[Tall-Corn] My Reappointment Request

sandi sjryan2 at gmail.com
Tue Jan 9 17:26:14 UTC 2018

Dear Tall Corn Listers,

As mentioned at the NFBI State Convention in October, I am applying for reappointment to the Iowa Commission for the Blind for a new three-year term beginning May 1, 2018. Today is the day I’m writing to ask for your letter of support for my reappointment bid. I have completed and submitted my application. I feel this additional term is important to move forward and enhance the initiatives and high-quality programs and services we have established over the last ten years. Many have been started. I want to see that they continue and succeed. As I told the Governor in my application, independent and productive blind citizens are a valuable economic resource in our state. I want to remain on the Commission to ensure that value continues to increase.

When you write your letter, please bear in mind that the National Federation of the Blind of Iowa does not endorse anyone’s appointment to the Commission, and that as a commissioner, I do not represent any blind consumer organization. I represent each blind Iowan, including you. If, on that basis, you can submit a letter of support on my behalf, I will appreciate it very much. 

Below is the statement I have submitted with my updated application for reappointment:
“I have lived in Iowa all my life, as a blind person since my first birthday. I was educated for ten years at the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School, then graduated from my local high school. After graduation I spent time at the Iowa Commission for the Blind’s Orientation Center, learning from the very best how to be a blind person with a good life. I went to college as a blind person; married and raised a computer engineer and a retail manager as a blind person; enjoyed a long and varied career, paying taxes on my wages as a blind person. The Iowa Commission for the Blind and the services and programs of the Iowa Department for the Blind have helped me live a normal, happy, productive life.

“My career was spent outside the field of blindness, but I learned much that has helped me succeed as a member of the Iowa Commission for the Blind for about nine years. I formulated and administered budgets, designed, implemented and evaluated a research study protocol and several heart health programs for women, edited documents sent out of the Department of Public Health, provided grants to local health agencies and administered those grants. I facilitated several coalitions on various health issues, wrote multimillion-dollar grant applications to the Federal government to fund programs, and coordinated a team of colleagues who worked with local health agencies providing community services to low-income women.

“During my time on the Iowa Commission for the Blind, I have helped to hire two directors (a third was hired during a brief hiatus from the Commission), update and revitalize the Iowa Department for the Blind’s policies, programs and services for the twenty-first century, maintain excellent services to blind Iowans even when the budget dwindled, work through the Federal Government’s WIOA initiative to help high school students and young adults become job-ready, employable citizens of Iowa, and work toward the goals of productivity and independence for all blind Iowans. I also wrote and revised a form to evaluate the performance of the last two directors, and am working to establish a Service Enterprise Initiative volunteer program at the Department.

“I ask that you reappoint me to the Iowa Commission for the Blind so that I may continue to help the Department move forward, increasing the expectations of blind Iowans to be productive, tax-paying citizens, and to help older Iowans stay in their homes and active as long as possible. Independent, productive blind Iowans are a valuable part of our state’s economy. I want to help ensure that value is increased over the next three years.”

Please email your letter to:
Christina Bettini, Deputy Director
Boards and Commissions
Governor’s Office
Christina.bettini at iowa.gov
Submit your letter no later than Monday, January 15. If you need more information about me for the letter, contact me at sjryan2 at gmail.com.

Thanks so much for your support!

Sandi Ryan 
Board Member, Des Moines Chapter
National Federation of the Blind of Iowa

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