Archived Information

First Meetings for Postsecondary Education Advisory Commission on Accessible Instructional Materials for Students with Disabilities

Jim Bradshaw, (202) 401-2310,

Event Date 1: September 27, 2010 - September 28, 2010

Students with Disabilities will be held Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 27-28 at the U.S. Department of Education's Potomac Center Plaza building, 550 12th St., S.W. in Washington, D.C.

Established by the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008, the commission will bring together government leaders, representatives from the publishing industry, individuals with print disabilities, representatives from two-year and four-year institutions of higher education and leaders in accessible technology. The panel will study the current state of accessible materials for students with disabilities in postsecondary education and make recommendations to Congress for improving access to and the distribution of instructional materials in accessible formats. This is the first federal commission charged with examining accessible instructional materials for postsecondary students with disabilities.

Commission members who represent entities specified by Congress include:

  • Eduardo Ochoa, assistant secretary, Office of Postsecondary Education, U.S. Department of Education.
  • Alexa Posny, assistant secretary, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, U.S. Department of Education.
  • Russlynn H. Ali, assistant secretary, Office of Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education
  • Maria Pallante, association register for policy and international affairs, U.S. Copyright Office
  • Stephan Hamlin-Smith, executive director, Association on Higher Education and Disability.
  • Bruce Hildebrand, executive director for higher education, Association of American Publishers.
  • Peter Givler, executive director, Association of American University Presses.
  • Jonathan Young, chairman, National Council on Disability.
  • Andrew Friedman, acting CEO, Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic.
  • Marc Maurer, president, National Federation of the Blind.
  • James H. Wendorf, executive director, National Center for Learning Disabilities.

Commission members appointed by the Secretary of Education who will serve as Special Government Employees include:

  • Gaier Dietrich, director of the High Tech Center Training Unit, California Community Colleges.
  • Lizanne DeStefano, Fox Family Professor of Education, University of Illinois- Urbana- Champaign.
  • Tuck Tinsley III, president, American Printing House for the Blind.
  • Jim Fruchterman, founder, CEO and president, Benetech.
  • George Kerscher, secretary general of the DAISY Consortium.
  • Kurt Herzer, medical and Ph.D. student, Johns Hopkins University.
  • Ashlee Kephart, student, Hamline University.
  • Linda Tessler, psychologist and learning disabilities specialist.

  • Event 1
    Who : Commission members
    What : First meeting of the Advisory Commission on Accessible Instructional Materials in Postsecondary Education for Students with Disabilities
    When : 9 a.m. Monday-Tuesday, Sept. 27-28, 2010
    Where : U.S. Department of Education's Potomac Center Plaza building, 550 12th St., S.W., Washington, D.C.