Lydia Callis, ASL Hero

Lydia CallisIt’s not often a sign language interpreter gets publicity for their work, but in the wake of Superstorm Sandy, American Sign Language Interpreter Lydia Callis got a great deal of unexpected attention.

In addition to a spoof on Saturday Night Live (SNL), her work as New York City Mayor Bloomberg’s interpreter was covered by NYMag, The Huffington Post, and The New York Times, to name just a few. Social media websites lit up with conversations about Lydia Callis’ “swag” and blogs devoted to her were created overnight.

After reading about all the attention she was getting, we were happy to see Deaf News Today provide a little background on this incredible woman.

Age: 30

Home: Westchester, New York

Family: Her mother is deaf and so are her three siblings

Job: ASL interpreter

Education: 2010 alumna of NTID’s ASL Interpretation Program

Experience: Worked for RIT as an interpreter on campus for a year after she graduated

While some were offended by the SNL skit, namely actress and activist Marlee Matlin, others were happy for the recognition of Lydia’s skills.

It’s important to note that one aspect of what makes an ASL interpreter great is precisely the animation that Lydia was recognized for.

What do you think about the new ASL hero, Lydia Callis?


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