Dr. Benjamin J. Soukup, H-'00, wearing a dark blazer with a light-colored tie

Title

Trustee Emeritus

About

Dr. Benjamin Soukup, H’00, served on the board from 2001-2013, and was chair from 2007-2013.

He founded the Communication Service of the Deaf (CSD) in 1975 and served as its president and CEO for 40 years, until his retirement in 2015. Under his leadership, CSD was one of the first organizations to establish the provision of telephone interpreting —- the predecessor to text-based telecommunications relay services –- then the first to provide video relay services in North America. Today CSD remains among the largest non-profit employer of deaf people in the country.

In addition to building CSD into a success, he was one of the original authors of the first Deaf Child Bill of Rights legislation, one of the first to lobby for enforcement provisions regarding interpreter certification, and a three-term president of the National Association of the Deaf, serving from 1993-1998. In recognition of his impact and many achievements, he was inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame. He received an honorary juris doctorate from Gallaudet in 2000.

He lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.