LADD has long been committed to creating a platform where people with disabilities speak for themselves and are included in the organization at every level. From our Independent Resident’s Council to our Board, people with disabilities serve in various positions and make their voices heard on a variety of topics.
But it is critically important that we also include people with developmental disabilities on our leadership team to guide the strategic decisions of the organization. To achieve this goal, LADD sought and was awarded grant funding to create a new position.
We are pleased to announce that we are taking an important step forward in filling this position. Jason Harris, longtime friend of LADD, will join LADD as Director of Strategic Operations on Sept. 8.
Jason is Founder, Spokesperson and Chief Idea Officer of Jason’s Connection, a non-profit and online community for individuals with disabilities, mental health, aging and diverse abilities and needs. He was also a Project Coordinator focusing on supported decision-making at Syracuse University’s Burton Blatt Institute, an international think tank for disability rights and human justice.
As a neurodiverse individual on the autism spectrum, Jason knows firsthand the challenges faced by individuals in finding supports to assist them to live their lives in a way that meets their needs and goals. In 2013, he founded Jason’s Connection, providing information, resources, art and personal-experience blogs. The site includes the largest national, organic and searchable resource directory developed by an individual with a disability. In 2018, Jason was awarded a master’s degree in Cultural Foundations of Education and a Certificate of Advanced Disability Studies from Syracuse.
He speaks to groups across the country about hidden and invisible disabilities, authentic disability representation and the cultural and social impact on the disability community. Jason also consults on the accurate representation of a female character on the spectrum at Riverdale High for Archie Comics.
In his new role, Jason will join the strategic operations team in developing and overseeing strategic initiatives for LADD to grow, innovate and empower.
This addition to our leadership team reflects the work of many people, over many years, to build a more inclusive community and an organization that strives to live its values. You are part of that. You, along with people supported by LADD, make this progress possible.
Please join us in providing a warm welcome to Jason.