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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Catherine Rose: Mother, genius, communications pioneer

Catherine Rose and her daughter Alexis
It is an honor and a privilege to be able to say that I have been able to count Catherine Rose among the friendships that I have made through this journey in life.  She and I were in high school together and shared many conversations back and forth from our swim meets.  Catherine is, literally, one of the most powerhouse intellects on the face of the Earth.  I thought that then about her and the past decade has only served to reinforce that estimation.

Catherine and her husband are blessed to be the parents of two beautiful daughters.  One of them, Alexis, was born with severe disabilities that prevent her from learning and communicating as other children her age.  It was something that led Catherine to take a position at Philips and their healthcare division.  In her time at Philips, Catherine has led the development of a system which could be used by Alexis and countless others to express thoughts and ideas that would otherwise be extremely difficult.  Catherine's technology, called LightAide, is now being employed throughout the world by people from all walks of life.  For her efforts, she and her team have been lauded with many awards from the healthcare and engineering communities.

I know of no other way to put it than this: Catherine Rose is the precisely right person to accomplish this magnificent task.  I can not possibly think of anyone else so gifted and given such an opportunity to share that gift with so many.

And now Catherine has been named among The Mighty!  That website has just posted an in-depth conversation with Catherine in regard to her family, LightAide, and how technology is providing a bridge across which we all may span together...
Rose noticed her daughter's attraction to lights and convinced her employer to build a teaching tool to help children with visual impairments learn. LightAide is now being used around the world by people of all ages, and, just as important, by their teachers and caregivers, who are beginning to realize their charges might have better cognitive abilities than previously thought.
"There's a whole lot of people who have vision, but they have low vision," Rose said. "They can't see as well in the light that we normally give them. But if we give them more light, then they may be able to use more vision."
Mash here for more of The Mighty's interview with Catherine.