Robb Patrick and Patches the dog

As a Deaf, American Sign Language-using person, I’m passionate about ensuring that Deaf people have full access to information, and that we all support Deaf-owned businesses.  My ever-faithful companion is Patches, a Deaf dog who accompanies me everywhere I go.

I am Deaf.

I am Deaf, first and foremost. And that’s not a bad thing. As part of a language-rich culture and community, I appreciate my community. With that said, disempowerment of Deaf people is rampant among hearing people. The biggest thing to remember is that without communicating directly with anyone who is Deaf, one cannot determine that person’s strengths, needs, or desires. First, understand that Deaf person’s identity (or identities), culture, language, values, and goals. This is simple, basic respect.  Remember what I said? Being Deaf is not a bad thing.

I am a business owner.

I owned a guided hiking tour business for seven years in Phoenix and Tucson. After selling the company, I decided to establish Referrals by Robb because I enjoy being a business owner where I can work with people and collaborate with organizations/businesses.  This allows me to combine my specialized knowledge of businesses and the Deaf community with the need for a centralized information source.

I am an activist.

As someone who has worked in activism for Deaf people, it is my goal to help bring about awareness of Deaf-owned businesses through this business. Through awareness, we can bring about change.