Champion - Evan Oakley

English / Humanities Professor • Chair of English Department

From: Windsor, CO

Nominated by: Veronica Patterson

Taking Charge of His Life

“Hearing devices, along with other technology, made it all possible. Hearing better through hearing devices is absolutely central to all I do.”

Evan is the English department chair at Aims Community College where he interacts with numerous faculty, students, and administrators.

He advises those unsure about seeking assistance to “waste no time, friend. Whether you realize it or not, a better way of life is waiting for you.”

How Hearing Loss Has Impacted Evan

“I went from being a normal hearing and functioning adolescent to being a profoundly deaf adolescent at the age of 13. I lost most of my hearing due to measles/encephalitis and began seeing an audiologist where I was fitted with hearing aids.”

“My whole adult life has transformed and been made possible thanks to hearing devices. For me, they’re the difference between an engaged human life and isolation.”

Who Inspires Evan?

Evan states that his biggest role model is the philosopher, Epictetus. He asserted the truth that external troubles are not what truly hinder us; rather, it is our attitudes and responses to those troubles that help or hurt us. He continues to be inspired by many famous and inspiring deaf individuals.

Previously involved with many professional organizations, Evan continues to participate in writing groups, poetry groups, a community poetry festival organization that he has directed, and the Academy of American Poets.

Why Evan Is a HearStrong Champion

Evan would be greatly honored to serve as an inspiration to others to overcome their hearing loss. His story will serve as motivation for those affected by hearing loss, and his successes will speak for themselves.

Evan relates to “the moments that involve loved ones and the priceless treasure of being able to interact with them, conversationally. Sharing my story would be such a pleasure.”

Watch Evan Honored as a HearStrong Champion

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