Dorothy Harrison Eustis and 'The Seeing Eye' of Morristown
Library patrons are certainly familiar with people walking (and training) dogs for the visually impaired around the streets of Morristown. These dogs are being trained by The Seeing Eye organization, and Dorothy Harrison Eustis—the woman behind that institution–is the focus a new biography by Miriam Ascarelli. Independent Vision: Dorothy Harrison Eustis and the Story of The Seeing Eye is the first biography of Dorothy Harrison Eustis, the Philadelphia socialite whose money, leadership and vision lead to the formation of The Seeing Eye in 1929. Although several books have concentrated on the history of the organization, Ascarelli’s book is the first to focus on Eustis herself and the confluence of people and events that lead to the idea for The Seeing Eye. Just this year, Eustis was announced as an inductee for the National Women’s Hall of Fame located in Seneca Falls, New York.
Miriam Ascarelli and Pat McKenna will both be at the Morristown and Morris Twp. Library to present two programs in one. Ascarelli’s talk will focus on Eustis’ life: her privileged childhood in Victorian Philadelphia; her marriage to the son of a wealthy inventor in upstate New York; her widowhood; her failed second marriage to a man thirteen years her junior; and the formation of The Seeing Eye. In addition, Pat McKenna, an outreach specialist from The Seeing Eye, will talk about his organization, how they train dogs and how the dogs guide the visually-impaired. McKenna will also have along one of his four-legged, canine ambassadors to greet those present. Ascarelli will have copies of her book on sale for $16.95 (cash or check only please) and all proceeds from books sold during the talk will go to The Seeing Eye, Inc.
Established in 1929, The Seeing Eye provides specially bred and trained dogs to guide people who are blind. Seeing Eye® dog users experience greatly enhanced mobility and independence, allowing them to retain their active lifestyles despite blindness. The Seeing Eye is a not-for-profit organization supported by contributions from individuals, corporations and foundations, bequests, and other planned gifts. The Seeing Eye is a trademarked name and can only be used to describe the dogs bred and trained at the school’s facilities in Morristown, N.J. [for more information on The Seeing Eye, please visit www.SeeingEye.org, call (973) 539-4425, or email firstname.lastname@example.org].
Charles Pat McKenna, Esq. is an outreach specialist who travels across the U.S. and Canada to recruit students to The Seeing Eye. He is responsible for coordinating The Seeing Eye’s Orientation and Mobility Seminar among other programs. Before joining The Seeing Eye in 2011, Pat served as a mediator and arbitrator for the State of New Jersey, and as a mediator for the Borough of Highland Park. He is licensed to practice law in the state of New Jersey and is currently with his second Seeing Eye dog, a large male yellow cross named Garcia.
Refreshments will be served. Please join us.