Affiliate Update

Katy Washington, Affiliate Liaison BOD

Carey Busch, Lead Affiliate Representative

As this is my first contribution to the Affiliate’s Corner, I would like to begin by thanking Terra Beethe for all she has done for AHEAD and its affiliates as well as her leadership and guidance.  I am so excited to continue working with the affiliates in this new capacity.  I am happy to announce that Carey Busch (Ohio AHEAD) has graciously agreed to become the new Lead Affiliate Representative.  We are in the process of planning the Fall Affiliate conference call planned for November.



The Ohio AHEAD affiliate hosted its annual statewide conference on October 13, 2017 at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Ninety-five people were in attendance to hear David McNelly, a Miami University graduate, talk about his personal experiences a student with a disability and how students can partner with disability services offices to improve their campuses. The conference also featured three concurrent session blocks with a total of nine sessions around the conference theme of The Changing Landscape of Higher Education and Disability. The organization awarded Julie Di Biasio of Kent State University with the L. Scott Lissner Outstanding Leadership Award as a seasoned professional, while Adam Crawford of The Ohio State University received the Dr. Lydia Block Rising Star Award as a new professional. Ohio AHEAD partnered with Miami University’s Access for All Accessible Technology Symposium held on October 12 to offer two days of professional development and networking. Ohio AHEAD’s 2018 conference will be held on October 19 at Terra State Community College in Fremont, Ohio. Conference presentations and additional details are available at 

AHEAD of the Northern Rockies

Submitted by Mika Watanabe, President, AHEAD NR

AHEAD NR Executive Board recently announced partnership with the Montana College Access Network (MCAN), a 501c3 non-profit organization that thrives advance the goals of all Montanans achieving their careers through higher education.

MCAN is interested in the success in students with disabilities in higher education and working to advance Montana’s Goal 2025 set by the Office of the Governor, Steve Bullock. MCAN aims to provide college access training and resources for school counselors and teachers to increase the number of adults pursuing postsecondary degrees and certificates. AHEAD NR will be involved in MCAN’s efforts by providing information, presentations, and other resources for transition guide for high school students with disabilities and their school counselors.

MCAN’s membership consists of various representatives from the Montana Department of Labor and Industry, the Office of Public Instruction, TRiO, Financial Aid officers, college recruitment personnel, and school counselors throughout Montana. AHEAD NR plans to join the MCAN’s annual conference in spring 2018 to provide its members with training and networking opportunities that are beyond disability services.

Colorado Wyoming AHEAD

Over the past several months, Colorado Wyoming AHEAD has embarked on some exciting changes. In 2015, members voted to become an AHEAD regional affiliate and in 2016 members voted to shift the meeting structure from five meetings per year to three “conference-style” meetings per year. This fall marked the affiliates first conference under our new title, Colorado Wyoming AHEAD, with the implementation of the conference-style meeting. 

The first fall conference was held at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs in October. This conference featured six breakout sessions and two plenary speakers, including an OCR Year in Review with two OCR attorneys from Denver. The closing plenary featured Sue Kroeger, a past AHEAD president and an Associate Professor of Practice in the Department of Disability and Psychoeducational Studies at the University of Arizona, on facilitating change and analyzing the work of a disability services office through a social model lens. With the goal of meeting the mission and objectives of the organization, the new robust schedule gave attendees a local and affordable professional development and networking opportunity. 

With these new and exciting changes, the Colorado Wyoming AHEAD Executive Board invites you to join us at our spring conference on April 5th and 6th at the University of Colorado Boulder. Registration for this conference will open on February 1st and can be found on the regional AHEAD affiliate website at

2017-2018 Executive Board

Jill Sieben-Schneider, Chair, University of Colorado Boulder

Brittany Otter, Chair-Elect, Front Range Community College-Larimer Campus

Sara Rotunno, Program Chair, Colorado College

Neal Sorensen, Treasurer, Aims Community College

Justin Hiniker, Secretary, Colorado State University-Pueblo 

Illinois-Iowa AHEAD

Illinois-Iowa AHEAD will be hosting its biennial conference entitled “Beyond Accommodations: Designing the Playing Field for Diverse Learners” on March 22 and 23, 2018 in East Peoria, IL. Are you interested in presenting at the conference?  Please consider submitting your proposal using the following website: Proposals are due November 21st, 2017. Presenters receive a special discounted registration rate! Members of other AHEAD affiliates may register for the conference for member rates. For more information or if you’re interested in being/promoting a vendor, please contact

Indiana AHEAD

Indiana AHEAD will be hosting its regional conference during Disability Awareness month on Purdue University’s campus March 29th and 30th in West Lafayette, IN. Sally Scott Ph.D., David Parker Ph.D., and Julie Steck, Ph.D. will be key presenters. Conference topics include “research you can use”, updates on universal design, professional caseload, and internet addiction and vulnerabilities for students with ASD among others.  Members of IN-AHEAD and other AHEAD affiliates may register for member rates. For more information please contact Keri Turrell at