Elizabeth Booth of Sun Lakes is among the outstanding individuals with hearing loss honored by the 2016 Oticon Focus on People Awards, a national competition that celebrates people who are helping to eliminate negative stereotypes of what it means to have a hearing loss. As the first place winner in the Advocacy Category, Booth was honored at a special awards ceremony at Oticon, Inc. US headquarters in Somerset, New Jersey on September 27. More than 100 hearing care professionals from across the United States attended the event to celebrate her achievements. As part of her award, Booth designated the Hearing Loss Association of America and the HLAA, Sun Lakes Chapter as her choice for a $1,000 donation from Oticon, Inc.
People from across the country cast thousands of votes at www.oticon.com to help determine who among the 12 finalists would be the 2016 first, second and third place winners in the Adult, Student, Practitioner and Advocacy categories.
“Outstanding volunteers, like Elizabeth Booth, are opening doors of opportunity for all people with hearing loss,” states Oticon President Peer Lauritsen. “Elizabeth generously shares her time, talent and personal experience with hearing loss to help others with hearing loss live full and productive lives. We are inspired by her optimism, her dedication and her ‘can do’ attitude.”
Booth, a retired reading specialist, still volunteers full time to educate, generously giving her time and talents to better the lives of individuals with hearing loss at the local, state and national level. As a person who has a cochlear implant and uses hearing aids, Booth is a natural teacher and role model for others struggling with the challenges of hearing loss. She says, “Life is not always the party we hoped for but while we are here, we should dance. Helping people master the steps is a rewarding and humbling commitment.”
Booth is the co-leader of two HLAA chapters and her popular “Listening with Booth” column appears in HLAA and ALDA newsletters. She is a mentor for cochlear implant candidates and recipients and a frequent volunteer for research studies at Arizona State University. In 2012, the governor appointed Booth to a seat on the Arizona Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing where she also serves on the Hard of Hearing Task Force.
The Oticon Focus on People Awards program was created in 1997 by Oticon, Inc., one of the world’s oldest and most respected hearing instrument manufacturers. Through the national competition, Oticon, Inc. aims to call attention to common misconceptions about hearing loss and motivate people with hearing loss to take advantage of the help that is available to them. The company’s goal is to reach out to the 80 percent of an estimated 48 million Americans who could benefit from hearing solutions, but who fail to seek professional help.
Read the inspirational stories of all 12 winners of the 2016 Oticon Focus on People Awards at www.oticon.com.