August Minute Message From The Movement

Fellow Federationist:

I have sad news.  We recently lost two members of our Federation family. 

On Monday, August 10, Shirley Morris lost her long, arduous battle with cancer.  Shirley was battling cancer for decades.  Shirley’s email address was sureshirley.  It is an apt description of her life.  If she gave you her word, she always kept it.  She exemplified loyalty, dedication and was a diligent worker in our movement.  For many years Shirley ran registration at both the National and Maryland Conventions.  I know more about her excellent work helping the NFB of Maryland. Shirley was a tremendous asset in making the Maryland Convention run smoothly.  She handled everything from making room reservations to making sure that the banquet exchange and seating went smoothly.  Shirley approached every task with graciousness and always maintained a good sense of humor. Shirley enthusiastically assisted her husband, Don, in his many activities, especially working with blind vendors in the Randolph-Sheppard program. Shirley also assisted Don in his many tasks as chairman of the board of trustees for Blind Industries and Services of Maryland. We will miss her kindness and fun-loving spirit. There will be a memorial service for Shirley in Maryland sometime in September. We will announce details when we have them.

Burnell Brown died suddenly sometime during the weekend of July 24-26. Burnell was active in both the D.C. and Maryland affiliates. Her death was a shock because she attended the July Meeting of the Sligo Creek Chapter and had a great time at our 75th National Convention. Over the years, Burnell served as both president and treasurer of the Deaf Blind division of NFB. She was devoted to helping all blind people especially those who also suffered hearing loss. We will miss her kindness and dedication.  

Congratulations to Us. We had three very successful BELL programs and were able to make a difference in the lives of 24 children. Many thanks to Melissa Riccobono, our BELL coordinator, and to the many volunteers who served in Baltimore, Glenn Dale, and Salisbury. See our upcoming newsletter for more details about these exciting programs.

Many thanks to Steve Brand, his committee, and everyone who attended our annual Crab Feast. Thanks to our efforts, we will be able to continue to award college scholarships to students and stipends so that younger students can attend summer training programs in the skills of blindness. We are looking forward to our next fundraiser for these programs.

Join us on October 3rd for dinner and our bid for opportunity auction. Time: 6:30-9:30 p.m. Location: College Park Knights of Columbus, 9450 Cherry Hill Road, College Park 20740. Cost: $30. For more information, go to or contact Debbie Brown at 301-881-1892.

The convention is coming. Save the weekend of November 13th, 14th, and 15th. We are going to the Carousel hotel in Ocean City. Make your reservations today by calling 410-524-1000. The cost of the hotel rooms are as follows: Standard Room - $83 per night + taxes, Ocean Front Room - $120 per night + taxes, and 2 Bedroom condo - $175 per night + taxes. Remember, taxes are 10.5% of the cost. Pre-registration information will be available soon. Our national representative will be the newly elected treasurer of the National Federation of the Blind, Jeannie Massay from Oklahoma. Come help us celebrate the past and plan for the future.

Action needed. Please contact the White House to let them know it is time to issue regulations making the internet a public accommodation that is applicable to the Americans with Disabilities Act. Emails and phone calls should be directed to Maria Town, the disability liaison at the White House. The email for the disability office is, and the phone number is (202) 456-1212. For further information, read "Time for the White House to Upload the Internet Regs," at

Calling all those interested in issues faced by people with both hearing loss and blindness. NFBMD will host a special seminar to exchange information and ideas on Saturday, September 26th from 10 am-1 pm at the Jernigan Institute, 200 East Wells Street. All are welcome to attend. For further information, email Janice Toothman at

Save the date. On Wednesday, September 30th at 7 pm, the National Federation of the Blind will host the One Book One Maryland program sponsored by the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, the Baltimore Rowing Club, and the Maryland Humanities Council. Come to 200 East Wells Street to meet and listen to a presentation by Daniel Brown. Mr. Brown is the author of The boys in the boat: nine Americans and their epic quest for gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. You can download the book from BARD or request it from LBPH. The book number is DB77138. Don’t miss this interesting presentation. Read below for important dates.

August 20. 9am – 3pm.  Possibilities Fair to be held at BISM, 3345 Washington Blvd., Baltimore, MD 21227.  Registration of $20 includes lunch.  Call 410-737-2600.

August 22. Back to school picnic sponsored by MDPOBC. For more information email Melissa Riccobono at

August 29. NFBMD Board of Directors Meeting in Salisbury. Everyone is invited to attend.

September 26. NFBMD seminar for blind people who also have hearing loss.

September 30. Daniel Brown, author of The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, speaks at the Jernigan Institute.

October 3.  Dinner and Bid for Opportunity Auction at the Knights of Columbus, College Park. For the benefit of the John T. McCraw Scholarship and Youth Empowerment Stipend programs.

October 15. White Cane Safety Day.

November 13-15.  NFBMD Annual State Convention, to be held in Ocean City, MD.

Sharon Maneki, President

National Federation of the Blind of Maryland