Nominations are being accepted through Oct. 3 for the Governor’s Outstanding Leadership in Disabilities Awards, honoring individuals from throughout Louisiana.

The awards are presented by the Governor’s Office of Disability Affairs, which was established as a resource for families dealing with disabilities and the agencies that serve them. By educating the public, and addressing and resolving disability issues, GODA’s goal is to support residents with disabilities so they may have an equal opportunity to actively participate in all aspects of life.

The following awards will be presented: Patsy Barrett Memorial, for a woman with a disability; Ken Vince Memorial, for a man with a disability; Youth of the Year, for an inspirational teen; Distinguished Merit, for an agency or individual; Volunteer of the Year; Service Animal of the Year; Family of the Year; Employer of the Year; Educator of the Year; Direct Supports Professional of the Year; and Veteran of the Year.

To view the nomination packet, go to affairs, and navigate through the “Programs” link to “Governor’s Outstanding Leadership in Disabilities Awards.” For more information, contact Jamar Ennis at (225) 219-9866 or

Disability Visibility Project

The 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act will be celebrated in 2015, and a project has been launched to encourage people dealing with disabilities to share their stories.

The Disability Visibility Project is a community partnership with StoryCorps, a national nonprofit that allows everyday people to record casual, one-on-one conversations in an effort to preserve history. These recorded conversations are often featured on NPR’s “Morning Edition.”

Although StoryCorps has recording booths in San Francisco, Chicago and Atlanta, the organization’s MobileBooth is traveling across the country in order to reach as many people as possible from July through December.

Alice Wong, who is spearheading this effort, said she envisions people talking about how their lives have changed since the passage of the ADA, their hopes for people with disabilities, and other relevant topics. All recordings will be preserved at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress in Washington.

The MobileBooth is scheduled to be in Dallas, Texas, Nov. 20 through Dec. 20. For further information, dates and sites, visit disabilityvisibility

Jane Pic Adams writes about issues of interest to people with disabilities and their families. Contact her at