Save The Date photo fo Fairport NY

2022 Hands & Voices Leadership Conference

“Leadership: More Than a State of Mind”

Sunday September 18th, 2022- Tuesday September 20th, 2022

Location: Fairport, NY (30 minutes outside of Rochester,NY)

Hosted In partnership with NTID with support from the Hands & Voices of New York Chapter

A Conference for H&V Chapter Leaders, H&V GBYS and ASTra Programs, Family-Based Organizations, Parents of Children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing, and All interested Professionals

Exciting Presentation Topics!

•  Other Duties as Assigned: Living Out the Non-Profit Life

•  Ready for Action: Feeling Motivated in the Midst of Change

•  Extending a Hand: DHH Plus Inclusive Event Planning

•  And more: Dads Unplugged, Data Story Telling, Siblings Have it Hard,
Understanding Parent-to-Parent Support, Virtual Support is Here to Stay,
and much more...

Exhibitor & Sponsorship Opportunities

Click for information on being an Exhibitor or a Sponsor at the Conference.

Sponsor Information

The Hands & Voices Leadership Conference brings together family leaders from all over the world to develop skills, to receive training on providing leadership to others, and to impact local systems. It is the only conference of its kind devoted exclusively to teaching family members with children who are deaf or hard of hearing how to be effective agents of change.

This conference is an excellent time to network and learn. Please help us build our audience by extending an invitation to a favorite teacher, your EHDI Coordinator, an important school administrator, or families with children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Not involved in Hands & Voices?  No problem!  This is a fantastic conference containing up-to-date information, fascinating conversations and networking, and exploration of content in new and exciting ways. Please join us!

The H&V Leadership Conference

Click here to register. Agenda (Whova link)

Keeping 2022 H&V Leadership Conference Attendees Safe and Healthy

The 2022 H&V Leadership Conference organizers are committed to holding a healthy, safe, and successful in-person conference September 18-20th in Fairport NY. Creating a safe and respectful conference environment is everyone’s responsibility. In deciding to wear a mask or not, please do so based on your personal needs, informed by your personal level of risk and circumstances. Per CDC guidelines, if you have tested positive for COVID-19 within 5 days of the conference – please do not come.  Please respect others around you and their own needs for safety and communication access as well.

We ask that all conference participants do their part in self-screening prior to arriving at the conference and during the conference. If you experience any of the following symptoms, not caused by another known condition- fever over one hundred degrees, cough, shortness of breath, body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, sore throat, or congestion/runny nose- please test for COVID-19

Any updates based on current trends will be placed on the Conference website. If you have any further questions regarding COVID-19 concerns, please contact our conference Director: and visit the CDC website.

Conference Registration

$445 - Full general conference
$325 - Monday only
$325 - Student – full general conference

Early Bird Registration has ended - August 15th, 2022

* Housing is NOT Included in price

CANCELLATION & REFUND POLICY: Written cancellation requests must be sent to and received on, or before, August 15th, 2022. No refunds will be given after August 15th, 2022. Refunds will be issued to those registrants who cancel, less a $75 processing fee per registration. Substitutions are welcome at no charge.

The Leadership Conference runs Sunday through Tuesday, September 18th - 20th, 2022

General Registration includes:

Sunday 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm - (Includes light meal and opening session/activities.)

Monday 7:00 am – 4:30 pm sessions - (Includes breakfast and lunch at conference center and dinner sponsored by NTID on campus. NTID will provide transportation to and from campus and the conference center.)

Tuesday 7:30 am – 12:30 pm sessions - (Includes breakfast)

Sunday Sessions that require pre-registration.
Other fees may apply.

H&V GBYS Coordinator Meeting
(Registration Required)

Sunday, Sept 18th 8:30 am - 11:30 am

Audience: You must be a GBYS Coordinator to register for this session. You must register for this meeting.

An annual meeting and training for Hands & Voices GBYS Program Coordinators. This session will be sure to provide ongoing training and the opportunity for peer-to-peer learning. This is our one-time each year to be together in-person. Come prepared to share your wisdom and be ready to gain new learning from this incredible group of Hands & Voices Leaders!

Facilitators: Lisa Kovacs, H&V Director of Programs

H&V Chapter Leader Meeting
( Registration Required)

Sunday, Sept 18th 8:30 am - 11:30 am

Audience: This session is ONLY for H&V Chapter Directors and/or Board Presidents, whoever is the parent lead for the Chapter. If the Chapter Director and/or President is not available, one representative from the Chapter Board/staff may register. You must register for this required pre-conference meeting. No more than two participants may register per H&V Chapter/effort.  Provisional Chapter leaders are encouraged to register.

Pilot Your Way to Success: Leadership Lessons from Flight Training

Leadership in every context is a lot like flying an airplane: people are depending on us, they are expecting to move from one place to the next, and at a bare minimum the quality of families’ lives is on the line. Do you want to be the leader who tries to do it all alone or do you want to embrace a style where everyone—from a brand-new board/staff member to the long-standing, ever-faithful member—owns the process of advancing the mission safely? Like flying an airplane, leading an organization can be exhilarating, terrifying, and rewarding all at the same time. Don’t want to fly a plane, no problem, but after three hours together you are going to be able to use lessons from flight training to pilot your way to success! This will be a working session with provided tools to take back to your local airport...I mean, your Chapter.

Presenter: Terri Patterson, Director of Chapter Support

Sunday Instructional Sessions
- $99 (Pick only one)

Sunday, September 18th: Offerings are 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm or 1:00 - 5:00 pm

*Select only one of the following three instructional sessions.

Sunday Instructional Session I (1:00 pm - 4:00 pm)

Measuring Up: The Importance of Understanding the Impact of Your Program

We can speak to the importance of parent-to-parent or family-to-family support because we have received support and provided it to others. We know how it felt to make a connection with another parent on this same journey. We have great stories of how these connections were made, what we learned and shared with others along the way. However, in the world where data is queen, how do we show that what we do makes a difference? The ability to show that the support we offer to families provides them with more confidence in their ability to find the resources they need for their child, confidence in connecting with others with shared experience, and confidence in advocating for what they and their child need, and confidence that their child will grow and thrive are at the utmost importance when our organizations are demonstrating impact to stakeholders and seeking funding. This session will provide the foundation of impact evaluations such as logic models, evaluation plans, and survey and focus group development. The session will also help participants in crafting ways to tell their story with both qualitative and quantitative data.

Presenters:  Alyson Ward, Lisa Kovacs and Mandy Jay

Sunday Instructional Session II (1:00 pm - 4:00 pm)

If You Build it, Can They Find It?

Time is precious for families with children newly identified as deaf or hard of hearing, as well as for their providers and systems that support them. Keeping up with recently developed resources and supports can be overwhelming and time consuming for all, so simply knowing that excellent resources exist and finding them easily helps speed up the process and helps us achieve our goals. This interactive session will highlight effective partnerships and communication strategies to ensure that all stakeholders know 1) what is available, 2) where to find it, 3) where to share it and 4) how to use/apply the resources that have been created and compiled for families, programs, and providers. Resources shared will include (among others): Language and Literacy Parent Tip Sheets with a new Family Activity Plan, DHH role model videos, The Virtual Waiting Room, The Family Guide to Audiology & Telehealth, Loss & Found Video (encouraging follow up to screening), A Parent’s Guide to Deaf and Hard of Hearing Early Intervention Recommendations, and other tools that have been created specifically for new families.  

Trainers: Candace Lindow-Davies, Sarah Roof, and Brooke Montgomery

Sunday Instructional Session III (1:00 pm - 5:00 pm)

Train the Trainer

Limit of 20 participants

Hands & Voices Train–the–Trainer “Sharpening our skills to train others”

Hands & Voices Train–the –Trainer “Sharpening our skills to train others” is a session for Hands & Voices Leaders who are in a position of training others. This may include a Hands & Voices board member, GBYS Coordinator, ASTra Advocate, etc. Participants in this session will learn about adult learning theory, how to find balance between lecture and interactivity, how to apply storytelling, managing participants, and overcoming training challenges. If you are a Hands & Voices leader who is interested in presenting and training others, this session is for you!

Presenters: Janet Desgeorges and Sara Kennedy

Sunday FREE Special Sessions
- Registration Required

Sunday, September 18th: Offerings are either 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm & 4:15 pm - 5:15 pm

Special Session I - FREE (1:00 pm – 3:00 pm)

Affirm: Culturally Diverse Leaders Training Initiative

“Remember that no one succeeds alone. Never walk alone in your future paths.” - Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor

H&V is excited to invite you to a new leadership initiative. This interactive session will provide a space for leaders of color who share similar cultural experiences. Participants will learn hands on technical assistance, relevant cultural resources, and strategies for interpersonal leadership skills. Most importantly, attendees will be able share in an affirming environment with peers who are both new and seasoned leaders. We welcome your authentic selves and valuable contributions!

Presenters:   Djenne-amal Morris, Christine Yoshinaga Itano, Rosabel Agbayani, and Latino Council

Special Session II – FREE (4:15 pm - 5:15 pm)

First Time H&V Leadership Conference Attendee Gathering

If this is your first time attending the Hands & Voices Leadership Conference, this is a session you don’t want to miss. This will be a fun and interactive session to welcome you to the Leadership Conference and share with you some tips to make the most out of your conference experience.

Presenters:  Brooke Montgomery and Ana Brooks

Special Session III - FREE (4:15 pm - 5:15 pm)

DHH Guides, Mentors and Role Models: A Round Table Discussion

Join us for a round table discussion as we learn from established H&V Guide, Role Model and Mentor programs. If you are with a chapter or a state/territory that is in the process of looking at another way of supporting families, come and ask questions. The FL3 DHH Guidelines, other resources, and information from recent surveys will be shared. Let's meet and share the wisdom among us.

Presenters: Stephanie Olson, Karen Putz

Tuesday Instructional Sessions
- $99 (Pick only one)

Tuesday, September 20th:  Offerings are either 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm or 2:00 - 6:00 pm

Tuesday Instructional Session I (2:00 pm -5:00 pm)

If You Don’t Ask, The Answer is Always No: Chapter Fundraising

Using a flipped classroom model, attendees will learn about the types of fundraising available for Chapters, including sponsorships for fundraising events, individual giving and memberships, contracts, and grant writing. Come prepared to develop a general grant application and get feedback from the class. Attendees will learn about ethical storytelling in fundraising efforts, and the importance of diversifying fundraising plans for their Chapter. The newly released H&V Fundraising Guide will be shared. Participants should bring or have available:   • Chapter Fundraising Goal • A success story or a lesson learned to share  

Presenters:   Helen Leiser and Sara Kennedy

Tuesday Instructional Session – II (2:00 pm - 6:00 pm)

Mentorship: Be One, Get One, Grow One!

Audience: This 4-hour instructional session is open to all H&V leaders, FBO leaders and professionals. NOTE: This is a pre-requisite for any H&V L2L Leaders interested in becoming an H&V L2L Program Mentor.

Description: Have you ever been mentored by someone and grown as a result and would like to explore becoming a mentor? Or are you currently serving in a mentorship role (either informally or formally) and would like to develop your skills? This session is for you. Mentoring is defined as a process in which an experienced individual helps another person develop his or her goals and skills through a series of time-limited, confidential, one-on-one conversations and other learning activities. There are many kinds of mentoring relationships and models, ranging from informal (think of a time you’ve been helped by someone more experienced without explicitly asking) to formal (an intentional relationship with established goals). Mentoring can occur at all levels or as in mutual mentoring that is viewed as a relationship where both participants provide and receive support in their personal and professional growth. This session will provide the opportunity to find out what mentoring is, and whether it is really for you in context to developing your leadership skills, as well as enhance your skills if you are already mentoring.

For example, have you ever had a great board member enter your organization, only to leave because they weren't sure what they were doing there?  IL Hands & Voices did, so they developed a mentor/mentee program that ALL board members go through. We will walk you through how to develop your own mentor training program, resulting in more engaged individuals within our team, it's easy to follow, and you can easily implement your own.

Presenters: Janet DesGeorges, Andrea Marwah, and Terri Patterson

Tuesday Instructional Session III (2:00 pm - 5:00 pm)

Creating a Multicultural Village

Get the unique diverse perspective of individuals with lived experiences as a Parent of a DHH Child and understand the perspective of a DHH Adult/Professional. Engage and interact to learn strategies to provide services and support that is mindful of family culture and its influence on family dynamics and the decision-making process. This Parent/Professional duo will share real life examples of ways to collaborate, and in equal partnership, work together to support the developmental, educational, and social/emotional needs of DHH children. 

Michelle Hu, Au.D. is Chinese-American who was identified as a child, fit with hearing aids shortly after and now utilizes bilateral cochlear implants. She has been a practicing pediatric audiologist since 2009. She is an Advisory Board Member of California Hands & Voices and the creator of Mama Hu Hears, an online resource aimed to help families and professionals understand the experience of someone growing up as a child who was Hard-of-Hearing.
Rosabel is a Filipino/Chinese-American and a parent of a DHH child. Her son failed his newborn screening but was not diagnosed until the age of 2 ½ years old.  Rosabel volunteers her time for the California Chapter as Board President and works in the medical community as a Clinical Research Analyst and Public Health Professional.

Through this workshop you will:

  • Better understand the importance of parent empowerment, parent to parent support, and parent/professional collaboration when it comes to serving DHH children from Diverse Cultures.
  • Explore the HV/FL3 resource “Advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Accessibility Guidelines”
  • Learn strategies to help understand and relate to the unique needs of parents/caregivers highlighting cultural empathy, family dynamics, and community support.
  • Discuss ways that Parents & Professionals can work together to form an inclusive community.
  • Work with your peers to develop specific and actionable strategies that can be used in your program to better understand, serve, and address the needs of Underserved Populations in your community.

Presenters:  Rosabel Agbayani and Michelle Hu, Au.D. 

Hotel Information


Special Room Rate Available until August 18th—$149.00 per night

The Woodcliff Hotel & Spa

199 Woodcliff Dr, Fairport, NY 14450

(585) 381-4000

To book on-line:

Click here for the reservation page, input dates you are booking, enter 2209HAND in the promotional code box. Applicable room types for the guaranteed rate of $149.00 will show.

Note: The code is only available until August 18th; after August 18th, call hotel to confirm availability.

Travel Information:

Fairport is a village located in the town of Perinton, which is part of Monroe County, New York, United States. Fairport is a suburb 9 miles east of Rochester. It is also known as the "Crown Jewel of the Erie Canal."

The Woodcliff Hotel & Spa is located about 30 minutes from Greater Rochester International Airport.

Air travel:

Greater Rochester International Airport

Ground Transportation to Hotel/Conference Center:

The hotel does not provide shuttle service. Ground transportation options from airport include:

  • Hartley Woodhams, Global Limousine & Black Car Service: Rochester, NY 585-764-7560
  • Quality Transportation, 585-455-8294,
  • Uber/Lyft is available from the airport
  • Car rentals are also available.