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In honor of National Deaf Awareness Week, Hamilton Relay is pleased to recognize Jerry Siders as the 2010 Deaf Community Leader for the State of Iowa.

October, 19 2010

Jerry Siders is a strong advocate and role model within the Deaf Community of Iowa.

Jerry's support and involvement in Iowa shines through as a result of his contributions in teaching, his participation in Deaf events and by keeping individuals who are Deaf connected. If there is an event in the Deaf Community in Iowa, Jerry is always there. Currently, he is the Interim Editor and Business Manager of the Sign Language Newsletter. He ensures that this publication continues to be printed and distributed to the Deaf Community in Iowa and recognizes that the newsletter is an important means by which to keep the Deaf community aware of the latest happenings socially and politically. Jerry also is the Iowa Association of the Deaf (IAD) Treasurer. He continues to be involved with the activities of the IAD by actively participating in the many IAD events held throughout the year.

Deaf Awareness is a constant part of Jerry's life both personally as well as through his career. For 25 years, he taught at the Nebraska School for the Deaf. He then was a teacher at the Iowa School for the Deaf (ISD) for 10 years. The subjects he taught included American History, Psychology, Sociology, World History and Economics. Even with this wide and varied workload, Jerry found time at ISD to sponsor the Iowa School for the Deaf Yearbook and to be the ISD Academic Team Coach. Since his retirement in 2008, Jerry can still be found at the school volunteering in the museum and substitute teaching on a regular basis.

Living on the Nebraska-Iowa border has given Jerry a chance to participate with both states regarding Deaf Awareness. Other organizations and activities Jerry has been involved with include:

  • President of the Nebraska Association of the Deaf

  • Board Member of the Nebraska Commission of Deaf and Hard of Hearing

  • Board Member of the Nebraska Telephone Relay Service Board

  • Board Member of Nebraska Special Education Advisory Council under Nebraska Department of Education

  • State Board of Licensing Interpreters for the Deaf

  • Member of the Iowa School for the Deaf Hall of Fame Committee

  • Jerry's selection as the Hamilton Relay Deaf Community Leader follows other honors held by throughout the years, a few of which include:
  • Outstanding Teacher of Special Needs Students in the Council Bluffs-Omaha area awarded at the Promise Event in 2007

  • Video Relay Consumer Association Advocacy Training, where Jerry trained to advocate for Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, Illinois, Missouri and Nebraska

  • Through his personal involvement and commitment to serving others, Jerry continues to be a leader and advocate in the Deaf and Hearing Communities in Iowa. It is an honor to recognize Jerry Siders for his accomplishments.

    This leadership recognition has been brought to you by Hamilton Relay.

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