Loud & Proud
About disability, for disability, by disability
"Embracing the word disabled, fighting the urge and the conditioning that demands we distance ourselves from it, is a powerful illustration of self-determination in action. It epitomizes how far the disability community has come. By deciding what we want to call ourselves, owning it, we claim our power and celebrate the history and the community advocacy that made it possible."
- Lawrence Carter- Long
Actor & Advocate
David Harrell is an international award-winning actor, speaker and disability advocate, originally from Brunswick, Georgia, now residing in New York City. Most recently he performed Off- Broadway in the New York revival of The Artificial Jungle by Charles Ludlum and in the New York Times Critic’s pick The Healing by Samuel D. Hunter. ABC television’s casting executives selected him to perform in the 2015 ABC Discovers New York Talent Showcase at New World Stages. He produced and performed in the short film The Siblinings Liebencrantz winning “Best Filmmaker” in the 2017 Easterseals Disability Film Challenge. His short film Lefty & Loosey won “Best Film” in the 2016 Disability Film Challenge and “Best International Actor” in the 2016 Focus on Ability Film Festival in Sydney, Australia.
Past, present, and future of prosthetics
David is an American Board Certified and Illinois Licensed Prosthetist, Orthotist and Pedorthist with over 20 years of experience. His home office is the Scheck and Siress lab located at the University of Illinois Medical Center.
David, the clinical director of prosthetics for all of Scheck and Siress, is a member of the board of directors and is the chairman of the board of AOPS central fabrication.
David is Scheck and Siress’ “creative solution” expert. He has come up with unique designs to fit challenging cases. He fits many hip disarticulation and hemipelvectomy patients along with multiple limb involved patients. David is also Scheck and Siress’ fitting expert for upper-extremity prosthetics. He has extensive experience in both pediatric and adult management. He additionally specializes in sports related prosthetics and works with many para amputee runners and athletes many of whom are competitive on the world stage. David also works with many active veterans.
Matt is the #1 booked diversity speaker for college & university campuses. He has delivered his messages of diversity to over a million people and two sitting Presidents of the United States. His presentations teach students how to find happiness, develop a better understanding of social justice and diversity, and how to see potential in themselves and overcome personal disabilities and challenges. Matt has been awarded Campus Activities Magazine’s 2014 Best Speaker, and Best Diversity Artist for 2010 and 2013
Americans with Disabilities Act
Established in 1980, Access Living is a change agent committed to fostering an inclusive society that enables Chicagoans with disabilities to live fully–engaged and self–directed lives. Nationally recognized as a leading force in the disability advocacy community, Access Living challenges stereotypes, protects civil rights and champions social reform. Their staff and volunteers combine knowledge and personal experience to deliver programs and services that equip people with disabilities to advocate for themselves. Access Living is at the forefront of the disability rights movement, removing barriers so people with disabilities can live the future they envision.
Acting With A Disability
"People meet you and immediately assume that there’s a sad narrative to your life, and that that’s the overriding issue in your life. I want to start seeing narratives where [people with disabilities] are written as full-fledged human beings.” Folkins, who is a little person, explained that when she auditions for roles that are entirely based around her height, she wonders why every other aspect of the characters’ lives are completely overlooked. She also mentioned that she would like to see more established characters portrayed by actors with disabilities, and feels that adding that element would make the stories fresh and interesting. -Playbill
Crossroad Adaptive Athletic Alliance
Crossroads Adaptive Athletic Alliance's mission is to support adaptive athletes through sport, community, and education. Though not specifically a veteran charity, over 50% of our athletes are wounded warriors. The organization is formed exclusively for charitable and educational purposes.
Diane Nutting & Talleri McRae
Disability, arts, and education.
"True accessibility happens when it is part of structural and programmatic design from the beginning—rather than an add-on or afterthought. The process involves the “basics” of scheduling and supporting services such as American Sign Language interpretation, real-time captioning, and audio description. It requires working closely with the operations and technical teams to account for the wide range of abilities of visitors as they design and build our site. It entails educating staff and volunteers so they will know how to answer questions when they arise.
However, beyond the tangible elements, accessibility is about making sure everyone knows they are welcome and have belonging and “membership” within a community" -Diane Nutting
"Notorious" Nick Newell
Professional MMA Fighter
Newell was born a congenital amputee. Before turning professional, he amassed an amateur record of 5 wins, 1 loss. He describes his early MMA career as a struggle, not because he could not win, but because other fighters did not want to fight a one armed fighter. The potential opponents who turned down fights against him felt that it would be a lose-lose situation for them, as if they won, it would've been against a one-armed fighter; if they lost, it would've been against a fighter with one arm. As such, finding quality opponents became a struggle for Newell.
When web sites, applications, or technologies are badly designed, they can create barriers that exclude people from using the Web. The goal is to make the Web accessible to all regardless of a person's location, language, or ability. What advances are being made in the computer programming word to accommodate people who have different accessibly needs?
Owner of CoApt Complete Control
Founded in 2012, Coapt is the first and only company with FDA Class II Clearance to provide revolutionary and intuitive control technology for advanced prosthetic arms. Started by four leading researchers in the bionics field, Coapt is based on years of research and clinical care at the nation’s leading hospital for comprehensive physical medicine and rehabilitation, the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab (formerly the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago). Coapt is an award-winning company that strives to improve the quality of life for prosthesis users by applying clinically dedicated engineering to its portfolio of transformative technologies. For more information, visit www.coaptengineering.com.
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