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Victoria Grace Assokom-Siakam

Victoria Grace Assokom-Siakam, Inclusionist

Headshot of Victoria Grace Assokom-Siakam in front of the Respectability banner

Victoria Grace Assokom-Siakam, Inclusionist

Victoria Grace Assokom-Siakam is an Inclusionist at RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for and with people with disabilities. Previously she served as a Development and Fundraising Fellow for the organization, in two major areas: the initiative to increase and strengthen partnerships with philanthropic organizations and the grant-seeking process. In her current position, Assokom-Siakam will focus on enabling people with disabilities to fully participate in foundations, philanthropy, nonprofit organizations and advocacy.

Previously she worked with individuals with disabilities to expand their opportunities whether at work or at home. These experiences with people with disabilities at St Louis ARC have motivated her to join RespectAbility and to help ensure that people with disabilities have the financial resources to pursue their ambitions.

Assokom-Siakam is a third-year student at Washington University in St. Louis pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in International and Area Studies – Development. Her own Cameroonian-American background, as well as growing up in multicultural Washington, D.C., has motivated her to study marginalized diaspora communities such as those of Arab or African descent in the U.S. Assokom-Siakam also is an intern for the Center for Community Health Partnership and Research through the Institute for Public Health at Washington University. There she creates promotional material for center events and researches violence prevention.Assokom-Siakam is interested in elements of urban spaces such as architecture, transportation, public policy and how people interact with these spaces. She still is exploring possible professions. Currently, her interests include public health, politics and user research. An example of user research is how people use a public park.

In her free time, Assokom-Siakam enjoys listening to comedy acts. In addition to the occasional run, to stay physically active, Assokom-Siakam plays rugby on the women’s club team at her university. She also likes frequenting restaurants with friends and family to try different food. Assokom-Siakam highly recommends inapa, also known as eru. Inapa is her favorite Cameroonian dish: a peanut sauce cooked with bitter leaves similar to spinach and beef.

Meet our Staff

Learn about all of the members of RespectAbility’s staff: https://www.respectability.org/about-us/meet-our-staff/.

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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