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About Us


The mission of DVIDB is to improve the lives of children, students, and/or consumers with visual impairments and/or deafblindness. Specifically, we aim to advance the education of individuals with visual impairments and deafblindness by: 

  • Promoting a professional community of educators in the fields of visual impairments and deafblindness. This includes defining and promoting the profession (i.e., writing position papers and defining professional standards) as well as recruiting and retaining professionals;
  • Encouraging research about, and disseminating information related to, interventions for individuals with visual impairments or deafblindness;
  • Fostering collaboration among special educators, general educators, vision/hearing professionals, and families; and
  • Advocating for the rights of individuals with visual impairments and deafblindness.

DVIDB Leadership

View DVIDB's executive board, directors, and committee chairs.

Constitution and Bylaws

Review the most current constitution and bylaws of the Division on Visual Impairment and Deafblindness (DVIDB).

History of the Division on Visual Impairments

In 1968 at the request of the membership, Mrs. Dorothy Bryan prepared a history of the first twenty years of what is now the Division on Visual Impairments and Deafblindness (DVI Newsletter, Vol. 22, No. 2, pp. 8-9). That history relates that the first formal meeting of persons interested in education of partially seeing children took place during the 1948 CEC Convention in Des Moines, Iowa. The small group of teachers that convened for luncheon and discussion that year met informally at each CEC convention for the next several years to focus attention on improving services for partially seeing children. By the 1957 Convention the group, then known as the Council for the Education of the Partially Seeing, had requested and received recognition by CEC Headquarters as an official CEC unity with a membership of 123.

By 1967 the interests of the Council members had expanded to include concerns for the education of blind children, and the name of the organization was officially changed to the Division for Visually Handicapped: Partially Seeing and Blind. Membership had reached 378.

Since that time interests have broadened and encompass curriculum development, parent counseling, development and selection of appropriate materials, research needs, teacher preparation, career education and vocational preparation of infants, children and youths with Visual Impairments.

In 1980 the Division membership reached over 1,000 with members coming from day and residential public and private school programs, state departments of education, teacher education, and related fields. Division activity currently shows concern for federal, state, and local issues and policies related to education of infants, children and youths with Visual Impairments. The Division continues to grow and diversify in its activity and membership and is now known as The Division on Visual Impairments and Deafblindness.


Former DVI(DB) Presidents

Past records indicate that the following persons have served as DVI(DB) Presidents since 1954:

Term Name State/Province
1954 to 1956 Wilma Schneider Illinois
1956 to 1957 Ruth Hawkins Pennsylvania
1957 to 1958 Hazeldene Ray Missouri
1958 to 1959 Rosalie Calone California
1959 to 1962 Frederica Bertram California
1962 to 1964 Mildred Moon Indiana
1964 to 1965 Joyce Bromley Tennessee
1965 to 1967 Madge Leslie Oregon
1967 to 1968 Randall Harley Tennessee
1968 to 1969 Clara Robertson Kansas
1969 to 1970 Lou Alonso Michigan
1970 to 1971 Ralph Peabody Peabody
1971 to 1972 Charles Woodcock Oregon
1972 to 1973 Phil Hatlen California
1973 to 1974 Carol Halliday Switzerland
1974 to 1975 Gloria Calovini Illinois
1975 to 1977 Richard Umsted Ohio
1977 to 1978 Marjorie Ward Pennsylvania
1978 to 1979 Margaret Niederer Illinois
1979 to 1980 Phil Vedovatti Illinois
1980 to 1981 Nancy Bryant Michigan
1981 to 1982 Rosanne Silberman New York
1983 to 1984 Myrna Olson North Dakota
1984 to 1985 Evelyn Rex Illinois
1985 to 1986 Anne Corn Texas
1986 to 1987 Vince McVeigh Pennsylvania
1987 to 1988 Virginia Sowell Texas
1988 to 1989 Jonathan MacIntyre Pennsylvania
1989 to 1990 Rita Livingston Texas
1990 to 1991 Kay Ferrell New York
1991 to 1993 Alan Koenig Texas
1993 to 1995 Jane Erin Texas / Arizona
1995 to 1997 Roseanna Davidson Texas
1997 to 1999 Donna McNear Minnesota
1999 to 2001 Stuart Wittenstein California
2001 to 2003 Mary Jean Sanspree Alabama
2003 to 2005 David Ross Pennsylvania
2005 to 2007 Ellyn Ross Pennsylvania
2007 to 2009 Phyllis T. Simmons Maryland
2009 to 2011 Loana Mason New Mexico
2011 to 2013 Derrick Smith Alabama
2013 to 2015 Diane Pevsner Alabama
2015 to 2017 Tiffany Wild Ohio
2017 to 2019 Amy Parker Oregon
2019 to 2021 Nicole Johnson-Mest Pennsylvania


Last Updated:  14 November, 2022

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