The Association of Late-Deafened Adults (ALDA) has awarded Ken Arcia, account manager for Arizona Relay Service (AZRS), with the Robert R. Davila ALDA Angel Award at its recent ALDAcon conference in Milwaukee. ALDA is an association that works to empower and unify individuals with hearing loss, regardless of age of onset. They strive to provide a stress-free environment where their members can communicate and support one another by sharing their unique experiences, challenges and coping strategies.
Each year at ALDA’s annual international conference, this award is presented to an individual who is actively involved within the late-deafened, the D/deaf and the hard of hearing communities. According to the leadership of the organization, Arcia has gone above and beyond these requirements.
“Apart from Ken’s 25 years as an active member within the relay service community, he has served as a past president, committee chair and member of the technology committee for ALDA,” said Sharaine Rawlinson Roberts, the individual who nominated Arcia. “He actively teaches others about relay services so that they can receive the full benefits from them. Most importantly, Ken is a friend to many and lives his life to the maximum, setting a great example for all of us.”
Arcia became deaf at the age of 21 due to Neurofibromatosis, Type 2 (NF-2). This hereditary illness led him to get involved with various deaf and hard of hearing organizations such as ALDA, the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) and DeafHope, a non-profit agency that provides services to Deaf women and their children who have experienced domestic and/or sexual violence.
“I look forward to the ALDAcon every year – I even plan my vacations around them. To have received this award is an incredible honor,” said Arcia. “I owe much of my success to ALDA and AZRS. Organizations like these provide me, and countless others, with a sense of community, opening doors to forms of communication that were once impossible.”
As account manager for AZRS, Arcia is responsible for providing education and training for the republic about the services AZRS provides. He works to raise awareness for the deaf, hard or hearing, deaf-blind and speech-disabled communities throughout the state.
About Arizona Relay
Arizona Relay Service (AZRS) is a public service provided by the State of Arizona and administered by the Arizona Commission for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing (ACDHH). AZRS makes communication by telephone easy, accessible, reliable and convenient for people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind, or have difficulty speaking. For more information, visit www.azrelay.org.