Dear Alexander Graham Bell Community,   
It was a pleasure to welcome so many of you at the 2016 Legacy of Innovation Gala this past Thursday. The association could not have had a grander 125th birthday party. The Gala was a beautiful celebration of Alexander Graham Bell's legacy, and all that it has made possible .

I want to thank our esteemed master of ceremonies, Lance Allred. From our first conversation, Lance was incredibly enthusiastic about working with AG Bell and to be part of our message, making sure that all parents who are faced with a choice for their child are aware that listening and spoken language is an option. Lance made everyone feel equally welcome at the Gala, and I look forward to seeing him again soon for future projects.

We were delighted to honor Dr. Bell's great-grandson, Gilbert M. Grosvenor, with our Lifetime Achievement Award, for his work in supporting the Association's mission and efforts throughout the years. We also presented Congresswoman Lois Capps with our Award of Distinction for her distinguished work in authoring the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Act of 2015 and working to assure its re-authorization in the 114th Congress.

With Sara and Gil Grosvenor

We were also graced with the presence of Richard Leakey and Sylvia Earle, two game-changers who have had a tremendous impact on their respective fields as part of the National Geographic network of explorers.

Also with us were Elena LaQuatra, Miss Pennsylvania USA 2016, and Neil Maes, spelling whiz kid. Elena so generously helped me present Rep. Lois Capps with her Award of Distinction. National Geographic produced a wonderful video about Neil and his family that can be viewed here.

I would also like to thank our Gala chair, Sara Grosvenor. Her singularly tireless work made this beautiful celebration possible.
Enjoying a moment with our Gala celebrities!

Listening and Spoken Language has never had a brighter future. The board, there in full force, greeted so many, not only from the AG Bell community, but also newcomers who were delighted to learn about the many modern options available to children and adults with hearing loss. I spent much of the evening in warm company, enthusiastic in their support of the options that are now possible thanks to modern hearing technology and speech therapy.

We have so many more lovely pictures available from Thursday night - I do hope you will enjoy them. We also have a video recording of the event available here.

This Gala is only the beginning of a new path forward for AG Bell. The future is bright, and you're all invited to participate! If you have any questions, concerns, or just something you'd like to say - please don't hesitate to contact me .

Until next week,

Emilio EAM signature blue transparent
Emilio Alonso-Mendoza

All good men and women must take responsibility to create legacies that will take the next generation to a level we could only imagine.

Jim Rohn