Potomac Chapter

of the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf



Conference Presenters

aj Granda 

aj is a teacher, social justice activist, textile artist, and a mom.  She hails from Carlsbad, California and has lived practically everywhere, and has made Seattle her home.  aj has been actively creating change and bringing new ideas to Seattle’s DeafBlind community for the past 17 years.  aj has worked alongside the Seattle DeafBlind community as the forerunners of the famous Protactile Movement.  aj co-authored the first article on The Seven Principles of Protactile and is developing a new curriculum to teach Protactile ASL to DeafBlind and sighted people.  Most of all, aj strives to connect people and build bridges between communities.


Robert Adam

Robert is the Director of Continuing Professional Development and Teaching Fellow at the Deafness Cognition and Language Research Centre, University College London. He is a qualified sign language interpreter and translator and has worked as a Deaf interpreter in Australia, the USA and the UK. His research interests along with Deaf interpreters are bilingualism, language contact and minority sign language communities. He is also Coordinator of the World Federation of the Deaf Expert Group on Sign Language and Deaf Studies. He is from Melbourne, Australia and currently lives in the UK.

Dr. Jonathan Webb

Jonathan is an activist, facilitator of difficult dialogues, author of KG: The South, professor at CSUN, and President of Sign Enhancers, Inc. Deeply devoted to the work of conscientization, he seeks to engage in both work and leisure through a critical lens that fosters consciousness, love, and liberation. 

Carla Shird

Carla is a Deaf Interpreter and a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).   She has expertise in providing workshops, consultation, and mental health counseling including working with ASL users.  She is passionate about helping people to create self-awareness, self-care, and becoming more connected with themselves, others, and their purposes. 

Jessica Brown, who hails from Missouri, currently works and serves in Fulton, Mo, and surrounding areas.  Jessica went to William Woods University in 2005 and received her Bachelor’s degree in History while attending as a student she also managed the ASL Lab as a Liaison at William Woods University. Shortly after she went to Gallaudet University where she was fortunate enough to receive Master’s degree in Sign Language Education in 2015.

She also received her MO-BEI CDI certification in 2017 while working as an Interpreter Certification Specialist with Missouri Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. She is currently a CDI on call interpreter for Missouri School for the Deaf as well as a full time ASL instructor at William Woods University. Most of Jessica’s time is devoted to presenting workshops, providing access to the Deaf community and working with other business avenues such as Positives Action, Org in England. She also screens interpreters to ensure quality services and ASL competency for said organization. With the remainder of her time, she works as a freelance CDI for conferences and various community assignments all over the Midwest. Her favorite settings are the two previously mentioned, as well as DeafBlind where she has happily immersed into.

She enjoys spending time with her family and close friends, making connections, lifelong learning, filming and editing videosand traveling fills her restless spirit.

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