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Donna Meltzer

Donna Meltzer, Board of Advisors

Donna Meltzer

Donna Meltzer is CEO of the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD), a national nonprofit organization that supports the nation’s 56 governor-appointed Developmental Disabilities Councils that work within state government to promote independence, productivity, and integration of people with disabilities through systems change activities. In this capacity, Meltzer oversees the organization’s public policy and advocacy agenda as well as technical assistance to the members. Meltzer joined the NACDD in October 2012.

Previously she was the senior director of government relations for the Epilepsy Foundation, where she worked from 1987-1993. She rejoined the Epilepsy Foundation in July 2005. She also served as director of legislative affairs for the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) from 1995-2005. Meltzer began her career on Capitol Hill working for the Honorable Tony Coelho (D-CA), a former member of Congress and House Whip. Meltzer also spent two years as the government affairs director for the National Health Council, where she directed the advocacy agenda for the Council’s Voluntary Health Agency (VHA) members. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland’s School of Journalism.

Meltzer also participates in several key coalitions including serving on the board of directors of the Coalition for Health Funding. She most recently stepped down from a three-year term as chairwoman of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD) where she is an immediate past chairwoman and co-chairwoman of the CCD’s Fiscal Policy Task Force. She also is a past chairwoman of the National Health Council’s Government Relations Affinity Group.

Meet our Boards of Directors and Advisors

Learn about all of the members of RespectAbility’s Board of Directors and Advisors: https://www.respectability.org/about-us/meet-our-boards-of-directors-and-advisors/.

Meet the Author

Lauren Appelbaum
Lauren Appelbaum

Lauren Appelbaum is the Vice President, Communications, of RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for and with people with disabilities, and managing editor of The RespectAbility Report, a publication at the intersection of disability and politics. Previously she was a digital researcher with the NBC News political unit. As an individual with an acquired invisible disability - Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy - she writes about the intersection of disability, employment, Hollywood and politics. From entertainment professionals to presidential campaigns, journalists to philanthropists, she conducts trainings on the why and how to be more inclusive and accessible. Behind the scenes in the entertainment industry, Appelbaum engages decision makers and creatives to improve the quality and number of authentic, diverse and inclusive presentations of people with disabilities on TV and film so audiences can see people with disabilities as vital contributors in America and around the world. She and her team have consulted on projects with Amazon, Disney/ABC Television, NBCUniversal, Netflix, and The Walt Disney Studios, among others. Appelbaum also enriches the pool of disabled talent in Hollywood by nurturing and connecting them to those who can assist with their careers, both on the creative and business sides of the industry. She is the author of The Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit, which was created to help entertainment professionals to be as inclusive of people with disabilities as possible, and the creator of an innovative Lab Program for entertainment professionals with disabilities working behind the camera. To reach her, email LaurenA@RespectAbility.org.

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