Interim Executive Director Update – August 31, 2016

///Interim Executive Director Update – August 31, 2016

Interim Executive Director Update – August 31, 2016



August IED Report

Greetings. There are several updates to provide related to Past President Whitcher’s recent announcement, the recently released 2016 JOI, and the 2017 LEAD Together national conference.


Sr. Director of Programs and Services

Earlier this week you received a vlog from Dawn Whitcher, former RID President, about her resignation due to her intention to apply for the Sr. Director of Programs and Services position with RID, as part of her search for full-time employment. RID HQ was informed of President Whitcher’s decision on Sunday evening, August 28th. Since that time, the HQ team has been talking about the implications of that announcement for our application and hiring process at RID. We determined it might be helpful to the membership to know what our process is like since it is unusual to have applicants for HQ positions from recent or current board members.

First, I want to note that RID welcomes all qualified applicants for vacant positions within HQ. Our goal is always to hire the most qualified individual possible, who is committed to RID’s mission and goals.

So what does the internal process at RID look like? When a position becomes vacant, we review the job description to ensure that it is current reflection of the position. When it is ready to be posted, we post both internally and externally. Internally, we always want to give our staff the opportunity to apply for other positions and/or to help recruit individuals they might know who are qualified applicants. Externally, we promote to our various communities.

When someone makes application for an open position at RID they do so by sending a cover letter and resume to This email address is managed by RID’s HR Director, who is Elijah Sow, Sr. Director of Finance and Operations. Elijah reviews applications to determine what position is involved and if the required materials have been submitted. He acknowledges receipt of the application. Once the application deadline closes, he submits all of the applications to the appropriate supervisor for review and discussion. He and the supervisor vet the applications and determine what individuals will be interviewed. Interviews are scheduled and the supervisor of the position conducts the first round. Those who reach the finalist level are interviewed during a second interview by the HR director and the Executive Director. The supervisor may include other individuals in the interview process– particularly those who will be working directly with the individual who is hired. At the end of the process, the desired candidate is identified, and references are checked. Assuming the references are appropriate, a salary package is determined with HR and an initial offer is made. Final hiring is dependent on a background check. Assuming the offer is accepted and the candidate passes the background check, a start date is negotiated and onboarding begins. Those candidates for a position that are not hired are also officially notified.

This is the same process that will be followed for the Sr. Director of Programs and Services. No changes to the process will occur as a result of past-President Whitcher’s application. Since I am the hiring supervisor in this instance, and this is a senior administrator position, it is my plan to include the individuals from HQ who will work directly with the new hire in the interview process and seek their feedback in the decision-making process.

As an administrator with 44 years of professional experience in the hiring a wide range of professionals, it is my intention that this process will be implemented with the same attention to procedure and fairness as all others that I have been involved with. Please let me know if you have any questions.


Release of the 2016 Journal of Interpretation

On Monday of this week, the 2016 JOI was released to the membership and our stakeholders. It is a very exciting publication that would not be possible without the hard work of the JOI Editors, Dr. Len Roberson and Dr. Sherry Shaw, as well as the HQ publications team. We extend our sincere appreciation to all of them.

This issue of the JOI, like previous issues, is available in written English. We recognize that at the 2015 NOLA convention the membership passed a motion that all publications of RID be available in both ASL and English. This particular issue of the JOI was already in process when that motion was passed and so was completed per the instructions provided to the authors. However, we want to provide an update on this motion as it relates to the JOI.

Currently, there is no other organization within the interpreting or Deaf Community that publishes an academic journal in both ASL and English. This means there are not established guidelines or standards available to follow. The time, expertise and expense required to create such a process exceeds RID’s current capacity. So, although we continue to work on expanding the offering of both ASL and English presentation of our communications and publications, this particular application of the motion has not yet been operationalized. When and if it can be for RID’s academic Journal of Interpretation and all of the VIEWS articles has yet to be determined. We will continue to explore the feasibility of this motion and keep the membership updated as we learn more. In the meantime, we remain committed to providing both ASL and English access to the greatest degree possible within our current resources.


2017 LEAD Together Conference

We have released information the initial information about the 2017 LEAD Together conference scheduled for July 20-24 in Salt Lake City, Utah. As well, an FAQ addressing the common questions being received by HQ has been posted on the RID website. More information will be forthcoming in the next few months. For example, this fall a survey will be distributed asking affiliate chapters, member sections, councils and committees to provide feedback about the priorities they believe should be addressed during the LEAD Together conference. Also, a Call for Teachers/Trainers for the skills development track will go out before the end of the year.

As part of the 2017 LEAD Together conference, the biennial business meeting will be held. Although there is a limit on the number of participants to the actual LEAD Together conference, the business meeting is open to any and all members. We appreciate that most members will not travel to Salt Lake City to attend the business meeting only. Historically, even when we have large numbers of participants at convention, we struggle with getting the quorum of 200 members needed to proceed with the business meeting. So, to make the business meeting more accessible, it will once again be lived streamed. In addition to the live streaming, the board has been working with the organization’s parliamentarian to determine how to allow for remote participation and voting during the business meeting. A tentative plan has been laid out, and is now being finalized for review and approval. Once it is ready, it will be shared with the membership and hopefully foster a greater level of membership engagement in the decision-making of the organization.

We have an interesting dual reality within RID. Members frequently communicate that they want more engagement in decision-making, but when opportunities to serve in leadership roles are open, or participate in volunteer leadership webinars, or exercise voting rights, participation is very low. In terms of voting, which was detailed in the 2015 Annual Report, only a small percent of the members vote– whether the voting is in-person during a business meeting or online through referendum. The average is 2-8% of the membership. It is the hope of the board that the very structure and nature of the 2017 LEAD Together conference, which is intended to draw those individuals who want direct, purposeful and intentional engagement around addressing issues facing the organization and the field, and to impact needed changes, will ensure a target audience that will also actively participate in the business meeting. As well, with remote opportunities for participation and voting, there is great optimism for increasing the number of members involved. Look for further information within the next month about this aspect of the conference.

Thank you for your attention to these matters. Please feel free to contact me at with any questions or thoughts.

2018-04-24T06:14:47-05:00August 31st, 2016|Categories: From RID Headquarters, From the Executive Director|0 Comments