[nfb-talk] Fwd: [Nfbv-announce] Retirement of Dr. Maurer
dandrews at visi.com
Sun Dec 1 18:44:17 UTC 2013
>From: "Fredric Schroeder" <fschroeder at sks.com>
>To: "NFBV Announce" <nfbv-announce at nfbnet.org>
>Date: Sun, 1 Dec 2013 11:12:29 -0500
>Subject: [Nfbv-announce] Retirement of Dr. Maurer
>Over the weekend, I participated in a meeting of the board of directors of
>the National Federation of the Blind. The meeting was held at our national
>headquarters in Baltimore.
>As you know, Dr. Marc Maurer has been our national president since 1986. He
>has served as president longer than any of our previous presidents and has
>guided us through a period of unprecedented growth and change. It was under
>Dr. Maurer's leadership that we established the Jernigan Institute and all
>of the programs that have been so successful in demonstrating the truth of
>our assertion that given proper opportunity and training, blind people can
>live and work as others.
>In particular we have developed many programs designed to provide blind
>children and youth with the skills and confidence they need to compete fully
>in their education and to develop their life ambitions. We have conducted
>the Youth Slam, Science Academy, and more recently the BELL programs.
>In the area of technology under Dr. Maurer's leadership we developed the
>KNFB Reader Mobile allowing blind people to have immediate access to print
>with nothing more than a cell phone and special software. And then there was
>the Blind Driver Challenge. There is no question that lack of access to
>reliable transportation remains a major barrier for blind people. Yet, the
>Blind Driver Challenge showed that we could develop the technology to enable
>a blind person to drive a car, not simply sit passively in a car that drives
>These are the expressions of Dr. Maurer's leadership. Yet at the heart of
>his leadership is his spirit and his belief in every blind person. He has
>inspired and encouraged us, faced the most difficult challenges with
>resolution and strength, and he has kept us together, and never let us
>waiver in our belief in our own right to live normal, productive lives.
>On Saturday afternoon Dr. Maurer told the board that it is his intention to
>not seek reelection to the presidency next summer at our national
>convention. He feels the time is right to transition to the next president,
>the next individual who can lead us for a quarter century or more. Dr.
>Maurer is in good health and believes that it is important that he step down
>from the presidency while he is able to assist with the transition. Dr.
>Maurer told the board that he, Dr. Maurer, plans to support Mr. Mark
>Riccobono as the next president of the National Federation of the Blind.
>Mr. Riccobono presently serves as the Executive Director of the Jernigan
>Institute. He is an accomplished individual with the strength and wisdom to
>assume the serious responsibility of leading our movement. He has brought to
>his work the imagination and competency we demand from our president.
>We are truly fortunate that within the Federation we have individuals who
>are able and willing to give all they have to furthering our move toward
>true equality. The demands of the NFB presidency are unimaginable. We
>require our leader to give all of his time, all of his imagination, and all
>of his personal reserve of judgment to leading our organization. This is
>what Dr. Maurer has done for the past 27 and a half years, and it is what
>Mark Riccobono will do for the time of his presidency.
>The transition brings to an end one chapter in our history and what a
>glorious chapter it has been. We cannot face the loss of Dr. Maurer's
>leadership without a sense of sadness; but the transition to a new president
>is not just the absence of what we had before. The transition heralds a new
>chapter in our history and with it, new opportunities-the chance to take all
>that has come before and build something bigger and more powerful than we
>have ever known.
>Please join me in thanking Dr. Maurer for his leadership, his friendship and
>his faithful devotion to our cause; and please join me in wishing Mark
>Riccobono the very best as he seeks to take the foundation that is all that
>has come before and build upon it the next great chapter in our history.
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