Since 1995 HLAA has recognized an outstanding young adult who has contributed their valuable time and effort to furthering the mission of HLAA. These young people help engage their community and bring their peers together to strengthen and support each other. We honor these individuals for all their hard work and dedication; they are the future of HLAA.
At the HLAA2019 Convention Kierstyn “Kiki” Kuehnle will be a recipient of the 2019 Outstanding Young Adult award, in recognition of her continued support of people with hearing loss through the Pennsylvania Walk4Hearing. Born with a hearing loss in her left ear, Kiki became more involved in the hearing loss community when she began to lose her hearing in her right ear as a young teen.
Kiki joined the Walk4Hearing in 2015 when she was only 12 years old. In just four short years her team has raised nearly $92,000. When Kiki started walking, she set an original goal of $5,000, and then went out to spread the word in her community by holding creative events and fundraisers. With her energy and enthusiasm Kiki surpassed her initial goal within three weeks.
Though her fundraising was impressive and practically unmatched, this was not all that made Kiki successful and memorable. Her passion for raising awareness and providing people with information about hearing loss drew those she met to her team, Team Kiki, and to the Walk4Hearing. So far nearly 150 people have walked with Kiki on her team, but with the support of her community those numbers will surely continue to grow. When she received the award letter, Kiki’s mother Lauren proclaimed, “Wow! What an honor! We are thrilled to attend [the Convention]. Kierstyn is so excited and honored to receive this award.”
Kiki will be at the HLAA2019 Convention in Rochester, New York to accept her award on Saturday, June 22 at the Cheers to 40 Years! HLAA Anniversary Celebration and Awards Gala. If you haven’t yet registered for the Convention, do so today. There is so much to learn, see and do there – including getting to meet people like Kiki, the future of HLAA. And while you’re at the Convention, don’t forget to get into the spirit with our annual Convention Walk4Hearing, taking place the same Saturday morning at 8:00 a.m. Who knows, maybe you could be the next member of Team Kiki!
Kiki is one of two recipients of the 2019 Outstanding Young Adult Award. Be sure to check out the next Hearing Life e-News on April 4 to learn more about our other Outstanding Young Adult, Bryan Martinez.