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Biographies of The 2000-2001 NFB:AE Board of Directors

President: Robert Fenton

Robert Fenton is an associate lawyer in the Civil Litigation Group at McCarthy Tetrault in Toronto where he practices law in the health, constitutional, human rights, corporate commercial litigation and administrative areas.

Robert Fenton received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Wilfred Laurier University in 1989. He obtained his L.L.B. from Queens University in 1992.

Robert Fenton maintains many memberships and affiliations. He is a former member of the Equity Advisory Group of the Law Society of Upper Canada, and a member of the National Coalition on Vision Health, the CNIB General Council, The National Association of Blind Lawyers, the Medical Legal Society and the Advocates Society. In addition, he is the President of the National Federation of the Blind: Advocates for Equality, Vice-President of the Canadian Association of Visually Impaired Lawyers and the Secretary of the American Blind Lawyers Association.

Contact Robert Fenton at: 25 the Esplanade, Unit 2816, Toronto, ON M5E 1W5 E-mail: rfenton@mccarthy.ca or robert.fenton2@sympatico.ca Phone: (Work) (416) 601-7702 or (Home) (416) 601-9291

First Vice-President: Ross Eadie

Ross Eadie is currently running his own business called Info Equity Inc., which produces accessible documents, trains people who are blind to use computers, provides accessibility consultations on the built environment, and provides computer consultations to the general public. Ross past work experience has included being a financial manager, caretaker, painter, 7 Eleven clerk, a McDonalds manager at 17 years old, and a building maintenance worker at 14 years old.

Since losing his eyesight in 1984, Ross has graduated with honours from college with a diploma in business administration. He worked as the financial manager/computer Co-ordinator for the Independent Living Resource Centre in Winnipeg, where he became involved with the disability rights consumer movement. He has sat on and held officer positions on many committees and organisation's since 1990. Acting chairperson and member of the City of Winnipeg's Access Advisory Committee was one of his major commitments in the 1990s.

Ross is a political activist who has run and almost became a City of Winnipeg Councillor and Member of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba for the NDP. Contact Ross Eadie at: 90 Rupertsland Blvd., Winnipeg, MB R2V 0E6 Telephone: (204) 339-5707 E-mail: ross@infoequity.mb.ca

Second Vice-President: Richard Marion

Richard Marion is currently employed in finance and administration in his family's commercial trucking and construction company, R. Marion & Sons Trucking Ltd. in British Columbia. In 1993 Richard graduated from Douglas College with a degree in Business Administration. Richard was one of the first participants in the teen computer camp program SCORE. He was appointed to a BC government committee that worked on issues dealing with Building Accessibility for disabled persons. Other previous involvement include memberships on the Boards of the Canadian Council of the Blind BC/Yukon Division and BC Coalition of People with Disabilities. Richard also held the positions of advisory board member for the Lower Mainland district of the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Vice-President External of the Douglas College Students Society, and president of the BC Educational Association of Disabled Students. Most recently, Richard was the President of the National Federation of the Blind: Advocates for Equality.

Contact Richard Marion at: 304 - 515 Whiting Way, Coquitlam, BC V3J 7W9 Home Ph: (604) 936-4698 Work: (604) 299-8258 Fax: (604) 299 8315 E-mail: rmarion@telus.net.

Treasurer: John Rae

John Rae is a Program Officer in the Equal Opportunity and Disability Partnerships Unit of the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship, Culture and Recreation in Toronto. During Johns 20-year career in the Ontario Public Service, he has held the position of Education Officer with the Employment Equity Commission, and was a Consultant with the Centre for Disability and Work.

John has been a Board Member of many community and human rights organisation's, and has been President of several organisation's, including PAL Reading Service, the Canadian Legal Advocacy, Information and Research Association of the Disabled (CLAIR), the Blind Organisation of Ontario with Self-Help Tactics, (BOOST) and the Don Vale Community Centre. He also co-chaired the Coalition on Human Rights for the Handicapped, which obtained the first human rights coverage for persons with disabilities in Ontario.

In April 2000, John received the Individual Human Rights Award from the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU). In June 2000, John was elected to the Board of Directors of BALANCE (Blind Adults Learning About Normal Community Environment), an organisation he has supported since its earliest days.

Contact John Rae at: #304 192 Jarvis Street, Toronto, ON M5B 2J9 Home Ph:(416) 941-1547 Work: (416) 325-6253 Fax: (416)326-9725 E-mail: penguin1002@yahoo.com

Secretary: Grant Robinson

Grant Robinson is a Marketing Analyst with IBM Canada in Toronto. He has worked for the Training Co-ordinating Group for Persons with Disabilities (TCG), the CNIB, Gretzky SCORE Teen camp and Hardy Stevenson and Associates, a consulting firm specialising in environmental impact assessment and program evaluation. Grant holds a BAA in Urban and Regional planning with an emphasis in Public Policy, and a BA in Geography. Previously Grant served as Chair of the Client Services Committee of the Toronto district of the CNIB.

Contact Grant Robinson at: 17 Bousted, Toronto, ON M6Q 1Y7 Home Ph: (416) 530-0537 Fax: (905) 316-2981 E-mail: grant.robinson@sympatico.ca

Member at Large: Irene Lambert

Irene Lambert was born and raised in the Montreal area, diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa at the age of 10 and continued to attend school in the public sector. While working at Mount Tremblant Lodge, she met her first husband while skiing, then moved to New York and produced three sons.

Following a divorce and a move to Miami she eventually met and married Robert (Bob) Lambert and the new family unit moved to Stanford University. Several years later they moved to Philadelphia, which enabled Irene to complete her studies in political science and psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. An appointment for her husband to the faculty of Loyola College (now Concordia University) in Montreal saw Irene return full circle to her own roots. Then, they adopted a baby girl. Twenty-one years later Bobs sudden death left Irene a widow. These last ten years she has devoted most of her time to work in the blindness field.

Irene is a graduate with degrees from The Lindsay Hopkins Technical School of Miami, Philadelphia Community College and the University of Pennsylvania. She also did graduate work in the psychology of sensory deficits and other continuing education courses. Presently, Irene is president and charter member of the Low Vision Self-Help Association, president of the Montreal Association for the Blind Users Committee (MAB), and a newly elected member at large of the NFB:AE Board of Directors. She is a member of the MAB Board of Directors and does volunteer work in the Technical Aids Boutique. Irene is a competitive lawn bowler and a past president of the Quebec Blind Lawn Bowling Association; a member of the Regroupment de les Aveugles et Ambliopes de Montreal Metropolitan (RAAMM); the American Council of the Blind (ACB); and the Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired (AER).

Contact Irene Lambert by E-mail at: ilambert@opus.autoroute.net

Member at Large: Betty Nobel

Betty Nobel was born in New Westminster, British Columbia. She has spent most of her working life as an educator, and attributes her excellent Braille skills to the education she received at the Jericho Hill school for the blind in Vancouver. Betty earned her Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of British Columbia, where she also subsequently earned a diploma in adult education, a BC Teaching certificate and a master of arts degree in higher education.

In 1981, Betty started work at Vancouver Community College. At the college, she was one of the founders of the Program for Visually Impaired Adults, which still offers courses today in Braille, English, Math, and using Microsoft products with adaptive speech and large print technologies.

Betty does volunteer work for other blindness-related organisation's as well as the NFB:AE, including the Canadian National Institute for the Blind and the Canadian Braille Authority. Betty brings the skills of a teacher, her administrative experience as Division Chair of Adult Basic Education, and experience working as a Special Advisor on Disability Issues in government to her volunteer position in the NFB:AE. She welcomes the challenge of being an advocate, and is confident that through the work of the NFB:AE, more blind, vision impaired and deaf-blind persons will realise their dreams of equal and full participation in Canadian society.