Then, we’re breaking out into concurrent tracks, with sessions around imposter syndrome and accessibility maturity, disability inclusion for leadership, and a panel discussing the future of video accessibility with the proposed CVTA.
After, we’ll dive into 3Play’s State of Automatic Speech Recognition report, accessibility as a gateway to creativity, and discuss complex identities and the intersection of disability.
Break time! Stand up, stretch out, and enjoy a pause in programming with an adaptive yoga class that empowers all ages and abilities to experience the benefits of yoga.
We finish off Day One of ACCESS 2023 with Theo Hildyard for a session on how to use data and empathy to create accessible marketing campaigns.
We’ll jump right into our second day of ACCESS on Friday, April 28th, with a panel of accessibility leaders, including Claudia Gordon, Christopher Patnoe, Kathy Martinez, and Charlotte Dales. They’ll explore practical tools and techniques for ensuring accessibility remains a priority in the current economic environment.
Moving right along, we’ll break out into our respective tracks with sessions on product innovation, inclusive game development, and the role of AI in digital accessibility.
We follow that up with discussions on how disability is shaping the pop culture narrative and the challenges of using technology for individuals with chronic mental health conditions.
Then, Jeff Wissel, Chief Accessibility Officer at Disability:IN, offers a unique, collaborative “Ask Me Anything” discussion around his experiences in accessibility and recommendations for best practices.
And finally, we end ACCESS 2023 with a fun special event featuring the Comedians with Disabilities Act. This collective features comedians with disabilities who bring forth the humor they find in their experiences.
Caroline Casey is the businesswoman and activist behind The Valuable 500, the world’s largest CEO collective and business move for disability inclusion. She is a system shaker driving the transformational change needed to create a more inclusive world.
Recently appointed President of the IAPB, Caroline also sits on several diversity and inclusion boards to include L’Oréal, Sanofi and Sky and is a much sought-after speaker. She has received an honorary doctorate as well as multiple awards and accolades for her work as a disability activist.
Head of Accessibility and Disability Inclusion – Google
Christopher Patnoe is the Head of Accessibility and Disability Inclusion for EMEA at Google. He leads Google’s efforts around the accessibility of product, people, policy and partnerships across EMEA – with a particular focus on Emerging Markets. He has more than 25 years experience in Tech working at companies like Apple, Sony Ericsson and Disney where he’s built hardware, software, and services. His current passion is Accessibility at the intersection of immersive technologies (xR) and consumer hardware. He is the chair for the Immersive Captions Community Group with the W3C, is the Accessibility Working Group Chair for the XR Association, sits on the Board of Trustees for the American Foundation for the Blind and the GAAD Foundation. Christopher has a degree in Music from UC Berkeley.
Kathy joined Expedia Group in October 2022 and leads the development of the travel tech company’s disability inclusion and equality strategy, weaving awareness and accessibility into all physical, digital, and cultural aspects across the organization.
Kathy is an internationally recognized disability inclusion thought leader. She most recently served as President & CEO of Disability Rights Advocates (DRA). Throughout her extensive career, she has also served as SVP, Head of Disability and Accessibility Strategy for Wells Fargo, and as Assistant Secretary of the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) at the U.S. Department of Labor, putting policy priorities into practice. Kathy is on the board of The American Association of People with Disabilities and has served on the boards of the National Council on Disability, the U.S. Institute of Peace, and the State Department’s advisory committee on disability and foreign policy.
Jeff has a distinguished career with Fidelity Investments over the past 28 years. Jeff started Fidelity Investments as a Mutual Fund Representative and worked in a variety of roles including multiple Pilot Start up Roles. In March of 2010, Jeff obtained the Certified Financial Planning Certification, and in 2016, Jeff Founded the Fidelity Investments Enable Employee Resource Group. Today there are 5,147 active members.
Jeff is proud to say he is legally blind with a degenerative eye disease called Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), and has been an avid user of assistive technologies including Screen Readers and Magnifiers for over two decades. Jeff has the IAAP CPACC Certification, the ADA Title II, III Coordinator Certification and is completing the DHS Trusted Tester Certification.
Accessibility and Inclusive Design Leader – Intuit
Ted Drake is the Accessibility and Inclusive Design Leader at Intuit, a financial software company that creates TurboTax and QuickBooks. Ted leads a distributed team of Accessibility Champions; working together to power prosperity. Prior to Intuit, Ted co-founded Yahoo’s Accessibility Lab and was a developer evangelist. Ted speaks regularly at technology and design conferences and is a board member of Magical Bridge Foundation, steering committee for Web4All, and program chair for CSUN Assistive Technology Conference.
Frances West is the founder of FrancesWest&Co, a global strategy advisory company focusing on operationalizing diversity inclusion through digital transformation. Frances and her expert partners help public, private, non-profit, and start-ups thrive and grow through digital inclusion and purpose-driven innovation strategy.
Frances has 30+ years of global business management, technology sales, emerging market development and organizational leadership experience. She held numerous executive positions, including being IBM’s first Chief Accessibility Officer where she managed a global team from IBM Research to establish IT accessibility standards, shape government policies, and develop human first enterprise technology and solutions enabling all people to reach their highest potential, regardless of their age or ability. Because of her expertise, Frances was invited as the sole IT industry representative to testify before the US Senate on the need to pass the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities.
Soren designs inclusive and accessible systems, communities, and products. As a Senior Manager of UX, Soren Hamby is making the design industry more equitable. They have a focus on accessibility, diversity, and inclusivity while simultaneously building a strong and diverse team.
They also guest speak, educate, consult, and write about inclusive design, employee equity in tech, and accessibility. Otherwise, you can find them eating large amounts of plants and collecting enamel pins in the NYC metro.
Catarina Rivera, MSEd, MPH, CPACC is a disability public speaker, DEI consultant, and content creator with over 14 years of experience in the public sector. Catarina works with companies to improve disability awareness, inclusion, and accessibility. She is the founder of Blindish Latina, a platform smashing disability stigmas through storytelling and advocacy. Catarina has worn hearing aids from a young age and was diagnosed with a progressive vision disability at 17 years old. She has a BA from Duke University, an MSEd from Bank Street College of Education, and an MPH from Hunter College. Catarina is a Certified Professional in Accessibility Core Competencies (IAAP).
Albert Kim is an award-winning accessibility subject matter expert and public speaker who previously worked with Doordash, Intuit, ServiceNow, Korn Ferry, Siteimprove, and Fable. He is also the founder of Global Accessibility NextGen Initiative, a global community of future accessibility champions and leaders. Albert pioneered the Neurodiversity & Mental Health inclusion in digital accessibility and currently serves as an invited expert at W3C Cognitive and Learning Disabilities Task Force as well as Mental Health Sub-Group.
Zainab Alkebsi is Policy Counsel at the National Association of the Deaf (NAD), the largest and most influential membership organization of deaf and hard-of-hearing persons in the United States. As Policy Counsel, Ms. Alkebsi is responsible for providing analysis, recommendations, and advice to the NAD on policy issues affecting people who are deaf and hard of hearing. Ms. Alkebsi regularly interfaces with government agencies, Congress, coalitions, media, and businesses on all issues affecting deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals.
Ms. Alkebsi also represents the NAD at conferences, on advisory committees and panels, and through presentations. Ms. Alkebsi also serves as the President of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Bar Association and Chair of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Consumer Advocacy Network. Before joining the NAD, Ms. Alkebsi served as Deputy Director at the Maryland Governor’s Office of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing coordinating the office’s legislative and policy efforts. Ms. Alkebsi has a BA in political science from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and a JD from the University of Baltimore School of Law.
Kiah Amara is a Disabled, Queer, and nonbinary producer, activist, and production accessibility coordinator. Originally from the rural Midwest, they now work globally expanding ideas of Accessibility, Disability, and all things deviant from normal through their company IndieVISIBLE Entertainment. Kiah is the PAC on Best Foot Forward (AppleTV+) which was featured in The New York Times and awarded a 2022 Ruderman Seal of Authenticity. Other work includes the Netflix x RespectAbility Children’s Content Lab, The Greatest ad (Apple x Somesuch), Rosie’s Rules (PBS Kids), CBS and WarnerBros. Discovery Talent Initiatives, and Accessibility Lead for the Far Out product launch at the Steve Jobs Theatre.
Coty Craven is a Producer focused on accessibility and inclusion for Unreal Engine at Epic Games. A longtime champion of game accessibility, they work on the Epic Developer Community team to help make Unreal Engine learning content accessible by ensuring that all video content is accurately captioned. They are also on the leadership committee for the new Epic Disability Alliance employee resource group, which focuses on supporting disabled employees, their loved ones, and allies.
An exciting lineup, right? And that’s just a sampling of who you can expect at ACCESS 2023. Check out the full list of speakers to see which other accessibility visionaries are joining in on this year’s conference.