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Please note that our Tri-Cities office will be closed on Saturday, May 7, 2022.

COVID-19 update: Masks are still required inside all public indoor settings of Wavefront Centre locations. Learn more.

Wavefront Centre for Communication Accessibility

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About Wavefront Centre

Our Team

We’re proud of our Wavefront family!

Wavefront Centre embraces and values a diverse and inclusive work environment. Our staff come from a variety of different backgrounds, experiences and cultures. We have staff that are celebrating their 29th year with us, while some have just cleared the 6 month mark. The average employed years at Wavefront Centre is 15 years. Many of our longtime staff have seen each other through life’s milestones: marriage, babies, graduation, mid-life crises, conscious uncouplings. Upon arriving at Wavefront Centre, you will be greeted and served by our diverse and friendly staff. Clients often compliment us on the family feel of our workplace culture.

Senior Leadership Team

Christopher T. Sutton

Chief Executive Officer

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

I love to travel, anywhere where there is a beach, good food, wonderful people, relaxing book to read and where I can turn off from technology.  A recent milestone birthday I spent it in India and celebrated at the Taj Mahal and Fort Agra, it was an experience of a lifetime.


Video about Christopher

Christopher T. Sutton, MBA, was appointed to the position of Chief Executive Officer at Wavefront Centre for Communication Accessibility on April 1, 2020. Christopher has over 20 years of cross-functional and progressive management and leadership experience, working with some of the largest organizations serving people with disabilities in the United States and Canada. Christopher’s career has spanned across the not-for-profit, public and start-up sectors where he has worked in various leadership capacities in business development, fundraising, government and stakeholder relations, marketing and communications, and sales.

 

Christopher holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Gallaudet University, and a Master of Business Administration from the Ivey Business School at the University of Western Ontario, in addition to a number of professional certifications.

 

Christopher is a sought-after expert in issues related to accessibility, diversity and inclusion, and sits on several committees nationally and provincially.  As a member and founder of various consumer/industry working groups, Christopher has been successful in enhancing accessibility and inclusion for a broad range of audiences. In 2019, Christopher appeared before three parliamentary committees to advocate for the passage of Bill C-81: An Accessible Canada Act.

 

Christopher was born with a profound hearing loss and grew up using hearing aids; in 2008, to expand his communication options, he underwent surgery to obtain a cochlear implant. In his free time, Christopher volunteers with charities, mentors young adults, and assists smaller organizations with developing social enterprises. Christopher enjoys travelling, visiting beach destinations, biking, cooking, and reading.

 

Christopher was born in St. John’s, Newfoundland & Labrador and has lived in Washington, DC, Toronto and Ottawa, Ontario, before moving to Vancouver, BC in March 2020.

Janice Comeau

Interim Chief Financial Officer

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Ruth Warick

Director, Programs + Services

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Dr. Ruth Warick, a leader in the voluntary sector and an experienced manager, joins Wavefront Centre for Communication Accessibility as Director of Programs & Services. Dr. Warick has experience with strategic planning, program development and management, client needs assessment, program evaluation, and research. She is dedicated to the inclusion and accessibility of persons with disabilities, particularly those who are Deaf, Deafblind, and Hard of Hearing.

Dr. Warick was employed by the University of British Columbia (UBC) for more than 25 years and as a Senior Accessibility Advisor, she had responsibility for facilitating reasonable accommodations for students, staff, and faculty with disabilities; in particular, she coordinated the provision of American sign language (ASL)interpreting and captioning services. Her work was based on a framework of recognizing the intersectionality of people’s lives, including gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and identity as Indigenous people.

She served as Co-chair of the Adult Special Education –Services, Articulation Committee for the post-secondary sector in BC from 2004 – 2007 and Chair of the Diversity Initiative Project of the Association of Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) for her profession, from 2008 to 2011.

She has prior experience as Director, Staff Development/ Management Development for the Saskatchewan Public Service Commission; Director, Women’s Services Branch for Saskatchewan Advanced Education and Manpower, as Associate Professor and Coordinator of Professional Programs for the University of Regina’s Extension unit. Her first career was as a newspaper reporter.

Working as part of a team of university researchers, she was editor of the first evaluation report of the Medical Interpreting Services in 2000 and was author of the section on ASL interpreting and captioning.

Dr. Warick’s innovations include being a founder of a services agency for Deaf and hard of hearing persons in Saskatchewan, being a founding member of the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association, and establishing an award-winning Seniors’ Education Centre at the University of Regina. She established the first development projects on education, employment, and healthcare of hard of hearing people for the International Federation of Hard of Hearing People of which she is currently President.

She also serves the international cross-disability movement as the First Vice-President of the International Disability Alliance, which interfaces with the United Nations on implementing the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. She has been involved in leadership positions in IDA since 2006.

Dr. Warick, who has a severe hearing loss, has a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of British Columbia. She was awarded a Graduate Scholarship from the Social Sciences Humanities Research Council of Canada, 1999/2000, for her thesis research on the post-secondary experiences of hard of hearing students. She received a Service excellence award from the Disability Resource Network of BC in 2009, and a UBC President’s Award of Excellence in Diversity in 2012. ​

Hugh McCormack, RAUD

Director, Clinical Operations + Social Enterprise

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Hugh McCormack, RAUD obtained his master’s degree in Audiology from Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, and his bachelor’s degree in Media Technology from the University of Limerick. Hugh also holds a Certificate in Business Studies from Cork Institute of Technology. Upon completion of his MSc, Hugh worked as a Clinical Audiologist with the NHS in Edinburgh before joining the Auditory Implant Centre in Belfast where he specialized in cochlear implants and bone conduction devices. In 2018 Hugh moved to Vancouver and joined Cochlear as the Clinical Territory Manager for Western Canada. In this role Hugh provided training and support to Audiologists and Surgeons as well as developed and implemented sales plans and strategies for the territory. Hugh was born in Ireland and has worked in Audiology in the UK, USA, and Canada. 

Ruth Blackburn

Executive Assistant + Facility Manager

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What is your favourite thing about working at Wavefront Centre?

 

Being able to hear about all the amazing ways the staff here are able to help someone.


I have worked at the Wavefront Centre for over 15 years. Before I was a staff member, Wavefront touched my life in many ways – as a Child of Deaf Parents (CODA), I saw the many ways Wavefront helped my parents, and helped me to be able to enjoy my time as a kid. I have a varied background in administration, design and facility management and am grateful to be able to give back to a community I care so deeply for.

Sergio De Leon

Manager, People + Culture

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Administration + Finance

Gary Rollins

Financial Analyst + Interim Controller

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What is the most inspiring part of your job?

 

The challenge of rebuilding the finance department and building new processes to make the department the best it has ever been! Also love the working relationships with my colleagues.


I have served many years in the accounting profession and have worked in various industries including food brokerage, not for profit, telecommunications and more. I thrive on looking after my health and have ran in several marathons and half marathons, hope to resume my racing again this year!

Greg Gaumont

Audit Project Manager

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Matthew Day

Front Desk Receptionist

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What is your favourite thing about working at Wavefront Centre?

 

My favourite thing about working for the Wavefront Centre is simply knowing that my work, as part of the team, helps people. I’ve always wanted to have a job that has a clear positive impact in the lives of the people around me and I hope I can continue to do this type of work for a very long time. 


Born and raised in several cities in the Lower Mainland I’ve always been interested in art and subcultures. I’ve tried my hand as a skateboarder, a graphic designer, a carpenter, a photographer, and even a forklift operator. After my time at the Wavefront Centre I hope to become an ASL interpreter and hopefully will be able to work with the Centre in that capacity.

Elena Grigorieva

Accounting Clerk

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

I’d have to say mine was 2 years ago when I went to Barcelona, Spain. I was there for about two weeks and it was by far the most amazing trip of my life!


I am an organized, responsible  and hard working person person who really enjoys travelling to places with different cultures, because it forces you to think about your own.

Sharon Miller

Accounting Clerk

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

A trip to Cancun so many years ago.


At the age of two and a half years old, I was diagnosed with a severe sensorineural hearing loss in both ears and have been wearing hearing aids ever since. When I say I understand, I really mean I understand. I have faced similar struggles on a daily basis and find inspiration by serving others. I have had the good fortune to work with the audiology, communications and counselling departments over my long tenure at Wavefront Centre. Each client shares their struggles and gains knowledge to overcome challenges with communicating with colleagues, family, and friends. I love learning about new technologies and services that are available to pave a gentler road in the world of accessibility and connectivity.

External Engagement + Strategic Initiatives

Janee Yang

Manager, Marketing + Communications

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What is the most inspiring part of your job?

 

Being able to push through meaningful initiatives with my marketing and communication skills to help building accessible communities without communication barriers.


My experience in marketing and communications ranges from public services to technology and creative advertising. The mission of marketing to me is to inspire people with the stories of a better world. My passion for the non-profit sector derives from the time when I used to work on public sector’s campaigns, advocating equality and inclusion. It motivates me every time when given the opportunity to promote all of these meaningful services and initiatives to more audiences and share the various ways to be inclusive.

Hearing Clinics

Maxine Dominelli

Audiology Administrative Supervisor + Audiometric Technician | Quebec Street

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

Camping – Green Lake, Beautiful B.C.


I LOVE to Camp, especially off the grid – the less modern technology, the better.

I grew up with a profound hearing loss – my daughter was 21 years old when I heard her voice for the first time with the aid of a Cochlear implant. Since then, I love to be in nature and listen to the sounds of water, birds chirping and raindrops falling. Time away from technology leaves me refreshed, rejuvenated and grateful for the gift of hearing. At Wavefront Centre, I’m fortunate to work with the Audiology Drop-in Program. I clean hearing aids, troubleshoot and do minor repairs. I love client work and find myself inspired each day by clients’ stories of living with hearing loss.

Tina Saiki, M.Sc., Aud(C), RAUD, RHIP

Registered Audiologist + Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Willow

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What is your favourite thing about working at Wavefront Centre?

 

I work with great people! I cannot do my job without the amazing support from everyone I work with. Not only are they great at what they do, they are genuinely super nice people!


I have worked as an Audiologist for almost 27 years; over 18 of these years have been with Wavefront Centre. When I am not working, my favorite escape is to be hiking to remote glacier lakes or stand-up paddling in the ocean.

Hanna Smith, M.Sc., Aud(C), RAUD, RHIP

Registered Audiologist + Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Quebec Street

Contact Hanna

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What is your favourite food?

 

Impossible question! I love food and am notoriously NOT a picky eater, which I credit to my time living in a dorm room.


I grew up in Edmonton, Alberta but am proud to call myself a Vancouverite since moving to this beautiful city in 2010. The best part of my job as an audiologist is when clients and their families tell me how much better they can communicate after coming to Wavefront. I enjoy getting to know people from all walks of life and hearing their stories – I look forward to meeting you too!

Goska Macior-Headrick, M.Sc., Aud(C), RAUD, RHIP

Registered Audiologist + Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Quebec Street

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

Camping in Iceland


I graduated from the program of Audiology and Speech Sciences at the University of British Columbia in 2011. I worked at BC children’s hospital and Miracle Ear Canada for 7 years prior to joining the Wavefront Centre in 2018.

 

I am certified in Tinnitus Retraining Therapy and have been providing treatment for tinnitus and decreased sound tolerance.

 

As a Clinical Instructor with UBC School of Audiology and Speech Sciences, I provide training to audiology students.

 

Outside of work, I enjoy reading on diverse subjects, birding, and doing outdoor sports.

Yiwan Woo, M.Sc., Aud(C), RAUD, RHIP

Registered Audiologist + Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Tri-Cities

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

Peru


I started my audiology career in the East Kootenay, providing comprehensive hearing health care in remote areas of BC. A few years later I moved back home, striving to continue empowering those who come through the agency. When I am not in the clinic, I can be found on a yoga mat, behind a camera, or on a trail.

Randi Fraser, M.Cl.Sc., RAUD, RHIP

Registered Audiologist + Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Quebec Street

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What is your favourite thing about working at Wavefront Centre?

 

Working with such an amazing and collaborative team!


I grew up on the east coast in Nova Scotia and graduated from the audiology program at the University of Western Ontario in 2020. After graduation I made my way to the west coast. I am thrilled to be a part of Wavefront and to help people reach their communication goals. When I am not working, you can find me on the ski slopes or exploring new hikes that Vancouver has to offer!

Nina Perisic, M.Sc., Aud(C), RAUD, RHIP

Registered Audiologist + Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Quebec Street

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What is your favourite thing about working at Wavefront Centre?

 

Having the chance to work with such great people! All of the staff at Wavefront inspire me everyday to be the best clinician I can be.


I was born in Croatia and moved with my parents to Canada when I was five years old. Growing up, I would spend most of the year on Vancouver Island, going to school and enjoying all the beauty of the West Coast, and in the summer, I would go back to Croatia to spend time on the Adriatic coast and enjoy quality time with my extended family. I was truly lucky to have the best of both worlds. Clinically, I believe in a patient-centered and collaborative hearing healthcare model and I enjoy helping my patients achieve all their hearing health goals.

David Brooks

Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Tri-Cities

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Ling Ling Yin

Hearing Instrument Practitioner | Tri-Cities

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Michelle Rondeau

Audiometric Technician | Quebec Street

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

I went to Australia for a year, and it was amazing!


I grew up with a sister who is hard of hearing, and who has worked at Wavefront Centre for longer than I have! Actually, my interest in audiology developed when I took over her Saturday receptionist duties when she became an audiologist at Wavefront Centre in 2013. My favourite part about working here is the diverse, inclusive, and passionate people, both staff and clients, that I learn new and valuable things from every day.

Cheri Nigut

Client Services Coordinator | Tri-Cities

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What is your favourite thing about working at Wavefront Centre?

 

Working at Wavefront has given me the skills to help people to hear better. Our clients are some of the best people I have ever met. I am also thankful for the wonderful people I get to work with.


I grew up in North Vancouver and moved to Vancouver Island where I worked and raised my children for almost 20 years. I moved back to the mainland to be closer to my large family and to find more opportunities for my children. Best decision I’ve ever made.

 

Melody Sawad

Client Services Coordinator | Quebec Street

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Janel Watson

Client Services Coordinator | Willow

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Jeremy Chai

Saturday Client Services Coordinator | Tri-Cities

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Paul Chalkman

Client Services Coordinator | Willow

Contact Paul

Sheena Chandarana

Client Services Coordinator | Quebec Street

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Marina Estrella

Client Services Coordinator | Quebec Street

Contact Marina

Accessible Communication Services

Rytch Newmiller, M.S.W.

Manager, Accessible Communication Services
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What is your favourite food?

 

Ahi Tuna Poke


 I have worked in many Deaf and Hard of Hearing non-profit organizations over the course of 27 years and I had the pleasure of beginning my work at Wavefront Centre in 2008. I later left for Alberta to complete my Masters in Social Work at University of Calgary.  In 2020, I returned to Wavefront Centre to join the Counselling Services team. I am pleased to be living back in Vancouver with my partner; we love to travel around the world and being with our family of 4 kids and 2500 indigenous relatives from Bella Bella, B.C.. I am well known in the Deaf community and I’m always available to volunteer and have been for 31 years. It’s good to be back at Wavefront Centre to continue to serve Deaf and hard of hearing individuals to thrive and succeed with communication accessibility.

Cindy Haner

Staff Interpreter / Manager, Interpreter Training + Development

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

Kenya – Beyond beautiful and seeing so many of the animals in the wild was amazing


I became a Registered Sign Language Interpreter in 2006. I love the field and the people I work with and for.  In my spare time, my husband and I spend our time outdoors hiking the local mountains and kayaking.

Suzie Giroux

Staff Interpreter / Project Manager

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What is the most inspiring part of your job?

 

The most inspiring part of my job is to see the growth in awareness for providing accessible communication to the citizens of our province, our country, and our world. I am honoured to be a part of that access and to be able to contribute in the ways which I do. 


A graduate of the program of Sign Language Interpretation at Douglas College, I have been interpreting for 28 years. I hold a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts in Leadership, as well as a Bachelor of Science in Sign Language Interpreting. I have a long history with Wavefront Centre for Accessible Communication, having done one of my practicum placements with the organization when I was in school. It is great to be now working at a place that feels so much like home and with a community and coworkers who feel like family.

Chandler Baer

Booking Coordinator

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Community Outreach Services

Tammy Gray

Interim Manager, Community Outreach Services + Better at Home Program Coordinator

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What is your favourite food?

 

Anything potatoes except sweet potatoes


I am a strong supporter of seniors and Deaf-Blind persons in our shared community and honoured to be their ally. At Wavefront Centre, I feel empowered by working with Deaf and Deaf-blind seniors to improve their lives. I am proudly Deaf and use American Sign Language.

Joy Borgonia, B.A. Com.

Employment Placement Specialist

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

Petra and Wadi Rum, Jordan


I have an extensive background in disability management and rehabilitation and am passionate about helping people with disabilities. It has been a great and rewarding adventure!

At Wavefront Centre I assist hard of hearing clients find sustainable employment, as an Employment Placement Specialist. I am also hard of hearing and working with clients with same disability makes me feel that I am not alone. It is about courage, determination and overcoming challenges like adversity, stigma and prejudice. Outside of work and household chores, you can find me hiking, trekking mountains and running. I love the outdoors and I’m ready to beat Forrest Gump in running. Run Joy Run….

 

Olav Naas, P.Eng. (Non-Practising)

Employment Placement Specialist

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What is the most inspiring part of your job?

 

Teaching the people the proper steps to choosing a career.


Born and raised in Vancouver, I am an active volunteer in the Deaf Sports community, playing golf casually and travelling abroad with my wife, Alessandra. Before joining Wavefront Employment Services, as trained as a Civil Engineer, I worked as a CAD Designer with extensive experience in infrastructure works. Being a self-starter collaborating with the Outreach associates in a team environment, I excel in building professional relationships with the people seeking assistance in an employment search.

Darshan Kaur

Senior Client + Volunteer Outreach Liaison

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If you could interview anyone (dead or alive) who it be, and why?

 

Helen Keller. Braving limitations, Helen devoted her life to uplifting humanity as an activist, teacher and author. If I could communicate with Helen, I would ask her about her mum, Katherine & teacher, Anne. Katherine wanted to educate her daughter and Anne did that well. These wonderful women transformed the Deaf and the DeafBlind world forever. 


Working with the Deaf community has been an enriching journey since the 1980s. After learning ASL, I volunteered with the Self Reliant Centre for the Deaf at the YMCA in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Whenever I wasn’t working with the media, I spent my free time with my friends who were Deaf. This amazing experience took me to Cheju Island in South Korea – my first Hard of Hearing Camp and also hiking with the YMCA’s Seniors Deaf Club in the foothills of the Himalayas, in Nepal. The highlight of my volunteer experience was attending the Deaf Way II conference in Gallaudet University (GU) in 2002. The Malaysia delegation had the privilege to meet Dr. King Jordan, the first Deaf president of GU. And, working at Wavefront Centre I get to indulge in my passion daily, sign language! 🙂           

  

Ryan Ollis

DeafBlind Coordinator

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What is your favourite food?

 

Ice Cream & Pasta


I am Deaf and legally blind was born and raised in Vancouver, BC. I have a passion for running and I’ve been involved in the Deaflympics for track and field in Rome and also in the Pan American Games for the blind. Now, after several ankle injuries, I’ve decided to retire from running. 

I’ve  worked in a variety of settings, including as an American Sign Language (ASL) instructor.  I’ve also worked in the community as a support worker and peer support worker, promoting independence for people with developmental disabilities or supporting mental health.  At my job here at Wavefront Centre,  I get to use my passion for working in the DeafBlind field as the DeafBlind program coordinator in hopes of improving accessibility for the DeafBlind community. In my free time, I enjoy nature, meeting new people and socializing, watching movies and travelling whenever there is an opportunity.

Gillian Pettitt

DeafBlind Intervenor

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Lindsay Collins

DeafBlind Intervenor

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What is the most inspiring part of your job?

 

Seeing the difference or impact that DeafBlind intervenors provide to the DeafBlind community.


I’m 32, recently connected with my father’s half of my family and discovered most were ranging from Hard of Hearing to Deaf. Found that interesting as I also recently completed the ASL and Deaf Studies Program at VCC. Future plans include attending George Brown to become a Certified Deafblind Intervenor and to become a Certified Sign Language Interpreter by attending Douglas College.

Angelou Dalys

DeafBlind Intervenor

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Janno Lim

Program Assistant + Project Coordinator

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

Last 2018, I went to the Netherlands with my hard-of-hearing friends to attend the international summer camp for the deaf and hard-of-hearing young adults ages 18 to 35. It was an amazing, memorable experience learning about the deaf and hard-of-hearing international community and making new friends from around the world.


I was born profoundly deaf and I got my cochlear implant on my right ear when I was three years old. I grew up in the Philippines and I moved to Canada when I started university ten years ago. I have worked and volunteered in various fields, ranging from retail logistics to youth community service. One of my most exciting experiences was teaching the deaf and hard-of-hearing children. My vision is to create an inclusive community that is accessible for everyone. During my free time, I enjoy learning languages including American Sign Language (ASL), cooking new recipes, swimming and relaxing on the beach during summer.

 

Communication Devices + Solutions

Porson Lee

Manager, CDP Sales + Solutions

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Community Research Program

Dr. Brenda Poon, PhD, MEd

Senior Research Fellow, Wavefront Centre for Communication Accessibility

Assistant Professor, School of Population & Public Health Faculty of Medicine, UBC

Contact Brenda

 

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What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

 

Italy was fantastic – The food, wine, culture, people we met… can’t wait to go back!


I am a researcher who thrives when exploring ways to create knowledge that helps mobilize community action. I am curious by nature and very interested in ways to promote healthy communities! Drawing from my educational background in Deaf and Hard of Hearing Studies, and Population and Public Health, I’d like to explore ways that people and organizations build bridges and relationships with one another to collectively support healthier societies that are accessible to all. At Wavefront Centre, I’m so excited to be part of the development of its new research program and look forward to seeing it grow!

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