IL DeafBlind Retreat Fundraiser

The Illinois DeafBlind Retreat is a bi-annual event held in Jacksonville, Illinois.  Our next retreat will be scheduled for June 2014.  Preparations are already underway and a committee is beginning the planning stages for what will be yet another exciting event!

Now there’s a way you can help make ILDBR a success.  Fact:  Retreats cost money!  But we have been able to keep the fees low for participants by raising funds to cover the cost of operating a retreat.  This year, we are organizing a raffle.  You can help out by either buying some tickets to support our cause, or helping to sell these tickets.

Each raffle ticket is $5.00.  But if you buy three raffle tickets, it is only $10.00.  That’s a free ticket for the cost of only two tickets!  The prizes are

  • First Prize:  $500
  • Second Prize: $300
  • Third Prize: $100

We will continue to sell tickets between now and July.  Winners will be announced during our July LeCOBDA Cruise.  Winners do not need to be present.

If you would like to contribute and buy some tickets or sell tickets, you can do so at any upcoming LeCOBDA meeting or contact Mindy Joy Mayer directly via email at




LeCOBDA Election Season Is Here!

The next LeCOBDA meeting will be on Saturday, April 13, 2013 at the Chicago Lighthouse from 11:00 a.m to 3:00 p.m.  in the Cafeteria at:

1850 W. Roosevelt Road
Chicago, IL  60608

Soup, sandwiches and beverages will be provided and you can bring your favorite desserts to share with the group.  We will be joined by interpreting students from Columbia College and Harper College to help facillitate communication.

Annual membership dues will be collected during this meeting.  Please bring $15 to renew your membership for 2013.  Your membership helps to keep our organization strong and cover costs such as the monthly luncheons, field trips and other fun things we do in our group.

If you are planning to attend the LeCOBDA Luncheon, please call or email the Deaf-Blind Program to reserve your lunch.  Contact information is below.  If you are an SSP/Interpreter/Volunteer, please arrive at 10:30 a.m. so we can pair you with a DeafBlind individual and we can start our meeting on time at 11:00 a.m.

This is an important meeting for the LeCOBDA members as this is the time of year when we elect new officers to help organize LeCOBDA.   We will elect a President, Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary.  All votes are due by April 13.  If you are not able to attend next LeCOBDA meeting, you can still vote by email.  Send an email to Mindy Joy Mayer at

Here are our official nominees:

  • Sara Chung
  • Celine Bush
  • Catherine Klein
  • Camille Page
  • Jerrie Lawhorn
Treasurer’s Assistant:
  • Debbie Hecker
  • Lori Eshoo (non-voting Volunteer)

Special Note:  Jerrie Lawhorn has been serving as our treasurer since 1980!  WOW!  And she is definitely not ready to retire yet.  However, she is willing to teach another to be her assistant Treasurer.

Only DeafBlind members in good standing (dues paid in full) can vote or run for office.  One exception is the Recording Secretary, which can be fulfilled by a non-DeafBlind volunteer.

To RSVP your lunch for the April LeCOBDA meeting, please contact one of the following at the Chicago Lighthouse Deaf-Blind Program:

Joann Rushing – 312.666.1331, ext. 3415 voice
312.957.4865 videophone
312.666.8874 TTYMindy Joy Mayer
312.447.3454 TTY
312.957.4865 videophoneVeramarie Baldoza
312.957.4865 videophone



SSP Task Force Meeting – Jan 31, 2013

The Illinois Deaf and Hard of Hearing Commission (IDHHC) formally launched the SSP Task Force in October of 2012.  The task force is responsible for developing a proposal for providing a Special Service Provider (SSP) program for DeafBlind residents within the state of Illinois.

The next meeting will be held on January 31, 2013 in Springfield, Illinois at the new IDHHC offices.  All task force meetings are open to the public, and you are welcome to join us for this important initiative.


528 South 5th Street, Suite 209
Springfield, IL  62701
Meeting Time:  11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The office is located just several blocks away from the Springfield Amtrak station.  If you are unable to make it, we will post here on information about the results of the meeting.

Current Task Force Members:

  • Karyn Campbell
  • Ingrid Halvorsen
  • Renee Ingalsbe
  • Julie Somers
  • Tamara Ward
  • Bryen Yunashko

Next LeCOBdA Meeting – February 9, 2013

When: February 9, 2013
Time: 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Where: Chicago Lighthouse
1850 w. Roosevelt road
chicago, IL  60608

We hope everyone had a safe, healthy and happy holiday and New Year!  For our combined Valentine’s / Mardi Gras celebration luncheon, we will have fresh, hot pizza, crispy green salad, and hot coffee and soft drinks.

Feel free to bring your favorite dessert to share and look for your piece of King Cake.  Planning to attend the February LeCOBDA luncheon?  Call or email the Deaf-Blind Program to reserve your lunch (Contact information at end of this announcement).  Wear red to celebrate Valentine’s Day, or wear purple, green or gold to celebrate Mardi Gras!
For SSPs/Volunteers, please come to LeCOBDA at 10:30 am; we need to match you with Deaf-Blind individuals at 11 am so we can start the LeCOBDA meeting on time with announcements.

Scentsy will be back on February 9 for orders; this is to raise money to fund the Deaf-Blind Retreat.

If you’re planning to come to our exciting gathering, please RSVP by February 4th to one of the contacts below:

Joann Rushing – 312.666.1331, ext. 3415 voice
312.957.4865 videophone
312.666.8874 TTY

Mindy Joy Mayer
312.447.3454 TTY
312.957.4865 videophone

Veramarie Baldoza
312.957.4865 videophone