of the

San Mateo Council of the Blind


January 2000 Vol. I No. 1



As we simultaneously launch this newsletter as well as this century, our thoughts turn to plans for the future. As I look ahead to the coming year, I look forward to increased membership and greater activity for the San Mateo Council of the Blind. We shall continue to provide support, friendship, and information through monthly meetings, phone calls, and this newsletter. I hope that we can become active in the areas of recreation and advocacy as well.

During the year ahead the blind community will be working in concert with agencies serving the blind to establish a state commission for the blind here in California. This commission will provide us with better services than those we receive through the current rehabilitation system. It is crucial that the blind and visually impaired community in San Mateo County increase efforts to improve the transportation services. Having quality, accessible public transportation is a key element in our integration into the life of our communities. If you aren't active in San Mateo Council for the Blind, I hope you will include us in your plans in the near future. Your involvement with the organization will offer several benefits. First, you will experience associating with others who share vision loss. I find interaction with other blind people counteracts the negative messages about blindness that I receive from the general public on a daily basis.

Second, involvement with SMCB will give you information you can use to manage your vision loss. Blind people are the experts on coping with blindness. Learn from local experts. Finally, involvement with our organization can give you the satisfaction of sharing your talents in making life better for all blind and visually impaired residents of San Mateo County.

We meet the first Saturday of each month at 10:30 A.M. at the Bank of America at El Camino Real and 3rd Avenue in San Mateo. Contact me for information-Frank Welte, Pres. (650) 508-8329 E-mail [email protected]

Welcome to Our Club Newsletter

This is our first issue–Vol. 1-1. Its inception is at the beginning of the new millennium. There will be several interesting features and new ones added as we grow from one sheet to a regular-sized edition.

Our front page has a president's message. We are fortunate in having Frank Welte in the role of leadership, for his computer ability is fantastic, and he also is treasurer of the Santa Clara Chapter of CCB. You will learn more about Frank when we write his biography. At the Nov. meeting he gave a conference report.

The types of articles we shall have relate to trips and visits our members have taken. What are your favorite restaurants or shopping places? Lately, have you used a new piece of equipment or technique you would like to recommend to us?

If you have any information you wish included in the newsletter, you may also send it online. Phil Kutner is our new editor and his e-mail address is [email protected]

The Life and Times of Bill Hobson

Bill Hobson is treasurer of our San Matea Chapter of the Council for the Blind. He has been in the club for 4 years and was Vice-Pres. and then President for a year. He came from Chicago, IL in the 60's, In 1992 Bill retired from Cal-Trans of California as a dispatcher for a fleet of several hundred cars when he developed Macular Degeneration.

Bill is on the advisory group at the Peninsula Center for the Blind in Palo Alto where he received low vision exams and support groups.

His unusual hobby is public speaking with the Toastmasters International. Every Tues he travels to the Oracle Corp. in Redwood Shores and makes presentations. He has taken first place in 3 table-topic talks. These are spur of the moment public speaking events.

Bill has had a computer for 5 years and a 20" CCTV, a 586 IBM PC, with JAWS, Zoomtext, and a scanner. His e-mail address is: [email protected]

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