Pixel Tracker

Sunday, November 18 , 2018, 1:23 am | Fog/Mist 52º


Romos Have a Need to Read for Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic


Couple's commitment fueled by a personal connection to the worthy cause.


Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic honored retiring Santa Barbara City College President John Romo and his wife, Mary, during the nonprofit organization’s 13th annual Record-A-Thon on Monday. More than 30 friends, family and RFB&D volunteers and staff joined in the noontime tribute at the organization’s studios in Goleta.

Romo is retiring from SBCC at the end of June. His wife, Mary, has been visually impaired since high school and uses RFB&D’s recorded books to keep up with her professional and personal reading.

Mary Romo related how her sight grew worse after college. She trained as a speech and language specialist in the 1960s, but said that so much changed in 30 years of work. Recording for the Blind (“& Dyslexic” was added to the name in 1995) helped her keep up with her professional materials, she said.

The organization’s volunteers “recorded the hot new textbook on 30 cassettes and it was there to refer to, so I could keep up in my field and feel I was doing the best job I could,” Romo recalled.

“I know what it is to feel inadequate," she added pointedly. "To have the materials recorded can make all the difference. (RFB&D) is there for all phases of my life.”

“Everyone knows Mary is a great reader," Romo said of his wife. "She’s a walker, and she often has her headset on, listening to books as she walks.”

About RFB&D, he said that “the partnership between City College and RFB&D is so important; I hope we can expand it.” (RFB&D’s service is offered through the Disabled Students Program at SBCC.) He concluded, “Reading is so great, if you can’t do it one way, you do it another.”

After the tribute, Romo led a group of readers into the RFB&D studios to record two books he had hand-picked for RFB&D’s library — John Irving’s Hotel New Hampshire and Ronald White Jr.’s Lincoln’s Greatest Speech: The Second Inagural.

Santa Barbara’s Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic has helped students learn through listening since 1976. The 13th annual Record-A-Thon, under way through Saturday, lets community members tour the Goleta recording studios and help record a book.

Click here to learn more or to sign up, or call 805.681.0531.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.