Among all of the people in the country, no one cares more about helping those less fortunate than William Austin, founder/CEO of Starkey Laboratories, Inc., said Val J. Halamandaris, President of the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC). Also honored at the Associations 23rd Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona this week (October 27th) were Former First Lady Nancy Reagan, the Honorable Robert Dole, and Gov. Dirk Kempthorne (R-ID).
William Austin, founder of Starkey Laboratories, the largest hearing aid company in North America, was presented with the NAHC Humanitarian of the Year Award. This award is named for former US Senator Frank E. Moss, whose legislation created both the Medicare and Medicaid home care benefits and who served as NAHCs Senior Counsel for 21 years. Austin was honored for his efforts to heal the broken ears of the world.
Since 1973, William Austin has conducted more than 200 missions a year to countries such as Vietnam, Mexico, the Ukraine, the Dominican Republic, and South Africa to fit needy children with hearing aids. In addition, the Foundation promotes hearing health awareness and provides hearing aids, hearing aid batteries and other hearing products to needy people free of charge.
Austin is considered the worlds foremost expert in hearing aids and his clientele includes four former Presidents, Billy Graham, Buzz Aldrin, Kirk Douglas, and others. Of course, its fun to help a movie star, Austin says, but the best is to see a child react when he first hears. I wish I could go on all the missions we conduct each year. The things we see are so remarkable. Its like you snapped on a light switch and let them hear the world.
Webster defines a humanitarian as a philanthropist or a friend of mankind. Bill Austin personifies caring in action. He has given unselfishly of not only his dollars and the products made by his company, but also his time to help those in need. He deserves the respect and commendation of all people, says Halamandaris.
The National Association for Home Care & Hospice, based in Washington D.C. is the largest and most respected organization representing over 5,000 hospices, home health agencies, representing some one million nurses and allied personnel who provide care at home for more than five million ill, disabled or dying persons every year.