NFB of SD State President:
Kennneth Rollman.
903 Fulton Street.
Rapid City, SD 57701.
Phone: (605) 721-3311.

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The South Dakota State Flag

The flag of the state of South Dakota represents the U.S. state of South Dakota with a field of sky blue charged with a version (in navy blue on white) of the state seal in the center, surrounded by gold triangles representing the sun's rays, surrounded in turn by inscriptions in gold sans-serif capitals of "SOUTH DAKOTA" on top and "THE MOUNT RUSHMORE STATE" (the state nickname) on the bottom. The inscription on the bottom was "THE SUNSHINE STATE" before it was changed in 1992. Read the full Wikipedia article.

Biographies of Convention Speakers

Click Here to Read Pam Allen's Biography

Pamela Allen currently serves as the Executive Director of the Louisiana Center for the Blind in Ruston, Louisiana. Prior to her appointment as the director in 2001, Ms. Allen served as the Director of Youth Services for the Center.

She is the President of the NFB of Louisiana and as Treasurer of the National Federation of the Blind.

Ms. Allen has served on the Ruston-Lincoln Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and currently serves as Secretary of the National Association of Blind Rehabilitation Professionals. Ms. Allen was appointed by Governor Jindal to the Louisiana Rehabilitation Council and has held various offices on the Council. She is also a member of the Advisory Board and the Research Council of the Professional Development and Research Institute on Blindness at Louisiana Tech University. Ms. Allen is a frequent presenter and keynote speaker at seminars for parents and teachers of blind children, and rehabilitation professionals.

Ms. Allen received a B.A. in Psychology from Denison University, and her graduate work includes certification from Utah State University. She and her husband, Roland, a talented and dedicated Cane Travel instructor and active leader in the NFB, reside in Ruston, Louisiana and have been married for twelve years. Both are active in church and local community organizations.

Click Here to Read Cris Mathew's Biography

Cris has worked with Wright Vision Center for many years and will speak on the Dry Eye Disease that is prevalent in our area due to weather.

Click Here to Read Gaye Mattke's Biography

Gaye Mattke has a Bachelor of Science from the University of South Dakota in Sociology and Psychology. She has worked for Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired since 1990 and has been Director since 2001. She has served on a variety of boards and councils addressing services for South Dakotan’s with disabilities. She’s a member of the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation; the National Council of State Agencies for the Blind, the SD Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities and South Dakota Rehab Action. She has one daughter who is a counselor at Carroll Institute in Sioux Falls.

Click Here to Read Michael D. Goehring's Biography

Michael Goehiring, Field Representative Guiding Eyes for the Blind has twenty-six years of experience in the field of trained dogs assisting those with disability. Mr. Goehring has worked with clients in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Hong Kong assessing individuals for appropriateness in use of a Guide Dog as well as providing training and after care services. Michael is a co-founder and the former Executive Director of Great Plains Assistance Dogs Foundation and spent six years in service on the Board of Directors for Assistance Dogs International [1992 to 1998]. He has presented at the ADI conference on multiple occasions as well as having presented on hundreds of occasions to rehabilitation professionals and consumers alike on the topic of dogs who serve those with disabilities [including AER, NFB, ACB, Foundation Fighting Blindness] and others. Michael’s work with Seizure Dog training was featured on Turning Point with Dianne Sawyer and the Nightly News with Tom Brokaw. Most recently, Michael has presented at the University of Hong Kong, the International AER conference in New Orleans and the IGDF conference in Kyoto, Japan.

Click Here to Read Twyla Eggers' Biography

Twyla Eggers began in her role as the Assistant Director for Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired on December 9, 2013. Twyla was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, but has lived in the Redfield, SD area for most of her life. She is married to Rob who works as a Program Manager at the South Dakota Developmental Center in Redfield and together they have 2 adult children Taylor, 23 also from Redfield and Dylan, 21 who lives in Watertown.

Twyla is a graduate of Northern State University in Aberdeen with a Bachelor of Science degree Psychology & Sociology and a Minor in Gerontology. She received her Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from Montana State University. Twyla has worked for state government for over 30 years. During this time she has worked for the South Dakota Developmental Center, Division of Rehabilitation Services and Division of Developmental Disabilities. When not at work, Twyla enjoys spending time with her family and friends. Twyla very much enjoys the outdoors, gardening, canning, camping and going to auctions.

Click Here to Read JoMarie Laughlin's Biography

JoMarie Laughlin has been the Assistive Technology Instructor at the SD Rehabilitation Center for the Blind for the past 13 years and presently serves on the Atech committee for SBVI. She expanded the Assistive Technology training by teaching the Mac Computer, iPad and iPhone, the Victor Reader, the Pearl Camera, the Hovercam TV5 and much more.

Prior to working at SDRC, she was a client in the Blindness program during the end of 1998-1999. She became a substitute teacher for all areas of the skills of blindness until she became self-employed in her own business designing Braille greeting cards and doing Braille transcription.

JoMarie completed the Literary Braille Certification in 2009 through the National Library of Congress. She is a lifetime Disabled American Veterans Auxiliary member and volunteers many hours helping others. She received the Directors Award in 2011 in recognition of her exceptional accomplishments in supporting the mission of the Divisions. She enjoys spending time with her husband of 38 years and with her two grown children, Nicholas and Starrla, and her three grandchildren Kyra, Haley and Carter. In her spare time, she loves to garden, exercise and give a helping hand for any person in need.

Click Here to Read Colleen Kirby's Biography

Colleen Kirby is the Assistant State Librarian for Access Services at the South Dakota State Library. In this position she is responsible for the Collection Services Program, the Reference and Documents Program, and the Braille and Talking Book Program.

Prior to being appointed to her current position Ms. Kirby served in several positions at the State Library including Continuing Education Coordinator, Technical Services Librarian and Digital Initiatives Librarian. She has also worked as the Special Collections Librarian at Black Hills State University, Librarian for the South Dakota State Archives, and as Assistant Cataloger for South Dakota State University.

Ms. Kirby is a South Dakota native having spent her childhood in the Lebanon area. She received her undergraduate degree from Northern State University, a Masters in Library Science from North Texas State University, and a Master of Arts in History from the University of South Dakota.

Click Here to Read Connie Sullivan's Biography

Connie Sullivan is a Program Assistant with the Braille and Talking Book Program at the South Dakota State Library. She has been a part of the Braille and Taking Book Program for 31 years. Connie has been a crusader for Braille and Talking Book Program her entire career, which includes working closely with the National Library Service in Washington, DC. One major project was preparing for the onset of digital talking books and the new digital talking book player. Connie believes that Libraries are one of the very important corner stones in the education of not only our children but also the adult population.

Click Here to Read Dave Miller's Biography

Dave Miller is a graduate of the South Dakota School for the Blind. He obtained his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of South Dakota and his Master’s Degree from Mankato State University. He was State Director of both the South Dakota Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and State Services to the Blind and Visually Impaired. He was appointed by the US Senate to serve on the Social Security Ticket to Work Panel to advise the administration on issues affecting the employment of SSI/SSDI beneficiaries. Prior to recent retirement he was the Chief Administrative Services Officer for Communication Services for the Deaf. Dave has been a lifelong advocate for people with disabilities and currently serves on the Board of the South Dakota Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities and the State Independent Living Council.

Click Here to Read Michelle Hosman's Biography

Michelle has been employed with Black Hills Special Services Cooperative for 16 years holding a variety of different positions but the last seven years as a Community Work Incentives Coordinator providing benefits and employment counseling to SSA beneficiaries in western South Dakota. She graduated from Chadron State College in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree with a major in Social Work. Michelle has been a member of South Dakota RehabACTion since 2004 and received the “Friend of Social Security” award in March 2012.