Brenda Rennie

Independent Living Services Advocate at the Center for Living and Working; Volunteer Our Deaf Sisters Survival Support Project
You can do it! Don’t just sit back and let things pass you by! If you need help, look for it! Deaf people can do it! Don’t allow other hearing people and mainstream society to look down on you, push it aside, and go on! Women have power!

Brenda Rennie is a 44-year old Deaf woman from Worcester, Massachusetts; she is a vibrant, high-energy advocate for the deaf. She was born in Ohio to hearing parents and quickly became a dedicated user of American Sign Language and a member of the culturally Deaf community. Brenda had a happy childhood, she was lucky enough to be surrounded by friends and family that were willing to communicate with her using many different methods; she is perfectly content with being Deaf and, in fact, is extremely proud. Brenda was educated in a residential school for the deaf in Ohio and then proceeded to attend Gallaudet University. Although she did not graduate from Gallaudet, she later achieved an advanced degree from Northern Essex Community College in Haverhill, MA. She moved around the country to several places such as Washington D.C., Maryland, Virginia, and Minnesota before settling down in Massachusetts. Currently, Brenda works as an Independent Living services advocate at the Center for Living and Working in Worcester, Massachusetts. Her profession involves serving as a resource for deaf or hard of hearing individuals in the Worcester area who are in need of assistance in finding housing, food stamps, skills training, and more. Brenda also volunteers for the Our Deaf Sisters’ Center.

Interview Date: 
February 16, 2009