Deaf Asian People and
Organizations
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
National Asian Deaf Congress
Formed in 1994, NADC is a non-profit organization whose
mission is to define and address the cultural, political and social
issues experienced by the Asian Deaf Community. NADC is
strengthened by the diversity of its chapters and the members
within them, who come from various geographic regions and
generations and have a number of different languages,
religions, and cultures. NADC also strives to provide education,
empowerment, and leadership to its respective members and
chapters. NADC has seven chapters located in different regions
around the country to facilitate members a little closer to home.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Greater Washington Asian Deaf
Association
Developed in 1994, GWADA became the 1st
chapter of the NADC and serves Asian deaf and
hard-of-hearing individuals around the
Washington D. C. area. Through social activities
and monthly meetings, the GWADA attempts to
create cultural awareness within Asian culture,
Deaf culture, and the local community.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Bay Area Asian Deaf
Association
Developed in 1995, BAADA became the 2nd chapter of NADC,
advocating for and serving the needs of Asian people who are
Deaf and Hard of Hearing in the northern part of California,
near San Francisco. They promote important issues, enhance
recognition of achievement, and empower individuals to
develop self- esteem. Through various events such as the
Chinese New Year and Japanese Cherry Bloom Festival, the
BAADA attempts to enrich Asian Deaf traditions and culture
as well as promote and support the family and community.
BAADA will host the 2007 Conference of the National Asian
Deaf Congress in San Francisco from June 30 - July 4, 2007.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Other NADC Chapters
There are 3 other NADC Chapters which do
not have websites.
– The Asian Deaf Association of New England
was established on November 5, 1998 and is
located in Boston, Massachusetts.
– The Deaf of the Pacific Rim was established on
October 14, 1999 and is located in Honolulu,
Hawaii.
– The Chicagoland Asian Deaf Association was
established in August of 2000 and is located in
Chicago, Illinois.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Southern California Asian Deaf
Association
Originally established in September of 1999, the Los
Angeles Asian Deaf and Hard of Hearing Association
(LADHA) became the 4th chapter of NADC. The name
was changed to SCADA in 2003 when members were
coming from various locations in southern California.
“The mission of the SCADA is to encourage Asian
Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals to explore and
address cultural, educational, political, social, and
economical issues, such as upward mobility and equal
employment opportunities.” The organization helps the
Asian Deaf and Hard of Hearing community to share
and celebrate their history and traditions, become
empowered, develop their leadership potential,
promote collaborative relationships and alliances, and
foster networking.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Metropolitan Asian Deaf Association
MADA, was established in 2002, becoming the 7th and
most recent chapter of the NADC, serving the New York
and New Jersey area. It is an organization by, of, and for
Asian Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing men and women,
focusing on multiculturalism, advocacy, education and
outreach. Through workshops, social activities, and
community service projects, MADA’s goals are to
advocate, educate, and network within the Asian Deaf
Community.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Asian Deaf Women’s Association
The ADWA is a charity organization
which provides support for Asian
D/deaf women and mothers with
Deaf/Hard of Hearing children who
live in London. It was established in
1992 to encourage Asian D/deaf
women to become less isolated and
more independent. It assists women
to realize their full potential to lead
fulfilling lives. Supports include:
basic skills in math and English;
training courses in life, health and
personal skills; workshops; Deaf
awareness; cultural events; social
activities; peer support; and youth
services.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Asian Clubs on College
Campuses
Asian clubs are offered for students
at two of the main universities for
Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing
students. The Asian Deaf Club is
located at RIT (Rochester Institute
of Technology) and the Asian
Pacific Association is at Gallaudet
University in Washington D. C. The
clubs offer many events on these
campuses to raise awareness of
Asian culture, such as cookouts,
chopstick eating contests, Korean
movies, and learning Vietnamese
sign language. Both clubs have
been active for over 10 years and
hold meetings on campus open to
all students and faculty.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Asian American Deaf Church
They are a few churches set up around
the country focusing on the Asian Deaf
culture and many Asian churches that
offer services to the Deaf and Hard of
Hearing. There are a plethora of
different religious places of worship for
different ethnic background located all
across the US: Korean, Pilipino,
Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese.
Asian-American Deaf Church
Seoul Catholic Association for the Deaf
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Dr. Steven Chough
Dr. Steven Chough was born in South Korea and graduated
in 1950 from the Seoul National School for the Deaf and
immediately began teaching at the Taegu Christian School
for the Deaf and Blind. Dr. Chough is profoundly deaf and
is well known as the first deaf person in the United States to
obtain a Master’s of Science degree in social work. He
worked as a social worker in New Mexico, Texas, New York
City, Minnesota and Michigan, where he fought for the
advancement of deaf people such as rehabilitation,
counseling, and educational services. He then joined
Gallaudet University as teacher advisor, and administrator,
including Dean of Student Affairs. After retiring in 1997, he
has continued to teach at both Gallaudet University and
George Washington University, in Washington, D.C.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Elaine Kam
Elaine Kam was born and raised in Manila,
Philippines and became deaf when she
was a baby due to nerve damage. When
she was eleven years old, her entire family
moved to America. Elaine attended
Gallaudet University and became involved
in the Asian Pacific Association which led
her to be involved with the NADC. She
graduated in 2002 with a degree in Deaf
Studies and later entered the National
Asian Deaf Pageant, winning and
becoming Miss NADC from 2004-2007.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Fat Lam
Fat Lam grew up in Hong Kong,
China and became a carpenter
after becoming deaf at age 10. He
came to the United States to
attend Gallaudet University where
he received his bachelor’s degree.
He later received his master’s and
doctoral degree. He is currently a
math professor at Gallaudet
University. He has returned to
China a number of times to protest
for democracy.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Eiichi Mitsui
Eiichi Mitsui is Japanese and comes from a family of
potters. He graduated from the Kanazawa Arts and
Crafts University with a degree in ceramics. Eiichi
Mitsui and his wife, Nariko Mitsui, who are both deaf,
won the 2005 Laurent Clerc Cultural Fund (LCCF)
Edward Miner Gallaudet Award for “recognition of
national or international leaders for promoting the
well-being of deaf people”. Eiichi is well known for his
Kutani-style porcelain, a kind of painted pottery.
Kutani porcelain was made from about 1650-1700 in
Japan. “His works are excellent representations of
the characteristics of old Kutani”. He has donated a
collection of his works to the National Technical
Institute of the Deaf (NTID). He has a pottery
business in Japan that specializes in old Kutani-style.
The majority of people he hires are deaf and his wife
is in charge of the business aspect of the company.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Cynthia Plue
Cynthia Plue was born in Hawaii and is
of Chinese descent. She was Miss Deaf
Ohio from 1989-1991. She became the
president of the NADC from 2000-2004.
She is currently an assistant professor
at Northern Illinois University. She “is
primarily concerned with the history,
literacy, and policy issues of Deaf
Education. In addition, she is interested
in the culture, language, identity, and
technology access issues among the
Deaf community and related issues.”
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Amy Wong
Amy Wong was born deaf in Indonesia. It was
difficult to get good schooling there, but her
parents were able to find a tutor and her family
started learning ASL. She moved to Canada
when she was 11 and then to California when
she was 14. Amy Wong was the first AsianAmerican Miss Deaf America; she held that title
from 1998-2000. She is currently attending
California State University at Northridge and
majoring in Fine Arts and Animation and is an
ambassador for the National Association of the
Deaf. She would like to “pursue a career in the
art field, whether it’s related to movie
productions or book illustrations.”
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
John Yeh
John Yeh and his family moved from Taiwan in 1962,
when he was 15, so that he and his sister, who are both
deaf, could receive a better education. He received his
bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Gallaudet
University and then his master’s in computer science at
another college. He wanted to be a mathematics teacher
but faced many obstacles because he was deaf, and
therefore decided to found a software company with his
brother called Integrated Microcomputer Systems, Inc.
(IMS). IMS did very well and received many awards.
They sold the company in 1994, but two years later John
founded Viable Technologies, Inc., which offers real-time
captioning transcription services to deaf and hard-ofhearing students. He is also chairman of Webbynation
which is the parent company of deafbuy.com and
DeafNation. He has served on boards such as the
National Captioning Institute, the National Asian Deaf
Congress, and the National Deaf Business Institute.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Asian Sign Language
Each Asian country has it’s own sign language, many being very
different from each other. Each language is obviously used in that
specific country, but over time has been brought to America by
immigrants. Although they did not influence the development of
American Sign Language, many families continued to communicate
through their native sign language within their own homes or in small
groups. Many forms of different Asian Sign Language have specific
features that make them easy to distinguish from other forms of sign
language. For example, Chinese Sign Language uses wiggling fingers
as a formational element in many of its words and Korean Sign
Language uses handshape morphemes which function as a marker for
gender.
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
References
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National Asian Deaf Congress: http://www.nadc-usa.org/
Greater Washington Asian Deaf Association : http://www.gwada-metrodc.org/
Metropolitan Asian Deaf Association: http://www.mada-nynj.org/
Southern California Asian Deaf Association:
http://www.dcsofsd.org/community_resources/organizations/SCADA_brochure
3.pdf
 Bay Area Asian Deaf Association: http://www.baada.org/What.htm
 Elaine Kam: http://www.nadc-usa.org/elaine.html
 Asian Deaf Club at RIT: http://www.rit.edu/~adc/
Asian Deaf Women’s Association: http://adwa.uk.tripod.com/
 Amy Wong: http://www.deaflife.com/feature/amy_wong.html
 John Yeh: http://www.ntac.hawaii.edu/products/Vol5%20SuccessBriefs/SSBVol5-Iss01-JohnYeh.pdf
 Steven Chough: http://www.naswfoundation.org/pioneers/c/chough.htm
 Fat Lam: http://clerccenter.gallaudet.edu/WorldAroundYou/jan-feb98/fat.html
 Eiichi Mitsui http://artoncampus.rit.edu/artist/113/
 Cynthia Plue: http://www.nadc-usa.org/ex_officio.html
Summer 2005
Transition Services Preparation & Training
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Deaf Asians - People and Organizations