The Wisconsin Association of the Deaf (WAD, established in 1876 in Delavan, WI, is the state's premier civil rights advocacy based organization of, by and for deaf, hard of hearing and deafblind individuals in the State of Wisconsin. WAD was originally known as Wisconsin Deaf Alumni Association. 


WAD is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization supported by the generosity of individuals and organizational donors, including businesses and foundations. We are governed by our bylaws as amended on June 2017.​

The board meets minimum of 4 times a year. 


All donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by the federal government. WAD 

President: Katy Schmidt (term expires 2019) 

Vice President: Justin Vollmar (term expires 2020) 

Secretary: Karen Dishno (term expires 2019) 

Membership Secretary: Barbara Rick (term expires 2020) 

Treasurer: Ann Geib (term expires 2020)

Appointed Member at Large: Ron Byington, Lance Wedgen, Jr., and Theresa Heyrman.

Appointed WAD/WisRID Liasion: Vacant

We believe all deaf people can embrace who they are,
can define their future, and can change the world.

Our Mission

Preserve, protect, promote and advocate for the civil, human, cultural and linguistic rights of deaf, hard of hearing, and deaf-blind individuals in Wisconsin.

Our Vision

  • Increase transparency  

  • Leadership development

  • Increase representation on various groups/boards 

  • Offer ASL classes/trainings​

  • Expand our outreach efforts 

  • Increase our financial capacity


We Need Your Support Today!