Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

A life without limits for children with hearing loss

aka AG Bell   |   Washington, DC   |  http://www.agbell.org

Mission

The Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (AG Bell) works globally to ensure that people who are deaf and hard of hearing can hear and talk. Through publications, advocacy, training, scholarships and financial aid, and certification of professionals, AG Bell promotes the use of spoken language and hearing technology. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., with chapters throughout the United States and a network of international affiliates, we want all families to be informed and supported, professionals to be appropriately qualified to teach and help children with hearing loss, public policy leaders to effectively address the needs of people with hearing loss, and communities to be empowered to help their neighbors with hearing loss live a life without limits.

Ruling year info

1951

Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Emilio Alonso-Mendoza J.D., CFRE

Main address

3417 Volta Place, NW

Washington, DC 20007 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf

EIN

53-0196644

NTEE code info

Services to Promote the Independence of Specific Populations (P80)

Disabled Persons' Rights (R23)

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (E12)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Every year in the United States, more than 12,000 babies are born with hearing loss, making it the most prevalent sensory defect. More than 90% are born to parents who can hear. With hearing technology such as hearing aids and cochlear implants, nearly all of them can learn to listen, the first step in developing spoken language and literacy. With support, children with hearing loss can learn alongside peers with typical hearing and achieve an independent, self-reliant life.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

STEM-HEAR

The STEM-HEAR project reaches out to college-bound students in the sciences and builds a mentoring relationship through internships in five university research programs led by professors with hearing loss. These professors mentor students, providing guidance on navigating scientific research while inspiring students to persevere in the sciences, a field where people with disabilities are sorely underrepresented. Their work allows students with hearing loss the opportunity to participate in auditory research projects, an area where they can contributed their personal experience to improve research efforts and development.

Population(s) Served
Students
People with hearing impairments

AG Bell works to promote issues relevant to children and adults with hearing loss to legislators, regulators, healthcare systems, the media, and the educational and legal systems. AG Bell participates in a variety of coalitions that address issues of concern to the larger community of individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, such as the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Alliance (DHHA) and the Joint Committee on Infant Hearing (JCIH), among others.

Population(s) Served

The AG Bell website is an online interactive resource where families, individuals with hearing loss, and the professionals who support them receive trustworthy information that is unbiased, sensitive and comprehensive.

AG Bell provides free resources about communication options, spoken language development, financial aid assistance, insurance reimbursement issues, self-advocacy, private and public school programs, and connects families with each other and professionals.

There is a critical need for support and reliable resources for Spanish speaking parents of children with hearing loss who have few resources for promoting the development of listening and spoken language for their children. Through its international office in Madrid, Spain, AG Bell develops content that is specific for these families and continues to meet the essential need for information for professionals and parents in improving literacy and written language for children with hearing loss.

Population(s) Served
People with hearing impairments
Families

The Turn It Up Fund is a donor-advised fund housed at AG Bell to support children who are deaf and hard of hearing who are learning to play musical instruments. This program partners with Dillehay Management Corporation to provide financial aid for these special activities that enhance learning and assist children with hearing loss in expanding their listening abilities.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
People with hearing impairments

AG Bell offers financial aid and scholarships to help support a listening and spoken language outcome for individuals who are deaf and hard of hearing. Programs are classified by age and educational level and range from infancy through post-graduate school.

Population(s) Served
Families

A quarterly magazine that includes features as well as regular columns that focus on the latest in hearing technology, communications access, educational approaches and professional development. The magazine addresses interests of people with hearing loss, the professionals who serve them, their families, educators and communities

Population(s) Served
Adults

AG Bell has 41 state chapters that offer local area information and resources, special events and networking opportunities for people with hearing loss, their families and the health and education professionals who serve them. Each chapter is focused on ensuring that Listening and Spoken Language has a presence in their area and on building connections between parents, professionals and children with hearing loss.

Population(s) Served
Adults

The AG Bell Academy certifies professionals as Listening and Spoken Language Specialists (LSLS®). The LSLS certification distinguishes a professional who has demonstrated the knowledge, skills and abilities to work with children who are deaf or hard of hearing to achieve an outcome of listening, spoken language and literacy.

Population(s) Served
Adults

AG Bell hosts a Listening and Spoken Language Symposium that updates professionals in hearing loss, speech-language therapy and education with the latest developments in research and professional development in the field. The Global Symposium, which is offered virtually and provides on-demand learning following the event, engages over 1,000 audiologists, speech-language pathologists, teachers, parents and students in more than 50 countries.

Population(s) Served
Adults

LOFT is a leadership program for teens held each summer in Washington, DC, which provides an active learning and bonding experience for teenagers who are deaf and hard of hearing and use listening and spoken language. The program is designed for participants to develop skills in individual leadership, teamwork, goal-setting, public speaking, and self-advocacy.

The LOFT program identifies and cultivates leadership and self-advocacy skills among participants by providing a supportive and structured environment in which participants increase their confidence and their understanding of their own strengths and abilities through activities designed to challenge them to work outside of their comfort zone.

Led by adults with hearing loss who serve as role models, AG Bell’s LOFT program has helped more than 720 teens learn to advocate for themselves and others, build up their leadership potential, and prepare for an independent, self-reliant adult life.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents
People with hearing impairments

Where we work

Awards

None 2009

None

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Goal A: Families and Children - Families will be provided with a wide array of resources that support them in raising independent and successful children. Children who are deaf and hard of hearing will have timely access to appropriate interventions to achieve their full potential.

Goal B: Adults - Adults who are deaf and hard of hearing will connect and build a community, enabling them to work together to advance equal access.

Goal C: Professionals - Professionals will be provided with professional development, credentialing opportunities, awareness and support in the theory and application of listening and spoken language for individuals who are deaf and hard of hearing.

Goal D: General Public - The general public will know that people who are deaf and hard of hearing can listen and use spoken language.

Families and Children - Increase outreach to families with children who are deaf and hard of hearing; Increase access to timely, complete, and accurate information at diagnosis and transitions throughout life; Increase legislative and regulatory activities to provide access to services through the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)/American Disabilities Act (ADA); and expand adoption of the Listening and Spoken Language Specialist (LSLS Cert. AVT® and LSLS Cert. AVEd®) credential to ensure that there are adequate numbers of highly trained professionals to serve children with hearing loss desiring to listen and speak.

Adults - Increase the participation of adults who are deaf and hard of hearing in AG Bell supported tools for connection and community; increase collaborative efforts among organizations representing the community with hearing loss on behalf of adults who are deaf and hard of hearing; and increase recruitment and retention efforts for teens and adults who are deaf and hard of hearing.

Professionals - Increase awareness of LSLS certification; increase opportunities provided for professional development; increase professional membership; and increase the rate of growth of LSLS certified professionals.

General Public - Increase the visibility of people who are deaf or hard of hearing who use listening and spoken language; Expand the social opportunities to identify volunteer leaders to increase engagement and share the changing needs of people with hearing loss; expand social media engagement of families, people with hearing loss, and professionals who serve them to be dedicated active social media influencers; and improve the reach and attraction of the AG Bell website to raise awareness universally that people with hearing loss can live a life without limits.

Through AG Bell's core values, the organization is able to fulfill its mission of "Advancing Listening and Spoken Language to Individuals who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing."

AG Bell's core values are:
Empowering and Respectful: demonstrated by empowering families to make informed choices; respecting all choices; valuing the contributions of those who are deaf and hard of hearing and advancing leaders who are reflective of the communities we serve.

Forward-Thinking and Innovative: demonstrated by appreciating AG Bell's heritage while actively anticipating and adapting to the changing environment, promoting access to technology and valuing visionary leadership.

Inclusive and Supportive: demonstrated by members and supporters dedicated to listening and spoken language and devoted to promoting a supportive, inclusive environment for all who are deaf and hard of hearing.

Dependable and Knowledgeable: demonstrated by an earned reputation for providing evidence-based, reliable, accurate information about listening and spoken language.

By conducting an environmental scan of the demographics, politics/societal values, legislation/regulations and business/economic climate AG Bell has been identifying, building and sustaining programs and services to meet the needs of children who are deaf and hard of hearing, their families and the professionals who work on their behalf. For example, infants who are diagnosed with hearing loss should begin to get intervention services as soon as possible, but no later than six months of age. AG Bell's Pediatric Outreach Program is a new initiative specifically designed to assist the primary health care provider in the delivery of care through online and real-time regional webinars.

Additionally, with a growing number of parents in the United States choosing a listening and spoken language outcome for their children who are deaf and hard of hearing, AG Bell continues to provide accurate and timely information to parents in order to for them to make important and informed decisions quickly. Furthermore, AG Bell continues to reach out globally to engage families and provide training and certification to professionals in listening and spoken language around the world.

Within AG Bell's goals, there continue to be barriers for families and children, adults, professionals and the general public. Examples of some barriers include; availability of affordable and accessible technology; problems with cost and lack of insurance; lack of access to services in a family's local community; a lack of Listening and Spoken Language Specialist certified professionals; and a lack of public awareness that people who are deaf or hard of hearing can listen and talk.

Financials

Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Board of directors
as of 01/31/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Dr. Susan Lenihan

Fontbonne University

Term: 2023 - 2022

Robert J Bush

Robert Bush & Associates LLC

Ivette Cejas, PhD

University of Miami Ear Institute

Emilio Alonso-Mendoza

Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Howard W Francis, MD

Duke University Medical Center

Sara Grosvenor

Alexander & Mabel Bell Legacy Foundation

Susan Lenihan, PhD

Fontbonne University

Catharine McNally

Phase2 Technology

John F Stanton, Esq.

U.S. Department of Justice

Arlene Stredler Brown, PhD

University of Colorado

Ken Levinson

Kornetsky, Levinson & Company, CPA’s, Incorporated

Jane Madell

Pediatric Audiology Consulting

Jenna Voss

Fontbonne University

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes