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Accessible Emergency Notification and Communication:
State of the Science Conference

Conference Speaker Biographies received

Art Botterell

Marcia Brooks

Jacqueline Du Bois

Kevin Colwell

Jane K. Fernandes

Larry Goldberg

Judy Harkins

Cheryl Heppner

Gregory Hlibok

Michael D. Maddix

Steve Marzolf

Diane Morton

Carl Pramuk

Ken Putkovich

Janina Sajka

Paul J. Singleton

Mike Starling

Daniel W. Sutherland

Gregg C. Vanderheiden

Art Botterell has more than thirty years experience in emergency communications and information systems and mass media. He has served on the national Emergency Response Team of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and with the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services. More recently he has served as a consultant to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and various other public- safety, emergency-management and homeland security agencies in the U.S. and abroad.

Mr. Botterell has taught crisis communications practices and systems at FEMA's Emergency Management Institute and the California Specialized Training Institute, and has written and lectured extensively in the U.S. and abroad. He was the architect of the Common Alerting Protocol (CAP) data standard and a founding Trustee of the Partnership for Public Warning. He is also a Research Associate of the Centre for Policy Research in Science and Technology at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Marcia Brooks is Project Director for the WGBH National Center for Accessible Media, and for WGBH Information Technology. She currently leads the grant project "Access to Emergency Alerts for People with Disabilities", funded by the Department of Commerce's Technology Opportunities Program (TOP). She previously led a grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to develop PBCore, a shared metadata standard for public broadcasting. Ms. Brooks served as a senior strategist at a leading Internet marketing agency, consulting for clients including America Online and Lockheed Martin. She has held various management positions at the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), and led the development of e-mail and intranet services for the nation's public television stations. She has also consulted for National Public Radio (NPR). Ms. Brooks has a B.A. in Mass Communications from the University of Massachusetts.

Jacqueline Du Bois is a Project Engineer at Combustion Science & Engineering, Inc. in Columbia, MD. She has served in the capacity of Project Manager performing and directing work related to developing a better emergency notification system for the deaf for the past 1 1/2 years. Miss Du Bois has bachelors and masters degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Princeton University and the University of California at Berkeley.

Kevin Colwell is Vice President of Engineering at Ultratec, Inc. where he is responsible for technology and product development. Kevin has 26 years of experience in engineering telecommunications technology including text telephones, amplified telephones, captioned telephone products, and captioned telephone service delivery systems. He has been active in finding access to emergency service solutions for text and captioned telephone users. Prior to joining Ultratec Kevin was involved in biomedical research at the University of Wisconsin.

Jane K. Fernandes was appointed Provost of Gallaudet University by President I. King Jordan in April 2000. In this role, she has led the restructuring of the Academic Affair division in order to enhance programs and services to students, promote greater collaboration among units, and streamline administrative decision making. Prior to her appointment, Dr. Fernandes was the Vice President for the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center (formerly Pre-College National Mission Programs) at Gallaudet University beginning in August 1995. She led the Clerc Center in a complete restructuring of the organization in order to better achieve its federally mandated national mission. National outreach efforts at the Clerc Center focus on the development of collaborations between the Clerc Center and other schools and programs to identify educational best practices and disseminate them across the nation.

Larry Goldberg is the Director of Media Access at WGBH and oversees the National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM), The Caption Center, and Descriptive Video Service. Mr. Goldberg has been deeply involved in the national effort to ensure that the design and implementation of the nation's media and information systems address the needs of people with disabilities. He was a pioneer in the development of the emerging captioning system for digital television in the U.S. and served as the founding chair of the Working Group of the Electronic Industries Association, responsible for the design of a captioning system for the country's Advanced Television system. Mr. Goldberg was awarded a patent in 1996 for "Rear WindowTM," the first closed captioning system for movie theaters and theme parks. Mr. Goldberg served on the U.S. Access Board's Electronic and Information Technology Access Advisory Committee that established rules for federal compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. He presents widely at conferences and consults for government and media and technology companies on access issues and is a member of numerous advisory boards. He also currently serves on the Federal Communications Commission's Technological Advisory Council and on the FCC's Consumer Advisory Committee.

Judy Harkins is a professor in Gallaudet University's Department of Communication Studies. She is the founding director of the Technology Access Program, and serves as a principal investigator on two Rehabilitation Engineering Research Centers (RERC) one on Telecommunications Access in cooperation with the Trace Center, University of Wisconsin, and one on Hearing Enhancement, in cooperation with the Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology at Gallaudet. These centers are funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. Current areas of study include wireless telephone accessibility, text conversation migration, video quality issues, and emergency communications access. Dr. Harkins currently serves as an alternate on the FCC's Network Reliability and Interoperability Council, addressing the future of 9-1-1. She teaches a course on communication accessibility to Gallaudet undergraduates.

Cheryl Heppner is the Executive Director of the Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons and Vice Chair of the national Deaf and Hard of Hearing Consumer Advocacy Network coalition. She is the author of the DHHCAN/NVRC national report "Emergency Preparedness and Emergency Communication Access: Lessons Since 9/11 and Recommendations," which has become known as "the deaf and hard of hearing community"s 9/11 Report." She has been honored for her education and advocacy work by the international Association of Late-Deafened Adults, National Association of the Deaf, and Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc.

Gregory Hlibok is an attorney advisor at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)"s Disability Rights Office. His work involves rulemaking proceedings concerning Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) and telecommunications access for people with disabilities. Within a short four years at the FCC, his office witnessed tremendous progress in TRS, from one type of Service, TTY to several types of services, Video Relay Service, IP Relay, and Captioned Telephone. In his early career, Mr. Hlibok served in two capacities, as a private practicing attorney and a financial consultant. Admitted to the NY Bar, Mr. Hlibok holds a BA in Government from Gallaudet University and a JD from Hofstra University School of Law. He is an active member of National Association of the Deaf and Maryland Association of the Deaf. He is seated as the Vice President of the Lexington School for the Deaf Board of Trustees. He is known for his leadership role during the Deaf President Now movement.

Michael D. Maddix is the Product Manager for the Sorenson Video Relay Service (VRS)

Mr. Maddix has been involved with Sorenson VRS since its inception and has been instrumental in helping Sorenson VRS become the leading VRS provider. In his capacity as product manager, he researches consumer needs/ desires for enhancements to the Sorenson VRS offering, ensures compliance with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules and regulations, and prioritizes the engineering team enhancement projects.

He graduated Cum Laude with a B.A. in Business Management from Golden Gate University. His experience spans over 11 years in the technology industry, working with companies, such as Sorenson Communications, Novell, and SwitchPoint Networks.

Steve Marzolf has been active in public safety and 9-1-1 for 18 years. He began his career with Montgomery County, Maryland while attending college. After graduating, he moved to Virginia to take a position with Prince William County where he managed the technical systems and administration of their 9-1-1 Center. While at Prince William, he served two years as a member of the Virginia Wireless E-911 Services Board. After almost 11 years with Prince William County, Steve left in October 2000 to accept the newly created 9-1-1 Coordinator position for the Commonwealth of Virginia. In this position, he supports the Wireless E-911 Services Board and assists in the development and deployment of statewide-enhanced emergency telecommunications systems. In June 2003, Steve was elected to serve and still serves as the President of the National Association of State 9-1-1 Administrators. Though it took a bit longer than he had planned because of his move to Richmond, Steve completed all of his requirements and was awarded a Masters of Public Administration from George Mason University in May 2005.

Diane Morton is a professor in the Department of Counseling at Gallaudet University and Program Director of the School Counseling Program. She is editor of the Journal of the American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association and a past board member of ADARA. As a part of her instructional responsibilities, Dr. Morton teaches crisis intervention in the schools which generally includes situations related to traumatic disasters and how that affects deaf schools and the deaf community at large. Dr. Morton initiated a joint project with the American Red Cross to provide Disaster Mental Health Services to deaf and hard of hearing people in the event of disaster. Hurricane Katrina was the first attempt to utilize this system and much has been learned from this experience.

Carl Pramuk is currently the Dean of Student Affairs at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C. Mr. Pramuk is also a member of the University's Crisis Management Team. He graduated from Gallaudet University with a B.A. in Sociology, and received a M.Ed. from The American University in Student Development in Higher Education.

Ken Putkovich retired from the Federal Government in 2004 after 41 years of service, 15 of which were with the NOAA National Weather Service. He is an engineering graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and the George Washington University and recently earned a Graduate Certificate in Telecommunications and Information Technology from Johns Hopkins University. He is currently working as a consultant in emergency warning dissemination for the Reston Consulting Group at the National Weather Service.

Over the past ten years he implemented Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME) technology on the NOAA Weather Radio (NWR) Network and doubled the size of the NWR Network, which currently is available to 97% of the U.S. population. His wife Betty is late deafened and a founding Director of Deaf and Hard of Hearing in Government (DHHIG). As a result, Ken recognized the value of NWR SAME in making emergency warning accessible to the deaf and hard of hearing and they began an outreach effort at the National Weather Service that has seen a special NWR exhibit at the Self Help for Hard of Hearing People (SHHH) and the Association of Late Deafened Adults (ALDA) National Annual Conventions, the DHHIG National Training Conferences, and DeafWay 2 over the past six years. Ken also prepared a short paper "Emergency Warning for People with Hearing Loss," that is posted in the Special Needs area on the NWR Website at; had an article published in DeafNews, and submitted an article for publication in the Hearing Loss Journal.

Janina Sajka has made major contributions to the development of accessible technology and technology policy, at agencies such as the World Institute on Disability (WID), and the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB). She is now a consultant with Capital Accessibility. She has directed the design and deployment of Vax, Unix, and Windows network environments, and of accessible workstations for staff use, as well as public web sites and telecommunications systems for both WID and AFB. She has participated in the development of key standards and regulatory initiatives including the DAISY/ANSI Digital Talking Book and the U.S. Government"s regulations implementing Section 508. Her current activities include chairing the Free Standards Group Accessibility Workgroup, participation with the World Wide Web Consortium's Web Accessibility Initiative, and the Special Working Group on Accessibility in the ISO/IEC Joint Technical Committee 1 (JTC 1).

Paul J. Singleton is the Program Analyst for the Department of Defense's (DoD) Computer/Electronic Accommodations Program (CAP). CAP supports equal access to information resources and employment lifecycle for individuals with disabilities by providing free assistive technologies. Paul received a B.A. degree in psychology and an M.S. degree in Administration from Gallaudet University.

Mike Starling was recently appointed Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for NPR, and Executive Director of NPR Labs.

In the 1970's Mike founded, built and managed both commercial and noncommercial stations in Virginia and spent the 1980's as chief engineer for NPR Member Station KPBS in San Diego. Mike's undergraduate work was in broadcast journalism and radio-TV at the University of Maryland. Mike is a board member of the North American Broadcasters Association, the Richardson Maritime Museum in Cambridge, and a past Board member of the International Association of Audio Information Services.

He has consulted for radio stations across the United States and Southern Africa and has been a U.S. delegate to the ITU. Mike joined NPR in 1989 as senior engineer, was named director of engineering in 1991 and a vice president in 1998. He is the recipient of the IAAIS's C. Stanley Potter Award for his work on making radio reading services accessible in digital radio and was recently named Radio World's "Engineer of the Year" for his work on digital radio multicasting. Mike is also a lawyer, being a member of the California and DC bars, the only two bars he has been known to pass.

Daniel W. Sutherland has been appointed by President Bush to serve as the Officer for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. This unique position calls for Mr. Sutherland to provide legal and policy advice to the Secretary and the senior leadership of the Department on a full range of civil rights and civil liberties issues. M. Sutherland provides advice on issues such as: the use of race or ethnicity in law enforcement and intelligence activities; detention policies relating to aliens deemed of "special interest" to national security investigations; the need to engage with Arab-American and Muslim-American communities; and, integrating people with disabilities into emergency planning and preparedness. Mr. Sutherland has been a civil rights attorney throughout his legal career, chiefly at the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice where he was a trial attorney for fourteen years. He co-authored Religion in the Workplace, a book describing federal laws governing claims of religious discrimination in employment settings. A speech he recently delivered on the role of Arab-Americans and Muslim-Americans in the war on terror has been published in the journal, Vital Speeches of the Day, and he recently published an article on homeland security and civil liberties in the Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics and Public Policy.

Gregg C. Vanderheiden, Ph.D., is Director of the Trace Research & Development Center, and a professor in the Industrial & Systems Engineering Department (Human Factors Program) and the Biomedical Engineering Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the principal investigator of the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center (RERC) on Universal Interface and Information Technology Access, and co-principal investigator of the RERC on Telecommunications Access. Dr. Vanderheiden and his team have developed techniques used to provide cross-disability access to a wide range of electronic products, including computer operating systems, public information and transaction systems, and cell phones. He is a member of the Network Reliability and Interoperability Council (NRIC), the ANSI/HFES 200 HCI Standards Committee, the ISO/IEC JTC 1 Special Working Group (SWG) on Accessibility, and was recently appointed to the Institute of Medicine's Committee on Disability in America. Dr. Vanderheiden served on both the Access Board's Telecommunications Access Advisory Committee and the Electronic Information Technology Access Advisory Committee, as well as two terms on the FCC's Technological Advisory Council, and has provided expert testimony to the Federal Communications Commission, the Access Board, the General Services Administration, the National Council on Disability, and several White House and congressional committees.

The RERC on Telecommunications Access is a joint project of the Trace Center, University of Wisconsin, and the Technology Access Program, Gallaudet University. The RERC is funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research in the U.S. Department of Education, under grant number H133E040013. However, the opinions and content are those of the grantees and do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education.

This page last updated:October 31, 2005


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