Rodney J. Kossick
Inducted Saturday, September 24, 2011
Rodney Kossick graduated from Moorhead High School in 1955. During high school, he participated in science club, track, chorus, operetta and language club. In 1959, Kossick earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and English literature from Minnesota State University Moorhead. He received his master’s degree in blind rehabilitation, orientation and mobility from Western Michigan University in 1962.
Kossick served in the North Dakota Air National Guard from 1955-58 and the Air Force Reserve from 1958-63. He worked for the North Dakota Division of Vocational Rehabilitation from 1960-66. From 1966-68, Kossick worked in South Vietnam as a blind rehabilitation consultant through the World Rehabilitation Fund, Inc. He received the Civilian Medal of Honor, second class, from the South Vietnamese government in 1968 for his work.
From 1968-71, Kossick held positions with the Washington State Services for the Blind in Seattle. He then worked for two years with the Australian National Council for the Blind to establish an orientation and mobility training school to train sighted instructors in mobility techniques. From 1973-74, Kossick worked for the Indiana Rehabilitation Services. He was state director, bureau for the blind, for Wisconsin Division of Vocational Rehabilitation from 1974-1980. From 1980 until his retirement in 2000, Kossick was a blind rehabilitation specialist in Milwaukee, Wis. In 1988, Kossick and his wife served as consultants to the North Vietnam government to survey education, rehabilitation and employment services for blind people.
Kossick has published several papers and been involved in numerous organizations including American Association of Workers for the Blind, Association of Educators for the Visually Handicapped, National Council of State Agencies Serving the Blind, National Rehabilitation Counseling Association, Orientation and Mobility Instructors Association of Australia, Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired, Lions International, and Blindness Hall of Fame, which he co-founded. He has been recognized with several service awards.
Rodney is married to Sue Melrose. They have four sons, Scott Enstrom, Todd Enstrom, Patrick Kossick and Kelly Kossick, 10 grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Kossick lives in Modesto, Calif.