Raymond BatehRaymond Bateh

Raymond Bateh earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Gallaudet University in 1987 and a Master of Science degree in Deaf Education from McDaniel College (formerly Western Maryland College) in 1994. Shortly after relocating to Seattle, Raymond began teaching ASL and Deaf Culture courses part-time. He discovered he had a passion for teaching and immersed himself in the study of how to teach ASL and Deaf Culture. In 1996, he was offered a full-time ASL position at South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia, Washington and has been teaching there for over 19 years. In addition, he has taught at the University of Washington Seattle every summer since 2008 and is a founder of the Deaf Political Action Coalition (2013). His interests are Semantics of ASL (ASL phrases), Oppressions, and Deaf children’s birth right to full access to quality education through Bilingual ~ ASL and English.


Lance Forshay

Lance was born Deaf and has at least five generations of Deaf family members. (30-35 Deaf relatives around the country) He graduated from Kansas School for the Deaf and Gallaudet University. He has a BA in Mathematics and Secondary Education. He also has a MS in Ministry from Southern Christian University (Now Ambridge University), Montgomery, AL.

Lance came to the University of Washington when it started it’s ASL program in 2007. Since that time the program has expanded into a two-year ASL and Deaf Studies Minor Program. He played a big role in UW ASL Club’s affiliation with the national ASL Honors Society and the establishment of the D-Center, a student center with collaboration between students in the Disability Studies program and the Deaf Culture/ASL Studies program, which is the first of its kind among American universities and colleges. He was promoted to the rank of Senior Lecturer in 2013 and was a recipient of the 2014 UW Distinguished Teaching Award. His ASL teaching experience spans over 25 years in a wide various type of settings from elementary to university level, from private tutoring to formal classroom instruction, and from non-credit education at churches and communities to credit classes in different educational systems.

Lance is a past president of the Washington ASL Teacher Association, a member of the national ASL Teacher Association, Washington State Association of the Deaf, Deaf Ministry Director at Lighthouse Christian Center in Puyallup and Deaf Political Action Committees to fight for Deaf rights in the state of Washington. He has given many workshops and presentations on ASL grammar, Deaf culture topics and issues related to cultural and language oppressions in the Deaf world for interpreters, ASL teachers and the Deaf community. His wife, Joan, and three kids, Matthew, Richard, and Samantha live in Puyallup. His hobbies include hiking, bike riding and gardening.


Richard Jacobs

Richard Jacobs (RJ) was a native Chicagoan until he moved to Seattle and married Julia Petersen, a Seattle native in 1996. He is proud to be a Washingtonian after living in Washington State for more than 20 years. He has two children who are fluent in ASL and are currently in high school. He went to Wisconsin School for the Deaf for nine years before going to Gallaudet University in Washington, DC for his bachelor degree. He received his masters degree at Lewis & Clark College Portland, Oregon. Before his children became heavily involved in high school activities, he was officer/volunteer for many organizations such as USA Deaf Team Handball, WA State Association of the Deaf, WA Chapter of Gallaudet University Alumni Association, WA ASL Teacher Association and few more.

RJ is a college professor and has been teaching American Sign Language at Shoreline CC and Edmonds CC for 20 years. His passion is to help ASL students learn how to communicate with deaf people as well as understanding many different deaf culture issues and history. He discovered and designed a fun learning activity: ASL Bowl for ASL students to review all information they have learned from ASL classes. This is one of students’ favorite activity in his class.

Recently, WSAD asked RJ to host Deaf Washington Bowl at the WSAD conference which is similar to ASL Bowl for the WSAD participants to participate in on December 5th. He will make it a suitable game for the participants to enjoy. This would be a great way for them and the audience to review, learn and remember the important history of Deaf Community as well as the Deaf Culture. He has several colleagues helping him collect and research on all important information on Deaf Culture and history for the activity. It will be a great event for you to learn and appreciate your identity as a deaf person as well as increasing your pride of Deaf Culture.