Anita Aaron speaks at the 13th Annual Ever Widening Circle event

Save the Date: Critical Issues Forum & Ever Widening Circle Reception 2016

WID is excited to welcome one and all to our annual event, the Critical Issues Forum, at the Ed Roberts Campus October 28, 2016! The topic of the day: ABLE Accounts.

The ABLE Act is the new tax-advantaged savings opportunity that allows eligible persons with disabilities to save up to $100,000 without risking federal disability benefits. Read more about WID’s work with the ABLE Act here.

After the Critical Issues Forum, we will have the Ever Widening Circle Reception, during which we will network and enjoy light refreshments.

If you’d like to join us, RSVP!

Critical Issues Forum

  • ABLE Accounts Informative Session: Learn the nuts and bolts of the 3 currently available national ABLE programs, as well as hear from the director of California’s ABLE and provide your input to help shape the program.
  • ABLE Accounts Interactive Session: With guidance from WID staff members, go through the process of opening an ABLE account in real time and learn about how you can help advocate to improve the ABLE Act through important pending legislation.

Ever Widening Circle Reception

The Ever Widening Circle Reception will allow WID to connect with our supporters and disability community leaders and will create a space for continuing the discussions begun during the forum presentations in a more casual environment.

Be sure to RSVP to WID’s annual event today!

Schedule at a Glance

  • 9:00am-9:30am: registration/check-in (Osher Rooms)
  • 9:30am-11:30am: ABLE Accounts Informative Session
  • 11:30am-1:00pm: Lunch (catered for those who RSVP)
  • 1:00pm-3:30pm: ABLE Accounts Interactive Session
  • 3:30pm-5:00pm: Reception (Ramp Circle)


  • What: Policy Summit and Ever Widening Circle reception
  • When: Friday, October 28, 2016; 9:00am-5:00pm
  • Where: Osher Boardrooms in the Ed Roberts Campus (3075 Adeline Street, Berkeley, CA 94703; above Ashby BART station)

Don’t forget to RSVP!

Thank you to our generous sponsors for their support of this event: AT&T, Chevron, IBM, JPMorgan Chase & Co., PG&E, and Stanley Yarnell & Victor Rowley (listed in alphabetical order).

AT&T logo Chevron logoIBM logo JPMC logoPG&E logoStanley Yarnell and Victor Rowley logo

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WID's Board Chair stands on stage with two awardees

Announcing the Ever Widening Circle 2015 Awardees!

For Immediate Release

Berkeley, CA, USA–On October 15, 2015, the World Institute on Disability’s held its annual Ever Widening Circle (EWC) gala and fundraiser at the Ed Roberts Campus in Berkeley, CA. It was a successful celebration of disability pride and progress that brought together a wide array of disability leaders, activists, and allies to connect, honor, and learn about some of the vital members of our community.

WID was pleased to honor the Bryan Bashin from LightHouse for the Blind & Visually Impaired and Catherine Kudlick from the Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability for their continued leadership in the disability world. 

WID staff, board, and awardees stand on stage together
Thomas Foley (with service dog, Alabama), Paul Schroeder, WID Executive Director Anita Aaron, Catherine Kudlick, and Bryan Bashin stand on stage together | Photos © Scot Goodman

The LightHouse for the Blind & Visually Impaired serves blind and visually impaired people around the San Francisco Bay Area, providing employment and rehabilitation services, community events, and other gatherings. It is currently celebrating its 109th year, making it one of the longest-running blind/vision-impaired organizations in the United States.

The Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability at San Francisco State University, self-described as “part think tank, part cultural center,” provides broad research and community to people with and without disabilities at San Francisco State and beyond. Their programs include the “Patient No More” video-history project and the Superfest International Film Festival.

A woman leans across the table to look at the man to her right, her mouth wide open in surprise
Linda Dardarian, surprise recipient of the Disability Leadership Award, turns to WID staff member, Thomas Foley in disbelief | Photos © Scot Goodman

WID also presented a surprise award, the Disability Leadership Award, to Linda Dardarian, one of the premier disability rights attorneys in the United States. Linda has successfully pursued dozens of groundbreaking disability rights cases throughout her career. Her work has addressed fair pay, employment discrimination, disability access, and more. Some of those cases led to widely-used “talking ATMs” at major banks, the installation of accessible walk signals in San Francisco, and Braille print and alternative media formats for a number of companies. Linda continues to be a leading advocate for people with disabilities nationwide, and is planning to ensure full access and equality for years to come.

“Linda’s work has directly improved the lives of thousands of people with disabilities nationwide,” said Thomas Foley, Deputy Director of WID, “but it reaches beyond those individual cases. The precedents set by her achievements have provided benchmarks for everything from equal pay to reasonable accommodations. In the end, that impacts hundreds of thousands of Americans. We are grateful for all she’s done and excited to present her with this award.”

A woman speaks into a microphone while a man stands behind her and smiles at the crowd
Linda Dardarian accepts her award and speaks on stage beside Paul Schroeder | Photos © Scot Goodman

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