Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic changes name

Nonprofit hopes new moniker -- Learning Ally -- will be more inclusive

Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic, a 63-year-old nonprofit that records educational audiobooks for persons with blindness and other visual impairments, has changed its name to Learning Ally.

President and CEO Andrew Friedman said in a press release that the new label reflects the diversity of the nonprofit's user base and is the result of months of planning.

"For one thing, our mix of users today includes individuals with diverse learning differences that are outside the scope of our former name," Friedman said.

The organization conducted a number of focus groups with its student members as well as with parents, veterans and educational professionals. The result, Friedman noted, was an overwhelming desire by the user community to not be labeled or typecast by a particular disability.

"They just want the same opportunities to succeed that others enjoy. Our new name goes to the heart of supporting their desire to learn and achieve," he said.

Headquartered in New Jersey with a studio in Palo Alto and three other California locations, the organization was founded in 1948 as Recording for the Blind, before extending its services to assist those affected by dyslexia as RFB&D. It currently serves over 300,000 K-12, undergraduate and graduate students nationwide, as well as veterans and lifelong learners.

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