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Beginner ProTactile Workshop

Intended for interpreters with limited ProTactile experience and an interest in learning more about working with the DeafBlind community.

Sponsored by:

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Workshop Description

Interpretek is an approved RID Sponsor for Continuing Education Activities. This professional studies program is offered for 0.60 CEUs at the Little/None Content Knowledge Level.

This Beginner Protactile workshop aims to introduce interpreters to protactile. Facilitators will explain basic protactile concepts, analyze how distantism influences experiences, guide participants through hands-on practice of protactile interpretation, teach Prompt Adopt Touch, teach and practice co-navigation skills and discuss all seven protactile principles.

  • Educational Objectives:
    • Demonstrate the proper hand placement and use in protactile, and learn about different functions of speaking and listening hands
    • Reflect and assess on how Distantism influences our experiences
    • Examine all seven protactile principles through small group learning and discussions
    • Construct and create protactile sign language using objects, through Prompt Adopt Touch
    • Demonstrate and develop new meanings and processes through hands-on activities
    • Translate and interpret from one language to protactile language through various immersive experiences
    • Examine and explore the importance of CoNavigation skills in protactile interpreting


Rhonda Voight-Campbell

Image Description: A professional headshot of Rhonda smiling. Her hair is down, and she is wearing a blue shirt.
Rhonda Voight-Campbell is a DeafBlind Specialist for the New York DeafBlind Collaborative, a federally funded grant that provides technical assistance to improve services for DeafBlind children. Additionally, Rhonda is an adjunct faculty at Rochester Institute of Technology where she teaches undergraduate students the necessary skills to work with DeafBlind people. Rhonda’s journey encompasses being a DeafBlind mentor, raising two Deaf children and following the Protactile movement. Her time is spent interacting with many DeafBlind folks from all backgrounds and in different environments/platforms, such as at retreats, through direct training and on listservs.

Pronouns: she/her

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Hayley Broadway
Protactile Language Educator

Image Description: Hayley in sunglasses, smiling as she touches the arms of a circle of signers.
Known as the Community Nudger, her love of community work and teaching brings her joy.  She enjoys spending time with her teen boys and spouse, exploring ideas with friends and colleagues, and poetry.  Creating opportunities for DeafBlind teachers and DeafBlind students and sharing in that experience for more nurturing growth of Protractile language is one of her biggest joys.

white; she/her/hers/they

Tactile Impression: Wears fashionable, textured attire. Wiggles her fingers on you when she is deep in thought. When you talk to her, you feel a steady stream of taps and squeezes. Sometimes, when she is really excited, she slaps you. Engage at your own risk

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Roberto Cabrera
Protactile Language Educator

Image Description: Roberto smiling while signing
Roberto Cabrera is a second-generation DeafBlind, Queer, Dominican. He is known for his work as a vocational rehabilitation counselor, a community outreach specialist, a teacher, and a trainer. Roberto has been involved with various organizations at local, state and national level. He is a people person, and he loves spending his time with community led projects. Roberto has been a strong advocate for the quality of lifestyle in the community of choice.

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Jason Herbers
Protactile Language Educator

Image Description: Jaz playing Jenga
Jason ‘Jaz’ Herbers is a proud first graduate of Tactile Communications (TC), a DeafBlind-led Training Center in Seattle, Washington. He works remotely for TC, now based in Monmouth, Oregon, as a Recruiter and Advocate for DeafBlind consumers through state Vocational Rehabilitation agencies. Occasionally, he provides in-person one-to-one training, such as Braille Education, Adaptive Strategies (AS), Assistive Technology (AT), and Protactile at TC.

He is also a Protactile and CoNavigator Educator providing hands-on trainings across the country and teaching a DeafBlind Interpreting course at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College.

Before finding his passion in the DeafBlind community, he retired after 15+ years in the Information Technology field. His last position was Computer Support Team Leader at Gallaudet University, where he graduated in 1996. Currently, he lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, with his wife, Deanna, their two young adult children, and two furbabies.

white, male, he/him

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Leslie Silva-Kopek
Protactile Language Educator

Image Description: Lesley smiling while signing with Jelica
Lesley Silva-Kopec has a profound passion for the DeafBlind community.  Upon moving to NYC, she quickly became aware that DeafBlind events took place a couple times every year.  She enlisted with other DeafBlind people to participate to host more DeafBlind events. She is currently involved with the New York City Co-navigator project.

While growing up, both she and her DeafBlind sister did not have any support during their difficult transition from deaf to DeafBlind. It was an extraordinarily difficult journey for her and her sister.  Once Lesley and her DeafBlind husband met, and became more involved with other DeafBlind people Lesley was able to more easily make the transition in perceiving herself as a DeafBlind person.  Her personal journey as a in her acceptance of her DeafBlind identity led her to seek out, learn and live Protactile.
Currently, Lesley works with Touch Seeds, LLC.  Touch Seeds specializes in working with DeafBlind children and their families.
She currently lives in New York City with her husband and two dogs.  She enjoys meeting new people and exploring new experiences.

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For cancelations and refunds, please contact roc.office@interpretek.com.
• 100% 7 days before workshop
• 50% 48hrs before workshop
• 0% day of workshop

Please contact roc.office@interpretek.com for reasonable accommodations.

This event upholds non-discriminatory practices and encourages a learning environment of mutual respect and free from bias.