ADA 30th Anniversary Videos

The Harkin Institute hosted a virtual rally on July 26, 2020, celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The rally featured video messages from 11 of the country’s most prominent disability rights activists. Watch the videos below presented in the order they were shown during the rally.

The rally was hosted in conjunction with The Dole Institute of Politics, the Edward M. Kennedy Institute on the U.S. Senate and the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum.

Senator Tom Harkin (retired)

Senator Tom Harkin was the lead sponsor of the ADA in the U.S. Senate and is a lifelong disability rights activist. His passion for disability rights comes from his brother Frank, who was deaf.

Senator Bob Dole (retired)

Senator Bob Dole advocated for people with disabilities throughout his career and played a critical role in the ADA’s passage

Darren Walker

Darren Walker is president of the Ford Foundation, a $13 billion international social justice philanthropy. Darren has been an outspoken advocate of greater inclusion for people with disabilities.

Judy Heumann

Judy Heumann is a pioneer in the disability rights movement who has spent her career working with disabled people’s organizations and governments in the U.S. and across the world.

Ted Kennedy, Jr.

Ted Kennedy, Jr. is a disability rights lawyer and longstanding advocate for inclusion and justice for people with disabilities. He serves as chair of AAPD, a leading civil rights organization.

Alex Watters

Alex Watters became disabled after a diving accident. He uses his story to encourage others as a college advisor and member of his local city council in Sioux City, IA.

Leah Katz-Hernandez

Leah Katz-Hernandez is a member of the ADA generation and works as Communications Manager, Office of the CEO, at Microsoft. She worked at the White House under President Barack Obama.

Bob Kafka

Bob Kafka is a lifelong disability rights activist and leader of ADAPT, a national grassroots organization that played a key role in advocating for the ADA’s passage.

Claudia Gordon

Claudia Gordon is an activist and attorney. She is the first Black female attorney in the United States. Claudia served as one of President Obama’s key advisors on disability issues.

Jenny Lay-Flurrie

Jenny Lay-Flurrie is the chief accessibility officer at Microsoft, where she has helped to build an inclusive workplace for people with disabilities that serves as a model for other companies.

Senator Tammy Duckworth

Senator Tammy Duckworth is an Iraq War Veteran and Purple Heart recipient who was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2016. She is an outspoken advocate for people with disabilities in Congress.

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