2012 High School Essay Contest Results

Summer is finally here! Congratulations to those who have just graduated. You all will be missed!

The high school essay contest committee deliberately looked through numerous entries from students across the country. We have narrowed down to two wonderful entries! The topic is "I am given one opportunity to travel using a time machine, I would go to the time of..." Many have shown a great ability to sum up to just 200-300 words expressing their viewpoint in history.

The winner of the contest is Alissa Poston, a freshman at University High School in California. 

If I was given one opportunity to travel using a time machine, the time I would choose to travel to would be the early 1700s. This was the time when the foundation for the United States of America was being created. This was both a time of pride, and a time of internal struggles to truly become an unprejudiced nation, as well as human being. The constant constitutional debates forces one to analyze their own morals, and to become a better, unprejudiced person, or in some cases, hypocritically inflict on their own people the same oppression as their former government had once done to them.

I would desire to hear the debates, and hear the final cheer when the constitution was written- Americas' people solemnly swearing to abide by it, and fight for human rights. It would be a time of great tension, but hope and faith in the future-hope that America would one day be the strongest country in the world- a leader in trade and agriculture and in military- but most importantly- a positive demonstaration of democracy, a demonstration that all countries would soon follow. I would hope that we, as Americans, Would be the role model for the pure-hearted. We would give everyone equal rights and a fair trial- and an especially fair shot at life. I would hope that each of the delegates to the constitution convention would have faith in our great nation, and that their children would live to see it prosper into what it is today.

And the honorary mention goes to Nathaniel Olson who is a sophomore, also at University High School.

If you know them, extend your warm congratulations!

PKZ's 2011 Woman of the Year: Tami Hossler

The National Organization of the Phi Kappa Zeta Sorority, Inc., is proud to announce Tami Hossler as their 2011 Woman of the Year. Tami is an untiring and fierce advocate for the rights of Deaf children to a bilingual education. Tami, a hearing mother, became involved in deaf education when it was discovered her daughter, Erica, was deaf. At that time they lived in Indiana, and thanks to a knowledgeable audiologist, Tami was referred to the Indiana School for the Deaf (ISD) where she witnessed her daughter blossom in the school’s bilingual program where both American Sign Language and English were used in the classroom.

From there Tami became an advocate and lobbyist not only for her daughter, but for all deaf children. She has been actively involved in the rights and needs of deaf children at ISD, and has worked for deaf children all over the country—from Florida to Alaska to California to Washington DC.

Tami is on the Board of the Deaf Bilingual Coalition (DBC) and is the Outreach Coordinator for DBC; she is on the Board of the American Society for Deaf Children (ASDC), and Editor of the ASDC newsletter, The Endeavor; she is on the Education Committee for the Florida Association of the Deaf, which is now heavily involved in passing a Bill of Rights for Deaf Children; and she is a member of the coalition for the Indiana School for the Deaf.

She has presented at an unknown number of conferences, among them the National Association of the Deaf Conference, 2010; a presentation to the Indiana Governor’s Office, 2011; Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Conferences in 2011 and 2009; and at conferences in California, Florida, Montana, and Georgia.

Tami is a role model for many hearing parents with deaf children. She spends hours on the phone with parents; she has also attended IEP meetings with other parents to make sure that ASL is included as the language of instruction. Tami was one of the leaders in the Parents United for Gallaudet, Unity for Gallaudet, during the 2006 protest.

Tami lives in Florida with her husband Jeff, who is very supportive of her activities. Her daughter, Erica, is a PKZ member. Tami has another daughter and just became a grandmother.

Dr. Beth Benedict talks about Tami Hossler's outstanding contributions in ASL.

Holiday Afternoon Tea Time & NPKZ Woman of the Year

To Women of the Metro Washington, DC Community, you are warmly invited to attend the Holiday Afternoon Tea Time and NPKZ Woman of the Year at Peikoff Alumni House, Gallaudet University on Saturday, December 10, 2011 from 11:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M.

There will be a short program, where the NPKZ Woman of the Year will also be announced, with tea refreshments. Appropriate attire is encouraged.

All attendees will be eligible for a drawing for a refund of the admission cost. You must be present at the tea party to receive the refund.

Ticket is $25.00 per person. Mail your check payable to NPKZ, Inc. to:

Peggy McCoy (pevmccoy@aol.com) 4001 Old Columbia Pike Ellicott City, MD 21043

You may also purchase the tickets from Janet Weinstock at janetweinstock13@gmail.com and Blair Rasmus at blair.rasmus@gallaudet.edu

The proceeds will be donated to the National Deaf People of Color Conference. This event is sponsored by the National Organization of the Phi Kappa Zeta Sorority, Inc.


For further information, print or download the flyer (PDF)

2011 Phi Kappa Zeta Pledges

The Phi Kappa Zeta Sorority is proud to announce our new selection of Pledges this year:

Mimi Rose Adams, Ohio  /  Amy Marie Bachtel, Ohio  /  Lauren Sonnenstrahl Benedict, Maryland  /  Ashley Elizabeth Bergeron, Ontario, Canada  /  Valerie Flora Farr, California  /  Jessica Michelle Fein, California  /  Emily Lynn Fisher, Ontario, Canada  /  Chanel Mandeville Gleicher, Maryland  /  Allison Cindy Erica Heron, Connecticut  /  Corinna Sara Hill, Maryland Krystal Lee Johnson, Texas  /  Stephanie Cora Johnston, Massachusetts  /  Monica Anna Jacinta Keller, California  /  Noel Elizabeth King, Arkansas  /  Samantha Jean Krieger, Indiana  /  Betsie Marie Kulikov, Louisiana  /  Tandy Samara Lewis, Maryland  /  Miranda Marisa Paddon Medugno, California  /  Michelle Joy Morris, Florida  /  Tiffany Ann Putt, Pennsylvania  /  Shea Ammons Rasmus, California  /  Laurie Bessie Rodriguez, Texas  /  Samantha Elaine Ruhland, Minnesota  /  Pakuna Nala Spady, Maryland  /  Ann Summerlin Whited, Indiana

Sister Rosalyn Gannon and Her Husband Receive WFD Honors

Rosalyn and Jack Gannon were recipients of the prestigious International Solidarity Merit Award, First Class, given by the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD), at the WFD Congress on July 24th.  This award was in recognition of their work to preserve the history of Deaf people around the world. Jack is the author of 3 books, the most recent: World Federation of the Deaf: A History debuts this month at the WFD Congress in Durban, South Africa.  Throughout all of his writing endeavors his wife Rosalyn has been by his side as his partner and behind the scenes assistant.  They make a formidable pair, a dynamic duo, whose commitment and perseverance enlighten the world about the history and accomplishments of Deaf people globally.

Summarized from the National Association of the Deaf at http://bit.ly/qGx2RL. Photo courtesy of Migalida Harney.

Sisters Malzkuhn and Jimenez Selected as Delegates for 2011 WFDYS

Sisters Bregitt Jimenez and Megan Malzkuhn were honored to be selected as delegates to represent Deaf Youth in USA, along with two other Americans, at Durban, South Africa for World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) Youth Section’s 5th Youth Camp.

WFD has been a frontrunner in international human rights and Youth Section was formed to encourage leadership and empowerment in international Deaf youth (ages 18-30).

Sisters Bregitt and Megan will be in Durban for a total of two and half weeks, starting with Youth Camp on July 6th and attend the Youth General Assembly to vote on goals, and continue the experience with WFD’s World Congress, from July 18 to 25.

Sister Fanny Corderoy du Tiers as Keynote Speaker at Business Convention & Expo of the Deaf

Sister Fanny Yeh Corderoy du Tiers will be the International Keynote Speaker at the Business Convention and Expo of the Deaf in Reston, Virginia, June 8-12, 2011. She will discuss her experiences as a deaf Chinese businesswoman in Europe, and particularly in France. Discrimination continues to be an issue for business people with disabilities, but even greater for one who is deaf and female. Fanny will share strategies for overcoming barriers, how to pursue business goals, and how to apply those strategies to overcoming barriers.

Sister Katherine Jankowski Writes About Sister Agatha Tiegel Hanson

Sister Katherine Anne Jankowski is embarking on an exciting project – a children's book about Agatha Tiegel Hanson. Written for a middle school audience, the book will cover the life of Sister Agatha, with a special focus her college years and what she endured as a woman in a men‘s college.

Sister Jankowski is currently researching Sister Agatha through written material and anecdotal information shared by Sisters who knew her and who were influenced by her.

Research on Deaf Children in Kenya by Sister Megan Youngs

Research shows United Nations-sponsored instruction for deaf children in Kenya provides essential skills, new hope for the future. Sister Megan Youngs' groundbreaking research speaks volumes about the plight of deaf children living in some of the harshest conditions imaginable. For more than a month last year, the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto graduate student lived in Kenya’s overcrowded Dadaab refugee camp to conduct interviews and gather information for her recently completed master’s thesis.

Watch Sister Youngs' research presentation: https://media.library.utoronto.ca/play.php?UZlSDRpwjVXr&id=3408

Read the article by John Schofield: http://www.oise.utoronto.ca/oise/About_OISE/news_article_110307.html

Two Sisters to Receive 2011 GUAA/LCCF Awards on April 9th

Two PKZ Sisters will receive awards from the Gallaudet University Alumni Association (GUAA) and Laurent Clerc Cultural Fund (LCCF) at Peikoff Alumni House, Gallaudet University on April 9, 2011, during the 42nd Annual Charter Day.

Sister Franna Lou Corley Camenisch (L) will receive the GUAA Pauline "Polly" Peikoff “Service to Others” Award and Sister Melissa Socorro Draganac-Hawk (R) will receive the GUAA Outstanding Young Alumnus Award.

Congratulations to both of you!

PKZ Sisters Involved in 2011 Academic Bowl

National Organization of the Phi Kappa Zeta Sorority would like to recognize those Sisters who were actively involved with the 2011 Academic Bowl (http://ab.gallaudet.edu) as dedicated volunteers!

Nationals Committee: Sherry Bravin Duhon - AB, Coordinator Rachel M Benedict - AB, Assistant Deborah Elliott DeStefano - Parent Booth, Renca Dunn - Evening Programs, Wendy Wiatrowski - Meals, Linda Stamper - Program Book, Beverly Buchanan - Hotel

Volunteers: Leticia Arellano, Clara Baldwin, Beth Sonnenstrahl Benedict, Danielle Berrigan, MJ Bienvenu, Yvonne Olsen Catt, Norma Halischak Clapp, Donna DeVito, Janna DiBiase, Abby Strauss Drake, Jean Drake, Stephanie Durand, Joy Fraychineaud, Alice Frick, Donna Guardino, Leila Hanaumi, Susan Roberts Hanrahan, Amy Hile, Beth Hortie, Lisa Jacobs, Justine Jeter, Stephanie Johnston, Isabella Kogan, Laurie Liefermann Ballinger, Mary Keane, Delia Lozano-Martinez, Holly MacFadden, Olivia Malcolm, Alyce Slater Reynolds, Wanda Riddle, Elsie Ritchie, Carlisle Robinson, Thelma Gonzalez Schroeder, Aimee Sever, Karen Sheffer, Amy Siebert, Agnes Sutcliffe, Nanette Virnig, Allison Weiner, Janet Rothenberg Weinstock, Jean Zisman Marcia Zisman

Coaches: Yvonne Davis-Talley, Edna Johnston, Maureen Mazza, Dana Sipek, Grace Walker

Additionally, the Sorority provided activities and gave out 500 free secret cookies to teams, coaches and participants. Thank you for representing PKZ well as always!

Omega Chapter Hosts Murder Mystery Play on April 8th

PAYMENT Checks and money orders can be made payable to PKZ Omega Chapter. Please do NOT send cash as that is illegal! Include your e-mail address (or some form of contact) so we can promptly let you know that we have received your payment.

Please mail all checks before April 1, 2011 to:

Melinda Harrison c/o PKZ Omega Chapter PO Box 32 Fremont, CA 94537-0032

We will continue to accept checks, as well as cash, at the door.

DINING The lovely Pleasanton downtown has many wonderful dining establishments within walking distance of Veterans Memorial Hall. We suggest you check out Yelp's page: http://www.yelp.com/search?find_desc=Restaurants+Downtown&find_loc=Pleasanton%2C+CA.

PARKING Parking space around the Veterans Memorial Hall is limited. Please be green and make carpool arrangements!

The physical address of the building is: 301 Main Street Pleasanton, CA 94566 Closest freeway exit is I-680, Bernal Avenue.

ACCESSIBILITY This performance will be done in American Sign Language. No voice interpreters will be available. If you are Deaf-Blind and in need of a SSP, please contact us know; we will make arrangements for you. The Veterans Memorial Hall is wheelchair-accessible.

CONTACT Any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach us at bayareaowls@gmail.com. Thank you and we look forward to seeing you there!

Sister Phyllis Frelich, an acclaimed actress, will be on CSI Thursday, February 3

Sister Phyllis Frelich, a Tony Award-winning actress, has landed this key role as Mrs. Betty Grissom on CSI. Be sure to tune in to "The Two Mrs. Grissoms," the title of the episode, on Thursday, February 3 on CBS! This episode will also feature other deaf actors Marlee Matlin, Tyrone Giordano, Anthony Natale, to name a few.

A preview trailer can be found at http://ow.ly/3PkUZ

Sister Tiffany Sue Williams Leads ADWAS After Sister Marilyn Jean Smith

Sister Tiffany Sue Williams has recently been selected as the new Executive Director of the Abused Deaf Women's Advocacy Services (ADWAS), replacing the outgoing executive director Sister Marilyn Jean Smith who founded the agency in 1986. ADWAS is the first of its kind that serves Deaf and Deaf-Blind women and children who experience domestic violence and sexual assault. Big hoots to Sister Tiffany on her new endeavor in March 2011 and best wishes to Sister Marilyn on her retirement. Check www.adwas.org for more information.