SSB Seeking Its Next Director
The job announcement for the position of Director for State Services for the Blind has now been posted. Closing date for applications is July 17.
We're looking for a passionate leader who believes in the power of all Minnesotans to contribute to our economy and our communities; who understands the critical importance of accessibility, including access to print; who knows that vision loss need not be a barrier to staying active and engaged as a senior; a leader who will be a tireless champion for the disability community.
At SSB, we provide tools and training for employment, living independently, and accessing print. We assist Minnesotans who are blind, DeafBlind, experiencing vision loss, or have difficulty accessing the printed word.
To learn more about the director position visit the State of Minnesota's Careers website, and use job ID #33707.
SSB Director Carol Pankow Named as New Assistant Commissioner
Carol Pankow, who has led SSB as our director since 2014, has been promoted to the position of Assistant Commissioner of Workforce Services at the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). In her new role, Carol will have responsibility for leading Disability Determination Services, Unemployment Insurance Program, Vocational Rehabilitation Services, and State Services for the Blind.
Beginning Monday, June 10, Deputy Director Jon Benson will serve as SSB’s Interim Director. A search for a new director is expected to launch by the end of June.
"Our job during this interim period is to keep the momentum going," Jon Benson said, "we’ve been working hard to streamline services, and continually improve how we serve our customers. We’re going to stay on that path and work hard to make a positive difference for Minnesotans who are blind, visually impaired, or DeafBlind."
"In my time at SSB," Carol said, "I have seen how thousands of blind, visually impaired and DeafBlind Minnesotans have used the services we’ve provided as a launching pad. They’re achieving their goals, building their dreams, and making our state a better place. Workforce Services at DEED are all about providing that same kind of launch pad to assist Minnesotans in facing challenges and overcoming them."
"I wanted to find someone who is passionate about serving our customers in workforce services and who believes in the ability of any Minnesotan – regardless of their background or skill set – to contribute meaningfully to our economy," said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove, "Carol is just that leader, which is why I’m thrilled to elevate her into this new role."
Carol, Jon, and the Commissioners office are working closely together to insure a smooth and productive transition.
What Would I Do, if I Couldn’t See?
Lots of us ask that question from time to time. The simple answer is that with a few new skills, you’d be going about your everyday life. Three short videos showcase Minnesotans who are blind, losing vision, or DeafBlind, doing just that.
"How Could I do This Job If I Can't See" (audio described) shows Minnesotans using high tech and low tech solutions at work. It’s a nice introduction for hiring managers who might be wondering if an applicant who is blind, low vision, or DeafBlind could indeed be the best person for a job.
"How Can I do It If I Can't See It" (audio described) speaks to the experience of seniors who are wondering how to live well with vision loss.
"How Can I Read It If I Can't See It" (audio described) is for everyone who loves reading and worries that vision loss, or another disability, might take away their ability to read. This video demonstrates how our Communication Center has become "Minnesota’s Accessible Reading Source."
Open Position on the State Rehabilitation Council for the Blind
The State Rehabilitation Council for the Blind (SRC-B) has an open seat for an industry representative. Learn more about the council or apply directly on the Secretary of State's Open Positions page.