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Webinar: A Review of Lesser Known Funding Sources and Strategies for Work-Related Assistive Technology

A Review of Lesser Known Funding Sources and Funding Strategies for Work-Related Assistive TechnologyCheck out this archived webinar from the archived RESNA Webinar Series. The original webinar aired November 19, 2014, so the information should be timely. Click here to view the webinar. Several accessible formats are available for your viewing convenience.

Press Release: Announcing 2014 Award Winners

WAF Logo

For immediate release: November 4, 2014

Announcing 2014 Awards Program Winners

The Washington Access Fund will present awards to businesses, organizations and individuals who have made noteworthy efforts to include, serve, and help people with disabilities across the state. The awards will be presented at the Washington Access Fund 10 Year Anniversary Celebration & Benefit set to take place at Town Hall Seattle with featured guest speaker John Hockenberry, host of Public Radio’s International’s The Takeaway.


Best Practice Award: Ark Lodge Cinemas

When members of the deaf, deafblind and hard of hearing community requested open captioning at his theater, David McRae willingly incurred the additional expenses so it was available for the premier of “the Hobbit”. He has also purchased a close captioned system and a descriptive video system for all three of his movie screens.

Innovation Award: MagicWheels

The challenge of negotiating hills, ramps, curb cuts and door thresholds in a non-motorized wheelchair is made easier with MagicWheels. Invented and manufactured locally, they were perfected with federal and state research funds. They offer self-contained 2-to-1 gearing and hill holding, all built into the wheel.

Frances Pennell Economic Opportunity Award: Caryl Wolf

Caryl Wolf volunteered her counseling and training services when the nonprofit she had been working at closed its doors. She then founded a new nonprofit – Benefits Central – and she continues to go the extra mile to guide people with disabilities who want to work and become self-sufficient.

Recreational Engagement Award: Outdoors for All

Utilizing over 700 volunteers, Outdoors for All enriches the lives of children and adults with physical, developmental, and sensory disabilities. Their all season programming offers hiking, winter sports, boating, campind and rock climbing to thousands of people with disabilities each year.

Ron Adams Outstanding Client Award: Melissa “echo” Greenlee

echo’s participation in the Washington Access Fund’s Individual Development Account program allowed her to found a web-based business: With she guides deaf and hard of hearing consumers to welcoming businesses through reviews. She helps businesses learn how to become more deaf-friendly through articles and advice.

Award Event

Date: Tuesday, November 11th, 2014

Time: 5:00 p.m. VIP reception/Cocktail hour; 6:00 p.m. Awards Ceremony. To be followed by 7:30 p.m. presentation in the Great Hall by John Hockenberry.

Where: Town Hall Seattle, 1119 Eighth Avenue

About the Washington Access Fund

The Washington Access Fund uses asset-building tools like Microcredit and Individual Development Accounts to promote access to technology and economic opportunity for individuals with disabilities in Washington State. Washington Access Fund is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI). 

Andrea Dimond, Director of Communications & Marketing
Washington Access Fund
100 S. King St, Suite 280
Seattle, WA 98104
Phone: (206) 328-5116

Click here to buy tickets to the VIP Awards Banquet.

Buy Tickets for John Hockenberry at Town Hall Seattle

John Hockenberry from the Take Away on NPR (Marco Antonio)

Come see John Hockenberry speak on the Future of Universal Design, Assistive Technology, and Disability Rights at the Washington Access Fund 10 Year Anniversary Celebration and Benefit! The event will take place at Town Hall Seattle on Tuesday November 11, 2014 at 7:30pm.

Hockenberry’s presentation will be preceded by a VIP Awards Banquet in which the Washington Access Fund will be presenting awards to businesses, organizations and individuals who have made a positive impact on people with disabilities in Washington State.

Click here to buy your tickets: VIP Awards Banquet: $100 | General Admission: $15

Sneak peak of John Hockenberry in FIXED

Picture on woman scuba diving in a wheelchair. FIXED: The Science/Fiction of Human Enhancement

We are so excited that John Hockenberry is coming to Seattle in 6 short weeks! Get a sneak peak of what’s on his mind in this exciting new documentary about technology and disability.

The documentary FIXED is playing at the Varsity Theater on October 9 (7-9 p.m.). This screening is organized by the UW Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering, and is a fundraiser for the neuroethics group there. After the film, they will have a panel of speakers, including Joanne Woiak from UW Disability Studies, Kayla Brown from DO-IT, and Sara Goering from UW Philosophy and Disability Studies which should make for an interesting and lively discussion.

Cost is $5/student with ID, and $10 for others. Buy student tickets at the Varsity Box Office and regular tickets at this link:

Info on the film

A haunting, subtle, urgent documentary, FIXED questions commonly held beliefs about disability and normalcy by exploring technologies that promise to change our bodies and minds forever. Told primarily through the perspectives of five people with disabilities: a scientist, journalist, disability justice educator, bionics engineer and exoskeleton test pilot, FIXED takes a close look at the implications of emerging human enhancement technologies for the future of humanity.

Patty Berne works at the Center for Genetics and Society as Project Director on Race, Disability and Eugenics, where she focuses on raising awareness about the ethical implications of emerging prenatal screening technologies. Fernanda Castelo works with Ekso Bionics as a test pilot, helping them develop the Ekso, a bionic exoskeleton which allows people with no or limited function in their legs to walk. Engineer Hugh Herr runs the Biomechatronics Lab at the MIT Media Lab where he designs bionic legs which allow himself, a double amputee, and others, to rock climb, trail run, play tennis, etc. John Hockenberry is an Emmy and Peabody award winning journalist, author, radio host (WNYC’s “The Takeaway”) and distinguished fellow at the MIT Media Lab, where he works to promote research into human-machine collaborations. Gregor Wolbring is a biochemist and ability studies scholar at the University of Calgary, in Calgary, Alberta, who lectures worldwide on human enhancement technologies and ableism.

Assistive Technology and Low Vision Open House

Refreshable Braille Display with iPad

What are you doing next Tuesday?

Join us at the Assistive Technology and Low Vision Open House at DSB in Seattle.

When: Tuesday October 7, 2014 from 10 am – 6 pm
Where: Department of Services for the Blind (DSB)
3411 South Alaska St
Seattle WA 98118
(free parking available on site)

Ever wondered what kind of technology is out there for a person who is blind or has low vision? Well here’s your chance to find out! The Dept. of Services for the Blind is opening its doors to their Seattle Assistive Technology and Low Vision labs to provide you with a hands-on experience. Come try out a wide range of tools, devices and technology to see what’s out there. Staff will be on site to answer your questions so you can get the most out of your experience. Representatives from the WA Assistive Technology Program and WA Access Fund will also be present to provide information about their services.

Please RSVP to: Julia Vidal 206-906-5550 or

*refreshments will be served