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Cheryl DeConde Johnson

Drawing upon her own experiences raising a daughter who is deaf, Cheryl DeConde Johnson’s life’s work has been assisting families on the same journey. Cheryl was an educational audiologist and program coordinator for the Greely, Colorado public school deaf and hard of hearing program. Cheryl is a former consultant with the Colorado Department of Education where she was responsible for deaf education and audiology services from 1998-2006. She co-authored the Educational Audiology Handbook, Hands & Voices Educational Advocacy Guidebook, as well as numerous other articles and book chapters. She has presented nationally and internationally on topics related to audiology and management issues in the school environment associated with children and youth who are deaf and hard of hearing as well as various topics in deaf education. Dr. Johnson has received numerous awards and recognitions for her work. Most recently she was honored by the Alumni Association of the University of Northern Colorado as the recipient of the 2006 Trailblazer Award, and by Phonak with the establishment of the Cheryl DeConde Johnson Award for Excellence in Educational Audiology.

Today, she is active as a consultant, program evaluator, writer, as well as a trainer for the National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE), and is a co-founder and past President of the Board of Directors for Hands & Voices. She is a lecturer in several AuD programs including the University of Colorado, Boulder, University of Northern Colorado, and Central Michigan University as well as adjunct faculty in the deaf education program at the University of Arizona.

Dr. Johnson’s special interests include promoting outcomes comparable to hearing peers for all children who are deaf and hard of hearing, communication access, and family involvement. For example, she has been instrumental in overseeing state Deaf and Hard of Hearing Student Education Plans, as in Minnesota and Washington.

Cheryl has championed transition from Part C to Part B, she is a founding mother of Families for Hands & Voices, she’s an expert on the use of technology, and she has developed an incredible amount of materials - it is endless.
--Christine Yoshinaga-Itano, PhD, University of Colorado Boulder, Professor of Audiology

In Colorado, Cheryl purchased OAE units for all the school districts whether they were located in frontier, rural or urban communities to ensure that any baby could receive a free hearing screen or rescreen. She served on our State Advisory Committee and worked tirelessly to pass infant hearing legislation. She has been instrumental in helping Colorado to reform deaf education beginning with early intervention. Nationally, Cheryl has been a leader in the field of parent support and promoting early identification of hearing loss.
--Vickie Thomson, PhD, Marion Downs Hearing Center Foundation, Program Director

Cheryl is innovative, brave, calm, persistent, determined, thoughtful, family focused, and outcomes driven. Cheryl is an inspiration to both fellow parents and fellow professionals.
-- Lisa Kovacs, Hands & Voices, Director of Programs