Founder & CEO
Lorin MacDonald has often been the pioneer that forged a path to make it easier for others to follow. In every community in which she has lived, she has left behind a powerful legacy of accessibility. The creation of HearVue is a natural evolution of Lorin’s advocacy throughout her life. She was the first to introduce captioning in various spheres – university (Ryerson University in Toronto, ON and Western University in London, ON); the judicial system (Courts in Hamilton, ON and London, ON as well as various Ontario Social Justice Tribunals); professional associations (the Ontario Bar Association, the Law Society of Ontario, the Advocates’ Society, and the Women’s Law Association of Ontario); and cultural venues (The Grand Theatre in London, ON and Mirvish Productions in Toronto, ON). More importantly, Lorin’s research demonstrates that captioning benefits far more than those living with hearing loss – English as a Second Language users and people with learning disabilities also are supported by captioning, along with a wider audience. Before HearVue, Lorin enrolled in law school believing a deeper appreciation of the law would enable her to more effectively advocate for people living with disabilities. As a woman born with a profound hearing loss, she has experienced a myriad of barriers throughout her life. As a human rights lawyer focusing specifically on discrimination as experienced by people with disabilities, she became frustrated by the glacial culture change that occurs on a case-by-case basis. Due to her overriding desire to effect change that will benefit everyone, HearVue was conceived as an innovative business model for live event captioning, be it in-person or online.
“HearVue is my bold vision to create real and long overdue change in live event communication accessibility. When we lift people out of isolation and into full participation at diverse live events, be they online or in-person, powerful change is sure to happen!”
Lorin is widely respected for her advocacy work because of her cross-disability approach, not focusing exclusively on accessibility for people living with a hearing loss. She has appeared in three Government of Ontario videos about accessibility. The popular 2012 subtitled YouTube videos, Day in the Life of Lorin (English) and Un jour dans la vie de Lorin (French) highlight the importance of accessibility in the personal and professional lives of people living with disabilities and are praised as a positive message for all.
A recognized champion in building awareness of accessibility and disability issues locally, provincially, and nationally, Lorin’s approach is grounded in evidence-based research and a desire to raise the bar in communities with respect to inclusion and accessibility. She uses her past work experience in advertising, public relations, and special event planning, her legal education, and her perseverance in the face of frequently adverse conditions to ensure people living with disabilities have an accessible community in which to live and contribute. She arms those who may be unaware or unconscious of the barriers experienced by individuals with disabilities with the tools necessary to create accessible and inclusive communities for all.
Lorin has been honoured for her contributions to a barrier-free Canada by her alma mater Western University, the City of London, various non-profit and community organizations, the Province of Ontario, and the legal profession.