FRIDCon 2021 Panelists and Presenters
Caryl Williams Love
Caryl hails from Albuquerque, New Mexico; The Land Of Enchantment and the state question, “Red or Green?” and is married to a Jamaican Chef, so food has to be full of flavor! Caryl has spent the last 30 years as an interpreter for the Deaf and has especially enjoyed performance & travel interpreting as well as mentoring interpreters within the educational field.
Along her own journey of personal development and wellness, Caryl began to understand why she kept repeating the same ‘self-sabotaging behaviors’. She learned researched based techniques to begin sculpting her own brain for a greater sense of well-being and happiness in her life. Resilience is needed now more than ever.
Caryl is doing her ‘happy dance’ when she get to witness the empowerment of others to experience their own mind-boggling breakthroughs to live their best lives.
As a Resilience & Optimal Performance Coach and Certified Havening Practitioner; Caryl offers various resilience focused workshops, facilitate flourishing skills group, and have a limited 1:1 customized coaching practice. Mental Mastery Parts 1 & 2, Emotional Intelligence Parts 1 & 2.
Natalie Williams Love
Natalie Williams Love, an educator, chef, spouse, friend and inspiration of resilient possibilities. In 2015 sustained her 3rd major concussion that hijacked her life as she knew it, requiring her to learn to be vulnerable and adapt to the world in a new way. The tools and techniques based in neuroscience and the research of positive psychology have allowed Natalie to continuously build her resiliency. She loves to share these tools so others can flip their bad moments into moments that are more enjoyable, especially if it ends in laughter. Mental Mastery Parts 1 & 2, Emotional Intelligence Parts 1 & 2
Corey Axelrod, MBA, is a passionate social justice advocate and social entrepreneur. As founder and CEO of 2axend, he helps businesses and organizations deliver user-centric experiences for Deaf and hard of hearing individuals. Strategic Community Allyship: A Model of Success for Interpreters
Brea Cross-Caldwell holds her CI/CT from RID, B.S. in Interpretation from Western Oregon University and is a Certified Life Coach. She has led thousands of interpreters in preventing burnout and finding the passion again in their lives and work through developing habits of self-care. Breana is a native of Portland, Oregon, where she can usually be found writing, reading, or playing near water with her husband and kids. You can find her online at www.brighterfocus.com. Self Care for Interpreters in 2D (VRS/VRI)
Jennifer Francisco is a Deaf professional who has taught in Deaf Education as well as at the collegiate level. Common Misconceptions Parts 1 & 2
Haley Eyster has been a NIC-certified interpreter for 5 years but has been an ASL user for more than 15 years. She is very involved in and is highly respected by the Deaf community. Common Misconceptions Parts 1 & 2
Shawn Norris, RID: Ed: K-12; NIC currently works at Flagler Health+ located in St. Augustine, Florida as the Coordinator of Interpreting Services, ADA and Section 1557 Coordinator, and ASL Interpreter. Due to being raised by Deaf parents, Shawn has close ties to the local Deaf community and serves as an advocate and volunteer. He spends time mentoring new interpreters both at work and as a volunteer. Shawn has been working in the interpreting field for over a decade, serving as an interpreter and manager for several companies and government agencies. Previously, he established a local agency that provided interpreting services in ASL and Spanish, which he later merged with a large national agency that created an office in Jacksonville. In addition to his extensive interpreting experience, Shawn is a long-time public speaker and has worked on several translation projects for a free Bible education work for the Deaf. Shawn’s interests include spending time with his family, reading nonfiction, and football. Healthcare Interpreting: Ethics and Cultural Competency
June Ann LeFors
June Ann LeFors is an American Sign Language/Deaf Studies instructor in the Department of Exceptional, Deaf and Interpreter Education at the University of North Florida and a freelance deaf interpreter and ASL translator in the central and northeast Florida areas. She is an appointed member of the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Advisory Committee for the Florida Department of Health and serves on the Florida School for the Deaf and Blind Board of Trustees. A state-certified K-12 teacher, LeFors previously worked at FSDB for 10 years in several roles, including as an ASL specialist and evaluator, preschool teacher in the Early Learning Center, and as a parent advisor in the Parent Infant Program. She earned her master's degree in deaf education/ deaf studies from Lamar University and a bachelor's in elementary education from Gallaudet University. She and her husband, Eric, a physical education teacher at FSDB, have six daughters - three of whom are Deaf or hard of hearing.. Deaf Professionals Terminology Panel: Moderator
Vyron Kinson lives in Atlanta, GA. Currently, he works full-time with the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD) as a Communication Specialist. He also has various part-time positions: Atlanta Area School for the Deaf as an ASL Teacher, Georgia Parent Infant Network Educational Service as a Deaf Mentor, CATIE Center: Graduation to Certification Project as a Co-Facilitator and ASL Mentor; ASL Diagnostic Service LLC as owner and Deaf Interpreter and he is also a freelance Disc Jockey.
In August 2020, Vyron obtained a Master‘s Degree in Sign Language Education at his alma mater, Gallaudet University in Washington, DC. Vyron graduated from Gallaudet University in2009 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work. Currently, he is in Project CLIMB (Cultivating Legal Interpreters from Minority Backgrounds) which is a multi-year grant that serves to increase the number of interpreters of color and/or from heritage signing backgrounds by creating career paths for specialization in legal interpreting for practitioners from these underrepresented communities.
Besides working and studying, Vyron contributes his time and energy to volunteer with the following: Georgia Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf as a Member at Large Representative; National Alliance of Black Interpreters-Atlanta Chapter as a member; Georgia Stakeholder Advisory Committee as Black Deaf Adult; National Black Deaf Advocates as Southern Regional Representative.
Vyron wishes you all have a good day! Deaf Professionals Terminology Panelist
Rikki Poynter is a disabled (Deaf, chronic pain and fatigue) content creator, streamer, writer, accessibility consultant, and public speaker based in Charlotte, North Carolina. She advocates for better accessibility on YouTube, specifically closed captioning, and has raised awareness about disability. In 2016, she created her campaign #NoMoreCRAPtions to bring the situation to light. In July 2018, she won an award from the National Association of the Deaf for her efforts. She does consultations for businesses, as well as traveling the country to various conferences and schools to speak about accessibility and her journey finding her Deaf identity. Deaf Professionals Terminology Panelist
Raised in the trade, Allen Weaver has always worked in construction and remodeling. His father, also Deaf, helped guide him into the profession with hands-on projects around their home and on job sites. Allen currently contracts for any and every kind of remodeling project, including flooring, drywalls, trims, doors/windows, room additions, fencing, complete renovations, and a variety of projects around the house. Deaf Professionals Terminology Panelist
Jenelle Rouse is a Canadian applied linguistics researcher and body movement dance artist. She current has more than a decade of experience as a classroom teacher at a bilingual school for the Deaf in Ontario. In addition to teaching Ontario Curriculum, she also has taught American Sign Language Curriculum classes for various grades. Jenelle brings a BA with honours (Toronto), BEd - a member of the President's List (Oshawa), and MA (London) into her passion of learning and teaching. Jenelle works at NSCC and UWO as an adjunct professor for first-year candidates. She is a firm believer that having sign language as a base is of utmost importance for every Deaf child. Her research focus is on accessibility to resources that recognize and promote American Sign Language acquisition of young Deaf children. Deaf Professionals Terminology Panelist
Jeremy Quiroga, MFA, CDI continues to share his love of life and his language through workshops and performances nationally. He started out as a medical interpreter by becoming the first staff CDI for the University of Rochester Medical Center. From that point forward medical interpreting because his focus. By combining his CATIE Center training, his ASL mastery skills, and life experience, Jeremy provides interpreter workshops with a phenomenal range of tools for the medical setting. Currently, Jeremy works as a VRI interpreter in a medial setting. Deaf Professionals Terminology Panelist, DI/HI Teaming from the Loop
Hand Waves Birth
Ally Balsley and Brittany Noschese met at the elementary school where their firstborns were classmates. They have three kids each and their birth settings were in the same order: First they delivered in a hospital, next in a birth center, and then at home. Their experiences were life-changing in different ways, with the same end result: They decided to train as doulas. They now co-own a business called Hand Waves Birth Services, which serves the Washington, DC area in a special niche, that of deaf doulas who communicate with their hands and provide hands-on support. They were even each other's doulas for their third births. Deaf Professionals Terminology Panelist
Shawn Vriezen, CDI, QMHI, has been interpreting professionally since 2008. Shawn has been a past board member for several nonprofit organizations, most recently in the role of Vice President of the Minnesota Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (MRID). When not working, Shawn likes to volunteer and advocate for various organizations, such as HEARD. In his free time he can be found with his pug and partner-in-crime, Diesel. DI/HI Teaming from the Loop
Rosemary Bocian, MA, EA, NIC, has been an ASL freelance interpreter for 9 years. In 2017 she co-authored the book "The Interpreter's Quick Guide to Self-Employment" which is currently being used by Interpreter Training Programs nationwide and sold on Amazon as well as at select Barnes & Nobles locations. Following publication, she began teaching workshops across the nation including the 2019 RID National Conference. This inspired her to become an Enrolled Agent and support interpreters directly by providing tax preparation services through her business Quick Guide Tax. Rosemary received both her Bachelor’s in ASL Interpretation and Master’s in Deaf Studies: Culture from Gallaudet University. As a professional tax preparer (EA), author and seasoned speaker, Rosemary presents the complex world of taxes in plain language so that interpreters can thrive in the profession. Tax Mistakes All Interpreters Need to Avoid
Kenneth has been a Nationally Certified sign language interpreter since 2009. His work has taken him throughout Florida, as well as Texas, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. He has worked in a variety of settings but currently works full time as a medical VRI interpreter as well as working as a freelance interpreter.
Kenneth has presented on topics including religious interpreting, educational interpreting, professionalism, use of classifiers, depiction, and expansion in American Sign Language interpreting. He served as both Treasurer and 1st Vice President of the Florida Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf as well as supporting a number of committees. Valuing Our Profession through Volunteerism
Garrett Bose, an ASL professor at San Diego State University (SDSU), is a New Orleans native and grew up with use American Sign Language as he was taught by his parents who learned it right after his birth. Garrett has a passion for making video arts in sign language. This led him to get a BA in Digital Arts and an MA in Sign Language Education. He believes that ASL makes Deaf people human by giving full access to communication. Also, he believes that the classroom should be a place where learning is fun. Kudos to the power of language! Garrett also serves on the board of the San Diego ASL Teachers Association and as well as public relations for other various sign language organizations by producing videos for their sign language communities. ASL Grammar: Theoretical ASL vs Common ASL
Carmelo (pronouns: he/his/him/él) was born and raised in Puerto Rico where he learned sign language at the early age of 11 years old. He went on to study in Special Education/Teacher for the Blind, however, due to financial constraints, shifted his focus on a career as a sign language interpreter. From there Carmelo moved to Florida in 2008 where he began working as a trilingual interpreter – English, American Sign Language & Spanish. As of 2013, he began working with individuals who are Deaf-Blind. Throughout his career, Carmelo has served in many leadership roles, including various RID committees and as a Board Member for Mano a Mano for 11 years, he obtained his national certification from the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf in 2019. He works with LGBTQIA+ communities since he start as a professional interpreter in 1997. Also he is been working with the CHARGE community since 2017, first as an English-Spanish interpreter and then as part of the sign language interpreter team as a Trilingual interpreter. He has continued to work in both communities ever since! Finally he lives in Apopka with his partner in live, John and their dog. Love to throw a good part and love to read. Lenguaje Inclusivo: Retos Existentes entre quienes usan el Español (Inclusive Language: Current Challenges within Spanish Language Users)
JorgeIván López Martínez (pronouns: él/elle, he/they) was born in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico, where they studied a Bachelor Degree in Sociology at University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez Campus and a Masters Degree in Public Administration at Rio Piedras Campus. In 2012, JorgeIván started working with victims and survivors at SIEMPRE VIVAS Project, a support program for gender-based violence, stalking and sexual aggression victims. He served as a General Coordinator for the Social Peace Alliance (ALAPAS), an organization that advocates for the victim’s rights and provide services to this victims, specially murder victims for several years. JorgeIván was also Coordinator for Vaiventura, an initiative that promotes comprehensive mental health and healing practices for LGBTQIA+ people and their allies in PR and its diaspora. Currently, JorgeIván supervises Rashna Yoga, a yoga portal and community that conjures embodiments, self comisión and belongings; and is a consultant to several projects and organizations regarding organizational development, and topics of gender and sexual diversity. Finally, they love yoga (in which is an instructor), meditation, being a conscientious listener and going out with friends. Lenguaje Inclusivo: Retos Existentes entre quienes usan el Español (Inclusive Language: Current Challenges within Spanish Language Users)