Carol-lee Aquiline was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA and lived in Sydney, Australia, from 1982-1996; Geneva, Switzerland and Ferney-Voltaire, France from 1996-1997; Stockholm, Sweden from 1997-2000; and Helsinki, Finland from 2000-2005. She is well known to the international Deaf and interpreter communities. She worked for the National Theatre of the Deaf (USA) from 1978-1982, and then the Australian Theatre of the Deaf until 1993, eventually becoming their first Deaf Artistic Director. She then took on the role as the first Manager of the Australian Association of the Deaf (AAD) National Advocacy Service and then first Executive Director of AAD. From 1996-2005 she was the General Secretary (Executive Director) of the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD), based in Europe. Carol-lee left WFD in 2005 to adopt her Deaf son, Aedan, from Russia, at which time she also moved back to the USA.
Carol-lee is a Certified Deaf Interpreter (CDI) through the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID), and also has her Indiana Interpreter Certification (IIC). She works as an ASL Interpreter and as an International Sign interpreter both in the USA and internationally, and has interpreted at a number of prestigious international Deaf conferences. Currently she serves on the Deaf Advisory Council for RID, and is Honorary Co-Chair for the RID 50th Anniversary National Conference in 2013.
Since 2007, Carol-lee has been an adjunct professor at J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College (JSRCC) in Richmond, Virginia, in the American Sign Language & Interpreter Education (ASL & IE) program. She teaches classes from orientation to learning ASL as an adult through beginning and advanced ASL; the literature of the US Deaf Community; and ASL skills development, cognitive processing and translation for interpreters. She has also mentored interpreters at various schools in Virginia, and tutored ASL students privately. Carol-lee moved to Indianapolis with her son in 2008, and continues to teach for JSRCC via videophone.Carol-lee is also contracted as an ASL Specialist and Deaf Role Model at the Indiana School for the Deaf, and is an independent international consultant and trainer in human rights and services for Deaf people and people with disabilities. In her capacity with WFD, she worked with the United Nations, UNESCO, WHO and other international bodies, and thus has a broad knowledge of international issues within the disability field. She is active as a public speaker and trainer as well as evaluator, consultant and advisor to advocates, agencies and community groups. Carol-lee is an experienced workshop leader, and offers previously developed workshops as well as designing workshops to meet the specific needs of individual groups.