On the 30th Anniversary of the Individuals with Disabilities Act

The virtual event is open to the public free of charge – as is a related discussion on Judy Heumann’s new memoir “Being Heumann” on March 24th. Members of the campus and alumnae community are invited to participate via Zoom. Members of the general public can sign up via livestream on Smith’s Facebook page.

About Judy Heumann

Judy Heumann is an internationally recognized leader in the Disability Rights Independent Living movement. Since the 1970s, her work with a variety of activist organizations (including the Berkeley Center for Independent Living and the American Association of People with Disabilities), NGOs, and governments has been instrumental in developing human rights laws and policies for the benefit of people with disabilities. She has campaigned for disability rights in the United States and abroad, served in the Clinton and Obama administrations, and served as the World Bank’s first adviser on disability and development. Her book “Being Heumann: An Unrepentant Memory of an Activist for Disability Rights”, published in 2020, describes her story of the struggle for belonging to a world that “was not built for us”.

About Tom Hehir

Tom Hehir recently retired after nearly 20 years as Professor of Practice in Learning Differences at the Harvard Graduate School of Education in Silvana and Christopher Pascucci. There he taught courses on federal education policy and the training of students with disabilities. He has spent his entire career in special education as a class teacher, local administrator in Boston and Chicago, and as a university professor. For the first six years of the Clinton administration, he was director of the US Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs.

About the Disabled Americans Act

This year marks the 30th anniversary of President George HW Bush signing the Disabled Americans Act. During this 30th anniversary year, the Civil Rights Division recognizes the many ways the ADA has transformed American society and enabled a generation of Americans with disabilities to thrive. At the same time, many barriers to equal opportunities remain. The United States Department of Justice is again committed to making the ADA’s promise a reality so that all Americans with disabilities can achieve their dreams and reach their full potential.

Via Smith’s Presidential Colloquium Series

The Presidential Colloquium regularly features influential thought leaders in a variety of fields – from poets and writers to economists and political experts – to share their expertise, provide insights, and stimulate discourse on important social, political, and global issues that require our attention. The lectures are free and open to the public.

The political philosopher Michael Sandel and the former mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Mayor C. Yulín Cruz, will take part in this year’s presidential colloquia. All events will be virtual in 2021 and open to the public free of charge. Details and registration information are available online.

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