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Disability Equality Index (DEI)

Become a Disability Equality Index
SM (DEISM) Founding Partner

Interested in helping AAPD and the USBLN® launch the DEISM initiative in 2014 - a disability inclusion benchmarking tool that is positioned to be used for years to come to help the business community and disability community?

Contact Jason Mida, Chief Development Consultant, at about becoming a Disability Equality IndexSM (DEISM) Founding Partner. Status as a DEISM Founding Partner is a one-time opportunity exclusive to companies that come on by December 31, 2014. Learn more about the Status as a DEISM Founding Partner opportunity and benefits here - (DOC) (PDF)

For more information about the DEISM FAQ - (DOC) (PDF)

Industry Leaders Join Pilot Program to Enhance Disability Inclusion Benchmarking Tool

The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) and the US Business Leadership Network® (USBLN®) are pleased to announce that many of America’s leading companies have signed up to take part in the pilot launch of the Disability Equality IndexSM (DEISM).  AAPD and the USBLN® sought the participation of 35 companies, and the maximum number joined well ahead of the November 15, 2013 deadline. The pilot phase will refine the DEISM survey prior to the 2014 launch of the first Annual DEISM survey.

Companies participating in the pilot represent a broad range of industry sectors. These include Aerospace, Agriculture, Consumer Products, Entertainment, Financial Services, Healthcare, Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical, Professional Services, Retail, Technology, and Telecommunications.

The DEISM is a national transparent benchmarking tool that will offer major businesses the opportunity to receive an objective score on their disability inclusion policies and practices, and identify avenues for continued improvement. In addition, the tool is intended to help build a company’s reputation as an employer of choice, which could advance talent acquisition. Furthermore, the DEISM will provide useful information to people with disabilities.

Disability Equality Index
SM Advisory Committee Announced

Bringing Together a Diverse Group of Thought Leaders

The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) and the US Business Leadership Network® (USBLN®) jointly announced the formation of the Disability Equality IndexSM Advisory Committee, a diverse group of thought leaders who have assembled to share with AAPD and the USBLN® their knowledge, expertise, and vision to enhance disability inclusion policies and practices in the workplace.

"We are truly honored to work with such a dynamic group of individuals who offer a broad range of backgrounds and experiences," said Jill Houghton, Executive Director of the USBLN®. "With the Disability Equality IndexSM having such wide reach amongst business, it is critical to gain perspective from leaders across different industries, business sectors, and within the disability community."

"I look forward to the Advisory Committee's insight and recommendations on the Disability Equality IndexSM", said Mark Perriello, President and CEO of AAPD. "We expect the Advisory Committee will assist in creating a more meaningful tool for business that will ultimately advance employment opportunities for people with disabilities."

In December 2012, AAPD and the USBLN® announced their joint partnership to develop the Disability Equality IndexSM, a transparent national disability inclusion benchmark tool that will offer major employers an opportunity to receive an objective score on their disability inclusion policies and practices. AAPD and the USBLN® are working diligently throughout 2013 to finalize and launch the first survey to Fortune 1000 companies.

The Committee's members are:

Jeannie Amendola

Member and Past President, CastABLE, Walt Disney World Resort, Administrative Assistant, Public Affairs, Walt Disney World Resort

Helena Berger

Disability Rights Advocate

Sara Bowen

Director, Corporate Counsel, EO Initiatives and Employment Law, Starbucks Coffee Company

Kelby Brick

Vice President, Regulatory & Strategic Policy, Purple Communications, Inc.

Mary Brougher

Executive Vice President, Operations, Bender Consulting Services, Inc.

Deborah Dagit

President, Deb Dagit Diversity LLC

Kareem Dale

Attorney and Disability Rights Advocate

Sheri Gilbert Pardo

Assistant General Counsel, Ernst & Young U.S. LLP

Christine M. Griffin

Executive Director, Disability Law Center

Jenny Lay-Flurrie

Senior Director, Accessibility (CPA), Microsoft

Randy Lewis

Founder, No Greatness Without Goodness

Fred J. Maahs Jr.

Director, National Partnerships, Community Investment, Comcast Corporation, Vice President, Comcast Foundation

Susan Mazrui

Director, Public Policy, AT&T Services, Inc.

Will Ris

Senior Vice President, Government and Regulatory Affairs, American Airlines

Neil Romano

President, The Romano Group

Rick Schroder

Manager, Inclusion & Diversity, GlaxoSmithKline

Rita Taylor-Nash, SPHR

Vice President, Corporate Diversity, Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC)

Keith Wiedenkeller, SPHR

Senior Vice President & Chief People Officer, AMC Entertainment Inc.

Bob Witeck

President, Witeck Communications, Inc.

Jonathan M. Young, PhD, JD

Partner & General Counsel, FOXKISER, LLP

About the US Business Leadership Network® (USBLN®)

The US Business Leadership Network® (USBLN®) is a national non-profit that helps business drive performance by leveraging disability inclusion in the workplace, supply chain, and marketplace.  The USBLN® serves as the collective voice of over 50 Business Leadership Network affiliates across the United States, representing over 5,000 businesses.  Additionally, the USBLN® Disability Supplier Diversity Program® (DSDP) is the nation’s leading third party certification program for disability-owned businesses, including businesses owned by service-disabled veterans.


The American Association of People with Disabilities:

Promoting equal opportunity, economic power, independent living and political participation for people with disabilities.

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