Sponsors and Organizers (2018)
INDEX, Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center, UMass Medical School
INDEX provides information to the public about doctors, dentists, programs, and services for people with disabilities in Massachusetts (See DisabilityInfo.org); develops accessible Websites and online courses (See INDEX Technical Services.); and conducts research in artificial-intelligence driven Web text simplification for people with cognitive disabilities.
Vision-Aid, a nonprofit serving the visually disadvantaged in under-served regions and a Harvard Pilgrim HealthCare Count Us in Community Partner (2018-18) is proud to sponsor the Boston Accessibility Conference. Vision-Aid’s mission is to enable the visually disadvantaged to live with independence and dignity. Programs include: Skills Training including Computer Education, Spoken English, Programming; Innovation in low cost Assistive Devices, and Technology and Advocacy for the visually impaired.
“BUILD EXPERIENCES THAT MATTER. We will help you design and build digital products and services that seamlessly integrate into work and life. Companies ranging from Fortune 500s to high-growth startups turn to us to help them design and build digital products and services that people love. Responsive Design & Development. Mobile Product Development. Internet of Things User Experience. Enterprise-grade Technical Design.” Cantina Consulting quote source
For many reasons—legal, business, and ethical—Oracle recognizes the need for our applications, and our customers’ and partners’ products built with our tools, to be usable by the disabled community. The Oracle Accessibility Program Office, reporting to the office of the Chief Corporate Architect, is responsible for defining the corporate standards for accessibility, and developing materials to train all employees so that they can successfully create products that meet those standards.
“Oracle is committed to creating accessible technologies and products that enhance the overall workplace environment and contribute to the productivity of our employees, our customers, and our customers’ customers.”
—Safra Catz, Chief Executive Officer, Oracle
Open Access Technologies
“Open Access Technologies (OAT) helps organizations of any size understand their document remediation needs. We can assist in remediating and/or transforming any document format (Microsoft Office, PDF, EPUB, etc.) OAT can either remediate for you, or you can work with our platform for various levels of automated remediation. OAT is raising the bar by showing how complex software applications can be designed, developed and delivered ready to use by all users, including individuals with disabilities. OAT was co-founded by Mike Paciello, world-renowned expert in software and web accessibility. For more information, please visit the Open Access website.”
“We provide premium closed captioning, transcription, audio description, and subtitling solutions at very competitive prices. Our goal is to simplify the process by providing a user-friendly account system, fast turnaround, flexible API’s, and integrations with a multitude of video players, platforms, and lecture capture systems. We create closed captions and subtitles in many different formats and languages. We also develop video search plugins and a range of tools that save time and cut costs. Our commitment to innovation has led to 7 patents (granted and pending)–all of which focus on making the captioning, subtitling, and transcription process more efficient and less expensive.” 3Play Media quote source
John Rochford is the Director of the INDEX Program of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center at the The University of Massachusetts Medical School. Through its DisabilityInfo.org Website, INDEX provides thousands of resources (doctors, dentists, programs, etc.) serving people with disabilities living in Massachusetts. Among other activities, John teaches in the medical school’s graduate program, “Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental & Related Disabilities (LEND)” and teaches medical school students how to interview patients with disabilities. See John’s faculty profile.
John has worked with children and adults with intellectual disabilities and/or autism since the 1980s. John has provided behavior-modification services, and specializes in skills acquisition. John has a Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis from Northeastern University and is a Licensed Applied Behavior Analyst.
John has led teams of information-technology professionals to build accessible Websites and online courses since the mid-1990s for state and nonprofit agencies serving people with disabilities throughout the United States.
John’s passion is Web accessibility for people with cognitive disabilities. With partners IBM, UMass Boston, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute, John conducts related research, such as artificial-intelligence based automatic text simplification.
John is an Invited Expert of the World Wide Web Consortium‘s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines Working Group; Cognitive and Learning Disabilities Accessibility Task Force, Low Vision Task Force, and Silver Community Group.
Peter Fay works at IBM Accessibility Research in Cambridge, MA. Currently, Peter is exploring how cognitive systems like IBM Watson and the Internet of Things (IoT) can enable the elderly to safely live at home as long as they are able.
Peter is also leading IBM Accessibility’s Higher Education research initiatives with key research institutions including University of Massachusetts-Boston, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and West Virginia University.
Over his 21 years with IBM, Peter has also worked in IBM Software Group focused on collaboration solutions and in IBM Global Technology Services focused on unified communications. Prior to joining IBM in 1995, Peter worked for a number of software companies in the Boston area. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Boston College.
Connect with Peter on LinkedIn.
Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterFay79.
Sarah E. Bourne is the Director of IT Accessibility for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, where she works on accessibility policy, standards, and guidance for development and procurement for internal and public systems. These efforts started with creating accessibility guidelines in 1998 as the Commonwealth’s first webmaster. You can find Sarah on Twitter as @sarahebourne
Margy Bergel, Fidelity
Marguerite “Margy” Bergel is Director of Digital Accessibility at Fidelity Investments where she is part of Fidelity’s User Experience Design team. Fidelity’s Digital Accessibility program involves training and empowering teams to design and develop with Accessibility in mind, creating and maintaining Accessibility testing tools, auditing products, working with vendors, informing policy, handling customer complaints, and conducting user research with people of all disabilities. Margy presents on usability, accessibility and design topics at conferences like CSUN, CHI, HCII, UXPA, and World Usability Day. She taught for many years at the John Slatin AccessU Conference organized by Knowbility, has taught at Bentley University, and is thrilled to be hosting the Boston Accessibility Conference this year.
Ann Chadwick-Dias, Fidelity
Ann Chadwick-Dias is Director of User Experience Research at Fidelity Investments. Her teams conduct User Research on platforms for Fidelity’s Workplace and Institutional clients and focus on usability and accessibility across channels. She has presented on topics related to universal usability at numerous conferences. She has taught in Bentley University’s graduate program for Human Factors in Information Design and periodically guest lectures at WPI. She has numerous publications in the field, has partnered with AARP on such initiatives as “Older, Wiser, Wired” and has co-authored a book chapter on Web design in the Handbook of Human Factors and Computing Systems.