Press Releases

Sorenson and Nos Entendemos are proud to partner to support the 2022 Summer Deaflympics in Brazil! This international sporting event brings together thousands of Deaf athletes to show their competitive spirit and share their passion with the global Deaf community. Alongside Nos Entendemos, Sorenson looks forward to providing interpreting resources and supporting communication access for Deaflympics athletes and staff. We will also be sharing special content, interviews, and updates from the Deaflympics events, so check out our social media pages to follow along and learn more about this exciting cultural event!

SALT LAKE CITY – (April 26, 2022) Today, Sorenson announced it has been named to the Forbes list of Best Employers for Diversity 2022. Sorenson is the world’s leading provider of inclusive communication services for Deaf and hard-of-hearing people. This prestigious award is presented by Forbes and Statista Inc., the world-leading statistics portal and industry ranking provider. 

“We are honored to be included on this important list of employers embracing diversity,” said Sorenson CEO Jorge Rodriguez. “As a provider of language services and accessible communications, we understand what it means to create a diverse workforce. In an effort to best serve our various communities, we proactively engage employees from diverse experiences who enrich our culture and company.” 

The Best Employers for Diversity were selected based on Statista’s innovative methodology, guaranteeing unbiased results and providing reliable insights. Over 60,000 U.S. employees were surveyed in companies with a minimum of 1,000 employees to identify The Best Employers for Diversity. 

The evaluation was based on four different criteria:  

  • Direct recommendations: Employees were asked to give their opinions on a series of statements regarding Age, Gender, Ethnicity, Disability, LGBTQA+ and General Diversity in their current workplace. The recommendations of women, elders and ethnic minorities were weighted higher than the non-minority groups.
  • Indirect Recommendations: Participants were also given the chance to evaluate other employers in their respective industries that stand out either positively or negatively related to diversity. Only the recommendations of minority groups were considered.
  • Diversity Among Top Executives/Board and Diversity Engagement Indicators were also part of the evaluation. 

Earlier this month, Sorenson announced that private investment firm Ariel Alternatives, LLC, a subsidiary of Ariel Investments, the first Black-owned asset manager in the United States, completed an acquisition of the majority of the Company’s common equity. With the support of Ariel Alternatives, Sorenson has an enhanced strategic focus on and commitment to underserved and underrepresented communities. “Expanding to additional populations aligns with our focus on of equity, inclusion, and accessibility for diverse communities in very tangible ways – through job growth, economic development, and increased opportunities for underrepresented people,” added Rodriguez. “In this new chapter at the Company, we reaffirm our commitment to expand to further our mission of leveraging the power of language to help relationships thrive.” 

As part of the strategic investment from Ariel Alternatives, Sorenson intends to transform into a minority business enterprise (MBE) and become a leading supplier to Fortune 500 companies, supporting business diversity. The Company also plans to significantly increase its mandates with minority-owned businesses in its own supply chain. 

“At  Sorenson, we celebrate and seek diversity in culture, thought, backgrounds, perspective and experiences,” said Brian Breinholt, Chief Human Resources Officer. “As one of America’s largest private employers of people who are Deaf, we see daily how diversity enriches teams and departments and makes a positive difference in our workplace and in our services.” 

La empresa reafirma su compromiso con la comunidad sorda y con el desarrollo económico invirtiendo en un nuevo centro de operaciones en Puerto Rico

San Juan, Puerto Rico 20 de abril de 2022. Sorenson, el proveedor líder de servicios inclusivos de comunicaciones para la comunidad sorda e hipoacúsica (sordera parcial), anunció hoy la expansión de sus servicios de español y de lenguaje de señas americano (ASL). La empresa estará contratando intérpretes de lenguaje de señas americano para trabajar desde su casa o desde un centro de interpretación en Puerto Rico.

“Para nosotros en Sorenson, es un placer renovar nuestro enfoque en los servicios de interpretación en español y en lenguaje de señas americano porque sabemos que este trabajo es fundamental para conectar a nuestras comunidades”, afirmó Jorge Rodríguez, director ejecutivo de Sorenson.

De acuerdo con Rodríguez, al expandir sus servicios, estimularán la creación de empleos en la Isla y ofrecerán más oportunidades a las comunidades.  “Consideramos que Puerto Rico es el lugar ideal para materializar nuestra misión de fomentar el poder de las lenguas con el fin de impulsar el avance de las relaciones de esta importante comunidad”, puntualizó Rodríguez.

Con el propósito de satisfacer las necesidades de los intérpretes, Sorenson ofrecerá puestos para trabajar desde el hogar y planifica abrir, durante este año, un nuevo centro de interpretación. El objetivo inicial es contratar a cien intérpretes de lengua señada y hablada, con la intención de incorporar más personal, a medida que la presencia de Sorenson crezca en Puerto Rico. Esto no sólo brindará más opciones de conexión y de comunicación para la comunidad sorda, sino que también promoverá el desarrollo económico local y generará un mayor número de oportunidades para diversas comunidades.

Un socio clave para lograr la expansión de Sorenson ha sido Claro PR, empresa que proveerá los servicios de telecomunicaciones y garantizará una conectividad a Internet segura para el nuevo centro de interpretación.

“Es un honor para Claro ser parte de esta alianza colaborativa que favorece a la comunidad sorda e hipoacúsica de Puerto Rico. En Claro, buscamos continuamente facilitar las comunicaciones usando nuestra tecnología”, aseveró Enrique Ortiz de Montellano, presidente y director ejecutivo de Claro.

Sorenson continúa liderando la industria proporcionando tecnología, servicios y comunicaciones accesibles para la comunidad sorda e hipoacúsica en los Estados Unidos, en el Reino Unido y en Canadá. A través de sus servicios de lenguaje de señas y de telefonía por Internet con subtitulado [Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service, IP CTS] para las personas con pérdida auditiva, Sorenson procesa más de ciento cuarenta millones de conversaciones al año.

“En Sorenson, sabemos que el acceso a las comunicaciones y a la tecnología es crítico para la comunidad sorda e hipoacúsica, por eso nos complace brindar nuestros servicios al Colegio San Gabriel y al resto de la comunidad en Puerto Rico. Esperamos que esta sea una relación sólida y duradera”, manifestó Lance Pickett, gerente de relaciones de Sorenson.

Las personas interesadas en solicitar un puesto de trabajo en Sorenson pueden encontrar información adicional en https://www.sorenson.com/careers/ o comunicarse por correo electrónico a joinus@sorenson.com.

Reaffirms commitment to community with enduring investment

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – (April 20, 2022) Sorenson, the world’s leading provider of inclusive communication services for Deaf and hard-of-hearing people, announced today an expansion of its Spanish language and American Sign Language (ASL) services. The company is hiring ASL interpreters who will be based in Puerto Rico, working either from home or from an interpreting center.

“Sorenson is pleased to renew our focus on our Spanish and ASL interpretation services, and we recognize how integral this work is to connect our communities,” said Jorge Rodriguez, CEO of Sorenson. “Expanding our services means we can support job creation and opportunity growth for underrepresented people, and we believe Puerto Rico is the right place to continue our mission of leveraging the power of language to help relationships thrive.”

To support interpreter needs, Sorenson is offering work-from-home interpreting positions and plans to open an interpreting center later this year. The initial hiring goal is 100 signed and spoken interpreters, with plans to increase with additional staff as Sorenson’s presence in Puerto Rico grows. These roles will not only offer connection and communication options for the Deaf community, but they will also support local economic development and create increased opportunities for diverse communities.

A key partner to support Sorenson’s expansion is Claro PR, which will be the company’s telecommunications provider, committed to providing reliable internet connectivity for the upcoming interpreting center.

“It is an honor for Claro to be part of this collaborative alliance which supports the Deaf and hard-of-hearing community in Puerto Rico. In Claro, we are continuously looking to facilitate communication through the use of our advanced technologies,” said Enrique Ortiz de Montellano, president and chief executive officer of Claro.

Sorenson continues to lead the industry in delivering accessible communications, technology and services to the Deaf and hard-of-hearing communities in the U.S., U.K. and Canada. Through its sign language services and Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service (IP CTS) for people with hearing loss, Sorenson processes more than 140 million conversations annually.

“We understand how critical access to communication and technology is for all Deaf and hard-of-hearing people, and Sorenson is pleased to commit our services to Colegio San Gabriel and the broader community in Puerto Rico. We look forward to a strong and enduring relationship,” said Lance Pickett, Sorenson Chief Relationship Officer.

Those interested in applying for a position with Sorenson can find more information at the Sorenson careers page or email joinus@sorenson.com.

First C-level Deaf executive brings real-world experience to diverse communities

SALT LAKE CITY – (April 12, 2022) – Today, Sorenson announced the appointment of Lance Pickett as its new Chief Relationship Officer (CRO). Mr. Pickett is the first Deaf executive to serve in the company’s C-suite since the company’s founding 20 years ago.   

Born Deaf into a family with both Deaf and hearing members, Mr. Pickett has spent his life negotiating both cultures, communication and communities. His personal experience, combined with his thorough understanding of Sorenson products and services and the needs of the people who use them, uniquely qualify him to lead corporate efforts to seek mutual understanding and collaboration between diverse people.

“Lance is the right leader to nurture new and established relationships as Sorenson  evolves to connect even more people worldwide using Sorenson’s accessible and inclusive services,” said Sorenson CEO Jorge Rodriguez. “Lance brings historical industry perspective and understands our renewed focus on innovation, consumer protection and compliance. We welcome him to the leadership team.”

In his new role, Mr. Pickett will draw upon his extensive, first-hand experiences in the Deaf, hearing and hard-of-hearing communities as well as his expertise developed over years serving in various Sorenson roles. He is pioneering and will lead Sorenson’s new Ambassador program.

Mr. Pickett began his career with Sorenson as a trainer, installing videophone equipment in customers’ homes, then rapidly advanced to director of technical support for Sorenson relay service. After 13 years, he was promoted to marketing vice president, where he was responsible for all consumer acquisition and retention marketing, branding, corporate communications, B2C marketing and sales support and product development. He spearheaded initiatives that drove record social media and community engagement; lobbied Sorenson’s positions to the FCC, political representatives and community advocacy groups; and consulted and collaborated with product development and design teams to ensure optimal user experiences across all of Sorenson’s modern, customer-focused platforms and hardware.

“I am pleased to join Sorenson’s leadership,” notes Mr. Pickett. “I am excited about our plans to expand our communication services to better serve Deaf, hard-of-hearing, diverse and underrepresented communities. I want to support the growth that takes Sorenson to the next level.”   Mr. Pickett is a graduate of Utah Valley University with a bachelor’s degree in multimedia communications technology.

Sorenson Employees Injured in Austin

Salt Lake City – April 9, 2022 

We are devastated to report that on Fri., April 8, 10 Sorenson employees who were in Austin, Texas preparing to attend a DeafNation Expo were injured when two vehicles collided at an intersection, sending one vehicle into the Sorenson group which had gathered near a food truck. The injured employees were transported to two local hospitals and treated for varying degrees of serious injuries.

“We are deeply saddened by this tragic event. Our hearts are with those in the Sorenson family who sustained injuries and with those impacted by the event,” said Sorenson CEO Jorge Rodriguez. “We continue to support them on their road to recovery and healing.”

Sorenson, el proveedor líder de servicios accesibles de comunicación en los Estados Unidos, anuncia transacción estratégica

Ariel Alternatives, LLC concreta la adquisición del paquete mayoritario de Sorenson.

Una asociación con el fin de expandir las opciones de comunicación inclusiva para la comunidad Sorda e hipoacúsica, y para diversas poblaciones a nivel mundial.

Un nuevo director general y una nueva junta directiva le aportan al equipo directivo pericia adicional en temas relacionados con productos, seguridad y regulaciones.

American Sign Language
British Sign Language

Salt Lake City, 4 de abril de 2022. Sorenson (o “la empresa”), el proveedor líder de comunicaciones para la comunidad Sorda e hipoacúsica en los Estados Unidos, anunció hoy que la firma de inversión privada Ariel Alternatives, LLC ha concretado la adquisición del 52,5 % del capital ordinario de los accionistas existentes, esto incluye a Blackstone Credit, un fondo gestionado por Franklin Mutual Advisers, y cuentas financieras privadas gestionadas por KKR, en una transacción de USD 1 300 millones. Los accionistas vendedores continuarán poseyendo una participación minoritaria en la empresa. Ariel Alternatives es la empresa privada filial de la firma gestora de activos globales Ariel Investments, LLC, la primera empresa de inversión de propietarios afroamericanos en los Estados Unidos.

Durante más de veinte años, Sorenson ha sido el proveedor líder de tecnología, de servicios y de comunicaciones accesibles para la comunidad Sorda e hipoacúsica en los Estados Unidos, y más recientemente, en el Reino Unido. El servicio de telefonía por Internet con subtitulado de Sorenson [Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service, IP CTS] para las personas con pérdida auditiva y la interpretación por video y en persona en lenguaje de señas americano y británico han modernizado la manera en que las personas Sordas e hipoacúsicas se comunican. Esta adquisición no afectará los servicios existentes de Sorenson.

En la actualidad, Sorenson procesa más de ciento cuarenta millones de conversaciones al año, y es una de las empresas privadas que emplea a más individuos Sordos en los Estados Unidos. Se espera que la inversión de Ariel Alternatives le permita a Sorenson conectar a más personas alrededor del mundo a través de sus servicios accesibles e inclusivos, y continuar expandiéndose para modernizar sus servicios comunicativos hacia las plataformas del siglo XXI. La presencia de Sorenson en Europa incluye a un prestigioso cliente en Francia y a su afiliada en el Reino Unido, Sign Language Interactions. Recientemente, la Oficina de Comunicaciones del Reino Unido nombró a Sign Language Interactions como el proveedor oficial del nuevo servicio de video relevo (VRS) para las llamadas a Emergencias al 999.

Esta transacción es la primera de la iniciativa estratégica “Project Black” de Ariel Alternatives, cuya misión es expandir las empresas sostenibles propiedad de minorías. A través de este esfuerzo, Ariel Alternatives busca transformar las empresas de cartera como Sorenson en empresas dirigidas por minorías y ubicarlas como prestadores líderes entre las empresas Fortune 500, respaldando así la diversidad comercial. Ariel Alternatives también apunta a ayudar a las empresas a generar empleos, igualdad y crecimiento económico dentro de las poblaciones subrepresentadas. Sus objetivos de alto impacto incluyen, sin limitación: acrecentar el acceso a productos para las comunidades desatendidas, contratar a personal diverso para cubrir puestos desde el nivel inicial hasta el nivel ejecutivo, obtener contratos de comerciantes y proveedores minoritarios, y forjar asociaciones filantrópicas con organizaciones que respalden los derechos civiles.  

Jorge Rodríguez, director ejecutivo de Sorenson comentó: “Nos entusiasma enormemente asociarnos con Ariel Alternatives. Su inversión nos permitirá optimizar nuestro potencial, y desarrollar nuestros sistemas, nuestras plataformas y nuestro alcance para mejorar la experiencia comunicativa de la comunidad Sorda e hipoacúsica. Además, podremos acelerar la investigación y el desarrollo, y ampliar las inversiones para ofrecer tecnología de vanguardia, lo que nos permitirá promover la equivalencia funcional para las diversas comunidades a las que servimos. Me complace que hayamos concretado esta transacción de envergadura que respalda nuestra tesis de accesibilidad, inclusión y oportunidad económica, los principios subyacentes de nuestra misión para respaldar a los grupos desatendidos y subrepresentados”.

David Posnick, director ejecutivo sénior de Blackstone Credit y miembro de la junta directiva de Sorenson, añadió: “Sorenson ha hecho un trabajo excepcional proveyendo servicios a la comunidad Sorda e hipoacúsica. Confío en que la asociación con Ariel Alternatives ampliará el alcance de los servicios de Sorenson, proporcionando el acceso lingüístico para las comunicaciones a poblaciones más extensas”.

Ariel Alternatives ha aprovechado su amplia red de ejecutivos minoritarios para colaborar con Sorenson nombrando, recientemente, a Jorge Rodríguez como director ejecutivo, y designando una nueva junta directiva que incluye a Paget Alves como su presidente, a Vonya McCann, al coronel J. Carlos Vega y a María Teresa Lensing como sus directores. Además de ser personas de color, estos ejecutivos le aportarán al equipo directivo de Sorenson pericia crítica en temas regulatorios, de productos y de seguridad a medida que la empresa evoluciona y amplía su enfoque en la innovación, en el cumplimiento y en la protección de los consumidores.   

  • El Sr. Rodríguez (director ejecutivo de Sorenson) se desempeñó anteriormente como presidente y director ejecutivo de numerosas empresas del grupo América Móvil, y trae consigo más de treinta años de experiencia en telecomunicaciones y gerencia.
  • El Sr. Alves (presidente de la junta directiva de Sorenson) fungió, recientemente, como el director de ventas y presidente de Business Markets Group de la Sprint Corporation. Es miembro de la junta directiva de Assurant, Inc.; International Game Technology, PLC; Synchrony Financial; y Yum! Brands, Inc. Asimismo, forma parte del consejo asesor para la iniciativa “Project Black” de Ariel Alternatives.
  • La Sra. McCann (directora de la junta directiva de Sorenson) compartirá sus conocimientos sobre temas regulatorios y aportará su amplia perspectiva para garantizar el estricto cumplimiento en Sorenson. Fue vicepresidente sénior de asuntos gubernamentales en la Sprint Corporation. Después de una extensa carrera en comunicaciones y gobierno, la Sra. McCann fue nominada por el presidente William J. Clinton, y su cargo fue confirmado por el Senado de los Estados Unidos, como embajadora y subsecretaria de estado adjunta para las Comunicaciones Internacionales y la Política de Protección de la Confidencialidad.
  • El coronel Vega (director de la junta directiva de Sorenson) es un experimentado profesional en ciberseguridad y es coronel jubilado del Ejercito de los Estados Unidos. Cuenta con más de tres décadas de experiencia en liderazgo en seguridad y lleva dos décadas especializándose en operaciones de ciberseguridad. Con su enorme capacidad para liderar organizaciones de amplia y pequeña escala, guiándoles para alcanzar sus rigurosos objetivos de informática, seguridad y operaciones, el coronel Vega ha dirigido a equipos en entornos con alto nivel de estrés, caracterizados por elevados estándares e intensos cronogramas operacionales. Ha liderado equipos de operaciones profesionales, de investigación y tecnología preparándolos para exigentes misiones, que incluyen desde el combate hasta misiones de respaldo en los entornos más hostiles.
  • La Sra. Lensing (directora de la junta directiva de Sorenson) funge, en la actualidad, como vicepresidente sénior y directora de Tecnología para Ingeniería, Infraestructura y Operaciones en McKesson, donde se enfoca enérgicamente en diseño de ingeniería y excelencia operacional con el fin de optimizar los niveles de desempeño. Anteriormente, ocupó varios puestos de liderazgo en AT&T y Rockwell Collins. La Sra. Lensing ha recibido numerosos reconocimientos en el área comercial, y ha trabajado para el Consejo Ejecutivo de la Tecnología de la Información Hispano que otorga los premios HITEC 100 a los cien líderes hispanos más influyentes en el sector de la Tecnología.

Sorenson recientemente ha contratado, y continuará contratando, a personal de minorías étnicas y a personas Sordas e hipoacúsicas para ocupar puestos de liderazgo, asesoría y dirección. Asimismo, la empresa planea establecer un Consejo de Asesoría Sordo que recomendará prácticas óptimas de manera continua con el fin de garantizar la debida conducción de la empresa en la comunidad a la que servimos.    

Sorenson recibió la asesoría de Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP y Credit Suisse. Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP actuó como el principal asesor legal para Ariel Alternatives. Greenberg Traurig LLP proporcionó asesoría jurídica adicional.

Sorenson, America’s Leading Provider of Accessible Communication Services, Announces Strategic Transaction

Ariel Alternatives, LLC completes purchase of majority stake in Sorenson

Partnership to enable the expansion of Sorenson’s inclusive communication options for Deaf, hard-of-hearing, and additional diverse populations worldwide

Newly appointed CEO and board directors bring enhanced product, security, and regulatory expertise to leadership team

American Sign Language
British Sign Language

Salt Lake City, April 4, 2022 – Sorenson (or “the Company”), the leading U.S. communications provider for people who are Deaf and hard-of-hearing, announced today that private investment firm Ariel Alternatives, LLC has completed an acquisition of 52.5% of the Company’s common equity from existing shareholders, including Blackstone Credit, a fund managed by Franklin Mutual Advisers, and private credit accounts managed by KKR at an enterprise valuation of $1.3 billion. The selling shareholders will continue to own a minority interest in the company. Ariel Alternatives is the private equity subsidiary of global asset manager Ariel Investments, LLC, the first Black-owned investment firm in the U.S.

Sorenson has been the leader for over 20 years in delivering accessible communications, technology and services to the Deaf and hard-of-hearing communities in the U.S. and, more recently, in the United Kingdom. Sorenson’s Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service (IP CTS) for people with hearing loss, video, in-person American Sign Language and British Sign Language interpreting have modernized the way people who are Deaf and hard-of-hearing communicate. This acquisition will not affect Sorenson’s current services.

Today, Sorenson processes more than 140 million conversations annually, and is one of America’s largest private employers of Deaf people. Ariel Alternatives’ investment is expected to enable Sorenson to connect even more people worldwide using the Company’s accessible and inclusive services, by expanding those services to additional 21st century communications platforms. Sorenson’s existing presence in Europe includes a flagship customer in France, and its United Kingdom affiliate, Sign Language Interactions. Sign Language Interactions was recently named by the U.K.’s Office of Communications as the official provider for the U.K.’s new Emergency 999 Video Relay Service (VRS).

This transaction is the first of Ariel Alternatives’ strategic initiative “Project Black,” its mission to scale sustainable minority-owned businesses. Through this effort, Ariel Alternatives seeks to transform portfolio companies like Sorenson into minority business enterprises (MBEs) and position them as leading suppliers to Fortune 500 companies, supporting business diversity. Ariel Alternatives also aims to help portfolio companies generate jobs, economic growth, and equality within underrepresented populations. These impact objectives include but are not limited to: increasing the accessibility of products to underserved communities; the hiring of diverse people from entry level to the boardroom; the purchasing of contracts with minority-owned vendors and suppliers; and philanthropic partnerships with organizations supporting civil rights.

Sorenson Chief Executive Officer Jorge Rodriguez commented: “We are thrilled to partner with Ariel Alternatives. Their investment will enable us to optimize our capabilities, evolve our systems, platforms and approaches to improve the overall Deaf and hard-of-hearing communication experience, and accelerate R&D and next-generation technology investments to promote functional equivalency across the diverse communities we serve. I couldn’t be happier that we have closed such a monumental transaction, given our thesis of accessibility, inclusion and economic opportunities as underlying tenets of our mission to support underserved and underrepresented groups.”

Senior Managing Director of Blackstone Credit and Sorenson board member David Posnick added: “Sorenson has done a phenomenal job of serving the Deaf and hard-of-hearing communities. I am confident the Ariel Alternatives partnership will extend Sorenson’s service reach, providing communication language access to broader populations.”

Ariel Alternatives has leveraged its extensive network of minority executives to introduce Sorenson to recently appointed CEO Jorge Rodriguez and new board members, including Chairman Paget Alves, and directors Vonya McCann, Colonel J. Carlos Vega and Maria Teresa Lensing. In addition to being people of color, these executives bring critical product, security, and regulatory expertise to Sorenson’s leadership team as the Company evolves and enhances its focus on innovation, consumer protection, and compliance.

  • Mr. Rodriguez (Sorenson CEO) was previously the President and CEO of multiple America Movil companies and brings more than thirty years of telecommunications and management experience.
  • Mr. Alves (Sorenson board Chairman) most recently served as the Chief Sales Officer and President of Business Markets Group for Sprint Corporation. He is a board member of Assurant, Inc.; International Game Technology, PLC; Synchrony Financial; and Yum! Brands, Inc. He is also on the advisory board for Ariel Alternatives’ Project Black initiative.
  • Ms. McCann (Sorenson board director) will provide increased regulatory expertise and a dedicated, board-level focus on ensuring strong compliance at Sorenson. She was a Senior Vice President for Government Affairs at Sprint Corporation, following a long career in both communications and government. Ms. McCann was nominated by President William J. Clinton and confirmed by the U.S. Senate as Ambassador and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Communications and Information Policy.
  • Col. Vega (Sorenson board director) is an experienced cybersecurity professional and a retired U.S. Army Colonel with over three decades of security leadership experience and two decades specializing in cybersecurity operations. With demonstrated capability leading large and small-scale organizations to achieve difficult IT, security, and operational objectives, Col. Vega has led teams in high-stress environments characterized by demanding standards and intense operational schedules. He has led professional operations, research, and technology teams in preparation for demanding missions that include combat and support missions in the most hostile environments.
  • Ms. Lensing (Sorenson board director) currently serves as Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for engineering, infrastructure, and operations at McKesson, where she is strongly focused on engineering design and operational excellence to optimize performance levels. Previously, she held various leadership positions with AT&T and Rockwell Collins. Ms. Lensing is the recipient of numerous business awards and has served on the Hispanic IT Executive Council for the HITEC 100 – 100 Most Influential Hispanic Leaders in Technology.

Sorenson has recently hired and will continue to engage additional ethnic minority, Deaf and hard-of-hearing leaders, advisors, and directors. In addition, the Company is establishing a Deaf Advisory Council that will recommend ongoing best practices for conducting business in the community it serves.

Sorenson was advised by Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP and Credit Suisse. Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP served as lead legal counsel to Ariel Alternatives, with Greenberg Traurig LLP serving as co-counsel.

Accessible communications provider to match $50,000 in donations

SALT LAKE CITY – (March 10, 2022) – Today, Sorenson Communications announced a partnership with the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) to drive support for Deaf people in Ukraine and for Deaf refugees fleeing the Russian invasion to relocate in neighboring Eastern European countries. Many Deaf Ukrainians, like their fellow citizens, are displaced and without basic supplies but also lack access to information and communication in sign language.

Sorenson, the world’s leading provider of inclusive communication services for Deaf and hard-of-hearing people, is launching a campaign to drive significant financial support for Deaf in the Ukraine and provide an avenue for Deaf and hard-of-hearing to help from abroad. 

Visit the Sorenson Donation Site to contribute.

WFD is coordinating support for Deaf Ukrainians through the Ukrainian Society of the Deaf (UTOG), an advocacy organization that networks with local associations throughout the country and that is currently working to ensure Deaf people are included in humanitarian aid and evacuation support and have access to sign language interpreting services. All donations made on the WFD’s Sorenson page will assist UTOG’s work.

This commitment is personal to Sorenson. Born in the Ukraine and now living in the U.S., Yuliya Novosad, who is Deaf, works as a graphic designer for Sorenson. “I am so lucky to work for such an amazing and thoughtful company,” she says. “Thank you, Sorenson, for creating a way to help and support Ukrainian people during this difficult time especially the Deaf community there. My family and I and my friends back in Ukraine are extremely grateful!”

Fast Company recognizes Sorenson for revolutions in communication between Deaf and hearing.

SALT LAKE CITY – (Mar. 8, 2022) Today, Sorenson Communications was named to Fast Company’s prestigious annual list of the World’s Most Innovative Companies for 2022.

Sorenson, the world’s leader in accessible communications for Deaf and hard-of-hearing, was thrilled to join the list of other mission-driven businesses that are making the biggest impact on their industries and culture as a whole—ultimately thriving in today’s ever-changing world. Sorenson is among inventive companies, including Canva, Microsoft, and SpaceX, creating the future today with some of the most inspiring accomplishments of the 21st century.

“Sorenson is honored to be named on this preeminent list of forward-thinking companies,” says Jorge Rodriguez, CEO of Sorenson Communications. “We leverage the insight and creativity of our diverse people – brilliant and committed, ‘whole brain’ teams who deeply understand our customers’ unique needs – as a catalyst to disrupt our industries and to deliver inclusive next-generation platforms and services. Our focus on diversity both within our company and in the communities we serve informs everything we do as we innovate new ways to connect people across languages and cultures.”

Sorenson was recognized for accessible technologies, like Lumina, the company’s Deaf-designed videophone, which provides unmatched clarity, cutting-edge innovation, and exceptional design. Additionally, Sorenson’s revolutionary technology, Wavello, was acknowledged as a crucial tool for communication between Deaf and hearing people during the pandemic. Wavello created new possibilities for connection by showing a Deaf caller, ASL interpreter, and a hearing caller on the same Video Relay Service (VRS) call for the first time.

For nearly two decades, Sorenson has been the leader in accessible communication, technology and services for the Deaf community, and today, Sorenson enables over 140 million conversations a year through its ASL interpreting services and its CaptionCall captioned telephone service. In the past three years, the company earned top accolades as an exemplary employer, with additional recognition for its efforts to support women and diversity in its workforce.

“The world’s most innovative companies play an essential role in addressing the most pressing issues facing society, whether they’re fighting climate change by spurring decarbonization efforts, ameliorating the strain on supply chains, or helping us reconnect with one another over shared passions,” said Fast Company Deputy Editor David Lidsky.

“Sorenson is dedicated to driving functional equivalency,” said Mr. Rodriguez. “We will continue to push the envelope with next generation technology and capabilities across our video and captioning platforms to deliver a superior customer experience.”

Seasoned Silicon Valley executive committed to responding to customer needs

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SALT LAKE CITY – (Feb. 22, 2022) – Today, Ivonne Valdes was named Sorenson Communications’ Chief Product Officer and Executive Vice President of Business Development. Valdes’ experience spans international sales, cybersecurity oversight, go-to-market strategies and includes a continual focus on enhancing the customer experience.

“Ivonne is a transformative business leader, with a proven track record of advancing strategic product and business initiatives,” said Jorge Rodriguez, CEO of Sorenson Communications, the leading provider of American Sign Language interpreting and phone captioning services. “Ivonne’s vision supports our efforts to connect people through accessible and inclusive communication as we continue to expand internationally. We welcome her to our executive team.”

Prior to joining Sorenson and since 2016, Valdes was the global senior vice president of accounts for Schneider Electric, where she oversaw strategic sales and customer experience for the Global Data Center Segment and synced business models across multiple business units. Under her leadership, the company experienced double-digit growth. As the leader responsible for global enterprise customers, including the Fortune 100, she managed more than $1 billion in annual revenue globally.

From 2010 to 2016, Valdes served in various vice presidential roles and divisions at Hewlett Packard Enterprise. She worked cross functionally to define, implement, and execute new services and go-to-market strategies, and was responsible for datacenter care, infrastructure automation and infrastructure as a service.

Prior to Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Valdes held senior sales leadership positions at Oracle Corporation and Sun Microsystems.

”I am honored to join a company that aims to change the world, one conversation at a time – and to be part of the transformation,” said Ms. Valdes. “I’m excited to support the development of next-generation technology and services that give new and existing communities advanced options for communication.” 

Valdes joins Sorenson with an array of awards, which include the 2020 Silicon Valley Women of Influence Award, the 2020 HITEC Hall of Fame, and the Infrastructure Masons 2019 Global Diversity and Inclusion Champion award.

Valdes chairs the HITEC Foundation and serves on the sales advisory board for Virtual Power Systems and Kloudspot.

Valdes received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Caldwell University and an MBA from the University of Phoenix. She holds a CERT Certification in cybersecurity oversight from Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute.

Executive brings deep experience to mission of serving diverse communities 

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SALT LAKE CITY – (Feb. 11, 2022) – Today, Sorenson Communications announced the appointment of Mark E. Sparger as the company’s first Chief Revenue Officer, a position that will draw upon his vast experience in advancing employee and company-wide performance – all with the ultimate goal of optimizing service to new and existing customers.  

“We welcome Mark to our executive team,” says Jorge Rodriguez, CEO of Sorenson Communications, the leading provider of interpreting and Video Relay services. “Under Mark’s direction, we aim to identify business opportunities and challenges and work nimbly and collaboratively to better serve our existing and underrepresented communities. We look to him to enhance our teams’ capabilities and to introduce systems and structures that will help us continue to excel in today’s fast-paced business world.”

Prior to joining Sorenson, Mr. Sparger was head of corporate aftermarket partnerships for CARFAX, where he provided leadership to sales and customer success teams that implemented go-to-market strategies and effective end-to-end customer experiences.

Mr. Sparger served as a board advisor to Aerial UAS Solutions as well as Chief Operating Officer for Fiber Prime Telecommunications, where he constructed business development growth strategies for international markets, focusing on Latin America, Europe, and North America. 

Previously, as senior director of global operations and fulfillment for Equifax/IXI, he led sales support and operations. Prior to Equifax/IXI, and for eight years, he served as Sprint’s Head of Americas, Americas Network Services, where he led operations and global business development. There, he enhanced operations, identified strategic markets, competitive advantages, sales/marketing opportunities, and areas of potential cost savings. In addition, he provided guidance and financial governance for global operations and served as executive sponsor to key global clients.

“I am pleased to join Sorenson,” notes Mr. Sparger. “I look forward to being part of an agile and progressive team that, in an effort to better serve people, addresses challenges and seizes opportunities to grow in new and exciting ways.” 

Mr. Sparger earned an M.B.A. from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). He is a certified Lean Six Sigma Green Belt, which designates advanced competence in the areas of data analysis, operational efficiencies, and cost management.  A vision-driven and goal-focused leader, Mr. Sparger understands how to implement, perform, interpret, and apply these principles at a high level of proficiency.