Aerial View of Washington DC
DC Metro BLN News - January 2019
2019 DC Metro BLN Programing: FEDERAL UPDATES from OFCCP and ODEP
The DC Metro BLN Program Calendar kicks off with key presentations by our Board Chair, Andrea Hall , in her new position as Manager, Diversity and Inclusion, General Dynamics Mission Systems - Craig Leen, New Director of OFCCP who recently served as Acting Director during which OFCCP issued ten new directives and who will share information on the EDI Award and his commitment to individuals with disabilities - Deputy Secretary Jennifer Sheehy and Renee Tajudeen, Director, Policy Communications and Outreach, ODEP sharing ODEP”S 2019 Disability Inclusion work.  

January 16, 2019
8:30 AM – 12:00

General Dynamics Mission Systems
12450 Fair Lakes Circle, Fairfax VA 22033

EDI Award: Excellence in Disability Inclusion Award (EDI) recognizes contractors that have expanded and improved recruitment, hiring, retention, and promotion opportunities for individuals with disabilities.
Andrea Hall
Andrea Hall
Craig Leen
Craig Leen
Jennifer Sheehy
Jennifer Sheehy
Renee Tajudeen
Renee Tajudeen
Thanks to our 2018 Gala Sponsors
Booz Allen Hamilton. Strategy and technology consultants.
eSSENTIAL Accessibility
Herson Family Vineyards.
Lockheed Martin.
Northrop Grumman.
The Sierra Group. Disability & Employment Leaders.
TCS Associates
TCS Interpreting
IN THE NEWS - Articles of Interest
Ted Kennedy Jr.
"Hiring People with Disabilities Is Good Business"

Opinion article by Ted Kennedy Jr.

For years, companies have maintained low expectations about hiring people with disabilities. Most of these companies believed that employees with disabilities could not perform well in the workplace and that actively hiring them would drag company performance and profits down.
Thankfully, over time, many employers have come to understand that these perceptions are untrue. And new research strongly suggests that the opposite — that hiring people with disabilities is good for business.

Business Sense
States of Progress: RETAINing Talent Following Injury or Illness

Millions of working-age Americans leave their jobs every year after getting hurt or diagnosed with a chronic health condition; however, many could remain in the workforce if they received timely, effective support from their employers and healthcare professionals—in other words, collaborative stay-at-work/return-to-work (SAW/RTW) strategies.

SAW/RTW practices not only benefit ill and injured workers, but also their employers and local economies. After all, helping a worker remain on or return to the job enables businesses to avoid the costs associated with employee turnover such as training, onboarding and insurance expenses. More importantly, they help employers retain valuable talent in today's competitive labor market while promoting a culture of support and inclusion.

HIRE Vets Medallion Program

The U.S. Department of Labor announced recipients of the 2018 HIRE Vets Medallion Program Demonstration Award, recognizing job creators for their leadership in recruiting, employing, and retaining America's veterans.  Honorees include  small businesses, community-based nonprofits, and national companies.

Recipients of the 2018 HIRE Vets Medallion Program Demonstration Award were evaluated based on a range of criteria, including:

  • Veteran hiring and retention
  • Availability of veteran-specific resources
  • Leadership programming for veterans
  • Dedicated human resources
  • Compensation and tuition assistance programs for veterans

Applications for the 2019 HIRE Vets Medallion Program will open to employers on January 31, 2019. For more about the HIRE Vets Medallion Program and Award, please visit .

OFCCP U. S. Department of Labor
Craig Leen Named OFCCP Director

As reflected on OFCCP’s website, OFCCP Acting Director Craig Leen has been officially named  Director of OFCCP . When the position was vacated by the previous director last July, Leen, who was Senior Advisor at the time, was made Acting Director. During his time as Acting Director, OFCCP issued ten new directives. Director Leen has also continued to change the approach of OFCCP basing it on  four pillars of transparency, certainty, efficiency and recognition  
"The Future of 5G: Empowering People with Disabilities"

A thought leader from the American Association of People with Disabilities explains the enormous possibilities for the disabled community with the advent of 5G.

"The Disability Collection"
Late last year, in honor of the UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities, The Disability Collection published its first stock of photos. The Disability Collection is a library of photography that authentically portrays disability in everyday life. The images were curated in partnership with the National Disability Leadership Alliance, Oath, and GettyImages. AAPD is a member of the National Disability Leadership Alliance.
nTIDE Lunch & Learn

January 4, 2019 noon EST

Webinar Agenda

  • 12:00 pm: Overview of National Trends in Disability Employment (nTIDE) Jobs Report Release – Andrew Houtenville, UNH-IOD & John O'Neill, Kessler Foundation
  • 12:15 pm: News from the field of Disability Employment – Denise Rozell, AUCD
  • 12:30 pm: Guest Panelist - Sarah DeMaio, AUCD
  • 12:45 pm: Open Question & Answer period for attendees
Mid-Atlantic ADA Center
The Intersection of ADA, FMLA, and Worker's Compensation Webinar

January 17, 2019 
2:00 - 3:30 PM Eastern 

Presented by TransCen Inc. and the Mid-Atlantic ADA Center

A Comprehensive Review with Best Practices for Human Resource Professionals

Figuring out how to navigate and comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act can be difficult in itself. So when FMLA or Workers’ Compensation are also involved, confusion about how each law applies is understandable. As cases increase in complexity with more than one law to apply, it’s important we understand the obligations under each and ensure we have effective processes in place to manage them. After a deep review of the six areas of intersection, we will go through an exercise to see how the intersections apply in real scenarios. To help employers effectively implement each law, we will explore best practices to set up employers and employees for success.

Presenter: Lauren Schipper, Regional Accommodation Manager, Amazon
American Foundation for the Blind
2019 American Foundation for the Blind Leadership Conference

Wednesday, February 27, 2019 - Friday, March 1, 2019
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM ET

Crystal Gateway Marriott
1700 Jefferson Davis Highway
Arlington, VA 22202

Welcome to the 2019 American Foundation for the Blind Leadership Conference. You will find a program packed with knowledgeable speakers, dozens of relevant sessions, and opportunities to network. In addition to three engaging general sessions, there will be concurrent sessions in the areas of aging and vision loss, education, technology, and leadership. In addition, the National Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision at Mississippi State University, will hold a State of the Science research conference on employment throughout the AFB Leadership Conference.

We invite you to listen carefully, engage with the experts and your colleagues, advance knowledge gained, and deliver by reducing systemic barriers. LEAD with AFB to create a world of no limits for people who are blind or visually impaired.
10 th Annual Voices of Change Conference: Secondary Transition FOR DC Youth BY DC Youth March 29 th  

Friday, March 29, 2019 from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM

Walter E. Washington Convention Center
801 Mount Vernon Place NW, Washington , DC 20001

Sponsored by:  District of Columbia Department on Disability Services & the District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education, Division of Teaching & Learning

Join us in celebrating disability awareness and youth voice! Participating youth will have opportunities to LEARN, LEAD, and ACT.

Registration will start in January 2019.

In for INclusion. Annual Conference and Expo. July 15th through 18th 2019, Chicago.

2019 Disability:IN Annual Conference and Expo

July 15 - 18, 2018
Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile

Disability:IN has opened registration for the 2019 Annual Conference and Expo. Last year’s conference sold out and this year the event is expected to bring together more than 1,500 attendees from across the country. This year’s theme is “IN for INclusion”.
2019 ILG National Conference. Shifting Gears in a Fast-Changing World. Milwaukee, WI. July 30 through August 2, 2019


Shifting Gears in a Fast-Changing World
July 30 through August 2, 2019

The theme of this year’s conference is “Shifting Gears in a Fast-Changing World.” The conference will be held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, from July 30 through August 2, 2019. We will be looking for new and innovative presentations that recognize the many changes that practitioners in the EEO/AA field and that workers in general are facing. The RFP will provide you with some possible topics for the conference, but we welcome different, creative ideas that will be of value to conference attendees.

ADA Mid-Atlantic Update 2019

November 13 - 15, 2019
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The 2019 Mid-Atlantic ADA Update will provide a wide range of up-to-date information on ADA regulations and guidelines, as well as strategies and best practices for successful implementation of the law. Conference speakers will include subject-matter experts from federal, state, and local government agencies, businesses, non-profit organizations, and universities. The ADA Update will offer opportunities to network with other professionals with similar interests and concerns. Professional development hours from several accreditation organizations will also be available.
For more information visit their website:
About Us
The DC Metro Business Leadership Network is an employer led non-profit that uses a business-to business model offering education, training programs and resources to change attitudes and address concerns of businesses so that they learn how to proactively include people with disabilities in the workforce, marketplace and supplier diversity.