Many assume you need a voice and hearing to communicate. You don’t. You just need two people who want to communicate, and the rest will work out.
Accounting Assistant Teresa Hendon was born deaf. She attended the Alabama School for the Deaf in Talladega from September 1968 until she graduated in 1983. She began her career in data entry at Alabama Power Corporate Headquarters in 1983 and transferred to the Remittance Processing Center (RPC) in 1991.
“My job as a manager is to learn how to communicate with people by any means necessary,” said Accounting Manager Chris Barnes. “I don’t know sign language, but we have figured out how to communicate without using our voices. We use gestures with our hands and body language.”
The RPC processes all customer payments for Alabama Power and Mississippi Power. Hendon’s primary responsibilities include posting customer payments, making daily bank deposits, keeping track of departmental numbers and setting up customers for automatic draft to pay power bills.
“I enjoy working on the accounting tasks,” said Hendon. “It’s been a remarkable 38-year career. I like all the employees who work with me.”
Hendon has developed ways to communicate where voice isn’t needed to accomplish her work. She doesn’t let the boundaries of voice limit her interaction with others.
“Teresa was born deaf, but she has not let that limit her success in her 38-year career at Alabama Power,” said Barnes. “She performs complicated, technical job duties every day. I am amazed how quickly she masters new technical processes without the use of speech.”
Hendon has been successful learning how to adapt to and face her unique challenges every day on the job and in her daily life.
When Hendon is not performing her job duties, she enjoys jigsaw puzzles and spending time with her two cats, Pookie and Cookie.