About the MDA

The Michigan Deaf Association, Inc. (MDA) is a non-profit, tax exempt 501-3c organization with a mission to help improve the lives of D/deaf and Hard of Hearing citizens of Michigan. MDA is affiliated with the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) whose mission is to promote, protect, and preserve the rights and quality of life of Deaf and hard of Hearing individuals in the United States of America.

Our History

Michigan Deaf Association has its beginning on July 5, 1880 as a reunion for Michigan School for the Deaf Alumni in Detroit. 

June, 1887 at Second Alumni Reunion at the Michigan School for the Deaf, they adopted constitution and by-laws.E. Morris Bristol, the Deaf school's teacher, was elected the first president. 

The name of the Association, "Alumni Association:" was changed to Michigan Association of the Deaf (M.A.D.) in 1898 to include Deaf people living in Michigan, regardless of where they graduated.

The name of the organization changed again in 1981 to Michigan Association of Deaf Citizens (M.A.D.C.)

In 1987, the MADC celebrated its 100th Anniversary in Livonia to reflect the year when the organization's Constitution and By-laws were adopted. 

The organization changed the name once again in 1995 to Michigan Deaf Association (M.D.A.) to reflect a new identify and cultural awareness.

Our Accomplishments

  • A successful defeat of a legislative action which would prohibit Deaf from driving automobiles
  • Elimination of some provocative terms such as "dumb" and "mutes" when referring to Deaf people in the publications
  • Rally at the State Capitol steps to support sign language as a human right for the Deaf
  • Advocacy led to the enactment of the Deaf Person's Interpreter Act (P.A. 204 of 1982 - the right of Deaf individual to obtain certified or qualified interpreters in the courts
  • Inclusion in the telecommunications law to authorize the telephone companies to sell or lease telecommunication devices for the Deaf at cost to Deaf and speech impaired consumers
  • The formation of the first Michigan Legislative Caucus on Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing
  • Aided in worthy causes including the unveiling of a handsome monument honoring W.L. M. Breg, a pioneer Deaf teacher of the Michigan School for the Deaf
  • Played a leading role in the celebration of the Michigan School for the Deaf's 50th, 100th and 125th anniversaries
  • The most significant accomplishment - - its founding of the Division of Deaf and Deafened in the Michigan Department of Labor in 1937
  • Sponsored Miss Deaf Michigan Pageant bi-annually
  • Supported local Deaf associations
  • Awarded employer of the year, volunteer of the year, interpreter of the year, Ben Beaver Award, annual scholarship awards to outstanding Deaf seniors
  • Made numerous charitable donations

Michigan Deaf Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. 29147 Leesburg Ct Farmington Hills, MI 48331

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