Dear White Interpreters

February 26th – March 25th, 2024

While the interpreting profession is currently made up of predominantly white people, deaf communities are increasingly populated by people of color.  This PPO course explores the insights of a collection of deaf interpreters of color who explore a variety of questions that provide insight for white interpreters, both deaf and hearing.  Additionally, they share advice with interpreters of color.  

This PPO course will engage the participants in watching the recorded panel discussion and reflect on the insights shared. Facilitated by Dr. Suzette Garay, Philip J. Wolfe, and LJ Williams as DPOC facilitators, participants will develop self and worldview awareness for being more effective in interpreting communities with Deaf people of color and/or working with Interpreters of Color.


Target Audience: Working Interpreters

(Please note: interpreting students should NOT participate in this course. For student oriented material, please email [email protected])


Educational Objectives:

Participants will be able to

  • Define and reframe the use of the following terms: BIPOC, ITOC, DIOC, and DPOC.
  • List three examples of microaggressions that Deaf Interpreters of color experience
  • Describe at least three signs from communities of color that are frequently misused
  • Articulate a rationale for when to accept and/or decline assignments working in communities of color
  • Explain three benefits for Deaf people of color being able to work with Interpreters of color



 Dr. Suzette Garay (Pronoun: She/They/Ella/One)
Dr. Garay is a Deaf BIPOC and a third generational Latina(x) from South America, Nicaragua and a third member of my family who was born Deaf. She holds the following degrees: BA, MA. PSY.S, and a Ph.D. Her major areas of studies are Special Education with an emphasis on Deafness and Learning Disabilities, Psychology, and teaching of American Sign Language. She is currently a retired Educational Psychologist and teaches online diversity training courses and has facilitated the Dear White Interpreter course previously with the CAITE BHI program. She also co-owns a private online website working with many families, individuals, and private business owners about interpreting, accessibility, diversity, and advocacy with diverse DHHDB consumers at

Dr. Garay’s resume includes the following qualifications: 25+ years of direct teaching, evaluating, and mentoring with ASL/Interpreter students, working with nationally-certified interpreters, and/or continues to work has an advocate for Special Education students and their families. She also has invaluable personal experience and success teaching, evaluating, and mentoring diverse deaf individuals and/or consumers from underprivileged socio-economic backgrounds.


 LJ Williams - Mr. Joseph (LJ) Williams, who is originally from Detroit MI, is Deaf Black, and person who is also Blind, and has CP. He has been working in Michigan for several years as a Deaf Interpreter and Mentor in various school settings for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students. Most recently, he has worked as a Case Manager for Deaf and Hard of Hearing consumers in the Orlando Florida area.  His professional work and personal experience as a Deaf and Blind person (DeafBlind and CP) have given him access to working as a Deaf interpreter and sharing his lived experiences of using interpreters and for addressing concerns that specifically come up from the “users point of view” for interpreters to consider when providing access. Currently, LJ lives in Utah and works with Sorenson. When not working, he enjoys spending time with his wife and family.


Philip J. Wolfe has a longstanding history as an advocate, pro-activist, and an antiracist worker who is white, Jewish, no pronouns, non-binary, pansexual, and Deaf. He grew up in upstate, New York, and was raised by his grandparents who were hearing and knew a little of any sign language.
Philip has been proactivity involved with various LGBTQ activism at many levels throughout his life and is currently the President of Northwest Rainbow Alliance of the Deaf.

In 2013, Phillip moved to Portland, Oregon where he currently resides and continues to focus his antiracism work with the Black Lives Matter movement as well as many other social justice movements that continue to impact his journey toward dismantling many ‘isms’ and unpacking his white privileges. Since then, Philip has actively advocated for the rights of people with disabilities. Philip joined the Portland Commission on Disability and served as a Commissioner for 8 years. Early 2015, Philip has served on the Community Oversight Advisory Board (COAB), mandated by the US Department of Justice to oversee policy and procedures for the Portland Police Bureau, and he also was the first Deaf Advocate to chair COAB.

Dear White Interpreters

February 26 - March 25, 2024 -
4 Sessions of Live Zoom Meetings -

Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, OR Thursdays

(only 1 session per week required)
4pm PST / 6pm CST / 7pm EST

Mondays DAI Member Sign Up Mondays Non-Member Sign Up Tuesdays DAI Member Sign Up Tuesdays Non-Member Sign Up Wednesdays DAI Member Sign Up Wednesdays Non-Member Sign Up Thursdays DAI Member Sign Up Thursdays Non-Member Sign Up

4 Sessions, Online Meetings

This course includes four live Zoom sessions, videos, worksheets, plus weekly online interactive group sessions. 

Learn how to become an effective ally.

This course provides 1.0 CEUs.

This course meets the category of Power, Privilege and Oppression Category (PPO, PS CEUs).  



Topics Covered in This Course

This four-week course will take place in February and March 2024. You'll receive one module via Kajabi each week. Interactive discussions take place in the online community at Diversity Academy and via Zoom. 

Earn your CEUs from the comfort of home (or anywhere!).

This course is made available to us through:

The St. Catherine University CATIE Center, Behavioral Health Interpreting project is funded by the US Department of Education, Rehabilitation Services Administration, #H160C160003. Although the contents of this resource were developed under a grant from the Department of Education, these contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal government.  It is shared under a Creative Commons license in which credit must be given to the creator and any derivative resource must be licensed under similar terms.  For more information on Creative Commons (CC by) licenses, click here

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Diversity Academy for Interpreters is an Approved RID CMP Sponsor for continuing education activities. This PPO Professional Studies program is offered for 1.0 CEUs at the Some Content Knowledge Level.

Diversity Academy for Interpreters promotes and supports policies of non-discrimination and an environment that is mutually respectful and free from bias.

Requests for accommodations must be submitted to [email protected]

Cancellation Policy: 

In the event that this course has to be canceled, we will notify you within 48 hours. We will provide an alternative course date. 

Should you decide that any of these courses are not for you, you may cancel with a full refund before the first meeting of the course. After the course begins, only course credit may be offered. 


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