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Inspiring Independence - Junior Blind of America

Junior Blind: A History of Fostering Independence

1953 Junior Blind of

America is established

by Norman Kaplan and

a dedicated group of

volunteers.

1957 Henry Bloomfield

makes property near

Malibu, California, available

for development of

our 40-acre, year-round

residential camp.

1960s We acquire eight

acres in the Windsor

Hills, and establish our

educational and residential

programs.

1970s We develop

Southern California’s only

residential rehabilitation

program for blind or

visually impaired adults.

1985 Robert Ralls joins

Junior Blind of America as

President and CEO.

Mid-1980s We create

the Infant-Family Program

for families with babies

who are visually impaired

with multiple disabilities.

1990s We develop our

Angeles Vista campus,

build state-of-the-art facilities

and expand services.

2000s We develop

innovative services for

teens and blind veterans.

2006 Bob Ralls retires.

We now serve more

than 7,000 individuals

each year.

2006 Miki Jordan

becomes President and

CEO. With the Board of

Directors, she prepares

to guide Junior Blind of

America in our new

Strategic Plan.

reach even more people with strategic services

at a critical time in their lives. We offer

a continuum of services, beginning at birth

and extending through infancy, school years

and adulthood.

Our students with vision loss deserve the

same experiences as other young people and

adults — whether school, camp, community,

family or work — and the same opportunities

to succeed. This truth, above all, provides the

spark for our efforts.

We look forward with excitement to the months

ahead and to finding new friends and partners

by our side in this important endeavor.

Miki Jordan, M.S.

President and Chief Executive Officer

Twenty years ago, I joined an incredible

organization. Today, the infants and children

I met then are grown and living with a

greater independence.

Many have families and satisfying jobs. This is

all the reward I need. It is no exaggeration for

me to say that serving as president of Junior

Blind of America has been a privilege. We

change lives for the better, one life at a time.

As I retire from this wonderful experience, I am

heartened to turn the reins over to a caring,

accomplished leader: Miki Jordan. She has the

capabilities and commitment to guide Junior

Blind of America into its next decade and

beyond. The best is yet to come.

Robert B. Ralls, M.S.

“We change lives for the better, one life at a time.”

Robert B. Ralls

There are an estimated 10 million

Approximately 47,000 Americans

blind and visually impaired lose their sight each year — one

people in the United States.

person every 11 minutes.

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • •

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Our Mission:

We provide programs and services for children and adults who are blind or

visually impaired and their families to achieve independence and self-esteem.


Our Values: We believe in providing programs and services in the context of home, family and community.

Claudia and Aldo Barragan watched their

daughter, Andrea, walk to the stage at the

first Infant-Family Program graduation last

year with a sense of gratitude for the journey

they’ve made as a family.

Andrea, four-and-a-half, was born with optic

nerve atrophy, which damages the nerve that

carries information of vision from the eye to

the brain. She also has cerebral palsy, which

affects her muscle coordination. As an infant,

she wasn’t able to sit or hold her head up. She

disliked touching unfamiliar objects, even toys.

Infant-Family Program

Our early intervention, in-home program serves children from birth

through three years old who are blind or vision impaired with multiple

disabilities. Our Infant-Family Specialists integrate learning into

family life, with individualized vision assessments, infant development

therapy and low vision support.

Then, when Andrea was two, her parents found

Junior Blind. An Infant-Family Specialist began

making twice-weekly home visits, working on

Andrea’s ability to focus using lights, action

toys, music and books. “The lessons helped me

to know how to play with Andrea so she could

learn,” says her mother.

Junior Blind “went above and beyond for us,”

adds Andrea’s father, assisting the family in

obtaining a grant from the Change of Life

Foundation for a reverse walker. Andrea goes

everywhere with it. “She’s able to explore her

surroundings and be mischievous, like a child

should,” says her father. He arranged for a corporate

donation to Junior Blind from his previous

employer, Sam’s Club, and encourages other

parents to do the same.

Andrea Barragan, Graduate, Infant-Family Program

The Barragans have attended Junior Blind holiday

parties and Family Camp, where Andrea’s brother,

Adrian, nine, quickly made friends. “At these

events, we all feel like a big family,” says Claudia.

When Andrea was born, doctors told the Barragans

she would be completely blind. However, she

has functional vision, and loves flipping through

books, looking at pictures. At the graduation party,

her mom followed close behind as Andrea happily

reached out and grabbed for her diploma.

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| Junior Blind of America 2006


For several months, Sarah Masso smiled and laughed, eager to greet the world like any

newborn. Her mother and father, Paula Serna and Leonardo Masso, were overjoyed.

Overnight, everything changed.

Suddenly, nine-month-old Sarah couldn’t even

sit up, much less crawl. Her gaze turned upward.

She began having small seizures, which left her

dazed. She no longer smiled. “It was as if she

wasn’t really here,” recalls her mother.

Paula frantically started looking for answers. The

first doctor she saw said Sarah might be depressed

because her mother worked too much,

so Paula quit her job in door-to-door sales.

Sarah only got worse. A trip to an emergency

room and many tests by a pediatric neurologist

followed. The diagnosis: global developmental

delay – cause unknown.

pushes a noisemaker. She looks at her mother

and laughs.

Sarah hasn’t started to crawl again, but she

scoots herself across the floor. Best of all, her

mother feels hopeful, inspired in part by other

parents at Junior Blind. “When Sarah got ill, I felt

she was lost to us. Now, I am so happy. My baby

has come back.”

Sarah Masso, Student, Infant-Family Program

“When Sarah got ill, I felt she was lost to us. Now,

I am so happy. My baby has come back.”

Paula Serna

There are approximately 55,200 The top three causes of blindness in

legally blind children in the U.S. children are cortical visual impairment,

retinopathy of prematurity

and optic nerve hypoplasia.

It was a frightening time for the young family,

which includes daughter, Manuela, five. Then a

counselor at the San Gabriel Pomona Regional

Center, which provides services for people with

developmental disabilities, told Paula about

Junior Blind of America.

Today, nearly a year later, Sarah is progressing

step by step. Her constant upward gaze is

almost gone. An Infant-Family Specialist comes

to the family’s home to improve Sarah’s handeye

coordination and her ability to focus, literally

creating new pathways in her brain. On a recent

visit, Sarah eagerly grabs a bright red ball, then

a green one. She watches herself in a mirror and

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • •

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Our Values: We believe in individual growth by focusing on abilities, meeting challenges and acknowledging success.

Twelve-year-old Chase Brophy attends junior high in the Azusa School District. He’s learning

Spanish from his sister, Britnee, 16. Musically talented, he started playing maracas and harmonica

as a boy. He is now so good on the drums – jazz, country and rock– that his brother,

Ryan, 18, brings friends home to hear him play.

Only five short years ago, when Chase enrolled

in the Special Education School, he didn’t enjoy

exploring the world around him.

Encouraged by his fellow students and teachers,

he learned to socialize and to walk independently,

using a white cane – something he resisted

at first. “Now he doesn’t want to go anywhere

without his cane,” says his mom, Coleen Brophy.

“He enjoys the attention.”

happy day and a sad one. “We miss Junior Blind.

The staff was always there for my son and for me.

They prepared Chase for the rest of his life.”

Chase might set those positive lyrics to a hiphop

beat.

Chase Brophy, Graduate, Special Education School

Special Education School

In our certified, private school, students ages three through 22 with

visual impairments and other disabilities receive instruction from a

caring staff with highly specialized training. Backed by an individual

learning plan, each child is encouraged to achieve his or her maximum

independence and educational ability.

His mother credits the Special Education

School with building Chase’s self-esteem along

with his communication skills and coordination.

(He took a Gold Medal in track-and-field at the

Junior Blind Olympics.) Chase graduated this

past June, ready for more academic challenges.

Also a former participant of the Infant-Family

Program, he was born six weeks early, and had

to be resuscitated. He is legally blind, due to

Leber’s Congenital Amaurosis, a rare genetic

eye disorder marked by an absence of lightgathering

rods and cones in the retina.

While his mother is excited to make plans for

Chase’s future, she calls his graduation both a

93,600 visually impaired or blind

students participate in special

education programs in the U.S.

Approximately 10,800 of them are

deaf-blind.

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| Junior Blind of America 2006


Alena Strickland (left); Mikey Strickland-Pedone

(right), Student, Special Education School

“I can relax and know Mikey’s taken care of. The staff never talks about what he can’t

do — they talk about his goals.”

Alena Strickland

For nearly 30 years, Alena Strickland has

provided a home to some 80 special needs

children through foster care and adoption,

often rescuing them from an institution.

One of those children is nine-year-old Mikey, a

student at the Special Education School.

Alena began at age 19 by fostering terminally

ill children, then took in children with emotional

and physical challenges such as autism,

bipolar disorder and deafness – all as a single

mom. Why? “Because I can,” says Alena, a

freelance interpreter for the deaf.

In 1999, she married Phil Pedone, who retired

from Pedone’s Pizza to share the family duties.

Together, they adopted Mikey, whose blindness

and severe developmental disabilities

are a result of Shaken Baby Syndrome, which

left him with multiple head fractures and a

detached retina.

Mikey is the last child to join the busy household

of 11 children, which includes Alena’s three biological

children and nine children still at home.

Alena and Phil tried school after school for

Mikey – so many she’s lost count – but each

one sent him home, saying he was too hard to

handle, often throwing or destroying things, as

well as biting and kicking.

When he came to the Special Education

School, he banged his head on the floor and

was unable to sit still. After nearly two years,

“he’s a totally different kid,” says his mom. Mikey

can sit through mealtimes, brush his teeth and

is learning to communicate through hand-signs

and a voice output device. He enjoys riding a

two-seated bike and using the treadmill.

“I can relax and know he’s taken care of,” says

his mother. “The staff never talks about what

he can’t do – they talk about his goals. Best of

all, they treat him like a person, not a burden.

No one else ever did that.”

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • •

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Charlie Miller likes to “high five” the staff in the Children’s Residential Program. If offered a

hug, he’s glad to oblige. It wasn’t always so.

“The warmth and positive energy from the staff

gives Charlie the quality of life he has now.”

Anne Miller

When 17-year-old Charlie first arrived threeand-a-half

years ago, he was highly medicated,

would often bite or hit himself and even lash out

at others. “The difference now is night and day,”

says his mother, Anne Miller.

In this nurturing, residential living environment,

Charlie, who has low vision, has stopped many

of the obsessive behaviors that characterize his

autism, and is both curious and kind. “There’s

so much warmth and positive energy from the

staff – that gives Charlie the quality of life he has

now,” adds Anne.

Over the years, she and her husband, Bob, tried

multiple programs for Charlie. The public school

district proved a dead end. He lived at home

until age 10, when they became concerned his

aggressive behavior might harm his younger

sister, Lizzie. He moved into a group home and

began attending Tobinworld in Glendale, a

private school for students who are autistic, developmentally

delayed or emotionally disturbed.

Its principal recommended the Children’s Residential

Program.

Now, every weekday, Charlie happily piles into a

van at Junior Blind to attend school. Charlie and

Lizzie, 13, like to burrow in his room and watch

videos together when she visits. Charlie also

enjoys swimming, carnival rides and going to restaurants

with his family. When he graduates from

the Children’s Residential Program at age 22, the

Millers hope he will have gained enough independent

living skills to enter a sheltered workshop.

For now, he joins other residents on outings to

the park, community events, even horseback

riding. As his mother says, “He has a wide world

thanks to Junior Blind.”

Charlie Miller, Student, Children’s Residential Program

People who are legally blind have

a central visual acuity for distance

of 20/200 or a field of vision no

greater than 20 degrees in its

widest diameter.

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • •

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Our Values: We believe in the power of love, friendship, fellowship and fun.

Visions: Adventures in Learning

Whether near to home or across the globe, Visions’ life-building

experiences are extraordinary. Children and youth who are blind or

visually impaired participate in extended group outings and trips

that inspire confidence, teamwork, calculated risk-taking and overall

personal growth.

Cave rafting in New Zealand. Snowboarding in Lake Tahoe. Surfing. White water rafting.

Not what many people expect from someone who’s visually impaired, but all in a typical day

for Tom Ashby, a longtime participant in Visions: Adventures in Learning.

“Growing up, you worry, ‘What am I good at?

What can I do with my life?’ Junior Blind has

shown me I can do so much,” says Tom, 29.

An adventurous boy, he came to Junior Blind’s

Camp Bloomfield at age seven, the same year

his parents bought him his first dirt bike.

Tom was born prematurely. Oxygen seeped under

his eyelids, causing a detached retina and

complete blindness in his right eye. He has only

partial vision in his left eye. For a long time,

doctors warned he might lose that eyesight,

too. “I wasn’t sure I would still be able to see by

age 18, so I wanted to experience as much of

life as possible.”

He signed on for every Visions adventure he

could. The trips — designed to help participants

build independence — taught him day-to-day

living skills, requiring him to pick out his clothes,

prepare food and challenge his own and others’

expectations. “Without this program, I wouldn’t

have known I could push myself to achieve the

things I have,” says Tom, who volunteers as

Tom Ashby, Graduate, Visions

jack-of-all-trades and counselor at camp each

summer, where he is known as “Mr. T.”

He built his first car at age 14 and is a certified

Toyota mechanic. Fully licensed, he drives

during daylight hours with the aid of a special

monocular device. A graduate of Riverside

Community College, he works for Guy Yoakum

Construction in Norco, servicing power equipment

and vehicles. At home, he cares for his

ailing mother.

14 | • • • • • • • • • • • •

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| Junior Blind of America 2006


Tom enjoys being a role model for other young

kids. “When I was growing up, someone made

that difference for me.”

Compared to Tom, Allina Seng, 14, is a beginner

with the Visions program. A major highlight

for him has been a Visions trip to San Francisco,

where he journeyed to Alcatraz Island

and learned about working with a guide dog at

Guide Dogs for the Blind. He’s a dedicated wall

climber, beating his own speed record this

summer and matching the performance of

sighted climbers.

Also a premature baby, Allina has low vision, especially

in his left eye. Now a freshman at Long

Beach Poly High School, he’s been involved

with Junior Blind since fifth grade.

“Junior Blind has helped me a lot,” he says.

Meeting other kids, having new adventures has

boosted his confidence. An excellent student,

he favors math and science. “Allina’s experience

with Junior Blind has been wonderful in encouraging

him to go out and explore the world,” says

his stepfather, Mao Seng.

Asked what he likes most about Junior Blind,

Allina doesn’t hesitate. It isn’t the “cool things”

he gets to do, although they are very cool. He

says, “It’s the people.”

Asked what he likes most about Junior Blind,

Allina doesn’t hesitate. It isn’t the “cool things” he

gets to do. “It’s the people.”

Allina Seng, Student, Visions

Diabetes is a leading cause of vision

loss among adults, responsible

for eight percent of legal

blindness in the U.S.

Approximately 45% of individuals

with severe visual impairment

or blindness have a high school

diploma, compared to 80% among

fully sighted individuals.

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • • • • • •

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Our Values: We believe in the primary importance of developing self-esteem.

Nothing should stop someone from realizing their dreams – especially big ones – not even

retinal coloboma, a genetic disorder in which part of the retina is missing. That sums up Danny

Brown’s philosophy.

The ambitious 22-year-old enrolled in Junior

Blind’s Student Transition and Enrichment Program

(STEP) in summer 2005 to learn valuable

independent living and job preparation skills.

Asked to list three things on his application he’s

interested in doing, Danny, who favors dress

pants and a tie, wrote “accountant, stockbroker

and entrepreneur.”

During the three-week program, he completed

an internship at Harold Davidson & Associates,

Inc., an investment counseling firm headed by

the chair of Junior Blind’s Board of Directors.

Among other duties, he helped to analyze real

estate opportunities. “Danny had some terrific

insights,” says Mr. Davidson. “I’m certain he has

a bright future.”

This December, Danny will complete the accounting

program at Abram Friedman Occupational

Center. Prior to STEP, he had been

considering the food service industry. The program

has inspired him to dream another dream.

He would like to work in a bank while attending

community college, then transfer to a four-year

university, eventually opening his own practice

as a certified public accountant. “I want to be

my own boss.”

He continues to attend STEP’s Saturday

workshops, eager to accumulate all the skills he

can. The experiences he’s had have him looking

forward to whatever’s coming next.

Student Transition and Enrichment Program

Teens and young adults from 16 through 22 identify and explore their

career options in this program, while learning the necessary workreadiness

skills to realize their dreams. At each STEP, they are inspired

and empowered to maximize their abilities for independent living.

Danny enjoyed STEP so much, he enrolled this

year in STEP-TWO, a six-week program, in which

participants work at a paid job and arrange

their transportation. Danny worked at the Fourth

Street Deli in downtown Los Angeles, getting an

insider’s view on running a business. One secret,

he says: “Good communication and a great

attitude with your customers and employees.”

Leading causes of blindness in

people age 20 and over include

glaucoma, macular degeneration,

senile cataract and diabetic

retinopathy.

Danny Brown, Student, STEP (Student Transition and

Enrichment Program)

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| Junior Blind of America 2006


Amelia Diaz, Graduate, STEP (Student Transition and

Enrichment Program)

“I had an awesome time at STEP. It gave me a taste for independence that hasn’t died.”

Amelia Diaz

“I love to sing – I’m obsessed with it,”

declares Amelia Diaz, 19, who has been

singing for others since she was two

years old. In fact, she combines her three

obsessions – singing, French and pop star

Celine Dion – in one.

Now, with some newly honed independent living

skills, she has even more to sing about: plans to

share her first apartment with a roommate.

One of Amelia’s best friends attended the

Student Transition and Enrichment Program

(STEP) in 2004, prompting her to do the

same in 2005. “I had an awesome time,”

she says, developing friendships she’s sure

will last a lifetime. The three-week program,

in which participants live in dorms, was the

longest she had been away from home. “It

gave me a taste for independence that hasn’t

died yet.”

Among other things, she learned to do her

laundry “without killing my clothes” and how

to go grocery shopping and cook dinner.

Other valuable lessons included writing a

winning resume.

Amelia has been blind from birth and wears

two prosthetic eyes, the result of congenital

glaucoma and Peter’s Anomaly. In this congenital

disorder, the cornea may be scarred,

and cataracts and glaucoma can develop. Even

so, her parents always told her that being blind

shouldn’t stop her from achieving her goals.

As a result, Amelia is in her second year at

California State University, Fullerton, majoring

in French, and may declare a second major in

vocal performance. Her goal: to be a French

interpreter or teacher. For now, she’s saving

to move from her parents’ home next summer.

She sings whenever possible for graduations

and community functions. “I love the feeling of

giving what I love to others.”

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • • • • • •

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Our Values: We believe in respecting the individual and in serving the individual as a whole person.

At age 53, Jennifer Peters thought she had her life in order. Legally blind since birth, she had

a degree in communicative disorders, a great job with an ophthalmologist, grown daughters

and grandchildren. When a car accident diminished her sight further, she adjusted. But one

morning a year later, she woke up unable to perceive anything. “This was a level of vision loss I

never thought I would experience,” she says. “I was devastated.”

Susan Pelbath was diagnosed with atypical

macular degeneration, loss of central vision, at

age 10. At 36, she developed retinitis pigmentosa,

which damaged her peripheral vision.

She refused to slow down her “huge, busy life”

raising six children – her own four and her niece

and nephew – and working as a high school

teaching assistant. Last year, a period of bad

health undermined her coping strategies.

Jennifer calls coming face-to-face with her vision

loss “hitting a major stop sign.” Susan calls it

“hitting my blind wall.”

Davidson Program for Independence

Since 1971, this comprehensive residential program on our Los Angeles

campus has helped more than 5,000 adults 18 and older who are newly

blind or visually impaired gain independent living skills and pre-vocational

training – preparing for employment and a fully productive life.

For both women, the answer to moving in a new

direction has been the Davidson Program for

Independence.

Jennifer joined Davidson in 2000. Its special

combination of education and counseling

helped her build the “emotional props” she

needed to go on. “That was the beginning of my

getting my life back,” she says now.

This secure, encouraging place gives newly

blind and visually impaired adults time and opportunity

to learn. Each student’s program is

individual. Jennifer stayed six months. Susan is

near the beginning of her journey, which started

in September.

She admits, “I faked it for a long time” – pretending

she had more vision than she did. “I’m

making up for all the steps I skipped, asking for

more, more, more.”

18 | • • • • • • • • • • •

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| Junior Blind of America 2006


Susan Pelbath (left), Student, Davidson Program for

Independence; Jennifer Peters (right), Graduate,

Davidson Program for Independence

Jennifer, meanwhile, has carved out her new life

with skills and confidence gained at Davidson.

She is Executive Director of the Center for the

Blind and Visually Impaired in Bakersfield, giving

back what she learned. “I certainly didn’t realize

my life could be so full and happy, and that I’d

know the level of independence I’ve been able

to achieve.”

She’s eager to learn “absolutely everything” the

program can teach her – from orientation and

mobility to computers with assistive technology

to Braille and independent living skills. She lives

with her guide dog, Isabel, on the Junior Blind

campus, taking the train home to her family in

Oceanside on weekends.

Of the students like Jennifer who’ve gone

before, and the staff, she says, “It’s so inspiring

what they can do.” Her goal: to return to school

for her degree, so she can teach algebra and

geometry on a college level.

Her advice to Susan and others who come after

her: “Be patient with yourself. Open your mind to

gain as much as you possibly can. This is a critical

time of learning and such a wonderful opportunity.”

“I didn’t realize my life could be so full and happy,

and I’d know the level of independence I’ve been

able to achieve.”

Jennifer Peters

Approximately 46% of visually

impaired adult Americans are

employed.

For legally blind working-age

Americans, the statistics are even

lower – about 32% are employed.

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • • • • •

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Share Our Vision Tribute Dinner

Special thanks to the Share Our Vision

Event Committee, Board of Directors

and staff for their hard work, involvement

and support.

Share Our Vision

1 Guests shared fond memories

and visions for the future at the

Tribute reception.

A Tribute to Robert Ralls and Linda Falcone | April 28, 2006

For more than two decades, Bob Ralls, former

President and Chief Executive Officer and the

second President in our 53-year history, and

Linda Falcone, who served as Vice President

of Development, have been instrumental

leaders in Junior Blind of America’s mission

to provide independence and self-esteem for

thousands of students and their families each

year. Their visionary leadership, professional

guidance and compassionate commitment can

be greatly attributed to the expansion, development

and direction of the organization, and the

high level of service and programs for which

Junior Blind is nationally recognized today.

As a special thanks to Bob and Linda, friends

and family of Junior Blind of America joined

together with our Board of Directors to pay

tribute to the couple and their invaluable contribution

and dedication to the organization for

more than 20 years. The gala night included

a spectacular and moving performance by

Laurie Rubin, renowned mezzo-soprano soloist

and former Camp Bloomfield participant; a

Silent Auction; a Live Auction; and a dinner

program in which 175 generous supporters

raised more than $265,000 in their honor for

Junior Blind’s programs and services.

The event also featured a special tribute to

founding visionaries Vera and Gil Brown,

Charlotte and Davre Davidson, Ruthe and

Seymour Fabrick, Belle and Seymour Owens,

and Mimi and Irving Wershow, whose passionate

humanitarian vision, commitment and

care provided the foundation for Junior Blind’s

services, and provide our inspiration for

the future.

1

4

22 | • • • • • • • • • •

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| Junior Blind of America 2006


Event Chairs

Vera R. Campbell

Jonathan I. Macy, M.D.

Event Committee

Members

Harold A. Davidson,

D.B.A.

Howard Fabrick, Esq.

Neal F. Harris

Peter Menard, Esq.

Sanford B. Weiss

Board of Directors

Harold A. Davidson,

D.B.A., Chair

Vera R. Campbell

Lee Colton, Esq.

Louise Davis, M.D.

Dan Dworsky

Howard Fabrick, Esq.

Scott Farkas, Esq.

Samuel M. Genensky,

Ph.D.

Neal F. Harris

Robert D. Held

Richard L. Kaplan, C.P.A.

Jonathan I. Macy, M.D.

Peter Menard, Esq.

George Mihlsten, Esq.

Joe Phelps

Jason M. Russell, Esq.

Sanford B. Weiss

The Honorable Andrew

Weisz

Ginger Williams

Reg Wilson

2 Junior Blind of America Board of Directors in

attendance included, pictured left to right:

Jonathan I. Macy, Robert D. Held, Neal F. Harris,

Scott Farkas, Richard L. Kaplan, Linda Falcone,

Vera R. Campbell, Robert Ralls, Harold A. Davidson,

Howard Fabrick, Lee Colton, Louise Davis, Sanford

B. Weiss, Jason M. Russell.

3 Junior Blind of America Chief Operating Officer,

Jay Allen, with Laurie Rubin, mezzo-soprano soloist.

4 Robert Ralls, Harold Davidson and Miki Jordan

5 The Silent Auction featured an array of artwork,

luxury vacation destinations and more.

6 Robert Ralls and Miki Jordan

7 Representing founding visionaries Howard Fabrick,

Vera Brown, Paul Owens and Irving Wershow with

Robert Ralls and Linda Falcone (center).

2 3

5 6 7

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • • •

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Summary Of Financial Data: For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2006

Statement of Revenues

Support from the Public Contributions $ 1,783,435

Capital 810,000

Wills, bequests and trusts 2,841,501

Total 5,434,936

Program Revenue Program service fees, contracts 6,029,115

Total 6,029,115

Other Revenue Investment income 1,755,543

Miscellaneous income 281,273

Total 2,036,816

Total public support, program revenue, other revenue $ 13,500,867

Community Partnerships 2005/2006

California Deaf-Blind

Services

California Department

of Rehabilitation

California Public

School Districts

California Regional

Centers

Center for the Partially

Sighted

Francis Blend School

Fiesta Educative

Guide Dogs for

the Blind

Institute for Families

Lions Clubs

Los Angeles County

Department of Children

and Family Services

Optimist Blind Youth

Association

Sinai Akiba Academy

Southern California

Conservatory of Music

24 | • • • • • • • • • • • •

• •

| Junior Blind of America 2006


Statement of Expenditures

Program Services Camp and Recreation Programs $ 1,195,506

Special Education School 1,451,244

Children’s Residential Program 3,119,459

Infant-Family Program 859,544

Davidson Program for Independence 1,470,629

Student Transition and Enrichment Program 212,359

Public Education 470,310

Upon request, copies of a complete financial

statement, as audited by Harrington Group,

are available from Junior Blind of America.

Total 8,779,051

Supporting Services Management and General 1,022,364

Fundraising 1,418,354

Communications 371,817

Total 2,812,535

Total expenditures, depreciation $ 11,591,586

Excess of revenue over expenditures (Includes Board-Designated Investment Income of $1,755,543) $ 1,909,281

University Partners

Southern California

Network

Study Center for the

Blind, Chihuahua,

Mexico

View Park Preparatory

Accelerated Charter

School

Verbum Dei

High School

Veterans

Administration

Westside Center for

Independent Living

YMCA

Zeta Beta Tau

California State

University, Los Angeles

California State

University,

Dominguez Hills

Foster Grandparent

Program, Pepperdine

University

UCLA, Gluck Fellows

Music Group

University of Kansas

University of Southern

California

University of

West Los Angeles

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • • • • • •

• •

| 25


Our Students

Birth to 5 years 10%

6-12 years 42%

13-20 years 45%

21 years and older 3%

6-12 years

21 years and older

Birth to 5 years

13-20 years

Who We Serve

Program Service

Programs Number of Students & Family Members Served Direct Service Hours

Camp Bloomfield 1,708 182,784

Visions/Recreation 3,167 18,120

Infant-Family Program 1,265 17,457

Special Education School 230 62,790

Children’s Residential Program 210 353,808

Davidson Program for Independence 327 202,122

Student Transition and Enrichment Program 872 59,088

Total 7,779 896,169

26 | • • •


• •

| Junior Blind of America 2006


Volunteer Partners

Programs Volunteers Hours

Davidson Program for Independence 118 1,758

Student Transition and Enrichment Program 24 385

Children’s Residential Program 239 1,596

Infant-Family Program 81 845

Special Education School 64 4,018

Visions/Recreation Program 142 1,287

Camp Bloomfield 104 3,458

Administration/Development 566 3,968

Music Program 12 64

Special event/support volunteers 236 1,416

Notable Achievements 2006

Recorded a 95+% satisfaction rate

among students, families and

referring agencies.

Met the highest standards of

excellence in all program

accreditation/certification audits.

Expanded partnerships and community

collaboration to serve more blind

children, adults and family members

than ever before (7,779).

Made important progress in the

implementation of the master plan

to upgrade and renovate Camp

Bloomfield. Through this ongoing

work, we will be able to preserve

the natural environment, rehabilitate

existing structures, upgrade and

rebuild facilities where necessary,

and ensure the highest level of fire

and life safety.

Total 1,586 18,795

Community Education Hours

Despite our increased services and other successes, waiting lists

of students in need remain. With the support of our donor partners,

Junior Blind of America plans to continue growing our vital services.

Combined Programs

Number of Hours

Total 1,914

Junior Blind of America 2006 | • • • • • • • • • • • •

• •

| 27


Board Of Directors

Chair

Harold A. Davidson, D.B.A.

Vice Chairs

Vera R. Campbell

Robert D. Held

Secretary/Treasurer

Richard L. Kaplan, C.P.A.

Members

Barry Charles, C.P.A.

Lee Colton, Esq.

Louise Davis, M.D.

Brenda Diener

Dan Dworsky

Howard Fabrick, Esq.

Scott Farkas, Esq.

Samuel M. Genensky, Ph.D.

Neal F. Harris

Jonathan I. Macy, M.D.

Peter Menard, Esq.

George Mihlsten, Esq.

Joe Phelps

Jason M. Russell, Esq.

Sanford B. Weiss

The Honorable Andrew Weisz

David Westley

Ginger Williams

Reg Wilson

Chair Emeriti

Barbara F. Bentley

Howard Fabrick, Esq.

John Isaacson

Jonathan I. Macy, M.D.

George Karlin

Sanford B. Weiss

President / CEO

Miki Jordan, M.S.

Leadership Team

Miki Jordan, M.S.

President & Chief Executive Officer

Jay Allen, M.A.

Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer

Kami Mann, M.B.A.

Senior Vice President of Finance &

Chief Financial Officer

Laura M. Hardy

Senior Vice President of Development &

Chief Development Officer

Carmen Garcia

Vice President of Operations

Lauri Gavel

Vice President of Marketing

Debra Adams

Senior Director of Programs

Marcia Salvary

Director of Development

Mary Goldman, M.A.

Director of Infant-Family Program

Maria Gonzalez

Director of Special Education School

Frank Cardenas

Director of Recreation Services

Ernesto Vasquez

Director of Children’s Residential Program

Gina Gonzalez

Coordinator of Student Transition and

Enrichment Program

Ken Metz

Director of Davidson Program for Independence

Shirley Manning

Director of Adult Education Services

Hilton Edior

Director of Maintenance

Junior Blind Counsel

Latham & Watkins

Junior Blind of America’s 2006 Annual Report

Executive Editor & Director: Lauri Gavel

Art Direction & Design: Warren Group | Studio Deluxe

Photography: Marcelo Coelho

Copy: Candace Pearson

Publication underwritten by private donations.

Upon request, this annual report is available on tape or in Braille.

© 2006 Junior Blind of America

28 | • • • • • • • • • • • •

• •

| Junior Blind of America 2006


Share Our Vision:

www.juniorblind.org | 1.800.352.2290


5300 Angeles Vista Boulevard | Los Angeles, California 90043 | Phone 323.295.4555 | Toll free outside of Southern California 800.352.2290 | www.juniorblind.org

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