Jeri Cooper, President
Jeri Cooper is currently a rehabilitation teacher for the DeafBlind in Oklahoma. Jeri is very active in her church at First Baptist in downtown Tulsa as well as organizations such as the Green Country DeafBlind Support Group, American Association of the DeafBlind, and the Tulsa Chapter of the Oklahoma Council of the Blind. She loves baseball and football, enjoys visiting with friends and always jumps at the opportunity to meet new people and to learn new things. She gives thanks to her Savior Jesus Christ and believes that if you have faith in God and in yourself, you can change your stumbling blocks into stepping stones.
Cassandra Oakes, Vice President
Cassandra Oakes was born in 1959 with a profound hearing loss. At age 19, she was diagnosed with an eye disease known as Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) and caused blindness to begin during the second decade of her life. She has accomplished numerous goals, both personal and professional, and is the founder and president of a non-profit organization called Sight-Hearing Encouragement Program. (SHEP). Her belief is: “You’re born with a ‘can’ gift in you to overcome the ‘can’t’ that came with you.”
Daniel Meek, Treasurer
Daniel Meek is a compliance officer for a small investment firm in Bethany, Oklahoma. He has a bachelor’s degree in accounting and is currently pursuing CPA certification. Daniel was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa at age fifteen, which is an eye condition that leads to blindness. In his late thirties, his diagnosis was modified to Usher Syndrome Type III, which leads to deafness as well. He is an active member in the Heartland Council for the blind and volunteers for the Sight-Hearing Encouragement Program. Daniel currently resides in Mustang, Oklahoma with his wife and two daughters.
Colleen Shorrock, Secretary
Colleen and her husband, Steve, moved to Oklahoma in October of 2015 leaving five children and five grand children in Texas. Recently retired, she decided to finish college and entered the interpreting program at Tulsa Community College. Colleen is currently enrolled in the University of Arkansas cohort program majoring in Educational Interpreting. Her volunteer efforts and community involvement as an interpreter and support service provider include the Broken Arrow Deaf Church and the Green County DeafBlind Club.
Roger Smith, Board Member at Large
A Tulsa resident, Roger began a metal fabricating career in 1970 after leaving the military. Over the years, he has had the opportunity to build a variety of things from an acrobatic airplane frame, to beautiful spiral staircases and custom street rods. Today Roger currently lives in Tulsa with his beautiful wife Beverly, “who is glad to have her garage back”. He is and has been involved in the Deaf community for over 20 years, and sits on the board of TSHA, and recently became a board member of Jeri’s House, another non-profit company located in Tulsa.
Allison Fallin, Board Member at Large
I was raised in a Philadelphia suburb, went to public school in sixth grade, after being a day student at the Overbrook School for the Blind.
I went to college and majored in English so words have always been important to me.
I first got involved with deaf-blind issues when I had the joy of marrying my late husband Joe Fallin, whose board position I’m filling.
The scope of deaf-blindness really impacted me when we had a Tulsa Council of the Blind meeting and a representative of Total Source for Hearing Access (TSHA) came and played “Unfair Hearing Test”, a group of ten words. I could barely understand any of them, and then I found out that that’s what people with a severe hearing loss hear all the time. It gave me a new understanding of the difficulties DeafBlind people face, and living with someone who was DeafBlind only deepened that understanding and passion to see Jeri’s house become a reality.
Dr. James S. Bissland, DC, Board Member at Large
Dr. James was a student at OSB in the 70’s. Dr. Bissland received his DC Florida license in 1986. He and Lisa married in November 1992, and their son, Thomas, was born in October 1993. They moved to Tulsa in February 1995 from Titusville, Florida. He’s been in practice in Tulsa for 25+ years. He’s been involved with the blind community for many years.