New Voices works to improve educational opportunities for children with severe communication and mobility disabilities.
Ashley Robinson is a Speech Language Pathologist working as an Augmentative Alternative Communication Specialist in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools since 2011. She received her Masters of Science from UNC-Chapel Hill.
Ashley’s motto is one that is shared by New Voices, “Everyone Deserves a Voice.” Ashley’s colleagues appreciate her dynamic approach for communication system implementation in the classroom. Ashley inspires others to believe in their students and provides the support necessary for them to successfully implement communication systems for their students.
Three peers, Elizabeth Burns, Kara VanHooser, and Ruth Morgan, a previous Lara Jane Parker recipient, nominated Ashley for the award.
Laura Lewis has over 25 years experience as a Speech Language Pathologist working extensively with children with communication disabilities. She received her Masters of Science degree in Speech / Language Pathology from East Carolina University.
Currently, Laura is an Assistive Technology Specialist with the Wake County Public School System. She is also a 2010 Kenan Fellow sponsored by the NC Council on Developmental Disabilities and New Voices Foundation.
One of Laura’s many strengths is recognizing the importance of parents in the development of communication systems for her students. Two parents nominated her: one with whom she worked over 20 years ago and one with whom she is currently working. These nominations illustrate Laura’s tireless commitment to children struggling to be heard.
The nominating parents were Laura Fischler and Dawn Selby.
Betsy Cordle is an Assistive Technology Specialist in Wake County Public Schools since 2004. Betsy’s background includes a Masters of Education in Special Education from UNC-Chapel Hill, which provides a unique blend of teacher and technology.
Several classroom teachers nominated Betsy because of her ability to provide practical ideas to improve communication systems in the classroom. Betsy was an instrumental part of a team that trained over 25 preschool through high school teachers of New Voices’ children.
A grateful parent, whose son is becoming a communicator, recommended Betsy for this award. Kristin Burnette, Michele Hill, Suzanne Tomalski, and Amanda Hummel, a previous Lara Jane Parker recipient, nominated Betsy.
Alecia Osisek is a primary system level teacher at Ephesus Elementary school in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City School system. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education and Graduate Certification in Special Education from Eastern University in St. Davids, Pennsylvania.
Alecia has a passion for teaching, a gift for creating a communication rich classroom, and has successfully transitioned a student into a general education setting. Alecia’s classroom serves as a model in her district established to improve the processes used by Assistive Technology/Augmentative Alternative Communication teams.
She was nominated by one of our other award recipients this year, Ashley Robinson.
“Speechless” is centered on a 16-year-old named JJ DiMeo who has cerebral palsy, can’t speak and uses an alternative-communication device to express himself. He’s the eldest of three children, played by Micah Fowler, who himself has cerebral palsy, a casting decision that alone makes this series stand out. The show’s creator, Scott Silveri, has personal experience with a nonverbal brother which brings authenticity to the show.
Let us know what you think of the show by commenting on our Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/newvoicesnc
The You Tube trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4u55WK6AbaM
Sign up to volunteer for the Santa’s Little Hackers event – adapt toys to be used by people of limited physical abilities. These toys allow them to play, interact, find joy and learn.
They need people who can sew, solder, test, box/unbox and volunteer in other ways. The link to learn all about the event and sign up is
New Voices provides scholarships to school professionals so that they can attend training to improve their skills in working with children with significant disabilities. Seven scholarships awarded thus far in 2016!
We receive grant applications on a rolling basis. For further information or to initiate the process, please contact us – email Pat@NewVoicesNC.org or call 919-659-5961.
New Voices recently hosted Dr. Rupal Patel to learn about Voice ID. To learn more about this listen to her TED Talk http://www.ted.com/talks/rupal_patel_synthetic_voices_as_unique_as_fingerprints
Or visit website https://www.vocalid.co/
Your support improves the lives of children who face challenges in speaking and walking.
Did you know – if you shop online at Amazon, they will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible purchases to the charitable organization selected by you (we hope you will choose New Voices Foundation!).
All you do is use http://smile.amazon.com/ instead of the regular Amazon site, choose New Voices Foundation, then shop as usual – same products and prices.
If you haven’t seen Certain Proof yet but would like to go to the Certain Proof website http://www.certainproof.com for additional information.
Curious about what the Certain Proof kids are up to today? http://www.newvoicesnc.org/updates-on-the-certain-proof-kids/