A composite of the LightHouse and Holman Prize logos

And the 2022 Holman Prizewinners Are…

We are pleased to announce the winners of the sixth annual Holman Prize for Blind Ambition. The Holman Prize awards up to $25,000 each to three blind people who have ambitious ideas that challenge misperceptions about blindness while also challenging themselves. The Holman Prize is named for James Holman, a 19th century blind explorer who was the most prolific private traveler of anyone, blind or sighted, before the era of modern transportation.  

In July, an international panel of 10 blind leaders spent two days selecting the three winners of this year’s prize. 

Introducing The 2022 Holman Prizewinners  

Abby Griffith, 28 – United States 

Photo caption: Abby Griffith sitting at her desk

Griffith will empower blind and low vision youth in Ethiopia by providing Braille reading and writing devices to students at the School for the Blind in Wolayta. When told over Zoom that she had won, Griffith covered her face in astonishment and cried tears of happiness, grateful for the opportunity to fund services for economically disadvantaged blind youth in her native Ethiopia.   

Holman Prize judge and blind chemist, Dr. Hoby Wedler said, “Abby is a truly extraordinary blind leader. She came to the United States, learned how to use assistive technology, and wants to bring her learnings of access tech and braille back to her homeland! This is truly remarkable and game changing.  

Cassie Hames, 33 – Australia  

Photo caption: Cassie standing at a bus stop wearing a reflective vest and holding her cane

Hames will develop “See Me,” an app that communicates with bus drivers to request them to stop to allow a visually impaired person to board, making independent travel on public transportation safer and more accessible for the blind. Hames’ exact response upon being told she is one of this year’s winners was, “Holy moly!” followed by an eruption of laughter and tears of shock and joy. 

Holman Prize judge and blind author, Dr. M. Leona Godin, said, “I was struck by Cassie’s tenacity demonstrated in her 90 second video pitch. Cassie is a woman with a clear and important project, and the will and ability to make it happen.”  

Tafadzwa Nyamuzihwa, 38 – Germany 

Photo caption: Tafadzwa speaking into a microphone

Nyamuzihwa, an experienced DJ, will open recording studios in Zimbabwe and Uganda that will employ and train blind and low vision people to become radio presenters. When informed that he had won, Nyamuzihwa began dancing around the room.  
 
Sarah Harris, Disability Rights Advocate and Holman Prize judge said, “Tafadzwa’s insight and passion to change perspectives and stigmas in regard to blindness are thoughtful and heartfelt.” 

LightHouse is thrilled to have Waymo as a partner and thanks them for their generosity in sponsoring of one of the three prizes this year.  

For more information contact 
Christina Daniels at 415-694-7315 or press@lighthouse-sf.org 
About the LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired 
Founded in 1902, LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired is the largest organization in Northern California providing skills, resources and community for the advancement of all individuals who are blind or have low vision.  
Email: info@lighthouse-sf.org and visit: 
www.lighthouse-sf.org/Holman-prize 

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