Leah Katz Hernandez inducted into the Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame

The Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame was established by the National Disability Mentoring Coalition (NDMC) to honor those individuals who are making a significant difference in the lives of youth and adults with disabilities through mentoring and to raise awareness about the importance of mentoring for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to induct Leah Katz-Hernandez into the Susan Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame.

Leah Katz-Hernandez is a speaker, author, and advisor with the Mitsubishi Electric America Foundation Advisory Committee. Previously known as the celebrated Receptionist Of The United States for President Obama “ROTUS,” Ms. Katz-Hernandez is a leading expert on disability inclusion, public communication strategy, and civil rights. Through her dynamic career, she gained experience with the nonprofit sector, presidential campaigns, Capitol Hill, and the Obama White House.

As a highly visible White House employee, Ms. Katz-Hernandez skillfully welcomed world leaders to the West Wing while simultaneously urging equal access for the Deaf, Disability, and Latina communities. Ms. Katz-Hernandez now uses her expertise to advocate for equality all over the world, with a focus on supporting marginalized communities. She earned her MA in Strategic Communication from American University in 2016 and a BA in Government from Gallaudet University in 2010.

Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame: Information and Inductees

Allison Chisenhall inducted into the Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame

The Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame was established by the National Disability Mentoring Coalition (NDMC) to honor those individuals who are making a significant difference in the lives of youth and adults with disabilities through mentoring and to raise awareness about the importance of mentoring for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to induct Allison Chisenhall into the Susan Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame.

Allison Chisenhall is a chemical process engineer for BAE Systems and a member of the Employee Resource Group, ABLE. Originally from Texas, Allison graduated from Johns Hopkins University in 2015 with a degree in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Throughout her time in college, she worked in multiple research laboratories in the Johns Hopkins Institute of NanoBio Technology, focusing on both cancer research and DNA nanotechnology. Allison was an active member of Kappa Kappa Gamma and captain of the Johns Hopkins University Club Volleyball Team. Following graduation, Allison spent her summer as an intern in the Cancer Research Internship (CRI) program for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a program focused on increasing diversity by recruiting and training students from groups under-represented in the biomedical science fields.

It was not until this time that Allison became greatly involved in the disability community. She participated as a mentee in the USBLN Career Link Mentoring Program in 2015, concluding with her attendance at the annual USBLN conference. This experience proved life changing in multiple ways, as the connections she made quickly led to her current role at BAE Systems and sparked her interest in becoming more involved within this community. In 2016, Allison was able to attend the conference as a BAE Systems representative, speaking at a conference-wide session on disability inclusion as a female in a technical field. This year, she has expanded her involvement even further, serving as a mentor in the 2017 USBLN Rising Leader program, aiming to provide the same support that hers did for her. She is a member of the Professional Development Committee for this year’s USBLN conference and will be serving on panels for multiple breakout sessions to share her experiences, challenges, and understanding of coping and succeeding with a disability. Outside of the workplace, she pursues her passion of guiding others to achieve their goals through fitness by instructing exercise classes throughout the week.

What does mentoring mean to you?
“For me, mentoring is about sharing experiences with each other to help improve others and yourself. Mentoring is not a one way street and it is essential for professional growth from both sides. I believe that all young adults, with disabilities or without, should utilize mentors and in turn offer their mentoring knowledge to others once they have developed those skills. Mentoring does not have to be a formal program, either. I recently mentored several young girls from my sorority who are feeling unsure of their future careers. Remember what it felt like then and use what you have learned and what you wish you had known to help those in that place. Everyone can be a mentor, and everyone should.”

Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame: Information and Inductees

Robin Jenks Vanderlip inducted into the Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame

The Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame was established by the National Disability Mentoring Coalition (NDMC) to honor those individuals who are making a significant difference in the lives of youth and adults with disabilities through mentoring and to raise awareness about the importance of mentoring for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to induct Robin Jenks Vanderlip into the Susan Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame.

Robin Jenks Vanderlip, MA, CRC first got involved with aiding people with disabilities when she was in high school where she would volunteer in the special education classroom during her study hall. Robin is a 2017 honor graduate of The George Washington University Graduate School of Education and Human Development Masters of Arts (MA) Program in Rehabilitation Counseling where she was a US Department of Education Rehabilitation Services Administration Scholar. Robin previously earned a Masters Certificate from The George Washington University in Brain Injury Education and Family Transition Services. She has earned her National Professional Certification as a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC). She completed this all as part of her ongoing recovery from her own severe Traumatic Brian Injury. She is a member of the American Counseling Association and the Counseling Academic and Professional Honor Society International- Chi Sigma Lota.

Robin’s practice focuses on working with people and families who need guidance, instruction, and support in the areas of physical, emotional, and social case management including housing. In her practice, she works with a wide variety of populations including veterans/wounded warriors, individuals and families with developmental disabilities, people over 50, survivors of brain injuries and post-traumatic stress, and victims of sex trafficking.

Robin is very sharp, smart, charming open minded professional with excellent interpersonal skills and sense of humor. She has over thirty years of successful experience working with people, with a proven
record of accomplishment and she is uniformly recognized as a change maker. In addition, she has earned a Certificate in Business Information Technology Leadership and has over 25 years of professional marketing, communications, and sales experience in the private and nonprofit sectors before becoming a rehabilitation counselor. Robin is a 1989 graduate of Salisbury University where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. Robin currently resides in Northern Virginia with her husband, two children, her rescue dog, and cat.

Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame: Information and Inductees

DO IT inducted into the Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame

The Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame was established by the National Disability Mentoring Coalition (NDMC) to honor those individuals and organizations who are making a significant difference in the lives of youth and adults with disabilities through mentoring and to raise awareness about the importance of mentoring for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to induct Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, & Technology (DO-IT) into the Susan Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame.

The DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology) Center is dedicated to empowering people with disabilities through technology and education. It promotes awareness and accessibility—in both the classroom and the workplace—to maximize the potential of individuals with disabilities and make our communities more vibrant, diverse, and inclusive.

The DO-IT Center strives to:

  1. increase the success of people with disabilities in challenging academic programs and careers;
  2. promote the application of universal design to physical spaces, information technology, instruction, and services;
  3. freely distribute online content, publications, and videos for use in presentations, exhibits, and the classroom; and
  4. provide resources for students with disabilities, K-12 educators, postsecondary faculty and administrators, librarians, employers, parents, and mentors.

Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame: Information and Inductees

Subhashish Acharya inducted into the Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame

The Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame was established by the National Disability Mentoring Coalition (NDMC) to honor those individuals who are making a significant difference in the lives of youth and adults with disabilities through mentoring and to raise awareness about the importance of mentoring for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to induct Subhashish Acharya into the Susan Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame.

Subhashish Acharya–better known as Subs (pronounced Subes)–is the Founder of Project Starfish (www.pstarfish.org), a global workforce development platform that launches and re-launches the careers of unemployed professionals with disabilities, youth, ex-felons, veterans etc by transforming them into digital workers with the help of contemporary skills, work experience and business inclusion.

Subhashish is a business professional and works at Oracle in the field of Alliance Strategy, managing Accenture for North America. In 2013, Subhashish attended a job fair for the blind in Boston. He observed first hand the problems, professionals with disabilities experience and was shocked at the unemployment rates for professionals with disabilities. Subhashish believed that unemployment can be solved via a mentorship model he invented that is based on “experiential learning” , “role playing”, “business and workplace simulation” and business inclusion to gain skills and work experience to springboard into the workforce. In the last 4 years, the Project Starfish model has mentored over 600+ individuals and subsequently created jobs and opportunities for over 200+ individuals in 8 countries i.e. USA, Canada, India, UK, Australia, UAE, Philippines and Malaysia by working with over 100+ companies. It is perhaps the only model that prepares workers as an online digital workforce which is work beyond borders. Subhashish is passionate about the cause and strives to create a better tomorrow for those who need work opportunities.

Subhashish has been appointed by Former Massachusetts Governor, Mr Deval Patrick to lead the Employment and Labor committee of the Rehabilition Council for the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind. His work has been mentioned in several newspapers around the world – Chicago Tribune(USA), Boston Globe(USA), Khaleej Times ( Dubai), Australian Entrepreneur magazine to name some. Project Starfish is now part of MIT’s Startup Exchange company and is scaling to accommodate veterans, youth, ex-felons etc and also transform them as workers globally along with professionals with disabilities.

Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame: Information and Inductees

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