Oticon Inc has announced the 2013 recipients of the Oticon Focus on People Awards, which honor outstanding individuals who prove that hearing loss does not limit a person’s ability to live a full, productive, and even inspiring life.

This is the second year that Oticon has invited the public to cast their votes to help determine who among the 12 finalists would be first, second, and third place winners in the Adult, Student, Practitioner, and Advocacy categories. More than 10,000 votes were cast by people from across the country and around the world.

“By empowering people to add their voices to selection of the winners, we aim to expand awareness of the program and its mission and inspire people with the remarkable stories of our finalists,” explains Oticon President Peer Lauritsen. “Our goal is to show that hearing loss does not limit a person’s ability to achieve and contribute to their families, their communities, and the world and to motivate people to seek professional care to address their own hearing health.”

Two of the four first place winners, Tina Childress and David Myers, are both frequent contributers to The Hearing Review.

The 2013 award winners will be honored in May at a special awards ceremony at Oticon’s US headquarters. The first place winners are:

Oticon people Sgt opt
Joseph Molinari (Adult Category) – This veteran police officer is determined to show that addressing his hearing loss strengthens his ability to serve the community and his fellow officers. His renewed confidence on the job and willingness to stand up to hearing loss is already changing perceptions.
Oticon People Kristen Lee Inman
Kristin Lee Inman (Student Category) – Seventeen-year-old Kristin reports that her hearing loss has opened doors to new experiences and created numerous opportunities for her to contribute. The high school senior is ranked first in her class, plays six instruments and varsity tennis, dances, holds a part-time job, and is a youth board member for the United Way.
Oticon People TinaChildress Ed AuD opt
Tina Childress, MA, CCC-A (Practitioner Category) – Tina is a respected educational audiologist and a cochlear implant outreach specialist and trainer. She uses her Internet savvy to expand access to the considerable online support available to people with hearing loss through her blog, Getting from There to Hear and her popular App List for Kids (and Adults) with Hearing Loss.
Oticon People David Myers PhD
David Myers, PhD (Advocacy Category) – A Hope College social psychologist and author of A Quiet World: Living with Hearing Loss, David is the creator of www.hearingloop.org, an invaluable resource on induction-loop systems that broadcast sound directly to hearing aids and cochlear implants. He is quick to share the credit for the rapid acceleration of the national hearing loop movement with the entire community of hearing advocates.

In addition to a $1,000 prize, first place winners received a $1,000 donation from Oticon Inc to the non-profit organization of their choice. First place winners in the Adult, Student, and Advocacy categories also received a pair of advanced technology Oticon hearing instruments.

There are also eight second and third place winners in the program’s four categories:

Mallory Chua of West Lafayette, Ind
Rocky Bernard of Beavercreek, Ohio

Ellie Guiliani of Plymouth, Mass
Darius Toney of Baltimore, Md

Tabitha Parent-Buck, AuD, of Mesa, Ariz
Saleem Assaf of Austin, Tex

Patrick Holkins of Tucson, Ariz
Nicholas Fina of Newark, Del

To read the stories of all 12 of the 2013 Oticon Focus on People Awards winners, visit www.oticonusa.com.

SOURCE: Oticon