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LEAP Program 2021: Session 3, Day 2

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  • Gayla Guignard MA, CCC-A/SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT

    Gayla Guignard, M.A., CCC-A/SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT has served as AG Bell’s Chief Strategy & Programs Officer since September, 2015. Gayla has worked as a direct service provider, clinical audiology and speech-language pathology supervisor, State Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) Coordinator, and as the inaugural director of Indiana’s Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education (CDHHE). She has served in numerous leadership roles on national committees and work groups and has presented on Listening and Spoken Language and related topics internationally. Gayla’s current work is focused on bringing knowledge forward about listening and spoken language and related areas for children who are deaf or hard of hearing. She is deeply interested in systems that serve families and individuals and seeks to be involved in systems change as a way to realize potential and improve outcomes for all individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing.

  • Catharine McNally

    Catharine McNally is the Accessibility Lead at Phase2 Technology. She is a dedicated advocate for using technology to bridge the accessibility divide – constantly adding new uses for accessibility. Her influential work has been recognized through national leadership awards, honors, and national publications. She lost her hearing at eight months old, has used Cued Speech and Listening and Spoken Language since she was eighteen months old and received her first cochlear implant at the age of three. She is the Immediate-Past Chair of the Board of Directors for the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. Catharine’s email address:

  • Ceil Weatherman

    Purpose: To radiate possibility through exceptional service and loving support.

    Ceil is a Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach & Employee Engagement Champion with 35+ years non-profit leadership experience. She consults with individuals, families, teams and all types of organizations. Using proven methods, she helps stakeholders understand and unleash potential that fosters collaboration and propels excellence.

    Ceil has experience working with leaders of all ages. She understands the challenges presented by remote working, organizational realignment and job elimination due to downsizing. She has navigated all three successfully by investing in and leveraging her strengths.

  • Shalini Chalikonda

    I'm from Raritan, New Jersey. I was born deaf, and I have one cochlear implant that I can't imagine life without! I have a Masters in Public Health from Boston University School of Public Health. I currently work as a population health data analyst at Hunterdon Healthcare Partners. As a member of a spiritual organization, I voluntarily teach education in human values to 7th-9th graders every Sunday.
    I love dogs, traveling, and nature (biking/hiking). I also enjoy watching documentaries, and rom coms on Netflix.

  • Jordan Livingston

    I was born in Calgary, AB Canada profound deaf in both ears and received my first Cochlear Implant when I was 3 1/2. Having spent most of my life around airplanes I always wanted to become an Airline Pilot. After getting my Private Pilots License at Rancho High School Aviation Academy in Las Vegas, NV I attended Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, AZ where I received a B.S. in Aviation Business Administration Flight Operations Concentration with a Flight Safety Minor. After graduating University I began my professional flying career as a Skydiving Pilot where I later was promoted to Chief Pilot, later I began Flight Instructing on the side. When COVID hit I eventually transitioned to full time instructing while waiting for the aviation industry to recover. Now things are improving which is allowing me to slowly transition into flying corporate jets and hopefully the airlines sooner than later. I am looking forward to what future achievements and endeavors await me in the near future.

  • Elisa Cimento

    Elisa is a senior project manager at Rally Health where she works at the intersection of clinical and product to create meaningful experiences that simplify the user experience in healthcare.
    Prior to working at Rally Health she obtained her undergraduate degree at the George Washington University.
    When she isn't keeping everything organized at work you can find her spending time on the trails in her backyard of San Francisco and trying new recipes. In pre-pandemic times, she loved to travel as much as possible, and still hopes to reach 40 countries under 40!

  • Derek Lee

    Hi, I'm Derek and I'm back in the San Francisco Bay Area after a short stint in Los Angeles for graduate school. I did a master's program in biostatistics at UCLA and currently work in data analytics. Previously, I did my undergraduate in Human Biology at Stanford University. I was also a former LOFT/LEAP attendee (2011) and it was one of the best experiences of my life. I still keep in touch with several LOFTees to date.
    I wear one cochlear implant and one hearing aid. I still keep the hearing aid because I got my cochlear implant in college and couldn't get used to the way music sounded with the implant alone. I still occasionally play the piano but was regularly performing with a local symphony orchestra until the pandemic hit.
    One of my passions is focusing on building a great community for young adults of the deaf and hard of hearing community, which you all will soon be a part of. In my spare time, I am obsessing over cars and driving my own sports car, posting my food adventures on Instagram (@dlee.foodie), or playing golf.
    I would love to talk with you more about figuring out college/after-high school plans, the challenges deaf/hard of hearing folks face when finding jobs, and any of my music, food, cars, or sports hobbies.

  • Julia Wells

    Julia Wells was born and raised in Washington, D.C., where she currently resides. She graduated from Colgate University in 2020 with degrees in Religion and Philosophy. While attending Colgate, she studied abroad in Scotland. She wrote my senior thesis on religion and the law. Currently, Julia is attending George Washington Law School.

  • Darius Rahmaan

    Darius Rahmaan is a recent graduate from the University of Memphis with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history. While enrolled in college, he has interned for the Tennessee General Assembly and for the Alexander Graham Bell Association. In 2015, Darius was a member of the Leadership Opportunity for Teens Program (LOFT). His goal and aspiration in life are to help other deaf and disabled people. Darius is also a lover of Literature and musical theatre.

  • Julie Schulte, MA

    Julie Schulte, MA is AG Bell's Teen Programs Coordinator. Julie is an audiologist by training and has a sister who is deaf. She has experience in working with children of all ages and their families as a direct service provider. In addition, Julie has been involved in system’s development in her past role as a State EHDI Coordinator.

September 18, 2021
Sat 1:00 PM EDT

Duration 3H 30M

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