Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities Honors Betsy Beaumon, Spearhead of Benetech’s Global Literacy Program at its Benefit Gala, April 30

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Betsy Beaumon, Benetech’s President who spearheads its Global Literacy Program, including Bookshare, an online library for those with print disabilities, will receive the 2016 Community Service Award at Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities’ Annual Benefit, BUILDING ON KIDS’ STRENGTHS, on Saturday, April 30 at the Stamford Marriott in Connecticut.

Betsy Beaumon, President of Benetech and Bookshare, is recipient of 2016 Community Service Award, given by Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc.

The Community Service Award is an honor and I'm personally gratified to be part of a vibrant community of providers, parents and educators, working to open doors to education and enjoyment.

Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc. will hold its Annual Benefit Gala, BUILDING ON KIDS’ STRENGTHS, at 6:30 pm, Saturday, April 30 at the Stamford Marriott. Dr. Lydia Soifer, Director of The Soifer Center for Learning and Child Development, will serve as the Master of Ceremonies.

At its 2016 Gala, Smart Kids with LD will present its Community Service Award to Betsy Beaumon, President of Benetech and Bookshare. Over the past several years, she has led Benetech’s Global Literacy Program, first as a general manager and now as President. She has also spearheaded the ten-fold growth of Bookshare, a global, online library at no cost for qualifying students with print disabilities, e.g., blindness, low vision and dyslexia.

Benetech is a Silicon-Valley nonprofit, focused on tackling urgent social needs via software tools and services. Bookshare is a global literary initiative of Benetech. As the world’s largest online library, Bookshare has over 385,000 digital books. The collection is accessible for those with qualifying complex language, physical or cognitive challenges.

Prior to Benetech, Betsy Beaumon was a senior director at BEA Systems, Inc., a leading provider of enterprise application infrastructure solutions. Previously, she managed international e-business initiatives for Cisco Systems, Inc.

Early in her career, she founded Social Online Services, the first web-based information and referral service for social services organizations.

Today, as a social entrepreneur, she is a recognized authority on digital accessible materials in education and the leader of what she calls the “born accessible” strategy. Under this vision, all future digital books, courses, any content would be integrated into the publishing process. This would include math formulas and STEM graphics (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math).

Further, Betsy Beaumon has testified on accessibility before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. She serves on the board of DAISY and NCAIM, which stands for the Digital Accessible Information System Consortium and the Advisory Board of the National Center on Accessible Instructional Materials, respectively.

She graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in electrical engineering.

“It’s an honor to be receiving Smart Kids’ Community Service Award,” said Betsy Beaumon, President of Benetech. “As a company, we are proud to support over 300,000 smart kids with learning disabilities in the United States via our Bookshare service without cost. Further, I’m personally gratified to be part of a vibrant community of providers, parents and educators, working to open doors to education and enjoyment.”

Dr. Lydia Soifer will be the Master of Ceremonies. She is the Director of The Soifer Center for Learning and Child Development, White Plains, New York. She is also Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine as well as a faculty member of Einstein’s Early Intervention Training Institute, Yeshiva University.

As a leading global expert in her field of speech and language, Dr. Soifer is frequently asked to give workshops and in-service training programs.

During the Gala celebration, the Fred J. Epstein Youth Achievement Awards will be given to a diverse group of student winners from the United States and Canada. The awards recognize an individual student’s remarkable talents and achievements, despite his or her struggles in school.

The major Youth Achievement Award is for $1,000.

The evening’s Gala will feature a cocktail reception, dinner, wine auction, silent and live auction, plus rock guitarist Dave Powers.

Among the auction items are:

  •     An at-home, three-course dinner with canapes for up to eight guests, prepared by Karen Hubrich, Executive Chef at the Pequot Yacht Club, Southport, Connecticut.
  •     A leisurely boat excursion across Long Island Sound, plus lunch for six guests.
  •     Tickets to the Westport Country Playhouse.

Gala tickets at $200, $250 and $500 are available at the Smart Kids with LD website.

The Leader Sponsors are Affinion Corporation in Stamford, CT; Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes in Darien, CT; Eagle Hill Greenwich; Southfield Center in Greenwich, CT; and Winston Preparatory School with branches in Norwalk, CT, Chelsea, NYC and Whippany, NJ. The Partner Sponsors are Eagle Hill Southport; Gen Re in Stamford; and Literacy How in North Haven, CT.

About Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc.
Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc. is a Westport-based nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering the parents of children with learning disabilities (LD) and attention deficit disorders (ADHD) via its educational programs, award-winning website and blog, and free e-newsletter at The organization also educates the public about these children’s gifts and talents. Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy is an Honorary Board member and Henry Winkler, Golden Globe award-winning actor, director and author, serves as the organization’s Honorary Chairman.

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Jane Ross
Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities
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