IM this article to a friend!

April 3, 2006

AG Bell Announces 2006 Convention Keynote Speakers: Founder and Survivor Winner Focus on Children

From: AG Bell - Apr 3, 2006

Clip Image002-1

AG Bell Announces 2006 Convention Keynote Speakers Founder and Survivor Winner Focus on Children

Washington, D.C., April 3, 2006 – The Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (AG Bell) welcomes founder Dr. Neil Izenberg and Survivor winner Tom Westman as the keynote speakers for the 2006 Convention in Pittsburgh, Pa. Dr. Neil Izenberg will address how he turned his passion for providing family-friendly health information into the award-winning during the Opening General Session on Saturday, June 24. Survivor winner and AG Bell parent Tom Westman will take the stage at the AG Bell Awards Banquet on Monday, June 26, to share how he is helping families get the facts that children with hearing loss can learn to listen and talk.

“AG Bell believes that every parent of a child with hearing loss should know that their child can learn to listen and talk and have the opportunity to make that dream a reality,” said K. Todd Houston, Ph.D., Executive Director/CEO of AG Bell. “Both of this year’s keynote speakers have dedicated themselves to creating similar opportunities for children and families – Dr. Izenberg gives families critical health information through and Tom Westman has turned his Survivor fame into an opportunity to inspire others with his family’s story about his daughter’s hearing loss.”

Neil Izenberg, M.D., is founder and chief executive of The Nemours Center for Children’s Health Media – creators of the web site , the web’s #1 site focusing on the emotional and physical health of children. Dr. Izenberg has had a career-long focus developing innovative, family-friendly media, including print, online, video and board games to help families better understand a wide range of issues concerning children. Dr. Izenberg’s organization has produced more than 25 nationally distributed, award-winning programs for both children and parents on a variety of health issues, and KidsHealth received the 2005 Webby Award as Best Family/Parenting website. Dr. Izenberg is a board-certified pediatrician at the Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del., and professor of pediatrics at Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, Pa.

Westman, the father of three, was prodded into applying for the CBS reality series Survivor, by his wife Bernadette. She was confident that he would be able to outwit, outlast and outplay 20 other contestants on the Pacific island nation of Palau. Since his Survivor win, Westman has kept busy as the new face of the Caribbean Joe casual lifestyle collection and as a spokesperson for several charitable causes, including work with AG Bell. His passion stems from his daughter, Meghan, who lost her hearing to meningitis as an infant. Meghan received a cochlear implant at age 2, and is now excelling in a mainstream school setting. Westman and his wife believe that, if they can take this fleeting moment of fame and use it to highlight the miracle that the cochlear implant has been to their family, it will all be time well spent.

The Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is a lifelong resource, support network, and advocate for listening, learning, talking and living independently with hearing loss. Through publications, advocacy, training, scholarships and financial aid, AG Bell promotes the use of spoken language and hearing technology. Headquartered in Washington, DC with chapters located in the United States and Canada and a network of international affiliates, AG Bell's global presence provides its members and the public with the support they need – close to home. With over a century of service, AG Bell supports its mission: Advocating Independence through Listening and Talking!


Jessica Ripper
Senior Director of Marketing and Communications
Alexander Graham Bell Association
for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
3417 Volta Place, NW
Washington, DC 20007
Office: (202) 337-5220
Direct Dial: (202) 204-4680

Plan to attend the AG Bell 2006 Convention "Building Bridges, Connecting Voices" in Pittsburgh, Pa., June 23-27, 2006. Register online at