What is your name?
How old are you?
I plead the fifth. 😉
What city and state do you live in?
What years and grade did you attend Tucker Maxon?
1977-1983 (Early Intervention – Kindergarten), then I was mainstreamed with itinerant support from a Tucker Maxon teacher of the deaf until my junior year of high school. (With the exception of those two years I lived in California from 1984-1986 for 2nd and 3rd grade).
Did you have a favorite teacher or staff member?
My teachers were so wonderful, I cannot pick a favorite. However, my favorite person from Tucker Maxon is my husband, Chris. We were in preschool, kindergarten, and 1st grade together. I was the one that took school seriously, while he would rather play outside — that has not changed much to this day!
Did you have a favorite place/space on campus?
One of my favorite places on campus was the firetruck! I do remember being in preschool, and how excited we were to have a new play structure. I am amazed it is still there — it has to be an antique by now!
What caused your hearing loss?
It is hereditary since I have an older brother also with hearing loss. It could be Connexin 22, but I have not had any genetic testing done.
What kind of tools do you use to support your hearing today?
I wear an AB cochlear implant and an AB Cros for hearing.
Do you primarily use speech, ASL, or both?
How has hearing loss impacted your life or the life of people close to you?
I have learned to be a person first who happens to have a hearing loss. I have wanted people to know who I am beyond my hearing loss, versus making it a stigma.
What did you study in college, and/or what kind of work do you do, or want to do?
I studied Elementary Education at George Fox for undergrad, and then Deaf Education at Lewis and Clark for my Masters. I have always wanted to come back to Tucker Maxon to teach, and I am thankful to work here all these years — going on 20 years!
Please share an accomplishment you are especially proud of:
Cannot think of just one, but here are a few: graduating from college, giving birth to three kids, fixing our washing machine, AND being married for 20 years on October 16th, 2019!
What is your favorite place you’ve traveled to?
I enjoyed visiting Washington D.C. when I was 12 with my family to see the history of our country. I hope to take our children there someday.
What do you look forward to most each day?
Time with family, and to positively impact people I encounter throughout the day.
Please share something you learned as a student at Tucker Maxon that has stayed with you:
I have learned to be okay with my hearing loss, and to confidently and kindly advocate for my hearing needs.
Any words of advice for today’s Tucker Maxon students (deaf/hard of hearing, typical, or both)?
– Every person’s hearing loss journey is different.
– Surround yourself with people who care and accept you.
– When others have misconceptions about hearing loss, see it as an opportunity to educate versus being mad and defensive. It goes a long way when you respond with genuine respect, and it makes others more willing to accommodate you.