Daniel Kish is the lead founder and President of World Access for the Blind. He holds Master’s degrees in both Developmental Psychology and Special Education. Daniel is the first totally blind individual to obtain certifications as an Orientation and Mobility Instructor. Daniel and his associates have worked extensively with tens of thousands of blind clients and families, and professionals of all backgrounds in over 40 countries to help break down the barriers to realizing the potential for blind people to achieve a quality of life comparable to their peers. He has presented and conducted hundreds of invited presentations and workshops internationally on all topics related to human perception and blindness, including professional development trainings for top scientists, Teachers, and medical practitioners.
Of particular note are his seminars on the development of the perceptual and imaging systems in the brain, how this development is disrupted by dependency conditioning, how this disruption stunts short and long term psychological and physical development, and how this disruption can be put back on track by reestablishing natural processes of self directed freedom of movement. Daniel has created the first systematic, comprehensive echolocation curriculum for advanced training. So advanced are the results of this training that Daniel has coined the term “FlashSonar” to underscore the advantages to his specific approach to the advanced instruction and use of active echolocation. This innovative technique is rapidly changing instructional paradigms for working with blind people, as well as modern understanding of brain plasticity. Daniel and some of his students have applied FlashSonar combined with other techniques to riding bicycles independently at moderate speeds through unfamiliar environments, and to participate effectively and independently in other complex activities such as skating, ball play, and solo wilderness travel.
Daniel and his associates are conducting a prolific public awareness campaign to show-case the real challenges faced by blind people, and the rich strengths and achievements possible for blind people. Daniel has spoken at TED and various TEDx events, PopTech, and other high profile public forums, and has been featured in many hundreds of leading media pieces from nearly every genre. Through continuous public awareness efforts, Daniel, his students, and his associates passionately demonstrate that blindness in itself need not be as limiting as has been historically assumed. They believe and demonstrate that one’s quality of life and freedom to achieve comes of one’s own choosing and self direction, not to be chosen or directed by others.