Quantcast

Lou Ann Blakeblake-louann

Director of Research Programs National Federation of the Blind (NFB)
Federation of the Blind (NFB)

The past year has not only been challenging with COVID-19, but we have also faced race and discrimination challenges and realities as a state and a country. How do you establish a strategy for diversity, equity and inclusion in your organization and how do you use your influential voice to help others understand the importance?

Collaborative effort by a diverse group of advocates is essential to bring about change. In 2020, I supported NFB affiliate leaders and members, the NFB legal team and advocates from other disability rights organizations in the effort to expand the availability of accessible absentee voting on a national level. The diverse group of organizations united on this issue resulted in an accessible way for blind and other print disabled voters to vote absentee in 27 states for the 2020 general election.

As women leaders, it is our role to help grow the next generation of leaders. What advice can you share to help affect not only the younger generation, but also the women who are trying to grow in their careers and create positive change?

Young girls and women need to be willing to step out of their comfort zones and traditional roles to pursue challeng- ing careers that provide opportunities for personal growth and pay good salaries. Be willing to consider careers that you may think are beyond your reach and don’t be afraid to fail.

This is a winner profile from The Daily Record's 2021 Top 100 Women awards. Information for this profile was sourced from the honoree's application for the award.