Chicago was the place to be in February! LDA of America hosted its annual International Conference for an excited and enthusiastic membership. The conference was filled with many nationally known speakers who provided the latest information and research on learning disabilities. Members and attendees were provided a variety of activities in which to participate.
The conference began with a Members’ Reception on Tuesday evening, February 17. It was a time for members to be welcomed to the conference by national president Nancie Payne along with members of the LDA Board of Directors and Professional Advisory Board. The reception afforded members an opportunity to meet and mingle with other members of LDA from across the nation and from abroad.
During the conference state affiliates were encouraged to submit Affiliate Accolades as a method of sharing important work their affiliates are involved in. For the first time, affiliates shared their Affiliate Accolades with the Council of State Presidents. After all presentations were made, the presidents voted for the Accolade they felt was the most innovative and/or worthwhile. The chosen winning state affiliate received a free registration to next year’s International LDA Conference to be held in Orlando, Florida, in February of 2016.
The Affiliate Accolades submitted and their states were:
- New Hampshire LDA – Recruitment through Connecting Disabilities with Educational Neuroscience
- New Jersey LDA – Recognizing LDANJ
- The LDA of St. Mary’s County – The 2014 Jed Baker Conference and “The Collaborative”
- LDA of California – Metamorphosis
- LDA of South Carolina – The Student Learning Disabilities Association of The Citadel (SLDAC)
- Maryland LDA – Psycho-educational Assessment Scholarships
- LDA of Illinois – Spreading the Word About LDA Using Social Media
- LDA of Illinois – Legislative Advocacy to Preserve Special Education Funding
The winner of the free registration to next year’s conference was LDA of South Carolina for its establishment of a student LDA organization at The Citadel.
Another highlight of the conference was the recognition of outstanding volunteers from throughout the United States. The volunteers all share a love of LDA and its mission to make the world a better place for individuals with learning disabilities. The volunteers were all recognized with a special display in the exhibit hall at the conference. The recognized outstanding volunteers were:
- Katie Cyphers – Georgia
- Ann Whitten – South Carolina
- Sharon Schussler – Illinois
- Eugene Bell – New Jersey
- Carol Legg Ziegler – Iowa
- Julieta Pasko – Illinois
- Donna Bowling – Maryland
Congratulations and a big thank you goes out to all the outstanding volunteers!
Last but not least, the Council of State Presidents elected new representatives at their meetings in Chicago. The new state presidents’ representative is Kristina Scott from LDA of New Hampshire and the assistant state presidents’ representative is Patti Useem from Indiana. Kristina will be a member of the national Board of Directors for the coming year and represent state affiliates on the Board. Congratulations to both for their election and willingness to serve.