Events by Year:
Congratulations to the Lighthouse Learning Center for Children™ Pre-K graduates, Class of 2017!
Proud parents and teachers looked on as six adorable four- year olds, both sighted and visually impaired, paraded into the classroom to receive their Certificate of Achievement. Wearing caps and gowns for the big event, they were welcomed by Virginia Jacko, Miami Lighthouse President & CEO.
The three-year olds in this first-of-its-kind inclusive Pre-K program also were awarded Certificates of Completion marking their year with the class as well. The students performed three offerings for their parents and guests: "Beautiful Day", "I've been going to my preschool" and "You Are My Sunshine".
Our graduates Dads were also treated to a pre-father's day gift. What could be more fun than to offer those attending the Pre-K graduation a complimentary shave by The Art of Shaving.
Vice President of IT for The Art of Shaving Rafael Niebles, and his staff of delightful cosmeticians, introduced both the girls and boys to the feel of cool shaving cream on their little faces, followed by the introduction of popsicle sticks to imitate razors that would be used in an actual shave. The kids had a blast as the photos show!
Miami Lighthouse Collaborates with the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute and The Frost School of Music
Dr. Julio Frenk, President of the University of Miami, toured Miami
Lighthouse for the Blind's programs and explored innovative new
partnerships between Miami Lighthouse, University of Miami Frost School of
Music, and Bascom Palmer Eye Institute.
Beep Baseball at Marlins Park
Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired
joined the Marlins for the annual Beep Baseball Classic on Monday,
February 15th. Miami Lighthouse's Transition students teamed up with
Marlins staff to compete in two games that were hosted simultaneously at
Beep ball is an adaptive version of America's favorite
pastime for the blind and visually impaired. There are some differences
from regular baseball. There is no second base. First and third bases,
four foot padded cylinders with speakers, are placed 100 feet down their
respective lines and 10 feet off the foul line. This is to prevent a
runner from colliding with a defensive fielder. The bases contain sounding
units that give off a buzzing sound when activated. The batter does not
know which one will be turned on. When the ball is hit, the base operator
activates one of the bases. The runner must identify the correct buzzing
base and run to it before the ball is fielded by a defensive player. If
the runner is safe, a run is scored. If a sighted players are
participating, they are blindfolded.
Following the games, awards were given out to players and
teams who exhibited most team spirit, sportsmanship, best team name, best
team chant, and wackiest team. The competitive and playful nature of the
Beep Ball Classic brings to life Miami Lighthouse for the Blind's slogan:
"It's Possible to See Without Sight™."
Publix chooses Miami Lighthouse for “Day of Service”
Publix, where “shopping is a pleasure,” made Friday, April
17th a true pleasure for Miami Lighthouse by selecting us as the
recipients of their “Publix Serves Day.” Publix founded in 1930 and Miami
Lighthouse founded in 1931 are celebrating their 85th anniversaries, and
Publix is celebrating by giving back to the community.
Our “day” consisted of Publix associates beautifying the
Lighthouse facility with the laying of sod, mulching and planting herbs
and vegetables to create our very own healthy garden. We will be
maintaining the new plantings as part of our High School High Tech Program
for our teenagers as an opportunity to teach them about gardening.
The associates also served lunch to our blind and visually
impaired clients as well as members of the Lighthouse staff. “We are proud
to support the work of an organization that provides an essential lifeline
to those who need it most in the communities where we work and live,” said
Nicole Krauss, media and community relations manager for Publix’s Miami
And we loved having you visit with us, Publix!
2014 Delta Gamma Sorority Volunteers at Miami Lighthouse
On Thursday, July 17th, members of the Alumni Group of the
Delta Gamma Sorority volunteered at Miami Lighthouse. The volunteers
helped prepare and serve lunch to the clients and brought an assortment of
sweets for them to enjoy as dessert. The Delta Gamma collegiate and alumni
groups are dedicated to being involved in the community and have helped at
Miami Lighthouse on many occasions. We thank the Delta Gamma Alumni Group
for their continued support and service to our organization.
2014 Perry Ellis International hosts Pre-Mother’s Day Arts and Crafts Sale
On May 9th, Perry Ellis International hosted a
pre-mother’s day arts sale benefiting the Miami Lighthouse Social Group
Activities Program. The event featured ceramics, paintings, jewelry and
flower arrangements made by blind and visually impaired program
participants. Clients and staff of Miami Lighthouse spoke to Perry Ellis
employees about the beautiful arts and craft pieces. We thank Perry Ellis
International for their continued support and hosting this event and we
look forward to future partnerships.
President & CEO of the Beacon Council Larry Williams and
President & CEO of the Coral Gables Chamber Mark Trowbridge toured Miami
Lighthouse for the Blind’s facility on March 27h. They visited the Sash A.
Spencer Educational Empowerment Center currently under construction, the
Better Chance Music Production Program™ and visited with visually impaired
children on spring break learning life skills at Miami Lighthouse. The two
business leaders also learned about Miami Lighthouse’s Job Readiness
Program which analyzes a blind or visually impaired individual’s skills
and interests to assist in the search for employment. Participants receive
training in skills needed to enter, remain in or return to suitable
employment. Other skills acquired include effective resume writing, job
searching techniques and interview skills which are all practiced with
expert coaches. High-quality training in adaptive computer access using
auditory screen reading and large print magnification devices as well as
Braille reading/writing and the use of electronic book readers and
electronic Personal Digital Assistance access is also taught at Miami
Lighthouse. In addition, work readiness skills, social skills and basic
communication are part of the program currently offered. We thank
President & CEO of the Beacon Council Larry Williams and President & CEO
of the Coral Gables Chamber Mark Trowbridge for spending time at Miami
We thank the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce for
spending time with us to learn about our programs President of the Greater
Miami Chamber of Commerce Barry Johnson and Governmental Affairs Team,
Daniel Tapia and Javier Hernandez toured Miami Lighthouse for the Blind’s
facility on March 4th. The team visited the Sash A. Spencer Educational
Empowerment Center currently under construction, the Better Chance Music
Production Program™ and spoke with clients in the Social Group Activities
On Monday, January 20th, students attending Miami
Lighthouse’s Better Chance Music Production Program™, Transition Program
and Braille literacy students celebrated the Martin Luther King holiday
with 30 peers from the Chapman Partnership. School-age children celebrated
with music, such as, Michael Jackson's legacy song "Thriller" and many
more. The Miamians Barbershop Chorus worked with students, teaching them
harmony and rhythm. Our guests enjoyed performances by the Miamians and by
our students who demonstrated their newly learned harmonizing skills. The
audience included board directors and guests from both organizations. The
Miami Lighthouse Transition teenagers also conducted a clothing drive so
that their new friends can take these items back to their families. “This
collaboration empowers these children and teaches them that nothing is
impossible when it comes to fulfilling their dreams, just like the example
set by Dr. Martin Luther King” said Trish Bell, Chairman of the Board of
KC Jones, President of the UM Sports Hall of Fame, John
Routh, Executive Director and Tracy Kerdyk, Secretary and Chair of the
Golf Committee presented a $1,000 check on January 22nd to Virginia Jacko,
President & CEO, representing the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind. The UM
Sports Hall of Fame donation is a contribution from a partnership between
the two organizations that took place during the Hall of Fame’s annual
golf tournament. Miami Lighthouse for the Blind thanks the UM Sports Hall
of Fame for their support.
Mater Academy East Middle/High School hosted a holiday
arts and crafts sale for Miami Lighthouse on Thursday, December 12, 2013.
The sale featured ceramics, paintings, jewelry and other pieces of artwork
created by blind and visually impaired participants of our Social Group
Activities program. Students and faculty were joined by friends and family
to enjoy a night of art, dining and fundraising. Seniors at Mater Academy
East and members of the DECA Club, spent time at Miami Lighthouse learning
about our programs and talking to clients in the SGA Program. Students
shared their experience with guests at the event and expressed their
appreciation for the services Miami Lighthouse provides to the visually
impaired community. We thank Mater Academy students and faculty for the
time they spent with us and for raising funds for the SGA program.
On Sunday, November 17th, Miami Lighthouse clients and
staff toured Sun Life Stadium and had the opportunity to take part in a
unique and exciting Miami Dolphins pre-game hands-on event. The
participants were exposed to a multi-sensory experience by having a
special touch tour of the stadium. They were also able to feel and handle
equipment used in the game, including helmets and footballs.
After the tour, the participants were able to experience
the Dolphins take on the San Diego Chargers and defeat them 20-16. We
thank the Miami Dolphins leadership for making this wonderful opportunity
On Saturday October 19, 2013, 16 teens from the Transition
Program put on a one of a kind haunted house for the participants of the
Better Chance Music Program at the Miami Lighthouse. The haunted house was
tactile and guests were blindfolded and led through spooky room where they
had to touch brains, eyeballs, vomit (and other gross objects that were
really just common grocery items).
The teens gained invaluable job readiness skills because
they had to plan and execute the event- each student selected a job as
either a tour guide or a station master. The teens also got experience
working in the kitchen boiling spaghetti for the guts and peeling grapes
for the eyeballs. Lastly, they worked with the Orientation & Mobility
Specialists in learning how to use human guide to safely guide others
around their surroundings.
There was also a haunted house judged by members of the
University of Miami’s Delta Gamma Sorority. While there many great
costumes, there could only be 3 winners:
Best Make Up- Luca Bompezzi (The Joker)
Best Costume Concept- Elisa Lastra ( Minion from
Best Overall Costume- JP Paniagua (The Grim Reaper)
Members of the Alumni Group of the Delta Gamma Sorority
from the University of Miami volunteered at Miami Lighthouse on Monday
September 30th. These enthusiastic volunteers prepared and served lunch
for our clients. The Delta Gamma collegiate and alumni groups are always
involved with the community and have chosen to help at Miami Lighthouse
whenever they can. Once again, we thank the Delta Gamma Alumni Group for
their support and service to our organization.
The Cornell University Alumni Club toured Miami Lighthouse
on Friday, September 27. The group visited the Social Group Activities
area, the Job Readiness Program and the Better Chance Music Production
Program™. The Cornell alumni also took the opportunity to get involved by
serving lunch to our clients. We thank them for spending time with us to
learn about our organization.
Former Dolphins player Nat Moore visited Miami Lighthouse
on Monday, September 23. Mr. Moore, who has been recognized for his
outstanding service to the community, currently serves as Senior Vice
President of Special Projects and Alumni Relations for the Dolphins.
During his tour, Mr. Moore visited the Better Chance Music Production
Program™ as well as the Social Group Activities area and had the
opportunity to speak with some of our clients about the importance of
employment. We thank Mr. Moore for taking the time to learn about our
On August 3rd the Miami Marlins Foundation presented Miami
Lighthouse with a $25,000 check as their 2013 Charity Partner during
pre-game ceremonies at Marlins Park. The game was kicked off with Board
Chair Agustin Arellano Jr. throwing out the first pitch. The Marlins
Foundation Charity Partner Program was created to make a focused impact in
philanthropy, and in collaboration with the Florida Heiken Children’s
Vision Program more inner-city schoolchildren needing eye care will get
the help they require to succeed in school.
2013 Miami Marlins Foundation Invited Miami Lighthouse Summer Program
Students to Second Annual On-Field Touch Tour At Marlins Ballpark
On Wednesday, July 10th thirty Miami Lighthouse for the
Blind and Visually Impaired summer program students, ages 13 to 18, got
the opportunity to take part in an exciting hands-on tour of Marlins
Ballpark and learn about the traditions of America’s national pastime.
With the help of Marlins Foundation staff, Miami Lighthouse summer camp
students used their other senses like touch and smell to learn about the
Ballpark. The students were exposed to a multi-sensory experience by
having a special touch tour on the Marlins Ballpark field and were able to
meet catcher Rob Brantly. After the tour, summer program students were
able to experience the Miami Marlins beat the Atlanta Braves 6-2. We thank
Alfredo Mesa, Executive Director, and Joanne Messing, Director of
Partnerships, of Miami Marlins Foundation for making this wonderful
interaction for our summer camp students possible.
On June 17th Miami Lighthouse unveiled the Lions Honor
Wall “in appreciation of Lions Clubs International Foundation and Lions
and Lions Clubs in District 35-A for their long-term commitment and
assistance to the blind people of our community.” The Lions Honor Wall is
in memory of Lion Oscar Vidal, founder of Lions Home for the Blind on July
24, 1974. The ceremony took place at Miami Lighthouse for the Blind in the
Social Group Activity classroom. Among the attendees were Lions District
Governor 35 - N Juan Tejera, Lion Virginia Jacko CEO of Miami Lighthouse,
and Lions Club members from Hialeah Pan-American, Miami Sunshine, Buena
Vista, Coral Gables, Miami Five Stars, Miami, Maritime Lions Club Miami
Cubans, Woman’s Club of Miami and Lions for the Blind Board of Directors.
Family members related to Oscar Vidal also attended the ceremony.
JP Morgan CHASE Bank Volunteers and Tours Miami Lighthouse
On June 12th Miami Lighthouse hosted JP Morgan CHASE Bank
for a tour and volunteering with Miami Lighthouse Social Group Activities
participants. Thank you JP Morgan CHASE Bank for your involvement with our
On May 8 Miami Lighthouse honored Dr. Harold and Gail
Cohen and Herb Klein at the 12th Annual Leave A Legacy/Donor Next Door
Dr. and Mrs. Cohen actively support various international
and local charitable and educational activities of the community,
including being honored by Miami Lighthouse as Ruby Jubilarians.
Herb Klein is a Miami Lighthouse client and volunteer. He
is a role model for our adult clients coping with vision loss and a
passionate advocate for Miami Lighthouse and the way our vision
rehabilitation services transform people’s lives. Herb volunteers in our
training kitchen and speaks to community groups about his experiences at
We deeply appreciate all of our generous donors and
volunteers who help Miami Lighthouse provide hope, confidence and
independence to blind and visually impaired individuals in our community.
Perry Ellis International hosted on May 9th a pre-mother’s
day arts sale benefiting the Miami Lighthouse Social Group Activities
Program featuring ceramics, paintings, jewelry, jewelry boxes, and flower
arrangements for Mother’s Day made by visually impaired program
participants. These clients talked to Perry Ellis employees about how
Miami Lighthouse teaches them to overcome the challenges of living with
blindness. The arts and craft pieces were displayed and program
participants showed how they create wonderful artwork. A recent grant from
Perry Ellis provided guayaberas, golf shirts and polo shirts with the
Miami Lighthouse logo to be used as uniforms. Miami Lighthouse looks
forward to its future partnership with Perry Ellis International and
thanks their staff for hosting the arts and crafts sale.
On May 4th, at a ceremony held at the Kazah Temple in Opa
Locka, Angel Wallace was recognized by the VSA for exemplary participation
in the arts. VSA Florida's (VSAFL) mission is to create a society where
people with disabilities can learn through, participate in and enjoy the
arts. Angel Wallace, 14, was nominated by Audrey Carballo and was awarded
by the VSA for her commitment to music excellence shown by her myriad of
achievements contributing to the Miami Lakes Warrior Band. In addition,
Miami Lighthouse Transition student Camille Hall, 19, won a $500.00
scholarship from the Leon Bain Scholarship Fund and will attend Miami-Dade
College in the fall, and 20 Transition students were recognized for their
participation in the program.
The Miami Marlins Foundation announced its 2013 Charity
Partners during pre-game ceremonies at Marlins Park on April 27. As one of
four charities selected in their highly competitive process, the selection
of Miami Lighthouse was announced with a flag presentation by President
David Samson. Recipients will receive a $25,000 gift from the Marlins
Foundation. The Marlins Foundation Charity Partner Program was created to
make a focused impact in philanthropy. As partners, more inner-city
schoolchildren needing eye care will get the help they need by providing
incentives for parents to take their child to their community optometrist
collaborating with our Florida Heiken Children’s Vision Program.
Better Chance Program at Jackson Memorial - March 2013
Miami Lighthouse Better Chance Music Production Program™
Students Performed During Spring Break at Jackson Memorial Hospital’s
Newly Renovated Courtyard Delighting Doctors, Nurses, Patients and others.
On Sunday, December 16th, twelve Miami Lighthouse
students, ages 13 to 18, got the opportunity to take part in an exciting
Miami Dolphins pre-game hands-on tour at Sun Life Stadium. The students
were exposed to a multi-sensory experience by having a special touch tour
at the Stadium. The students also got to feel and handle equipment used in
the game, including helmets and footballs.
After the tour, Transition program students were able to
experience the Miami Dolphins honor the 1972 Dolphins. The 40th
Anniversary celebration of the only undefeated NFL team included the
induction of coach Bill Arnsparger into the team’s Ring of Honor and
speeches by Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, Coach Don Shula and
Dolphins President Mike Dee. The students then watched the game from a
private suite from which they saw the Miami Dolphins beat the Jacksonville
Jaguars 24-3. We thank Marcus Bach-Armas, Manager of Corporate Affairs for
the Miami Dolphins, for making this wonderful interaction for our students
Miami Marlins Community Foundation hosts 50/50 raffle
for Miami Lighthouse Students Legislative
On April 18th the Miami Marlins Community Foundation
hosted a 50/50 raffle to raise funds for the Miami Lighthouse Music and
Transition student trip to Universal Studios over the summer. The students
raised funds and handed out Miami Lighthouse brochures to patrons
attending the Marlins game and were able to watch the Marlins claim
victory over the Chicago Cubs 9-1. The Miami Lighthouse summer camp
students would like to send a special thank you to the Miami Marlins
Community Foundation for making this wonderful night possible.
Miami Lighthouse Better Chance Music Production
Program™ graduate Natalia Sulca Helps Kick-off the 2012 Legislative
Natalia Sulca performed in Tallahassee at the State
Capitol on January 10th 2012 at the invitation of Senator Nan Rich and
sang “God Bless the USA” for the opening of session in the Senate. Natalia,
19, is a graduate of the nationally recognized Miami Lighthouse for the
Blind Better Chance Music Production Program. Natalia currently attends
Berklee College of Music in Boston and has recently performed at the
Discover Orange Bowl.
On January 4th Natalia Sulca was invited by The Orange
Bowl Committee to kickoff the pre-game festivities at the 2012 Discover
Orange Bowl. Natalia sang “God Bless the USA” a song written by country
musician Lee Greenwood in front of an estimated crowd of over 70,000.
Natalia said, “I am honored that the Orange Bowl Committee selected me to
sing such a meaningful song in front of a great audience.” Agustin
Arellano, Jr., member of the Orange Bowl Committee and board member of the
Miami Lighthouse said, “I am very excited to bring these two organizations
with rich traditions in the community together, and I am extremely happy
Natalia was selected to perform.” The background music was recorded at the
Miami Lighthouse Henry and Inez Stone Music & Sound Studio by Miami
Lighthouse music students, Music Engineer Antonio Cobo, and Music Director
Edward Boland, right, President of the Lions Club of Miami
presented a $3,000 check on May 5th to Nelba Gonzalez, Coordinator of Arts
& Crafts/SGA, and Cameron Sisser, Manager of External Relations,
representing the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind. The Lions annual donation
is a contribution to the persons with sight disabilities and blindness of
the Miami-Dade community that receive services from the Miami Lighthouse.
The Miami Lighthouse thanks the Lions Club of Miami for their continued
On March 17th Miami Lighthouse for the Blind Better Chance
Music Production Program™ students performed in front of over 200
individuals taking part in the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Naturalization Ceremony. The students performed the National Anthem, God
Bless the USA, Coming to America and I’m Yours a song by Jason Mraz.
On March 16th the Miami Lighthouse celebrated their Spring
Festival with the support of Credit Suisse and Hands on Miami. Hands on
Miami provided an activity for the children which included painting and
decorating flower pots and later planting flowers and herbs in the pots.
At the end of the festival the volunteers from Credit Suisse and Hands on
Miami had a shared reading session with the children. Thank you Credit
Suisse and Hands on Miami for your involvement with our programs.
Michael A. Silva, Esq. Named Chairman Of The Miami
Board Of Directors At Annual Meeting
Michael A. Silva, Esq. was installed as Chairman of the
Miami Lighthouse Board of Directors at its annual meeting January 26th at
the Kelley Roy Gallery. Mr. Silva has served two terms on the Miami
Lighthouse Board of Directors and previously provided pro bono legal
counsel, including revisions to bylaws and other board governance issues.
"It is our pleasure to welcome Michael into this
leadership position at Miami Lighthouse," said outgoing Board Chairman
Owen S. Freed, Esq. "We look forward to working with him over the next two
years as Miami Lighthouse fulfills its goals as a Center of Excellence in
Low Vision and Vision Rehabilitation."
"Michael's pro bono counsel and guidance as a Board
Director has been such a blessing to us in recent years," said Miami
Lighthouse President and CEO Virginia A. Jacko. "His forward-thinking
leadership will help us accelerate our progress as we serve ever more
people in this community."
Mr. Silva is a Tax Partner with Hunton & Williams LLP. His
practice focuses on international tax law, estate planning and
representation of foreign investors and banks. He has been selected as one
of "Florida's Legal Elite," a listing of the state's top 1.7% of "lawyers
held in the highest regard," by Florida Trend Magazine three years in a
row, and was named among the top lawyers in Florida by Florida Super
Lawyers Magazine. He also was named one of the "Top Up and Comers in South
Florida" for tax law by the South Florida Legal Guide. Mr. Silva graduated
from the University of Florida Levin College of Law and the Fisher School
of Accounting. He is a Certified Public Accountant and certified by the
Florida Bar in Tax Law and International Law. In 1993, he served as
Judicial Clerk for the Honorable Allen J. Kornblum, Probate Division of
Circuit Court, Miami.
More than 70 professionals attended the Interdisciplinary Approaches to
Low Vision Across the Life Span Seminar at Miami Lighthouse on November 6.
The continuing education seminar held for occupational therapists,
physical therapists and nurses was offered through a collaboration of
Miami Lighthouse with Florida International University College of Nursing
and Health Sciences thanks to Alma R. Abdel-Moty, Chairperson of the FIU
Department of Occupational Therapy. The Health Foundation of South Florida
provided partial underwriting for the event.
Keynote speaker Tara A. Cortes, PhD, RN, FAAN spoke to guests on the topic
of our aging population and the prevalence of low vision. Other guest
speakers included Amy McKenzie, Ed.D., Florida State University; Jeanette
S. Leonard, M.A., CCC-SLP/A, Purdue University; Lisa Roberts, DPT, PT GCS,
Florida International University; as well as Rosemary Gonzalez, O.D.,
P.A., Consulting Optometrist at Miami Lighthouse.
Eight-time Grammy Award winner José Feliciano delighted more than 20
aspiring blind and sighted musicians in the Better Chance Music Production
Program™ when he visited them at the Miami Lighthouse Henry and Inez Stone
Music and Sound Studio on November 18th.
Click here to view an article
that appeared in the Miami Herald about Jose Feliciano’s visit.
Marriott World Wide Call Center
Five Miami Lighthouse Job Readiness Program Graduates
To learn more about Miami Lighthouse Job Readiness Program, please listen
to the following testimonies. If you are unable to open the audio files,
check the status bar at the top of the screen and click on "Run Active X".
Miami-Dade County Public Schools
Alberto M. Carvalho
Visits Miami Lighthouse
Superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Alberto M. Carvalho,
visited the Miami Lighthouse on July 26. He began his tour by visiting one
of the three Heiken Children’s Vision Program mobile eye care units that
have provided eye exams and glasses to over 40,000 low-income students in
Miami-Dade County. Carvalho met with the Transition program students ages
14 to 22 as they introduced themselves and spoke about the schools they
attend. He related to the students as he spoke about their Miami-Dade
County School experiences, as he had once been principal or vice principal
at several of the children’s schools.
He admired many of the ceramic art pieces created by Miami Lighthouse
clients in the Social Group Activities (SGA) program. Virginia Jacko and
Nelba Gonzalez presented a ceramic lighthouse business card holder, which
he gratefully accepted.
Miami Lighthouse Music Program students performed two songs for the
Superintendent, one being the students’ favorite song, “I’m Yours” by
Jason Mraz, and the other “Proud to be an American” by Lee Greenwood. The
tour concluded with President and CEO Virginia Jacko demonstrating how the
blind and visually impaired learn to navigate a computer at Miami
Blind Babies Program children
Miami-Dade Public Library System Make-a-Bookmark Contest
Since 2003 Miami Lighthouse for the Blind Little Lighthouse program and
the Miami-Dade Public Library System have teamed up for the
Make-a-Bookmark Contest. The contest encourages participating children and
their families to read books. All children in the Miami Lighthouse Blind
Babies program who take part in the contest are recognized as winners for
their participation and creativity.
Click here to see bookmarks created by
Miami Lighthouse Blind Babies program participants.
Click here to see bookmarks created by
Miami Lighthouse Blind Babies program participants featured on the
Miami-Dade Public Library System Facebook page.
Miami Lighthouse Honors Board
Director Ray Casas and
Client/Volunteer Hugo Meneses
at Leave A Legacy/Donor Next Door Recognition Luncheon
At the Leave A legacy/Donor Next Door Luncheon Miami Lighthouse honored
Board Director Ray Casas and Miami Lighthouse client and volunteer Hugo
Board Director Casas was recognized for his 18 years of service to the
Miami Lighthouse in key leadership positions on the Board of Directors
since 1992, including 10 years on the Executive Committee and his current
position as Chairman of the External Relations Committee as well as for
the pro bono services provided by his public relations firm. Wragg and
Casas’ services include drafting and distribution of news releases, media
relations and counsel on communications issues. Ray has provided important
communications services and counsel throughout the years as a volunteer.
Hugo Meneses, a Miami Lighthouse client since 2003, received recognition
as an extraordinary advocate for the blind and visually impaired. He has
collaborated actively in raising funds for the Miami Lighthouse’s “White
Cane Day” event, and in 2008 he was the individual who obtained the
largest number of pledges. Each year he also solicits donations from the
community in support of the event. Hugo is a member of the “UCHEU” (Union
de Ciegos Hispanos en los Estados Unidos), a non-profit that organizes
recreational activities for the blind such as picnics, parties and field
trips. Because of his many relationships in the community, Miami
Lighthouse clients have meals that are more nutritious.
Miami Lighthouse Annual Board
The Board of Directors of Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually
Impaired, Inc. held its annual meeting at the Key Biscayne residence of
Michael Silva, Esq., on January 27th. Mr. Silva has served in
several Board governance roles for Miami Lighthouse, previously as Board
Performance Oversight and Monitoring Committee Chairman and as Treasurer.
The fifty attendees at the annual meeting included Board Directors,
Honorary Directors, members of the Heiken Children's Vision Program
Advisory Committee, the senior leadership team of Miami Lighthouse, and
Miami Lighthouse friends including the legendary Henry Stone, a
former client and producer of 23 Gold and Platinum albums.
Click here to read more.
Miami Lighthouse Celebrates
Community Leader Donna R. Blaustein, Esq. As 2009 “Woman Of Vision”
On June 16th,
community leader Donna R. Blaustein, Esq. was named Miami Lighthouse for
the Blind’s 2009 Woman of Vision in recognition of her many years of
dedication and support of the Miami Lighthouse mission. The prestigious
award was presented at the third annual Women of Vision Luncheon at Miami
Lighthouse on June 16th. More than 85 of South Florida’s most
distinguished female leaders attended this luncheon, generously
underwritten by Walter and Terri Shikany and co-hosted by Carmen
Betancourt-Lewis, Carmen Bishopric, Shelley Beckwith Rutherford, Nancy
Jean Davis, Pam Garrison, Norma Quintero & Terri Shikany.
The Miami Lighthouse
Woman of Vision award was established in 2007 to honor notable female
philanthropists in our community. Past Woman of Vision honorees include
Philanthropist Gloria Martin in 2007 and Philanthropist Jean Ellen du Pont
Shehan in 2008. Awardees are presented a special one-of-a-kind signature
pin designed by René Ruiz.
Touche Volunteers Lend a Helping Hand at Miami Lighthouse
For the second year,
Miami Lighthouse received assistance with a variety of tasks as volunteers
from Deloitte pitched in to help on Deloitte’s annual “IMPACT” Day – a day
to make an impact on the communities where they work and live.
Actor Woody Harrelson Prepares for Blind Pianist Role
Woody Harrelson, who will play a blind pianist in the
upcoming film Seven Pounds, found the perfect place to practice his
“blindness” skills at Miami Lighthouse. Harrelson’s character befriends
the main character, played by Will Smith, a guilt ridden and suicidal IRS
agent. “I was more nervous about this role than about any I’ve ever had,”
Harrelson said. The challenges of playing a blind musician are daunting,
but Miami Lighthouse, with its vision rehabilitation services and
groundbreaking music program, was an excellent fit for Harrelson as he
prepared. He practiced the use of the white cane with Orientation &
Mobility Specialist John Clapp, COMS, and observed blind keyboard artists
practicing in the Henry & Inez Stone Music & Sound Studio. Harrelson, who
entered the American consciousness as the affably dim Woody Boyd on the
long-running TV series Cheers, has appeared in many major feature films,
including Indecent Proposal, Play it to the Bone and The
People vs Larry Flynt. Seven Pounds is scheduled to open in
theaters in December.
Miami Lighthouse Men of Vision Honor Legendary Music
Producer Henry Stone
More than 50 friends of Miami Lighthouse gathered on August
5th to celebrate the Inaugural Men of Vision “Havana Nights,” hosted by Al
Cabrera, Scott Sime, Eric M. Stein, and David Turner. Guests enjoyed live
music as well as vintage and new cars featuring a placard noting
historical milestones of Miami Lighthouse coinciding with the model year
of each car. In keeping with the “Havana Nights” theme, a live cigar
roller demonstrated his craft. Legendary music producer and former Miami
Lighthouse client, Henry Stone, was named the 2008 “Man of Vision.” Henry
has been fundamental in the creation and success of the nationally
recognized music program at the Lighthouse. The event was sponsored by
SunTrust Bank South Florida, Turner & Associates, LLP, CB Richard Ellis
and Williamson Cadillac.
Northern Trust Bank Visits Miami Lighthouse
On July 3, 2008 Board Directors Ed Joyce and Kent Benedict
along with colleagues from Northern Trust Bank visited Miami Lighthouse
where they joined Lighthouse clients in the Gallery for lunch and were
entertained by summer camp student musicians and instructors. The group
toured the facility and learned about the many programs and services
offered by Miami Lighthouse to blind and visually impaired children and
Miami Lighthouse Women of Vision Honor
Jean Ellen duPont Shehan
and Gloria Martin
More than 50 of Miami’s most prominent female
philanthropists gathered at Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually
Impaired June 24 at the second annual Women of Vision luncheon. The
inspiring event included the presentation of the 2008 Woman of Vision
Award to Jean Ellen duPont Shehan; the completion of Gloria Martin’s $1.1
million gift to Miami Lighthouse; news from CEO Virginia A. Jacko about
new initiatives at Miami Lighthouse; a touching testimonial from Helen
Mopsick, whose 6-month-old son Colton participates in the Miami Lighthouse
Blind Babies program; and original music performed by the Miami Lighthouse
musicians. Norma Jean Abraham, Shelley Beckwith Rutherford, Jan Salvesen
Morrison and Norma Quintero hosted the event.