Our History

In 1979 “Rocky” Stone founded our organization in Bethesda, MD.  At that time, it was called the Self Help for Hard of Hearing People, Inc. (SHHH). It was founded and incorporated as a non-profit, educational membership organization. As a World War II Vet and former CIA agent with a hearing loss, Stone was convinced there had to be other people with hearing loss who could benefit from sharing ideas with one another. So, Stone founded the organization with a handful of people in his family room.

The original start-up group of people has grown to over 200 chapters nationwide. In recent years the name of the organization was changed to the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA).

Our Southwestern Connecticut Chapter of HLAA was chartered in 1999 and is composed of numerous individuals and families representing all age groups from various walks-of-life, as well as all types and degrees of hearing loss.

In our short existence, our Chapter has carried forward the ideals of our founder.  Our monthly chapter meetings feature professional speakers who present a wide variety of programs related to hearing loss. Also, our chapter has developed many outreach projects reaching out to various groups throughout Fairfield County. We are proud of the individual workshops we have developed for schools, municipal organizations, senior centers, healthcare providers, visiting nurses associations, hospitals and various civic groups.

Our chapter is especially excited about our program that helps to educate fourth grade school children on how to communicate with people who have a hearing loss, as well as techniques to protect their ears from our noisy world. We have presented this program in Wilton and New Canaan schools over recent years.

We advocate for assistive listening devices and looping systems at public sites, places of worship and local theaters, both live theater and movies.

We are proud of our monthly award winning newsletter which was recognized as the ‘Best HLAA Chapter Newsletter of 2008 by our National HLAA, along with an award for having the ‘Best’ website design from our National HLAA Organization in 2009.