This year’s conference, held in Dallas, Texas, was the first in-person event since 2019 and was home of the largest number of attendees in the conference’s history. Disability:IN said of this year’s event:
“The Disability:IN Global Conference gets larger each year, and 2022 is our biggest yet!
We finally got to connect with old friends and new colleagues in-person in Dallas after two years of virtual programming. And what a turnout – we had 4,000 attendees (virtual and in-person) from 32 countries.”
As always, specific tracks and presentations were available both virtually and in-person that focused on important issues such as inclusive businesses, supplier diversity, ERG/BRG, accessibility, inclusive marketing, ESG investing and much more. The event also featured not one, but two very prominent guests in the disability communities who further spoke on the importance of inclusion in their specific industries.
Lachi, a visually-impaired musician and one of the biggest advocates for inclusion in the music industry, was in attendance along with award-winning actress and one of the main stars of this year’s Oscar winning film, CODA, Marlee Matlin.
The 2022 Disability:IN Inclusion Award winners were also announced, which recognizes visionary brands and individuals that are advancing disability inclusion. Company honors were awarded for Employer of the Year, Top Corporation for Disability-Owned Businesses, Supplier of the Year, Marketplace Innovator of the Year and Affiliate of the Year. The individual honors were as follows:
John D. Kemp Leadership Award: Recognizes an individual who has developed or influenced the development of significant company disability employment programs and/or services that resulted in measurable, tangible and positive outcomes that dramatically improved disability employment opportunities. Awarded to: Rodney O. Martin Jr: Chairman and CEO to Voya Financial
The NextGen Alum of the Year: Recognizes an alumnus who has gone above and beyond after participating in Disability: IN’s NextGen Leader Initiatives. This alumnus has not only demonstrated corporate leadership, but has also paid it forward for future NextGen Leaders. Awarded to: Meenakshi Das, Microsoft
The ERG/BRG Executive Sponsor of the Year Award: Recognizes an executive sponsor of a company’s disability ERG/BRG who has had a measurable impact on disability inclusion at the company and champions disability inclusion across the enterprise. Awarded to: Lisa Bickel and Joshua Pascoe, Honeywell
The Supplier Diversity Advocate of the Year: Recognizes a procurement champion who has demonstrated outstanding commitment to the utilization and growth of disability- owned businesses, and also provided exceptional support for certified Disability-Owned Business Enterprises (DOBEs), Veteran- Disability Owned Business Enterprises (V-DOBEs) and Service-Disabled Veteran Disability-Owned Business Enterprises (SDVDOBEs).
Awarded to: Mary Brougher
This year, Disability:IN is renaming the Supplier Diversity Advocate of the Year Award to the Mary Brougher Supplier Diversity Advocate of the Year Award to commemorate the late disability rights leader. Brougher was a leading advocate for employment for youth and adults with disabilities and mental health advocacy.
Along with the panels and awards, Disability:IN is also a great opportunity for business networking, pitch challenges, job opportunities and much more. The Disability:IN Global Conference is the premier resource for everything you need toknow on the importance and implementation of disability inclusive practices in every workspace. If you missed out on this year’s conference, mark your calendars for next year’s event happening on July 10-13, 2023 in Orlando, Florida.