RID accepting applications for CEO
[Transcript] The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc (RID) is now accepting applications for a CEO position. The RID just completed their 2019 National Conference in Rhode Island. The keynote presenter was Evon Black. Nyle DiMarco was the banquet presenter.
The Daily Moth did an interview with the new RID President and interim CEO. Here it is.
JONATHAN WEBB: Hello there, I’m Jonathan Webb. This is my sign name. I’m the current Board President of RID.
CHARITY WARIGON: I’m Charity Warigon. I’m currently the interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of RID.
Jonathan here is RID’s first African-American president and that was inspirational to people in the audience. They wiped away their tears and were inspired to see people representing themselves. So, it’s a really diverse board which is just so great.
JONATHAN WEBB: This is historical.
Alex: Webb’s term will last two years. He currently lives in Southern California where he owns a business and teaches interpreting at CSUN. His wife is also an interpreter.
Warigon has been serving as RID’s interim CEO for several months now.
This will be RID’s second CEO search in a year. The previous CEO, Joey Trapani, a CODA, stepped down after a few months on the job. His selection was controversial because he was picked over a Deaf candidate, Nicole Sheneman, who multiple people in the Deaf community thought was just as or more qualified.
I asked the two what would be different with this CEO search process this time around.
So, what’s the difference now? It’s not going to be just the board or the committee making all the decisions for the RID CEO search.
The RID CEO search will consist a group including a majority of deaf people, a majority of people of color, and also will include stakeholders from the community.
This group will convene, and this is the first round of RID CEO candidates.
They will create a list of names that will be turned over to the RID board, actually no, it’ll be turned over to him, the board president.
Then the board will choose the final candidate in the second round. It depends on the number of the final candidates. I don’t know, there could be 2, 3, 4, 5 of them. Once the list is submitted to the board, they’ll proceed to the second round.
Alex: You can check out who is on the search committee and their bios on the RID website. The CEO application does not specifically mention that a Deaf candidate is desired. I asked Webb and Warigon what value, what weight they put on a candidate being Deaf.
We feel the most important factor, the top priority, is being qualified. Now, when they’re qualified, check, the next factor is the identity. People need to feel that RID can be trusted. People need, and by people, I mean the deaf community, need to know that RID understands my interests, what we need and how we navigate. Does that mean we can legally push for a deaf candidate? No, we can’t but it means we can prioritize language, cultural awareness and having the ability to communicate effectively. When we are able to implement these criteria then we’ll use that to filter out the right person for the job.
And if you’ve noticed the job requirements, that is what narrows down the candidates for RID CEO and opens the door to the interview. That’s where I think you need to look more carefully for the ASL fluency requirement. So, we’ll keep this open, but of course, deaf people who are ASL fluent would meet this requirement.
Alex: The application and job description is on the RID website. I asked the two to share highlights from the RID conference.
The culture of this conference, the vibe, is truly unique. It felt like, the first time we came into this conference, many members felt like it was a very different place and they meant it in a positive way. It feels more open, feels more friendly and it feels welcoming. It feels like there’s diversity. People feel like, “You see me.”
They finally feel this pull, a desire to be more involved.
The theme of our conference was, “Come Together, Work Together, Thrive Together.”
What you’ve seen all week has really emphasized that. We’ve come and worked together. And we’ve thrived. It’s beautiful.
Thank you both for your time. RID is expecting to announce the new CEO this October.
Gallaudet University: [gallaudet.edu]