AAPD Celebrates the 21st Anniversary of the Passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Washington, DC  (July 25, 2011) – The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), the country’s largest cross-disability membership organization, is pleased to announce that Secretary Kathleen Sebelius will give the keynote address at AAPD’s Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) anniversary event and Justice For All Award celebration on July 26.

Secretary Sebelius will help celebrate the 21st anniversary of the ADA and AAPD’s Justice for All recipients for their leadership on disability issues: Senator Mike Enzi (R-WI), Senator Mark Pryor (D-AR), Tom Tauke, Executive Vice President, Public Affairs, Policy and Communications at Verizon, and Bruce Darling, National Organizer with ADAPT. Mark Mellman, CEO of The Mellman Group, a polling and consulting firm, will receive the Thomas Paine Award, given to individuals who improve the voter participation of people with disabilities.

The recipients will receive their awards in advance of the event, and will be recognized during the celebration. AAPD’s new President & CEO Mark Perriello and AAPD’s new board chair Joyce Bender will co-emcee the event.

“We’re honored to recognize the work of these disability champions. Their contributions are strengthening our movement and improving the quality of life of all people with disabilities,” Perriello said.

The event will be held in the Senate Auditorium in Dirksen-G50 and is invitation-only. Media is welcome, but should RSVP to David Hale, Sr. Director of Development & Communications at AAPD.

This annual event is held each year to celebrate the ADA anniversary and to recognize individuals who have contributed in extraordinary ways to increasing the political and economic power of people with disabilities. In previous years, AAPD has presented awards to top congressional champions of the ADA, including Ted Kennedy, Tom Harkin, Chris Dodd, Orrin Hatch, John McCain and Bob Dole.

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The American Association of People with Disabilities is a convener, connector, and catalyst for change, increasing the political and economic power of people with disabilities.

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