The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) has appointed Edward F. Ogiba of Sarasota, Fla, as its new director of chapter development. Ogiba is in charge of helping current chapters to grow and building new ones through strategic development, best practices, and leadership training. The post entails providing HLAA’s state organizations and chapters around the country with the direction and support they need to deliver the organization’s education, support, and advocacy services to open the world of communication for those with hearing loss.
Ogiba has a long career in leading the development of new products and advertising. He worked for many Fortune 500 companies, including as the president of Group EFO and as an account director at Ogilvy & Mather. Ogiba has served as president of the HLAA Sarasota chapter for the past 5 years, was the HLAA Florida state chapter coordinator, and a was board member of the HLAA Florida State Association for the last 2 years. He is entering his fifth year as a Board member of the Ear Research Foundation. In the last 5 years, the HLAA Sarasota chapter’s membership under Ed’s leadership has grown significantly, as the chapter has offered a wider range of new education and support services and a high-powered outreach program that has had the chapter averaging some 6 to 8 meetings and events in the community each month.
Ogiba has been a local advocate for hearing loops and has been instrumental in drawing in more than 100 local theaters, churches, and community venues in Southwest Florida to install hearing loops. The chapter was named Sarasota County’s “Best Cause” by SRQ Magazine in 2012, with Ed being pegged as the “Best Visionary.”
HLAA Executive Director, Anna Gilmore Hall, says, “HLAA is pleased to bring this kind of experience and expertise to our efforts to build robust, vibrant HLAA Chapters across the country. Because Ed comes from a chapter background, we know he will hit the road running.”
HLAA represents 48 million Americans with hearing loss by providing its members with the education, support and advocacy to live well with hearing loss. Many HLAA members profess that the organization and its many self-empowering programs have changed their lives, according to the organization. Ed Ogiba lost his hearing primarily due to a combination of military service and Ménière’s disease. He wears both a hearing aid and cochlear implant. He attests, “HLAA saved me from a life of isolation by introducing me to listening and communication skills as well as several assistive listening devices, all of which I desperately needed to return to a normal life and resume my career.”
Ed will join the HLAA national office on April 21st.