A Chapter of the California Council of the Blind

May 2022

EDITOR: Sandy Quenzer,

COPY EDITOR: Beverly Clifford,

ADDRESS: Silicon Valley Council of the Blind (SVCB), P.O. Box 4116, San Jose, CA 95125

DEADLINE: for the June, 2022 issue: noon, May 23, 2022

VOLUNTEERS: Naomi Grubb,

MEMBERSHIP: Mike Keithley,

LEGISLATION: Mike Keithley,

PHONE: 888-652-5333



Legislative Hotlines, current issues for blind persons:


800-221-6359, after 5 PM and weekends


800-424-8666, 3 to 9 PM and weekends

DISCLAIMER: This publication contains announcements from the Silicon Valley Council of the Blind and is also a forum for opinions relating to blindness issues. Signed articles reflect the views, and research, of their authors.

STATUS: SVCB is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax-exempt organization under the California Council of the Blind.

CHANGES OF ADDRESS: Contact Mike Keithley,

Monthly meetings are held at the Santa Clara Valley Blind Center (Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired San Jose). Meetings run 9:30 AM to 1 PM the third Saturday of the month and are open to all.



by Rob Turner

Mentorship, the topic of discussion for the program at our April meeting, was well received. Several comments were heartfelt and showed their gratitude toward their mentors. There were so many responses that the start of our business meeting was delayed for a few minutes.

Our parent organization, the California Council of the Blind, has an upcoming virtual convention starting Thursday May 12 through Sunday May 15. To learn more, visit

My message is short this month because I need to prepare for a vacation at a Santa Cruz beach house. Until next time, stay safe and stay well.



by Mike Keithley

"Well you guys, we're at church and master is trying to stay awake. He's thinking about how to start this column. To help him out I said:

'Lui lui, howl le lu ya'

Think I woke everyone up!"

Yes you did King, excellent! And that dog stop on the organ was quite rousing. But you better look out for that terrible swift sword. "O dear!"

And we had a nice "lu ya" event at our April program. It was all about mentors we knew, and I thought it quite interesting. It's one of those times when you learn something you didn't know about your acquaintances that harmonize to how they feel to you. I couldn't attend the meeting in person, so I used our Zoom link. It was quite good. So now there's no excuse for not attending SVCB meetings. You'll find the zoom information in the event calendar.

The pre-convention activities are happening now and the CCB convention commences May 12. Don't forget to register. The URL is

In addition, remember that Debee Armstrong is SVCB delegate and Mike Keithley is alternate. If we can help, let us know.



Compiled by Mike Keithley

Board Votes to Go Forward with Hybrid Convention

ACB's board of directors voted to move ahead with the hybrid ACB national conference and convention in Omaha. You can learn more about registration and upcoming program events at

AAVL Cookbook Available

Does a cookbook with more than 165 mouthwatering recipes contributed by members and friends of the Alliance on Aging and Vision Loss, including main dishes, desserts, holiday favorites, and much more, sound appetizing to you? If so, the AAVL Cookbook, "The Food of Our Times" is just what you need! This special collection is available now in two formats for just $20.

The electronic version will entitle you to two downloadable versions: Microsoft Word and accessible PDF. There are currently six copies of the non-UEB (aka "regular") braille that are looking for a good home and ready to ship right away. Others will be ordered and shipped as soon as possible. To get a copy, visit

or send your check or money order payable to AAVL to treasurer Kathy Gerhardt, 2456 Edgewater Dr., Poland, OH 44514-1724, or contact her at (304) 283-7424 or

Markey, Porter Introduces Disabled Jurors Nondiscrimination Act

On March 29th, Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass) and Rep. Katie Porter (CA-45) introduced The Disabled Jurors Nondiscrimination Act, legislation that prohibits excluding a person from federal jury service on account of disability.

Currently, federal law prohibits excluding an individual from jury service on account of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or economic status. The new legislation adds the word "disability" alongside those protected characteristics.

The bill also clarifies provisions of federal law governing juror qualifications, by amending the statute under which jurors are qualified to serve unless they are "unable to read, write, and understand the English language with a degree of proficiency sufficient to fill out satisfactorily the juror qualification form" or "unable to speak the English language". The bill clarifies that no person may be disqualified from serving on a federal jury under those provisions on account of disability. Under the bill, it would be clear that a person who uses braille or sign language is not "unable to read, write, and understand the English language" or "unable to speak the English language." Twenty-three states already have statutes that prohibit exclusion and/or disqualification from state jury service on account of a disability, including both Massachusetts and California.

A copy of the legislation can be found at:

A copy of the one-pager can be found at:

Special Thanks Following Ukrainian Benefit Concert

ACB thanks all those who joined in and donated for the April 16th "We're With You" benefit concert for Ukrainians who are blind and impacted by the current conflict. Over 111 blind musicians and their allies performed for the event, which ran over 11 hours. The event has raised over $92k to date, including over $6k raised through the website. The event will be rebroadcast on ACB Media. So, stay tuned for information on how you can listen again to this historic event!

Getting Geared Up for Omaha

ACB continues to celebrate its 60th anniversary this year with our 60-for-60 annual campaign. We're all quite excited to return to an in-person event, while at the same time providing a wealth of virtual and hybrid content for those who may be unable to travel to Omaha.

In celebrating our 60 years of success, we wanted to know what your own fondest memory may be from a past ACB convention. Share your story by emailing it to and we'll include it as we highlight past convention memories leading up to Omaha. You can also share it on your social media account and use the hashtag #ACB60. And as always, we welcome contributions to our 60-for-60 campaign. You can click the 60for60 button on our home page at Your tax-deductible donation helps make future conventions a success!

Invitation to Participate in a Focus Group Study

We invite you to participate in a study at Columbia University that explores issues of trust in a type of medical research called "precision medicine research." This looks at a person's genetics, environment, and lifestyle. It can help physicians improve prevention and diagnosis of diseases and develop new treatments.

You are invited because you are: A deaf or hard of hearing adult, a blind or low vision adult, or an adult with a mobility disability. If you agree, you will be asked to join a 2-hour online focus group to share your thoughts about precision medicine. You do NOT need to have prior knowledge about precision medicine research to participate in this study. The study will help us understand what deaf or hard of hearing adults, blind or low vision adults and adults with mobility disabilities think about how precision medicine researchers and research institutions can be more responsive to the needs of persons with disabilities.

The focus group will be conducted using Zoom. It will be available in English, Spanish, and American Sign Language. CART Captioning will be available, as needed. You choose the language that works best for you. Focus group dates and times will be scheduled soon. You are offered a $50 gift card for participating in our focus group.

If you are interested, please contact Research Assistant, Madeleine Gibbons-Shapiro, at

You will be asked to complete a short online survey about your background and convenient times for participation. If you need any accommodations, please let us know.

If you have any questions, please contact the Principal Investigator, Dr. Maya Sabatello at



Compiled By Bev Clifford

The following recipe was submitted by Suzanne Smith, and comes from Fast and Healthy Ways To Cook Vegetables, from Storey Publishing.

Zucchini Spaghetti Sauce


Two medium zucchinis, sliced.

Two stalks celery sliced.

One green pepper sliced.

One onion sliced.

One 16 ounce can whole tomatoes.

One 6 ounce can tomato paste.

Two tablespoons olive oil.

Three tablespoons oregano.

One half teaspoon garlic powder.


In a large, covered skillet, slowly saute the zucchini, celery, onion, and green pepper in the oil until soft. (about 20 minutes).

Add the remaining ingredients, cover, and simmer for at least 15 minutes more. Serve over pasta. Makes 5 to 6 servings.




Below is an upcoming haptic tour and live audio description for a production of "A Small Fire" on Sunday, May 29.

A Small Fire

Written by Adam Bock | Directed by Mary Ann Rodgers May 29 Haptic Tour & Live Audio Description

Adam Bock's meticulously crafted script follows Emily Bridges, a woman used to running all things, from her construction business to her family, until she suddenly begins experiencing mysterious changes. As her world shifts, her relationships transform in poignant and revelatory ways.

When: May 29 haptic tour at 3:30 pm PST, live audio description and performance at 5 pm PST.

For more information and reservations, Email

For Tickets and info:



Submitted by Susan Glass

The Odd Couple

May 20 to June 12, In-person Only

By Neil Simon, Directed by Leslie Lloyd

Neil Simon's classic comedy is still just as hilarious as it ever was. When Felix Ungar, a neurotic, neat freak news writer, is thrown out by his wife, moving in with his also-divorced best friend Oscar Madison, a slovenly sportswriter, seems like an ideal plan. However, it does not take long for the pair's catastrophic incompatibility to come crashing down on their lives, to hilarious effect. The Odd Couple won Neil Simon a Tony® for best author in 1965.

Featuring: John Mannion, Jerry Lloyd, Matt Regan, Jim Woodbury, Will Perez, Ken Boswell, Kimberley Roberts, Mary Melnick, Karen DeHart, and Barbara Reynolds.

May 28, 2:15-2:30 pm FREE presentation for visually impaired patrons before the 3 pm show.


EVENT CALENDAR: May to June 2022

Compiled by Mike Keithley


A weekly SVCB Social Hour is scheduled for 4 PM every Wednesday afternoon until forever.

Join Zoom Meeting:

One tap mobile:


Call in number: 408-638-0968

Meeting ID: 739825688

Passcode: 222638

When prompted for a participant code, press the Pound key.

Note that the above call-in information is used for SVCB's virtual link to in-person membership meetings.

Tabard Theatre Shows

To order tickets, call the Tabard box office at 408-679-2330 and speak to Marilyn Watts, or visit:

SVCB members and Vista Center clients should use Discount Code BC27 when ordering. Performances take place at The Tabard THEATRE, 29 North San Pedro Street, San Jose. The phrase "On Demand" means that the show can be viewed by services like Comcast.

Shows described by AudioVision: For all San Francisco productions (Golden Gate and Orpheum Theatres, Tickets are generally on sale four weeks before the production opens. To charge tickets and reserve receivers, call 888-746-1799 (SHN Theaters), or fax your order to 415-581-2121 and ask for AudioVision tickets. If you have any questions, please email

San Francisco LightHouse

To hear weekly events at the San Francisco LightHouse, call 415-694-7325.

Let's Talk Low Vision

The monthly "Let's Talk Low Vision" conferences are held on the third Tuesday of the month at 8:30 PM Eastern. Archives are available at:

Zoom information is distributed through the ACB Community Schedule email list, or by emailing:

Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors

Departs every Sunday at noon from Pier 40 in San Francisco. Call 415-281-0212 for information and reservations, or visit

Bay Area Outreach and Recreation Program (BORP)

BORP believes that everyone should have access to the unique challenges that outdoor recreation provides, and makes every effort to accommodate each person's needs, including providing transportation and volunteer support. For event listings, call Lori Gray at 510-843-4398, or visit



May 12 to 15: formal CCB virtual convention. See Membership Corner.

May 20 to June 12 In-person Only, Tabbard Theatre, The Odd Couple, see Notes.

May 21, 9:30 AM to 1 PM: SVCB membership meeting. Program: convention reports and interactions.

May 23, noon: June SVCB newsletter deadline.


June 2, 7 to 9 PM: SVCB Board meeting. If you want to join this meeting, contact SVCB president Rob Turner.

June 18, 9:30 AM to 1 PM: SVCB membership meeting.

June 20, noon: July SVCB newsletter deadline.