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Svetlana Kouznetsova

“An accessibility trailblazer with a unique combination of professional expertise in accessibility and lived experience with deafness.”


About Me

I’m an independent B2B accessibility consultant and trailblazer who has been deaf since age 2. I have had to use various alternative solutions to communication and information barriers throughout my life. I am a former hearing aid user, a current cochlear implant user, a native Russian speaker, a fluent ASL user, and can communicate in at least 5 languages. 

I've lived in different countries, learned several languages, and navigated through most of education as the only deaf student in regular schools without formal communication access services. I also had no captioning access on TV when growing up.

Captions on TV changed my life in early 1990s when I was 15 years old. My father brought home a captioning decoder. We were so amazed by this magic box that made captions appear on almost all TV channels! They played a major role in helping me master English as my third language and access aural information as a deaf person. Since then I cannot imagine my life without captioning access!

I have an MS degree in Internet Technology and over 20 years of professional expertise in design, technology, and accessibility. Throughout my career I learned about the best practices for captioning, visual communication, and web accessibility and started to incorporate them in my work. Eventually I became a professional accessibility consultant and an international speaker educating businesses on the importance of accessibility to the world’s largest minority of 1.85 billion disabled people. 

For over the past 10 years, I have advised business owners, corporations, media producers, event organizers, and educational institutions on the benefits of accessibility and the return on investment they will receive from improving accessibility strategies for their web, media, and events.

I’m also a founder of Audio Accessibility and advise businesses on how to improve communication and information access to 466 million deaf and hard of hearing people in the world. My book and TEDx talk uncover the benefits of high quality captioning access that increase audience and ROI for businesses.

Many people think that deafness is a weakness, but I have proven them otherwise through my consulting and international speaking.

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