March 2017

The President’s Message and Anne Taylor’s “Monthly Column” both highlight the March 11 event. But there’s more…
The Chapter is excited because it’s the first time the major hearing aid companies and cochlear companies have appeared together to offer free testing with no obligation. Per the companies, a worldwide FIRST!
In addition, there are panel discussions/presentation for those wanting information from consumers (CART and LOOP provided).  The seminars are below and for more information, link to "read more."


9:30 – 10:30   -- How Assistive Listening Devices Complement My Hearing Aids

Panelist will show their alarm, alerting and hearing support products, discuss why they need them and answer your questions about ALDs.

11:00 – Noon -- How Access Technologies are Transforming Lifestyles in the Community

Jim Scott, President of Complete Hearing Solutions, will discuss how loops, captions and CART are making theatres, movies, services, meetings and shopping more accessible for those with hearing loss in our area.

12:30 – 1:30 -- What to Expect from a Cochlear Implant

For anyone considering a cochlear implant (CI) in the foreseeable future, this is an opportunity to ask our panel of CI users the pros and cons of getting a CI. Reps from the three leading CI manufacturers will be on hand for your technical questions.            
           READ MORE!


President's Message


Dear Members and Friends,

On Saturday, March 11, the Chapter will present an unprecedented opportunity to try as well as compare ALL the latest hearing technologies without purchase or obligation.

This year’s “EXPO” event is entitled “HEARING TECH CLINIC”.
We have gathered vendors with the understanding that they are demonstrating and not selling. We want our members and friends to feel at ease in sampling the latest in hearing technology.
We, the not-for-profit Sarasota/Manatee Chapter of the Hearing Loss Association of America, are carrying out our mission to educate, advocate and support the hearing loss community. We hope you will support us by attending this free event.

We will be demonstrating and/or discussing the following: 

  • Hearing aids
  • Cochlear implants
  • Assistive listening devices
  • Community access
  • Hearing loops
  • Captioned phones
  • CART/captions
  • Free hearing screenings
  • Free product demonstrations
  • Free product trials
  • Free individual counseling
  • Free panel discussions
  • Free exhibitors

Join us between 9:00 AM and 2:00 PM at the Community Foundation located between Tuttle Avenue and Shade Avenue. It is one mile east of 301 and four miles west of I-75. 


JoAnne DeVries, President

Website -
Facebook -



Scholarship Chair Patricia Lakey has announced the 2017 HLAA-S/M $1,000 scholarship to the HLAA National Convention in June of 2017.

Our Chapter offers this annual scholarship to members in good standing who have not attended a National Convention.

The scholarship will entitle the winner to a registration to the Hearing Loss Association of America convention in Salt Lake City, Utah from June 21-25, 2017. The scholarship will also include a shared room at the convention hotel for three or four nights, and round-trip airfare or automobile travel expense between Florida and Salt Lake City.  The maximum value of the scholarship is $1,000. Besides that, it’s a fun experience guaranteed to make you want to return year after year!
The deadline to apply is March 7, 2017.
Scholarship application can be found on our website:

Our Professional Partners:

The HLAA policy is to not recommend any specific product or any specific ENT, Audiologist or hearing aid dispenser.
The Chapter follows this policy but has identified professionals who endorse our 501 (c) (3)’s mission to help others through information, education, advocacy and support. They are listed on our webpage at  
Members are encouraged to review this list of professionals when considering professional services.

Additional information is also available on HLAA’s National website. The site features a searchable hearing health care directory that enables you to look for hearing products and local hearing aid providers.
To access, click on:


On Thursday, April 6, HearCare Connection Sarasota will host their annual Wine&Stein Fundraiser at Gold Coast Eagle Distributing in Lakewood Ranch.
The evening includes a wine & beer tasting, live and silent auction, heavy appetizers by Evie’s on Main, Michael’s on East, and Alpine Steakhouse. Free Daps, a Guinness Book world record holder for Hip Hop Free Style, will be performing. 
Doors open at 6:00 PM and the event is from 6:30 PM - 9:30 PM. Tickets are $50.00 each and are on sale now. Purchases can be made by calling HearCare at 941-316-0406 or online at:
HearCare Connection believes strongly in the idea that better hearing develops better communication. The Wine&Stein event helps bring people together for the cause of hearing and gives us an opportunity to raise funds for the local clinic. 
This event continues to provide operational funding for the local hearing clinic, one of the few non-profit audiology centers in the nation.



Listen!Up has highlighted the March 11 Hearing Tech Clinic and suggests preparation to attend the event with 12 ways you can improve your hearing.

1. If you have not had a recent hearing test, get a hearing screening from All Ears Hearing Services.

2. Get a consultation from Dr. Lyndsey Nalu to learn what types of aids might be best for your hearing needs.

3. Try the hearing aids from Oticon, Signia/Siemens, Starkey and Widex. If you have tinnitus, check out the new therapy software in Signia’s new line of hearing aids.

4. Need more than a hearing aid? Advanced Bionics, Cochlear Americas, and MED-EL can show you how cochlear implants (CIs) can make a difference.

5. Hearing aids are not the final solution for most people. Try the hearing accessories, like the various neck loops and the Roger Pen.

6. Check out the assistive listening devices from Advocates For Better Hearing, which can alert you to sounds your hearing aids or CIs miss, especially when you are asleep.

7. Falls are the #1 cause of serious injuries for seniors, and hearing loss can affect your balance, so consider getting a balance screening from Equinox Physical Therapy.

8. Want to hear better on the phone? Get a free captioned or amplified phone from CaptionCall, CapTel or Florida Telecommunications Relay.

9. Want to hear all at home? Check out the hearing loop systems for living rooms, dining tables, televisions or entertainment systems from Complete Hearing Solutions.

10. Like to hear better at the movies or theatre? See the HLAA Mentor and learn about the personal captioning systems at local movie houses and loops at various theatres.

11. Like to hear better in meetings? Attend one of our panel discussions listed on our cover page. There is both a loop, as well as CART from Americaptions so you will not miss a word.

12. Need financial help? Visit “Help Us Hear” from the Ear Research Foundation. 

Everything is FREE!



Listen Up recommends our Helpful Links/Resource Page for relevant information regarding hearing loss READ MORE!



Thank you to the 24 volunteers assisting with the “Hearing Tech Clinic”!

HLAA-Sarasota/Manatee hosts monthly meetings, organizes social events and participates in community outreach. In the past few years, the Chapter has grown to over 200 members and the Board is committed to continuing that growth. To accomplish this, your support is necessary. We always have a need for volunteers for Chapter meetings, such as membership assistance, 50/50 raffle and social hour.
The Chapter is active in outreach with over 100 events at the Farmers Market, Health Fairs, public events and knowledgeable members are encouraged to assist us. There are so many ways you can make a difference. 
Please contact Anne Taylor at if you can pay it forward with your time to help educate and advocate for the 145,000 community members with hearing loss.


The Chapter’s outreach program covers over 100 events a year.  Please contact Dave Donnelley to “pay it forward” by attending events with our table and materials and informally offering education, advocacy and support to members of our community. 
On the job training is available at any Farmers Market day or a special event. Let Dave know if you can help HLAA - Sarasota/Manatee by contacting

Saturday March 18

Our monthly information and support booth at the Sarasota Farmer’s Marker offers an opportunity for people to learn how to address their hearing loss.

The Chapter has a permanently assigned site at1920 State Street, between Lemon and Pineapple.
There will be
free hearing screening each month by one of HLAA - Sarasota/Manatee’s Pro Partners. If you have a friend who needs hearing help and cannot make one of our meetings, please suggest they visit us here.




March 8th, 2017 1:30 PM

Lynn Rousseau was diagnosed with severe to profound hearing loss at a very young age. After college and marriage, she moved to Gainesville and joined SHHH, HLAA’s prior name.

Wanting others to feel just as capable with hearing loss as "normal hearing individuals”, she became a member of the SHHH Florida Board. Lynn then became Florida State Chapter Coordinator, traveling all over Florida to meet and start chapters.

Through her HLAA work, Lynn was invited to become a member of the Continental/United Airlines Travel Advisory Board. Then came an invite to join the brand new Royal Caribbean “Guests with Disabilities Advisory Cruise Board”. She also taught employees of Amtrak how to recognize and assist people with disabilities. Lynn is Past President of The Hearing Loss Association of America - Florida State Association and founder/current president of the Gainesville Chapter.
Lynn's desire is to make travel easier, safer and more enjoyable for those of us who cope with hearing loss.
The title of Lynn’s presentation is “Traveler’s Rights”.


North Sarasota Library Meeting Room
2801 Newtown Blvd., Sarasota

February Chapter Meeting Recap

Dr. Kyle Allen is an Otologist and Neurotologist with the Tampa Bay Hearing and Balance Center in Tampa.    
His presentation was “What is New in Hearing Aid and Cochlear Implant Technology”.

Dr. Allen talked about the difficulty of hearing in noise and explained the design and purpose of devices such as a remote microphone, the Roger Pen, and directional microphones.

He also traced the history of research on regeneration of hair cells.

Dr. Allen spoke of a new procedure called an “Ear Lens” and how it can increase the HZ range. He spoke about the procedure of achieving a mold on the eardrum and using a 3D printer for an exact fit.

He surgically implants all three brands of cochlear implants and explained the advantages and limitations of MED-EL, Advanced Bionics and Cochlear Americas. These differences involved MRI ability, wireless sound, compatibility with hearing aid and what the FDA has approved or delayed.
There was an extended Q and A session that continued after the meeting.     
It was great to see so many of our northern friends back with us. We had an attendance count of over 50.




“After Hours” is the evening Chapter meeting for members and guests who are unable to attend during the day. Of course, all members and guests are welcome!
Chaired by Dr. Lindsey Nalu, the meetings are held at 6:00 PM at the Centers for Arts and Humanities, 1226 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota.
Dr. Victoria Moore, Au.D. discussed and demonstrated the latest developments in hearing device technology during the Tuesday, February 7th, meeting.

She addressed the latest in hearing aid accessories including wireless phone clips, TV streaming and others. She went through each manufacturer’s accessory products such as Phonak’s ComPilot and Roger Pen, Advanced Bionics Naida BiModal, Clear Sounds’ Quattro 4.0 and others.
Dr. Moore then spoke about looping and her patients’ use of Time was spent on CaptionCall and Hamilton CapTel phones as well as InnoCaption’s app for cellphone captioning.
Dr. Moore continued one-on-one discussions in an extended social hour as refreshments kept the group engaged for some time after the meeting.

Next Meeting – Tuesday, May 2, 2017 at 6:00 PM

                  Meeting is supported by CART. 


Click on Event Calendar for Upcoming Events READ MORE!



LISTEN!UP is reprising captioning and CART information to help newer members to advocate for themselves.  Education and Advocacy are part of the HLAA mission.
Captioning is the text of the audio portion of a video or film displayed directly on the video or film, often on the bottom of the screen. This may include not only the words, but the sounds that are important to understand and the source of the sound. Open captions cannot be turned off; closed captions are not visible unless they are decoded and turned on for display.
CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) is verbatim text of spoken presentations provided for live events. Only the text is provided on a computer screen or projected for display on a larger screen. CART may be provided in the classroom, at meetings, workshops and other presentations including live theater – anywhere that someone with a hearing loss needs to hear in a group setting.
The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) considers closed captioning for television or the Internet an assistive technology that allows persons with hearing disabilities to access television programming under the Communications Act. For a television receiver to display closed captions, it must use a set-top box decoder or contain integrated decoder circuitry.
The US Department of Justice (“DOJ”) considers captioning an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act.  Movie captioning is not yet a required accommodation in all cases, but DOJ is requiring closed-captioned movies for the larger movie chains. A final rule issued in November, 2016 states: “Movie theaters shall: (1) have and maintain the equipment necessary to provide closed movie captioning and audio description at a movie patron’s seat whenever showing a digital movie produced, distributed, or otherwise made available with these features; (2) provide notice to the public about the availability of these features; and (3) ensure that theater staff is available to assist patrons with the equipment before, during, and after the showing of a movie with these features”.
Closed captioning is often critical to people who are hard of hearing or deaf. Television is the sole source of local information in an emergency for many. Both television and movie captioning is clearly a source of information, education and entertainment.
You don’t have to have a hearing loss to find closed captioning useful: people for whom English is a second language use captions to get a better grasp of English, children’s reading is enhanced with the use of captions, and hearing people in bars, gyms, airports, and other noisy places appreciate the value of captioning.
Captions on television are required with few exceptions.
For more information about the FCC’s requirements:

Last month, the Wall Street Journal had an article about TV sound.
Chapter members are savvy about techniques and technology to help hear television but Geoffrey Fowler, the author, had some new ideas on how to make TV sound more clear.
“You know there’s a problem when you keep reaching for the remote to crank the volume up and down. Or perhaps you’re like my septuagenarian parents, who squabbled recently about dad’s excessive cable news volume while mom was trying to read in the other room.
The blame starts with TV makers, many of whom treat sound as an afterthought in their quest to make ever-thinner screens. You need at least a little junk in the TV trunk for speakers to produce decent sound. Nowadays, you’d be hard-pressed find a model with speakers even facing you—most TVs have speakers that point down or toward the back, where sound can get muffled. And volume levels can still be all over the map between your cable box, Blu-ray player, Apple TV and PlayStation.
Short of cranking the volume up to 11, there are things you can do to hear dialogue better. Here are some proven strategies—plus new options for seniors and others who might experience moderate hearing loss.
Fix the TV
Before you spend a dime, try moving the TV. When I went to visit the engineers at Dolby, which makes audio and video tech, they helped me set up an experiment: Using a microphone and sound meter, we compared the speaker output of the same popular-model TV mounted on a wall and sitting on a table. The key is to measure the level of sound at around 1,000 hertz, where human voices tend to come through strongest.
In the lab, setting the TV on the table made dialogue clearer. Why? Because the TV’s down-facing speakers needed something to bounce off. But not all surfaces are the same: A cloth on the table will absorb sound. Moving a TV closer to a wall or burying it inside a cabinet could make it more bass-y…


On February 7, The Centers for Disease Control published an in-depth study entitled “Vital Signs: Noise-Induced Hearing Loss Among Adults”.
The study generally confirms the dangers of noise exposure but addresses measures the federal government can take to reduce such exposures that result in hearing loss.
The full exhaustive study can be found at:
As an overview, they stated: “Hearing loss is the third most common chronic health condition in the US. Almost twice as many people report hearing loss as report diabetes or cancer. Noise exposure away from your job can damage your hearing just as much as working in a noisy place.
Being around too much loud noise - like using a leaf blower or going to loud concerts - can cause permanent hearing loss. And once it’s gone, you can’t get it back!
You can have hearing loss before you even notice you’re having problems. Noise is measured in what are called decibels (dB). Over time, listening to loud sounds at high dB levels can cause hearing loss—or other hearing problems like a ringing sound in your ear that won’t go away. The louder a sound is, and the longer you are exposed to it, the more likely it will damage your hearing. The more often you are exposed to loud sounds over time, the more damage occurs. It’s important for healthcare providers to ask about hearing and to screen those who are at risk” 


Chapter’s Vice President’s Monthly Column in The Venice Gondolier

[Anne Taylor is a Bilateral Cochlear Implant user, a Gallaudet Certified Peer Mentor for the Hard of Hearing, Vice President of the local Hearing Loss of America)   

Confused about Hearing Devices?

Try Out and Compare the Latest Hearing Technology at the Hearing Tech Clinic!

 Do you hear only bits and pieces of conversation?
Are you overwhelmed by the huge variety of hearing devices?
Are you aware that there are 48 million Americans with hearing loss and only 7 million benefit from hearing aids? (John Hopkins Medical Research)
Do you worry about stigma attached to hearing loss, the high cost of hearing aids, being pressured to buy?
Are you wondering where to begin to improve your hearing?
You may want to consider this ….
The local chapter of the Hearing Loss Association of America has come up with its  
first-ever Hearing Tech Clinic on March 11th. This will be a one-day opportunity to try and compare as many hearing devices as you like – without pressure to buy.
The four leading hearing aid manufacturers will be on hand to explain how the latest hearing technology may help you to improve your hearing. Hearing aids have come a long way since the ear trumpet and even offer new advanced features such as tinnitus therapy software.
The Hearing Tech Clinic’s product stations will offer you the opportunity to try out numerous wireless accessories. Sometimes, hearing aids are not enough and wireless accessories can help connect you directly to phones, televisions, people’s voices across the table in noisy restaurants.
As well as trying wireless and other assistive listening devices (ALDs), you will have the opportunity to check out captioned phones and home loop systems.
There will be hearing screenings and balance screenings. Audiologists and mentors will guide you through the process. This event will be
free and nothing will be sold!
However, people with hearing loss can obtain a
free captioned or amplified telephone of their choice.
The Hearing Loss Association of America suggests you bring a copy of your last hearing test or, if you have never had one, take advantage of the
free hearing screening. Audiologists will be available to discuss the best hearing devices to meet your needs and lifestyle.

Hearing Tech Clinic
Saturday, March 11th, from 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Community Foundation of Sarasota County
2635 Fruitville Road, Sarasota
For more information, please call 941-706-4312



HLAA conducts educational webinars for its members and constituents.  There is no cost to attend webinars.
To view a Webinar, go to



HLAA Membership Notes

Our memberships are dual memberships in both the HLAA and the HLAA Sarasota/Manatee Chapter.

The cost is $35 for an Individual membership; $45 for a Couple.
Among the many functions of HLAA National is the lobbying for people with hearing loss to have equal access in public venues.
If you have any questions on Membership, please feel free to contact Anne Taylor at
Membership applications can be found at the Chapter website,




Our Helpful Links/Resources Page for relevant information regarding hearing loss --








Private Eyes Movie Club 

The Private Eyes Movie Club now meets on LAST Thursdays!

This month, the Club will “meet” on Thursday, March 23, around 4:00 PM to 4:30 PM at the Hollywood 20 on Main St. in Sarasota. A roundtable review - and other conversation - follows at a restaurant within short walking distance of the theatre.
The exact time and movie will be announced to Private Eyes members and guests. Membership is
free – sign-up with link below, by e-mail or on Facebook.
Remember to ask for “caption glasses” or caption devices at any movie theatre and thank them for the accommodation.
Sony describes the glasses as follows: “The glasses may be comfortably worn over prescription eyewear. The closed-caption viewing uses unique Sony holographic technology, which delivers bright, clear, and easy-to-read subtitles seemingly ‘in the air’.  The system transmits closed-caption data from a media server wirelessly to the glasses' receiver box, and can be programmed to display subtitles in a choice of six languages.
The Private Eyes Movie Club is open to anyone in the community to learn how Sony Captioned Glasses can improve your understanding of a film.
Glasses are
free with the purchase of your movie ticket.
HLAA Members are entitled to a
free movie ticket with their first outing with the Movie Club.

Those interested in the movie club should contact Anne Taylor ( to be included to the monthly movie club mailings. It is also important that you RSVP to Anne if you need to reserve a pair of caption glasses.
The December group saw “La La Land” and followed with a great meal and discussion.


Curtain Time Theater Club (Members Only)


The Chapter has confirmation for our 2017 Van Wezel tickets.

Each year, non-profits are given a block of tickets at a reduced rate. Our event will be “RHAPSODY AND RHYTHM”, a multimedia musical concert celebrating the music of George and Ira Gershwin on Wednesday, April 5, at 8:00 PM.
This is another advantage of our $35 annual membership and is a “Members Only” event.

Please leave your e-mail with Committee Chair Anne Taylor at 
and mail your check in the amount of $10 for each ticket for yourself and up to one guest to: Anne Taylor, 11651 Ashinga Ave., Venice, FL 34292.

An optional dinner prior to the show will be scheduled as well.     

The Players Theatre will be moving east in a few years and become the “Players Centre for the Performing Arts”. For now productions will continue at 838 N. Tamiami Trail.
The Theatre is in its 87th season and provides the Chapter with 20 to 25 tickets for the pre-opening show of each of its Broadway series productions.
The theatre is looped so you may sit back and hear every word clearly.

The next production is FOOTLOOSE and our tickets will be for March 21.

“Footloose” is a fast paced and exciting musical based on the 1984 film by the same name. The story involves an ordinary city teen transplanted into a conservative small town where dancing is forbidden and rock and roll is demonized. With original songs by Kenny Loggins, Tom Snow, Dean Pitchford, Eric Carmen, Sammy Hagar and Jim Steinmen, this show is a multiple Tony Award winner for Best Book, Best Original Score and Best Choreography. Songs include: “I’m Holding Out For A Hero,” “Footloose” and “Let’s Hear It For The Boy.

If you wish to attend “Footloose”, please leave your e-mail with Committee Chair Anne Taylor at Tickets are allocated on first response basis.  
If you use the box office in person,
thank them for the loop
If you attend a performance,
thank them for the loop



Between The Covers Book Club

The Chapter’s “Between the Covers” Book Club meets twice a year, Spring and Fall. The next meeting is tentatively scheduled for May 15 at 5:00 PM.
Katherine Bouton’s first book, “Shouting Won’t Help”, was a “Covers” selection several years ago. Her follow-up book, “Living Better with Hearing Loss”, is a practical guide to daily life with hearing loss, from the mildest to the most severe.
The book is available in all forms at

 Katherine was a writer and editor at the New York Times. She recounts:
“Hearing loss dominated my waking life. Every time someone said something to me that I couldn’t follow, every time I flinched at a loud noise, every time I couldn’t hear at the movies or the theater, every time I answered the phone and not only couldn’t tell who was calling but even whether the caller was male or female, I despaired … A transportation glitch, such as a stalled subway or a grounded plane, isn’t about being delayed or trapped or claustrophobic. It’s that I can’t hear what’s being said -- not only announcements, but even speculation from fellow passengers. I am often reduced to tears of frustration, and sometimes I panic, unable to ask for help -- because I can’t hear the answer or help myself”.
Familiar?  Live better - read the book! 




Copyright ©
Our mailing address is:
PO Box 48643
Sarasota, FL 34230

Email - Info@hlas@org
Listen Up HLAA-S monthly newsletter offers Education, Advocacy and Support for the 145,000 people with hearing loss in Sarasota and Manatee Counties. For more information visit or call 941-706-4312.  For comments or suggestions, contact editor Richard N. Williams at  Opinions expressed in “Listen Up” are those of the Editor or Author.  Mention of goods and services in articles or advertisements does not mean the Hearing Loss Association of America or the Hearing Loss Association of America-Sarasota Chapter endorses same nor should exclusion suggest disapprovaal