What is the UPBC?

The purpose of the organization is to create a climate of opportunity for blind children in home, school and society; to provide information and support to parents of blind children; to facilitate the sharing of experiences and concerns among parents of blind children; to develop and expand resources available to parents and their blind children; to help parents of blind children gain understanding and perspective through partnership and contact with blind adults; and to function as an integral part of the National Federation of the Blind and the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children in their ongoing efforts to eliminate discrimination and prejudice against the blind and to achieve for the blind security, equality and opportunity.

The membership is open to parents of blind children, educators of blind children and others interested in promoting the purposes of this organization.

We are a division of the National Federation of the Blind which is the largest organization of the blind in the country. Refer to: http://www.nfb.org/

Utah Parents of Blind Children is a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization

Sunday, September 9, 2012

IEP Workshop

Utah Parents of Blind Children
IEP Workshop

Saturday, September 29, 2012
9:30am – 3:00pm
LOCATION:  Division of Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired (DSBVI)
  250 North 1950 West, Salt Lake City
Child Care will be provided!
For registration please complete and return the Registration form by Friday, September 21, 2012.

Completed forms may be returned to:



477 E. Truman Avenue
South Salt Lake, UT 84115

Special Guests:
Carlton Anne Cook Walker works as a Teacher of Students with Blindness/Visual Impairment in four school districts, holds National Certification Literary Braille (NCLB), and lives in Boiling Springs, PA.  She is also a licensed attorney who maintains a small solo practice and provides legal representation for several local governments.
Carlton has made presentations on special education advocacy for blind children to parents, educator sand attorneys since 2007 in seven states.  She has also provided one-on one help to parents with IEP-related questions and has contributed to the development of national publications in the areas of law and education.
Carlton serves as President of the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children (NOPBC), as a Volunteer Field Representative for the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), and as a Board member for the Pennsylvania Parents of Blind Children (PaPOBC), for the National Captioning Institute (NCI) Advisory Group, and for the Advisory Committee for the Blind of Pennsylvania (ACBP).

Carlton and her husband, Steve, are the parents of 11 year old Anna Catherine, a braille reader and cane user.  They have two adult children, Ken and Stephanie.
Rebecca Turley has been a Parent Consultant and Trainer for the Utah Parent Center since 2007.  She helps parents who have children of ALL disabilities find information, resources and supports in their communities.  Rebecca presents workshops for the Utah Parent Center including IEP, Transition, Section 504 and Positive Behavioral Supports.  Rebecca also serves as the Statewide Volunteer Coordinator for the IEP Coach Program, and the Family to Family Support Group Network. Rebecca understands the importance of systems change and currently serves on several committees including the Utah Special Education Advisory Panel and the Disability Support Council for the LDS church. Rebecca is married with two children and has a 17 year old daughter with several severe disabilities.  Her husband Mark is legally blind and is the Salt Lake Chapter President for the National Federation of the Blind.
Hollie Murdock: Director, Educational Resource Center/USIMAC Programs at the
Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind

Monday, July 2, 2012

Annette Newbold Honored

On Friday, May 18, 2012 Annette Newbold was presented with the Marla Palmer Award for her dedication to the education of and her love for our children. The award presentation took place at the National Federation of the Blind of Utah State Convention.

Annette began her career with the Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind in 1972. After teaching for three years she took a brief hiatus but returned to USDB in 1983 where she continues to teach today. For over 30 years she has taught our children it’s respectable to be blind. She has given them confidence.  Like us in the NFB she believes that Braille is an essential ingredient to helping our children to be successful. She has loved them as if they were her own.

In 2010 Annette took two weeks out of her summer to teach at the BELL (Braille Enrichment for Literacy and Learning) Program. This was her third summer ensuring that those who need her help get it.

The Marla Palmer Award was created by the Utah Parents of Blind Children in honor of Marla's decade of service and countless hours spent helping to ensure our children receive the services they need and deserve. This award is presented to those individuals who exemplify these same attributes.

Thank you Annette for teaching and loving our children.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

NFB of Utah 2012 Annual State Convention

National Federation of the Blind of Utah
2012 Annual State Convention
“Individually, we are one drop.
Together, we are an ocean!”
(NFB: A Vehicle for Collective Action)

May 17, 18 and 19, 2012
Red Lion Hotel
161 West 600 South, Salt Lake City

Utah Parents of Blind Children Convention Highlights    
A Division of the National Federation of the Blind of Utah
Register online:  www.nfbutah.org
Must pre-register no later than May 15th to receive the steeply discounted meals which start at $7 per meal. If you miss the deadline, parents are still more than welcome to come and listen, but meals will not be available.

In addition to the NFB Utah general convention sessions and Saturday evening Banquet, please join us for the following events:

Thursday, May 17th

5:30pm – 7:45pm – Family Dinner Meeting for Utah Parents of Blind Children

Cost: $10 per person over the age of 12; Children 12 and under free (sign up when registering for the Convention)

Agenda will include:

      We will have the pleasure of hearing from Mary Jo Hartle, former Director of Education of the National Federation of the Blind Jernigan Institute
      Time for parents to share experiences both positive experiences and challenges with the education of your blind child(ren)
      Descriptive movie and activities for kids
      Information about the National Federation of the Blind 2012 Convention July 3-8 in Dallas, Texas

Friday, May 18th 

  • Afternoon - Project STRIVE video presentation
  • Hear about the Braille Education Literacy and Learning (BELL) Program
  • Evening – Project STRIVE meet the board dinner

Saturday, May 19th

We will be having one breakout session this year. This will be offered Saturday morning and will include the UPBC Board Elections.

Also available: Many free Braille children’s books, IEP help materials, other informational brochures

Child Care:  Child care will be provided Thursday evening. A stipend will be available to anyone requiring child care to support your attendance at the Friday and Saturday sessions. Please contact UPBC President Julie Ledford at 801-455-3934 or upbcmail@gmail.com if you need a child care stipend.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

2012 NFB BELL Program

2012 NFB BELL ProgramRiley Phelps of the Utah BELL session smiles next to his Braillewriter.
Braille Enrichment for Literacy and Learning

When: June 11-22, 2012

Where: USDB Salt Lake Campus, 1655 E. 3300 S., Salt Lake City

Description: The goal of this program is to provide children ages 4-12** with two weeks of beginning Braille instruction through fun, hands-on learning and activities. The program is designed to run Monday through Friday for approximately 5 hours. With the addition to crafts, games, and other engaging projects, children may also enjoy field trips to sites related to the BELL curriculum. The BELL Program is in it's 3rd year in Utah. Past participants, parents, and instructors are open to share their experience if you would like more information.

**In order to provide quality services, this program will be limited to a maximum of 10 students. Parents will be notified by BELL Program Directors by April 30, 2012 if your child has been accepted into the program.

Please click here for to complete the application.

Should you have any questions please contact Wendy Bybee at wendy@thebybees.net.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Equal Work for Equal Pay - Washington Seminar 2012

"The Washington Seminar is an annual event of the National Federation of the Blind to introduce the agenda of blind Americans--the priority issues requiring congressional attention over the coming year. The issues are selected from official positions of the Federation and may address concerns in the following areas: relevant civil rights issues; educational programs and services. Approximately three legislative initiatives are chosen for priority attention during the Washington Seminar." (nfb.org)

This year NFB of Utah had approximately 20 members attend Washington Seminar. They spent five days in our Nation's Capital learning about the history of our land as well as sharing their thoughts and feelings regarding equality with our Senators and Congressmen.

This years issues presented were:
  1. The Fair Wages for Workers with Disabilities Act of 2011: Stop Discrimiation and Promote Equal Work and Equal Pay (http://www.nfb.org/images/nfb/SI/Fair%20Wages%20for%20Workers%202012.pdf)
  2. The Home Appliance Accessibility Act: End the Digital Divide (http://www.nfb.org/images/nfb/SI/Home%20Appliance%20Accessibility%20Act%202012.pdf)
  3. The Americans with Disabilities Business Opportunity Act: Help Unleash the Entreprenurial Capabilities of Individuals with Disabilities (http://www.nfb.org/images/nfb/SI/Americans%20with%20Disabilities%20Business%20Opportunity%20Act%202012.pdf)

Along with the visits to Capitol Hill there was a two day meeting for our parent leaders. This workshop is called the Parent Leadership Program.

Here are some thoughts from two of the attendees on their experience at Washington Seminar:


My name is Jerry Phelps, I had the pleasure to attend the Parent Leadership Program In Washington D.C. I have to say the program was such an eye opener. It was an amazing experience to learn more about the NFB and The parent programs across the United States. I learned a lot abut the IEP process that I was not aware of. I look forward to learning more because like so many parents I always feel like I am not a part of the team but that will change. I
was amazed at the speakers that came through our program and gave us insight to not only the issues we were there to discuss but to change my perspective. I have always told my boys that they would never drive but I learned that anything thing is possible if you but your mind to it. I cannot place limitations on my kids nor can I stand by and let society do the same. I look
forward to being more involved in the NFB and help to build a stronger program here in Utah. I truly thank everyone for allowing me to be a part of this program. It was a Life changing experience for me.


I recently attended the Washington Seminar with both Julie and Jerry. This was a great learning experience of which I learned to how to better provide leadership within our chapter. I enjoyed meeting and learning from other parents as well as active blind adults. I met other parents and advocates and parent-advocates that had great ideas on improving chapter dynamics.
This experience was valuable because of the opportunity to see the potential of my child and that there are others, like him, who will support him and fight, lobby, and advocate for his needs.

Senator Mike Lee's Office

Senator Orrin Hatch's Office