where she coordinates interpreting services for students, faculty and employees. Barbara has served two terms as a Board member for the Nebraska Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and for the Nebraska Interpreter Review Board, which oversees rules and regulations for licensed interpreters.

photocandiceCandice Arteaga is the President for Omaha Association of the Deaf (OAD) since April 2016. She was Vice-President at OAD before being elected to be the President. Candice has been very involved with the Deaf Community in Omaha and Lincoln. Her goals for the Deaf Community to grow together, work together as a team, and show the others about Deaf Culture.
   Candice was born deaf and raised in Iowa. She is the only deaf child in her family. Candice graduated in 1999 at Iowa School for the Deaf in Council Bluffs, Iowa. She attended Iowa State University for 2 years but moved to Nebraska to be married to her husband, Jonathan Arteaga, of 12 years and grow a family. Candice and Jonathan have a beautiful and active 10-year old daughter, Azaliah and 2 dogs, Shaddow and Angel.

photoconnieConnie Herndon. Serving the 14 states of RID Region IV  was a joyous privilege and challenging journey for Connie, a native Kentuckian.  She has studied, taught, and worked in North Carolina, Ohio, Colorado, and Iowa before settling down in Lincoln, Nebraska, with her husband in a house managed by a shrewd cat.  She currently interprets and mentors in a variety of community, post-secondary, and video settings. Interpreting has been her way of life for over 40 years.  Connie states, “My life would be very different (and very dull) without the mind-opening and vision-expanding opportunities given to me by the Deaf Community.”