HLAA launches “Campaign to Make Hearing Aids Affordable.” Components of the campaign include:

    • Increasing awareness about hearing loss and reducing stigma

    • Advocating for unbundling of hearing aids and professional services

    • Supporting low-cost options for consumers

    • Advocating for insurance coverage and tax relief in the states

    • Supporting the Hearing Aid Tax Credit legislation H.R. 1479 and S. 905

Creating an opportunity on our website for consumers to rate the hearing health services they receive and comment on their hearing aids

Executive Director Brenda Battat attends the twelfth seminar of the Ida Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark.

HLAA produces video Teamwork for Hearing Loss Awareness. The production was funded by the Manhattan NYC, HLAA Chapter from their Walk4Hearing proceeds. The video highlights the work of the national HLAA office and HLAA chapters across the country.

May 11, 2011: HLAA staff spent a day on Capitol Hill advocating for the Hearing Aid Tax Credit legislation. Together with board members of the Hearing Industries Association (HIA) they met with seven members of the House and Senate to ask them to co-sponsor the bipartisan legislation. House Bill H.R. 1479 was introduced this session by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) and Rep. Tom Latham (R-IA). The bill has 31 co-sponsors and gives a $500 tax credit for people 55 and over and dependents.

The Walk4Hearing, produced by HLAA, is held in 23 cities across the country this year. Washington Redskins Reed Doughty (safety #37) is the 2011 national honorary chair. Phonak CEO Mike Orscheln is the 2011 national business chair. The Walk raises public awareness and generates funds to improve services for people with hearing loss.

HLAA accepted the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) invitation to be a voting member of the Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC). The mission of the CAC is to make recommendations to the FCC regarding consumer issues and facilitation the participation of consumers, including people with disabilities and underserved populations in proceedings before the FCC.

More than 1,800 people from 11 countries came to the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, in June for the largest convention that HLAA has ever hosted. Chris Artinian, CEO and president of Morton’s The Steakhouse was the keynote speaker at the Opening Session. The Artinian family was the subject of the documentary Sound and Fury. In addition to a record number of attendees, this 26th HLAA Convention made history in many ways:

Six hundred attendees attended the captioned and looped performance of the hit musical, Wicked, at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. This was the largest group of people with hearing loss ever to attend a performance at the Kennedy Center, and the first time the Opera House has been equipped with a hearing loop. Thank you to loop manufacturer Ampetronic for taking on this huge task.

FCC Commissioner Michael Copps was awarded the HLAA Lifetime Achievement Award for his commitment to accessibility for people with disabilities and specifically for people with hearing loss. Due to his leadership, people with hearing loss have unprecedented access to telecommunications and media in all aspects of daily life.

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts was awarded the HLAA National Access Award for their extraordinary efforts to include people with hearing loss through real-time captioning, hearing assistive technology, and sign language interpretation. The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts also provides access for people with loss of vision and people with mobility disabilities.

James F. Battey, M.D., Ph.D., director, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, National Institutes of Health, received the James B. Snow, Jr., M.D., Award for furthering scientific research in the field of hearing loss.

Anne T. Pope received the Howard E. “Rocky” Stone Humanitarian Award, named after the founder and given to a former national board member.

People came from eleven countries to attend the convention and the 2nd International Hearing Loop Conference held in conjunction with the convention and hosted by HLAA. Countries represented were: Australia, Canada, Denmark, England, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and The Netherlands.

HLAA publications and marketing campaigns win Hermes Creative Awards. These awards are part of an international competition for creative professionals involved in the concept, writing and design of traditional materials and programs and emerging technologies. The following awards were given:

HLAA Convention 2010 in Milwaukee – Platinum Award for Integrated Marketing Materials

HLAA Walk4Hearing – Gold Award for Integrated Marketing Campaign

Hearing Loss Magazine, September/October 2010 issue – Gold Award for Magazine Publication Overall Content and Design

Hearing Loss Magazine, January/February 2011 issue – Honorable Mention for Magazine Design