In honor of National Deaf Awareness Week, Hamilton Relay is pleased to recognize Randall "Randy" Pippins, Sr. as the 2009 Deaf/Hard of Hearing leader for the State of Louisiana.
Randall "Randy" Pippins, Sr. is a Louisiana native. Born in Abbeville and raised in Baton Rouge, Randy became deaf at an early age. He has three children who also are deaf. Randy attended the Louisiana State School for the Deaf and after graduating in1977, began his career by working for the Louisiana State Printing Service.
From an early age, Randy was motivated by group sports and working with individuals who are deaf. His father began taking him to the Baton Rouge Association for the Deaf (BRAD) which led to Randy's 15 years of involvement as an advocate, coach, player and friend to athletes, both young and old, who were a part of BRAD. By the 1980's, he was appointed Athletic Director of BRAD.
As they grew up, Randy's children became actively involved in sports which lead Randy in the direction of taking over the sports program at the Louisiana School for the Deaf (LSD). Through his special blend of volunteer coaching, sponsoring events and counseling students on sports, Randy was able to guide others in the principles of sports and demonstrate how the same principles mirror life. His involvement with students was legendary. The LSD Class of 2003 presented him with an award for "Outstanding Service to the Senior Class of 2005."
Randy served 12 years as the President of BRAD, 19 years as Chairperson for the BRAD Invitational Tournament Classic, Chair of the Dixie Deaf Bowling Tournament in 1983, and was Chairperson for the Southwest Bowling Tournament in 1993. His involvement thus far within the Deaf community as a leader was simply a "warm up in the batter's box" for what came next.
Since Randy was the BRAD representative of the Louisiana Association of the Deaf (LAD), his ability to communicate and work within diverse groups was well known. With some friendly persuasion, Randy ran as President of the Louisiana Association of the Deaf in 2005 and won. Randy had little time to adjust to his new role as President before Louisiana was faced with a hurricane of epic proportions. Hurricane Katrina devastated the state displacing thousands of people, including the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities. The communication challenges that ensued tested Randy's ability to help people recover, find shelter, acquire provisions, and reassemble their lives. This severe crisis was a test of his leadership and the outcome proved that the experience and his contribution will never be forgotten.
In addition to his many achievements, Randy, along with Pauline Wood, Chair of the LAD Board, were honored by the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) for hosting the 2008 NAD Convention in New Orleans. The NAD awarded them the title of "Knights of the Flying Fingers" for their outstanding work in efficiently running one of the best events of NAD in recent history. Randy made sure that it was understood that running NAD was a team effort; many local and loyal LAD members in Louisiana gave their all to putting on an outstanding conference for the thousands of visitors who attended.
Randy is a fine example of an unselfish and dedicated person in providing service to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities of Louisiana. Hamilton Relay is pleased to share and recognize his remarkable triumphs.
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Hamilton Relay offers a variety of services including Telecommunications Relay Service, Captioned Telephone and Internet Relay services. Hamilton provides Telecommunications Relay and/or Captioned Telephone services to 16 states, the District of Columbia, the Island of Saipan and the Virgin Islands. More information is available at hamiltonrelay.com.