Kathleen Treni retired as the principal of the Continuum of services for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students in Bergen County Special Services District (BCSSD). The Continuum includes Listening and Spoken Language pre-K through 12th grade programs for deaf and hard-of-hearing students in Midland Park, New Jersey, pre-K through 12th grade Total Communication programs in Hackensack, New Jersey, “Sound Solutions,” a service agency of itinerant teachers, therapists and audiologists who consult with school districts throughout northern New Jersey area. In addition, she oversaw the early intervention program, a home and center based model. Other professional duties have included being adjunct professor in the Speech and Communication Disorders Department at Montclair State University, teaching Supervision and Organization of Speech Programs.
Treni was born deaf to hearing parents. Both she and her brother, Mark, who also is deaf, were raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, in the public schools. Treni graduated from the University of Miami with two degrees. She taught in Miami, Boston and in New Jersey. Originally, she taught high school biology and then became a teacher of the deaf and hard of hearing. She taught all ages and all levels, from early intervention through 12th grade. After finishing a second master’s in school psychology, she was a school psychologist for several years before becoming supervisor. As director, she earned a reputation for having high educational standards, outcomes and for her vision in deaf education. In Midland Park, she helped establish a complete Kindergarten through sixth grade collaborative education program that is a model of inclusion. She completed her third master’s in administration.
She has been a member of the Alexander Graham Bell Association since 1973 when she received the Elsie Grosvenor scholarship from the association. She has since been active in DHHS (Deaf and Hard of Hearing Section), served as an officer, attended DHHS retreats, and functioned as a mentor to young deaf and hard of students. As a professional, she was a member and chairperson of International Professional Section and the past-chairperson of Public School Caucus, a group of administrators of deaf and hard-of-hearing programs around the country. She has served on the school aged financial aid committee since 1995 and represented the Association on the CED advisory board for a number of years. She has contributed to both the Volta Voices and Volta Review magazines. She served as president of the Alexander Graham Bell Association during the 2010-2012 term.
In her spare time, Treni spends time with her family and friends or escapes to her Ohio cabin. She enjoys reading, hiking, experimenting with yoga, and planning her vacations. She lives in Ramsey with her husband, Michael, and their Sheba Inu, Neeka. They have three grown daughters, Tiffany, Ashley, and Morgan and three grandchildren, Addison, Treyson, and Maeve.