Dana Marlowe has an unrivaled passion for equal technical access for all. In the accessibility field, this intensity has made her a staunch advocate for people with disabilities. Initially starting out as a sign language interpreter some years ago, Dana discovered that a business endeavor could spring out from her true passion. She always knew that she wanted to provide the best access to technology for people with disabilities. As her focus on communication and interest in technology to improve the lives of people with disabilities grew, she learned from different industries but this knowledge did not fulfill her original plans. Thus, in April 2009, she decided to hybridize her passions, work with partners and start her own accessibility and IT consulting firm. Dana and her colleagues took the plunge and opened up Accessibility Partners, headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland. Even though Accessibility Partners has only been in existence for a mere fourteen months, they are now one of the leading accessibility consulting firms in the world. With her company, breaking down the accessibility barriers is a reality, not just a dream anymore.
Accessible IT leads to economic independence, educational advancement, access to hope, and full participation in society, all things that Dana values highly. She helps federal agencies and private companies make their hardware, software, web sites, and telecom products accessible for everyone. The most rewarding attribute of creating this company for Dana is that she is able to hire people with disabilities to assess the usability of their products. Who better to know if a product is accessible than people with disabilities? Dana is a devoted leader to this technical cause and in what little spare time she has, she serves on related committees, task forces and keynoted conferences across the globe. Despite a crazy schedule, she makes time to volunteer in her community for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and American Cancer Society. With over 12 years dedicated to IT accessibility for people with disabilities, colleagues and disability advocates everywhere know Dana for her stewardship in advocating for all aspects of disability rights.
Idea Mensch Interview