To provide outreach, advocacy, education and services by promoting an inclusive culture and accessible digital infrastructure to ensure equal access to employment, education, recreation, and independent living opportunities for people with disabilities.
To inspire accessibility for people of ALL abilities.
My Blind Spot believes that all individuals are entitled to acceptance, encouragement, and respect – as well as freedom from discrimination, labeling, and stereotyping, regardless of their challenges in life. We believe that every person, at every age and level of ability, has the potential for growth. We believe that access to the right tools, including technologies, promotes ability and restores infinite possibilities.
Promote awareness among leaders in business, education, and government about the critical importance of making their digital content, software, and technologies accessible and usable to the disability community.
Expand employment and business entrepreneurship opportunities for people who are blind, visually impaired, or print disabled. Foster independence and full societal participation for people with disabilities by eliminating technical, physical, and perceptual barriers to inclusion.
Expand understanding of the business advantages to accessible infrastructures for customers and employees. Educate organizations on the process for integrating accessibility to enhance customer experiences, talent acquisition, productivity, and overall morale.
Provide customized roadmaps for organizations to integrate accessibility into their culture, processes and technical infrastructures. Deliver accessibility services as a way to advance organizational success while providing employment opportunities for persons with disabilities.
Albert Rizzi was Executive Director of a thriving preschool and afterschool program in the South Bronx. He had made a successful career change from marketing to early childhood education. Now his sights were set on starting a charter school where he would continue working on behalf of the underserved, under-resourced children and families to whom he had dedicated his life.
An unexpected development stopped this plan in its tracks. Albert was hospitalized, suffering from a dangerous strain of fungal meningitis that attacked his optic nerve. In January 2006, he woke up completely blind.
Faced with this new way of seeing, Albert drew on the qualities he had brought to his work in education—persistence, optimism, energy, drive, and an irrepressible urge to reach out and bring others into a world of hope and opportunity. Coming back from death’s door, he made remarkable progress at breakneck speed.
Nevertheless, being blind and learning to operate in the sighted world often was challenging, frustrating, and disturbing. Particularly distressing was the discomfort that other people seemed to feel in his presence. He became increasingly committed to dispelling fears and misconceptions about blindness and building awareness that loss of sight brings the opportunity to experience the world in new and different ways and to call upon the best in oneself and others.
Albert also became acutely aware of the limitations imposed upon him and his peers from the disability community due to the failure of governments and organizations to use current and cutting edge technologies, ignoring legislation designed to ensure that computer-based communication and information systems are accessible to people who are blind or print disabled. Despite the existence of ever-advancing technologies, Albert daily and repeatedly encountered, and continues to encounter, websites, mobile apps, software programs and digital media that continue to be "disabled" to people who cannot effectively read print because of a visual, physical, perceptual, developmental, cognitive, or learning disability.
Albert has dedicated himself to shifting perspectives nationally. He talks vehemently and repeatedly, to anyone who is willing to listen. He has touched, and continues to touch, the lives of thousands of people of all ages through his national outreach. He is often seen on local, national, and international media, spreading his message of hope and a vision of a world that sees the disability community as capable, contributing participants in all aspects of society.
To advance his goals, Albert founded My Blind Spot, a nonprofit organization dedicated to accessibility, education, and advocacy. His entrepreneurial abilities and outgoing disposition and positive outlook helped him garner support and assemble a team notable for its diversity and commitment. An educational program was developed and a website established. My Blind Spot began working with governmental agencies, organizations, and schools to achieve the high degree of accessibility that is possible through technology and mandated by law, yet all too seldom realized in practice.
Some recent major initiatives include the following.
Our focus on accessibility does not stop with "just" developing employment opportunities, or working with governmental agencies, or introducing organizations to programmatic solutions around virtual access, or partnering with organizations to ensure that people can independently manage their finances. My Blind Spot considers educating and advocating for virtual accessibility as a nonnegotiable, and works tirelessly to infuse accessibility into the DNA and corporate culture of our clients. We foster appreciation for the ability of people who are blind and print disabled while raising the bar of expectation and opportunity.
Albert J. Rizzi received his B.A. from Manhattanville College and has dual M.S. degrees from St. John’s University in education—one in early childhood and the other in administration and supervision. He was a New York City Teaching Fellow and began his career in education as a kindergarten teacher. He became the Executive Director of MARC After-School and Pre-K Program located in the South Bronx, providing direct services to 250 students and their families. In 2006, Albert unexpectedly and completely lost his sight. He became an activist and advocate for the blind and visually impaired, providing education, building awareness, and working to achieve the development and dissemination of assistive technologies.
Lori started her career in software engineering more than 25 years ago – creating and contributing too many popular software products for the consumer and educational markets such as The Print Shop, Kid Pix, Kaplan’s SAT Test Prep, Quicken, QuickBooks and Mint.com.
Lori has always believed that technology is a way to eliminate barriers to inclusion and independence for people with disabilities. She began advocating for universal design and accessibility in the mid-1990’s when she was the Director of Software Engineering at Broderbund Software.
More recently, at Intuit, Lori had the privilege of creating and leading the company’s first-ever corporate Accessibility Program, which focused on training thousands of software engineers, product managers, and designers in accessibility guidelines. She also spear-headed a global, multi-year initiative to make QuickBooks accessible to people who are blind or visually impaired.
Anthony holds dual degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. He has over 30 years experience in hardware design and software programming. He has worked as a Digital Electrical Engineer on several commercial and government projects specializing in miniaturization of electronic equipment. Anthony specializes in computer and cloud networking and has collaborated with clients and third parties on creating custom software designs and is a web presence and accessibility expert.
In 1995 he founded GRQ Innovations, Inc. a computer consulting firm that addresses the business computing and software needs of corporations across the country. Anthony is also an accessibility expert and guides our clients in compliance and best practices for federal and international standards and protocols in the development and designing of accessible digital offerings, websites, mobile apps and work environments. He is proficient in designing and developing custom made computer systems and software, which lends itself to working on custom designed legacy programs and platforms needing intensive remediation's and corrections in order to be compliant and conformant with current standards and protocols. Anthony manages The MBS team of accessibility professionals, some of whom are members of the blind and print disabled community.
Kevin received his B.S from Farmingdale State University in computer programming and information technology. He specializes in computer and cloud networking as well as custom software design and web development. He is also a Cisco Certified Network Associate. Kevin has been working on accessibility standards and remediation projects and is an expert in accessibility and usability testing including digital offerings, mobile apps and websites.
CEO and Co-Founder, Blue World, Inc, a privately held data collection and marketing company
Vice President and financial advisor, Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.
retired Senior Vice President, HSBC Bank
Business manager in the veterinary industry and fundraising consultant.
CFO and Co-Founder, Blue World, Inc, a privately held data collection and marketing company
Entertainment and film industry consultant
Founder and CEO
Chief Technology Officer
Educational Projects Coordinator
Director of Project Management
Director of Training
Senior Accessibility Specialist
Communications and Marketing
Grants and Development
Dawg of Counsel
Blue World (New York), Inc., is a service company focusing on data collection and analysis, fulfillment, marketing services, and software application development. Blue World services are specialized for the needs of the food service and beverage industries. It has an impressive client base that does business in a wide range of food, beverage and equipment markets. Blue World has experienced astounding growth by focusing on the latest technology and exemplary service to its customers.
The Chatlos Foundation is a private, philanthropic foundation that funds nonprofit organizations in the USA and around the globe and does not solicit or accept donations from the general public. It was founded in 1953 by William Chatlos (1889-1977), a native of Bridgeport, Connecticut.
The Emblem Club is a national organization affiliated with the Elks Clubs. There are over 300 clubs in the United States. Through their many fund raising activities, they donate to: Tall Elks (Elks Therapy Program), Washington State Association of Emblem Club’s Eye Care, DARE, American Cancer Society, Clark College Literacy and to local charities voted on by the members.
Partners for Sight is dedicated to increasing the self-reliance and dignity of blind and visually impaired persons. We believe these individuals should have the tools and resources necessary to lead independent, productive lives. Through our support of non-profit organizations that share this philosophy, we are making the world easier to navigate for thousands of people, every day.
The IFFF is dedicated to programs and projects that promote financial literacy and independence among lower income individuals, families, entrepreneurs and small businesses. IFFF donates Intuit software and resources to empower people, and the organizations that serve them, so they can achieve better money outcomes.
From helping clients select the best adaptive technology solutions to customizing training to fit clients' needs and preferences, Adaptive Technology Services serves individuals who depend upon the use of adaptive technology to achieve professional and personal goals. Their diverse staff provides evaluations, set-ups, scripting and configuration, technology training, employment workshops, technical support, worksite accommodations: technical support, worksite accommodation, and Section 508 compliance testing throughout the US and Canada. The company's training and technical staff have Federal security clearance with Social Security Administration and Internal Revenue Service.
Sterling Adaptive supplies technologically advanced equipment and software to serve those who are blind or visually impaired and others with disabilities. The company offers a full range of computer hardware and software, peripherals, and assistive technology products and can support these products with free demonstrations, installations, full hardware and software troubleshooting, and ongoing product training. Sterling Adaptive works with private individuals, non-profit agencies, private organizations, educational establishments, and commercial enterprises.
The International Association of Accessibility Professionals (IAAP) is a membership-based organization for individuals and organizations that are focused on accessibility or are in the process of building their accessibility skills and strategies. The objective of this association is to help accessibility professionals develop and advance their careers and to help organizations integrate accessibility into their products and infrastructure. The IAAP will provide a place for accessibility professionals around the world to gather, share experiences and enrich their knowledge of accessibility.
Freedom Scientific develops the highest quality video magnifiers, braille displays, screen magnification software, and the #1 screen reader, JAWS® for Windows. For over 20 years, their products have provided access to print and computers for people with blindness, low vision, or learning disabilities.
WebABLE TV is an Internet TV Channel on the TV Worldwide Network (www.TVWorldwide.com) dedicated to providing accessible live and on-demand interactive coverage of the issues, activities and events important to the community of people with disabilities. Produced in cooperation with WebABLE TV charter sponsor, The Paciello Group, (www.PacielloGroup.com), our staff of industry professionals with extensive experience in the production of accessible Internet TV programming for the disability community, seeks to inform, educate and engage audiences to generate feedback and build intelligent consensus for the advancement of all people with disabilities. WebABLE TV values input from our audiences on content and programming suggestions at email@example.com.
The mission of the New York State Commission for the Blind is to enhance employability, to maximize independence and to assist in the development of the capacities and strengths of people who are legally blind.
Ai Squared is the global leader in Assistive Technology since 1987. Ai Squared produces ZoomText, the world's best-selling computer screen magnification and reading software. Ai Squared products also include sitecues SaaS, which makes websites easier to see, hear, use and enjoy. Ai Squared products and services are sold in 40+ countries, and localized in 23 languages.
GRQ Innovations Inc. is an accessibility firm specializing in making corporations, government agencies and other organizations "Disability Smart" by working with them to make all their digital offerings and work environments accessible to ALL. Accessibility is not just our mission, but has been our passion. GRQ has been providing technology and software programming support and consultation for over 20 years. Throughout the years we've retained every client due to our professional support and exceptional customer service.
Founded by Dr. Henry Viscardi, Jr., who served as disability advisor to eight U.S. Presidents and became one of the world's leading advocates, The Viscardi Center educates, employs and empowers people with disabilities. It provides Pre-K through High School education (age 3 to 21), school-to-work youth transition services, vocational training, career counseling and employment placement, assistive technology, and adapted driver education to children, adolescents and adults with a wide variety of disabilities. The Center also assists businesses in diversifying their workforces and developing and advancing disability inclusive cultures in their workplaces.
More than just training, Disability Awareness Training provides consultation, advocacy support, employment initiative guidance, online programs, and other services to help increase awareness of disability issues and advance related goals.
I Can Do That Productions works one-on-one with its clients to provide clean, crisp design on a quick turn-around. ICDT offers multi-faceted services ranging from creating eye-catching ads for The New York Times, small & efficient websites.
Dancing Dots Braille Music Technology, L.P., was founded in 1992 by blind musician and programmer Bill McCann to develop and adapt high-tech tools for creative people with blindness and other disabilities. In 1997 Dancing Dots released its first product, the GOODFEEL® Braille Music Translator.
The company is an authorized distributor for a wide range of assistive technology and music products. It has customers throughout the U.S. and in over forty other countries. Dancing Dots received the U.S. Small Business Administration's Tibbetts Award for innovation and excellence in high technology. In 1999, Dancing Dots was invited to the White House to demonstrate its technology to the President and Vice President. McCann has been interviewed by the BBC World Service, the Associated Press and the Philadelphia Inquirer and has authored numerous articles about his work.
We especially thank the following donors:
90 Broad Street
New York, NY 10004
Chatlos Foundation, Inc.
P. O. Box 915048
Longwood, FL 32791-5048
11436 SE 208th St. Sp #4
Kent, WA 98031-1683
Contact WSAEC via email
2632 Marine Way
Mountain View, CA 94043
100 South Bedford Road, Suite 340
Mount Kisco, NY 10549
My Blind Spot is a 501c (3) nonprofit organization. Our tax identification number is 27-0223913.
We are funded by fees for digital accessibility services and speaking engagements, and by generous contributions from friends and supporters who support our mission and value the work we do.
We direct 80 percent of every charitable dollar we receive into programs and services that support people with disabilities, with a focus on those who are blind, visually impaired, and print disabled.
The remaining 20 percent allows us to administer our programs and services, maintain our accessible website, participate in social media outlets, attend conferences and conventions, and develop our base of support from organizational and individual donors.
At My Blind Spot, we believe that access to the right tools promotes ability and restores infinite possibilities.
© 2017 My Blind Spot, Inc. All Rights Reserved