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Keynote Speakers

Beth Benedict

Beth S. Benedict, Ph.D.

Dr. Benedict is a professor at the Department of Communication Studies at Gallaudet University, and is also the coordinator of Gallaudet's Deaf and Hard of Hearing Infants, Toddlers, and Families: Collaboration and Leadership Interdisciplinary Graduate Certificate Program.  She has published numerous articles and is a widely sought after lecturer on diverse topics including early intervention, early language acquisition, and family involvement.

Dr. Benedict is currently the chair of the Joint Committee on Infant Hearing and representing the Council on Education of the Deaf.  Dr. Benedict was the president of the American Society for Deaf Children (ASDC) from 2007 to 2011. ASDC is the oldest organization of, by, and for parents of deaf and hard of hearing children (www.deafchildren.org).   In 2010, she received the prestigious Antonia Brancia Maxon Award for EHDI Excellence at the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention conference in Chicago, Illinois along with numerous awards.

Dr. Benedict holds a Ph.D. degree in education from Gallaudet University, a master's degree in education counseling from New York University, and a bachelor's degree from Gallaudet in psychology. She is also a proud alumna of the Maryland School for the Deaf.

Visit Beth Benedict's website 



Dr. Tom Humphries

Tom Humphries, Ph.D.

Tom Humphries is an Associate Professor in Education Studies and the Department of Communication at the University of California, San Diego. He is Vice Chair of the Department of Education Studies. He has published two widely used ASL textbooks, Learning American Sign Language (Allyn & Bacon, 2004) and A Basic Course in American Sign Language (TJ Publishers, 1980).   He is co-author (with Carol Padden) of Deaf in America:  Voices from a Culture (1988) and Inside Deaf Culture, both from Harvard University Press as well as numerous papers, including the recently published “Deaf in the time of the cochlea” (JDSDE, 2011).  He is a member of the Gallaudet University Board of Trustees.  He was recently awarded the Henry Trueba Award for research leading to the transformation of social context of education by the American Educational Research Association.


Visit Tom Humphries' website



Dr. Carol Padden

Carol Padden, Ph.D

Carol Padden is professor of Communication and Associate Dean in the Division of Social Sciences at UCSD. She studies emerging sign languages in various parts of the world including in Israel and Turkey. She has written numerous academic and popular articles about sign language grammars. With Tom Humphries, she is the co-author of four books on language and culture of Deaf people in the United States. Her work has been supported by the U.S. Department of Education, the Spencer Foundation, the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health. In 2010, she was named a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Fellow.

Visit Carol's personal website

Visit her UC San Diego page