Women's History Month: Ode To Helen Keller

Eyes Are The Story Founder Amy Gallant Sullivan Closes Women's History Month with a Tribute to her Childhood Icon

As we close out Women’s History Month, Helen Keller reminds us all of what a true visionary can be. Growing up in Boston, it was impossible not to be inspired by her journey. What little girl wasn’t! Raised in a family steeped in eye health, and, in close proximity to Perkins School For The Blind, I was always fascinated by Keller's story, which occupies a special place in my heart. I have fond memories visiting the campus and the beautiful grounds, and imagined her discovering a whole new world with her teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan (no relation!) in 1888.

“I joined the little blind children in their work and play, and talked continually. I was delighted to find that nearly all of my new friends could spell with their fingers. Oh, what happiness! To talk freely with other children! To feel at home in the great world!” 

Helen Keller taught us how to push boundaries and how to see beyond what’s visible. Personally, I take tremendous courage from Keller's life’s journey and contributions to empowering the visually impaired. 

Translating vision into different aspects of life from eye health, to art, to cosmetics… is the fabric of my being. In the spirit of Keller's devotion to championing disability rights for the blind, I am proud to have embarked on one of my proudest projects: a collaboration with Vatican Museums called The Italian & International Patrons.

Through this partnership, we are dedicated to the preservation and the perpetuation of arts, antiquities and sculptures in the Vatican Museums with a special focus on making art accessible to all, even those with disabilities (e.g. blindness) who otherwise would not be able to participate.

“I had never before considered the importance of accessibility of artwork for the visually impaired. I feel like this opened a whole new way for me to think of both artwork and our abilities.” -A Junior at Matignon High School, Cambridge, MA, who toured exhibit

This project is a large undertaking that recruits design, restoration and vision experts from around the globe.


My hope is to one day return to Perkins School to create something similar in the form of an interactive multisensory garden (an idea that was in planning stage just prior to the pandemic). For now, that dream is on hold. But if we learn anything from Ms. Keller, it's to never give up, despite the obstacles we face.

-Amy Gallant Sullivan