For Immediate Release
Contact: Kristin Tutino, (585) 258-0253


January 5, 2006 (Rochester, NY) – WXXI Public Broadcasting and Al Sigl Center host the fourth annual Dialogue on Disability: The Herman & Margaret Schwartz Community Series, an initiative designed to raise awareness about the abilities of people with disabilities.

According to Daniel M. Meyers, President of Al Sigl Center, “Our strategic alliance with WXXI focuses attention on abilities and helps take the “dis” out of disability. That’s what the Al Sigl Center partnership is all about.” The week-long initiative, which runs January 16 through January 22, includes special programming on WXXI-TV and AM 1370.

“This is our fourth year working with Al Sigl Center on this very important project,” said Norm Silverstein, President of WXXI. “Each year, this outreach effort has helped raise the Rochester community’s awareness of the abilities of people with disabilities. We believe that the strength and sensitivity of this year’s programming will continue to spark conversations and change perspectives.”

AM 1370 kicks off the week-long initiative on Monday, January 16 at 12 noon with a special 1370 Connection program followed by The World at Your Fingers at 1 p.m., a program that takes a look into the world of deafblindness in India. At 1:30 p.m., AM 1370 brings listeners Dyslexia: Identifying, Coping and Learning, with host Barry Vogel who visits with Dr. Sally Shaywitz, a neurologist, to discuss early diagnosis of dyslexia in young children, older children, and adults, and what can be done to assist people with this disability.

The centerpiece of the week is the premiere of The Collector of Bedford Street, airing Tuesday, January 17 at 9 p.m. on WXXI-TV 21 (cable 11). The Academy Award-nominated short documentary takes a heartwarming look at Larry Selman, a 60-year-old man with developmental disabilities, and his unique contributions to his community. Selman and The Collector of Bedford Street director Alice Elliott will be in WXXI’s studio to talk about the film and its importance after the broadcast.

On Thursday, January 19 at 12 noon 1370 Connection’s Bob Smith talks about disability issues followed by Grey Matter: Crossroads and Frontiers at 1 p.m., which highlights three fascinating case histories, each a turning point in neuroscience. The initiative wraps up with a special on 1370 Connection: Healthy Friday on Friday, January 20 at 12 noon on AM 1370 with host Elissa Orlando.

Disability issues will also be topics on WXXI-TV’s Need to Know, which airs Friday, January 20 at 9 p.m. and again on Sunday, January 22 at 12:30 p.m., Homework Hotline, which airs Tuesday, January 17 at 5:30 p.m. and Assignment: the World, which airs Thursday, January 19 at 6:30 a.m.

Dialogue on Disability is made possible thanks to the support from the Fred L. Emerson Foundation. Additional support provided by Bank of America, Boylan Brown, Code, Vidgor & Wilson LLP and the Ames Amzalak Trust. To learn more, visit


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