The National Federation of the Blind of of California
Uniting Blind People
Love, Hope and Determination
to Live the Life We Want

We are now accepting pre-registration forms for our 2015 State Convention.

The National Federation of the Blind of California will assemble in convention on October 30, 31 and November 1, 2015.

Where: The Doubletree by Hilton Newark/Fremont
39900 Balentine Drive
Newark, CA 94560

For hotel reservations call: (510) 490-8390. Press 2 on the option menu to make your reservation with staff at the front desk.
Group code: NFC.
Note: You will need your hotel confirmation number to complete the pre-registration form.

Room rates: $109.00 + tax – without breakfast buffet
$129.00 +tax – with breakfast buffet for two guests

The fun will begin on Thursday evening, October 29. So be sure to arrive early. The Exhibit Hall and Board of Directors meeting will begin on Friday, October 30 at 9:00 A.M. The Orientation Center for the Blind Alumni Association Inc. will meet over lunch at 12:00 noon ($20.00). Don’t forget to bring your best Halloween costume for the Masquerade Ball and contest at 8:00 P.M. on Friday evening.

On Saturday, October 31 The general session will begin promptly at 9:00 A.M. The afternoon sessions will break out into “Round Table” discussion groups. The highlight of our convention will be the banquet on Saturday evening when we will get to hear the keynote address from our national representative, Pamela Allen, First Vice-president, National Federation of the Blind and the Director of the Louisiana Center for the Blind.

Sunday morning will wrap up the event with elections, resolutions and other Federation traditions.

Please note: If you would like to take advantage of bus transportation to the convention on Thursday, October 29 you will need to pre-register soon so we can reserve the buses. More information about locations and times will follow. There will be two buses coming up from southern California and one bus from northern California.

Register now for the NFB of California 2015 convention


The 2016 Washington Seminar Application is now available on our web site. All interested participants should complete the Washington Seminar Application form. The deadline to submit your request is Thursday October 15th, 2015.


NFBC Grant Application Now Available

The National Federation of the Blind of California is pleased to announce that the 2015 National Convention grant application is now available. The deadline to submit your application is April 15th,2015.

Grant Application:


Dear Fellow Federationists,

I start this March Bulletin with our new branding. The following is the essence of the 75 years of love, hope and determination. Commit it to memory. It will get you through all kinds of situations.
“The National Federation of the Blind knows that blindness is not the characteristic that defines you or your future. Every day we raise the expectations of blind people, because low expectations create obstacles between blind people and our dreams. You can live the life you want; blindness is not what holds you back.”

2015 Summer Internship Application Deadline
If you or someone you know has a desire to learn about current legislation, education, technology, civil rights, public relations, and much more, applications and accompanying documentation should be submitted to Anil Lewis at by March 13, 2015. The program runs from June 1 to August 7 and includes a trip to the 75th anniversary convention of the National Federation of the Blind. This opportunity is being made available through the Jernigan Institute located in Baltimore, Maryland. More information can be found at:

The U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing Money Reader is Still Available
If you did not attend the National Convention in 2014 and receive a free money reader, you can still apply for one at the web site: You must be a qualified patron of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS). On a personal note, I would like to tell everybody these very helpful, portable readers have been very handy for sorting and organizing paper currency when I did not have sighted assistance readily available. I recommend that everyone apply now.

Chapter Development in California
Two of our NFB of California Board Members, Rochelle Houston and Ever Lee Hairston travelled to our Riverside / San Bernardino Chapter to build membership in California. Rochelle told of her journey into blindness and shared tips on fundraising ideas for building the organization.
The Pathfinders Chapter held the annual membership recruitment reception. Ever Lee Hairston spoke to the group about her experiences learning to become an independent blind adult. The reception was a success resulting in four new members.

Viejas Casino Trip
If you want to try your luck at the role of the dice on your way to the pot of gold, join the Pathfinders and San Fernando Valley Chapters on Saturday April 4, 2015.
If you live in the Los Angeles Area, lucky participants will meet at the
Greenline Park & Ride at 8 a.m. which is located at 11901 South Crenshaw Blvd, Hawthorne, CA.
If you live in the San Fernando Valley Area, meet at 7 a.m. at the home of Robert Stigile located at 19831 Friar Street, Woodland Hills, CA 91367.
Donation $2. This fun filled event will help raise money to get people to the 75th Anniversary Convention of the National Federation of the Blind in Orlando, Florida this summer.
For reservations and more information, contact Rochelle Houston at
323-807-0300 or email or Robert Stigile at 818-381-9568 or email

First Annual Senior Division Seminar Saturday, April 11, 2015
The National Federation of the Blind of California Senior Division is inviting you to join us for a seminar in knowledge, information, & methods of living with blindness. We are planning on door prizes and lots of fun!

WHEN: Saturday, April 11, 2015
TIME: Noon – 3pm
WHERE: Hometown Buffet
12139 Hawthorne Blvd. Hawthorne, CA 90230

RSVP by March 31st, CONTACT:
Charlotte Carroll – (310) 625-6558, email
Cheryl Thurston – (909) 821-9589, email

Mary Willows, President
National Federation of the Blind of California
3934 Kern Court
Pleasanton, CA 94588
925) 895-2778


“How many legs does a dog have if you call the tail a leg? Four. Calling a tail a leg doesn’t make it a leg.”-Abraham Lincoln

Dear Fellow Federationists,

“The National Federation of the Blind knows that blindness is not the characteristic that defines you or your future. Every day we raise the expectations of blind people, because low expectations create obstacles between blind people and our dreams. You can live the life you want; blindness is not what holds you back.”

Accomplishments in Washington 2015
This year the National Federation of the Blind hosted a reception to celebrate 75 years of advocacy for blind people in America. On Tuesday, January 27, Federationists and several members of Congress came together to recognize the work of the NFB. Amongst the speakers was Congressman Pete Aguilar (31st District) from California who acknowledged the history and success of the Randolph Sheppard Act. He told his personal story about growing up the son of a blind man who benefited from the innovative Business Enterprise Program. I am certain there will be an article in the Braille Monitor about this in the near future.

Transitioning to Integrated and Meaningful Employment Act” (TIME Act) (H.R. 188) was well received this year. As of the writing of this bulletin nine Republicans have co-sponsored the bill. The state of Vermont successfully changed supported employment for the disabled to a business model which has resulted in job retention at minimum wage. This was definitely a selling point for Republicans. We will keep you informed as we hear of the progress of H.R.188.

National Federation of the Blind 2015 Scholarship Program
Deadline: March 31, 2015
Help us to spread the word about the largest scholarship program in the county for visually impaired and blind students. Are you a legally blind college student living in the United States or Puerto Rico? This annual program offers 30 scholarships worth from $3,000 to $12,000 to eligible students, from high school seniors beginning their freshman year in the fall semester of 2015, up through grad students working on their PhD degrees. These merit scholarships are based on academic excellence, community service, and leadership. In addition to the money, each winner will receive assistance to attend the July 2015 NFB annual convention in Orlando, Florida, providing an excellent opportunity for high-level networking with active blind persons in many different professions and occupations. To apply, read the rules and the Submission Checklist, complete the official 2015 Scholarship Application Form (online or in print), supply all required documents, and request and complete one interview by an NFB affiliate president (unless the president requests a later date). Applications are accepted for five months, from November 1, 2014, to March 31, 2015. Go to for complete rules and requirements.

Chemistry Camp 2015 Accepting Applications Now
If you know of a 14-18 year old blind or visually impaired student with an interest in learning about chemistry, now is the time to get the applications for the 2015 Chemistry Camp.

When: Friday, May 1 through Sunday May 3, 2015
Where: Enchanted Hills Camp near Napa, California
Who: Up to twelve blind students will be selected to participate

For more information or to apply, please visit:

Questions? Please do not hesitate to contact Angela Fowler:
530-902-0987 or

KNFB Reader Mobile App is Available for 50% off
The KNFB Reader App is an App that you can use to take a picture of a document and it will read the document to you. It is on sale for $49.99 right now. It usually costs $99. Go to:

Audible Prescription Labels
For your information, if you get your prescriptions filled at Walmart, Walgreen’s, or CVS, you may want to know that they offer their customers audible prescription labels. All you have to do is ask your pharmacist.

Mary Willows, President
National Federation of the Blind of California
3934 Kern Court
Pleasanton, CA 94588
925) 895-2778