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Vanni Le

Vanni Le, Entertainment Outreach Program Manager

Vanni Le smiling headshot in front of a staircase

Vanni Le, Entertainment Outreach Program Manager

Vanni Le is the first-ever Entertainment Outreach Program Manager at RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community. She focuses on fighting stigmas by ensuring authentic representations of people with disabilities in film and television. Le brings brand strategy and program management experience from both the entertainment and nonprofit fields, having previously worked at the Walt Disney Studios, Sony Pictures Entertainment, the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, March of Dimes, and most recently A+E Networks.

Le strives to effect social change and champion diversity and inclusion in industries with underrepresented communities. Her passion for diverse representation in media (and lack thereof) is her drive for pursuing a career in entertainment. As someone with low vision and a recent diagnosis of ADHD that was previously misdiagnosed as mild anxiety disorders, she also recognizes the importance of authentic portrayals of disabilities and general mental health in media. Le is a first-generation, low-income graduate of the University of Southern California (M.S. Digital Social Media and B.A. Public Relations), where she empowered and advocated for higher education and post-graduate success as president of QuestBridge, admissions interviewer, and student government first-gen advisor.

Born in Orange County, California and raised in Tampa, Florida, Le is based out of Los Angeles, California. In her spare time, she enjoys playing the piano or ukulele and singing, mentoring college students, or catching up on television.

Contact Vanni Le

Reach Le at VanniL@RespectAbility.org.

Meet our Staff

Meet the Author

Lauren Appelbaum

Lauren Appelbaum is the VP, Communications and Entertainment & News Media, of RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so all people with disabilities can fully participate in every aspect of community. As an individual with an acquired nonvisible disability – Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy – she works at the intersection of disability, employment, Hollywood and politics. She regularly conducts trainings on the why and how to be more inclusive and accessible for entertainment executives throughout the industry. Appelbaum partners with studios, production companies and writers’ rooms to create equitable and accessible opportunities to increase the number of people with lived disability experience throughout the overall story-telling process. These initiatives increase diverse and authentic representation of disabled people on screen, leading to systemic change in how society views and values people with disabilities. She has consulted on more than 100 TV episodes and films with A&E, Bunim-Murray Productions, NBCUniversal, Netflix, ViacomCBS, and The Walt Disney Company, among others. She represents RespectAbility on the CAA Full Story Initiative Advisory Council, Disney+ Content Advisory Council, MTV Entertainment Group Culture Code and Sundance Institute’s Allied Organization Initiative. She is the author of The Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit and the creator of an innovative Lab Program for entertainment professionals with disabilities working in development, production and post-production. She is a recipient of the 2020 Roddenberry Foundation Impact Award for this Lab. To reach her, email LaurenA@RespectAbility.org.

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