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October 4, 2006

Press Release as Prepared by the Gallaudet University Alumni Association

From: GUAA - Fremont, CA - Oct 4, 2006

Gallaudet University Alumni Association Chapter Hosts Tent City Rally in Support of Faculty, Staff, Students, and Alumni (FSSA)’s Effort to Seek for Social Justice including Removing Jane Fernandes, Gallaudet University’s 9th President.

Fremont, CA – On Wednesday, October 4, 2006 the deaf community of Bay Area will be gathering at the soccer field by Walnut Avenue and Overracker Avenue near Mission Blvd at 4:00 pm to protest the Gallaudet University’s selection of Jane Fernandes, the 9th president.

The Tent City, amply named after last spring when the students of Gallaudet University protested loudly against the Board of Trustees’ decision to select Jane Fernandes and their unresponsiveness to the division that is happening on the campus. During the period of unrest at Gallaudet University, the students would pitch the tents across the university campus to protest.

Among the complaints the students and faculty are bringing up are: Jane Fernandes do not exhibit the quality as a solid leader to bring the deaf community into the next level. The group also felt that the search process was flawed and removed some more qualified candidates. One of them ended up as the Executive Director of National Center on the Deafness at California State University at Northridge.

The Tent City at California School for the Deaf will have several speakers such as Bridgetta Bourne-Firl, a former Deaf President Now leader who was part of the group protesting Elizabeth Zinser, a hearing person, selection as the Gallaudet University president back in 1988. Tom Holcomb, a professor at Ohlone College and Gallaudet University alumni and a parent of two current Gallaudet students will be speaking to the group at local Tent City in Fremont at 4 pm on Wednesday, October 4, 2006.

The deaf community of Bay Area is hoping to drum up support for the Gallaudet University faculty and students in order to re-open the search process and select a more qualified candidate to lead Gallaudet University after I. King Jordan’s retirement upcoming this winter.

Rory Osbrink at

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