Lou Vieceli was born in 1921 in Illinois. He attended Southern Illinois University in Carbondale where he received his B.A. (1948) in physical education and mathematics and his M.Ed. (1959) in guidance and counseling. He and his wife Jewell have a son and two grandchildren, all are currently living in Carbondale, Illinois.
In 1948, Lou Vieceli began his professional career as a rehabilitation counselor for the Illinois Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, a position he held until 1959. At that time, he was invited to join the faculty of the Rehabilitation Institute at Southern Illinois University where he served until his retirement in 1993. He is best known for the development of his Placement Counselor Training Program for the Blind which he conducted from 1959 until 1993. He also provided Small Business Enterprise Supervisor Training for the Vending Stand Program.
As a nationally recognized authority on job placement of blind persons, his advice and counsel were in high demand. He served as consultant to numerous State Rehabilitation Agencies including Ohio Services for Visually Handicapped, Florida Commission for the Blind, Arkansas Rehabilitation Services for the Blind, and the Texas Commission for the Blind. He worked on the "Careers for the Blind" project for the American Foundation for the Blind. He was frequently asked to evaluate manuscripts for journals and book publishers as well as grant proposals for a variety of agencies.
Lou Vieceli was active in several rehabilitation associations. He served as president (1965-1966) of the Illinois Association of Workers for the Blind. He was treasurer (1969-1971) and board member (1979-1983) for the American Association of Workers for the Blind. He served as editor of the Employment Counselor’s Newsletter for AAWB’s Group 2. He was a Louis P. Ortale Lecturer for the Job Placement Division of the National Rehabilitation Association (1980).
Fortunately for the field, some of Lou Vieceli’s expertise is in published form. He and Thomas Dickey edited the book Guidelines for the Selection, Training and Placement of Blind Persons in Information Service Expediting (Southern Illinois University Press, 1975). Among a dozen chapters and articles, he co-authored with George Magers "Occupational Information and Job Development," in Services to the Blind: A Community Concern (1973).
Lou Vieceli received many honors and awards in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the rehabilitation and job placement of blind persons. They include: AAWB’s John H. McAulay Award, Chicago, 1969 for outstanding achievement in the placement of blind persons; Certificate of Appreciation, State of Illinois, Department of Rehabilitation Services, 1982; the Ambrose Shotwell Memorial Award, AAWB Convention, Phoenix, Arizona, 1983; and Community Service Award, The Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind, Chicago, 1985; and AFB’s 2005 Migel Medal Award, Boston, MA.