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Tammie Stevens, Policy Apprentice

National Leadership Program, Fall 2021

Tammie Stevens smiling headshot

Tammie Stevens

Tammie Stevens is a Policy and Civic Engagement Apprentice in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Fall 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community. Stevens’ apprenticeship was funded by the Fox Family Foundation.

Stevens is a California girl even though she was born in Texas. She lives in the center of the state.  She feels lucky because she is two hours from mountains, ocean, forests, and desert terrain.

Stevens has a Master of Arts degree from the University of the Pacific. Her degree focus was Educational Entrepreneurship. Stevens created a tool for educating organizations about digital inclusion as her capstone project. She believes that access to information and opportunity is the first step towards success for marginalized communities.

When Stevens lost her sight to eye disease as an adult, her children were growing up, and she had embarked on her educational journey to become a teacher. Along the way, she has experienced many barriers to success, not the least of which were internal and external biases about her own possibilities.

For more than twenty years, she has fought the stigma that people with disabilities are unemployable. Finding the National Leadership Apprenticeship opportunity at RespectAbility gave Stevens unbelievable relief. RespectAbility changed her mind about her worth as an employable person. They value her lived experience and the abilities she worked so hard to earn.

Now Stevens wants to give back to her disability community. She would like to work on digital inclusion, individual and organizational training on ableism, and local, state, and federal policy making. Her goal is to have a seat at the table where conversations happen about access and inclusion for sidelined communities, including people with disabilities.

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RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for and with people with disabilities. Learn more about the National Leadership Program and apply for the next cohort! Contact [email protected] for more information.

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Meet the Author

Tammie Stevens

Tammie Stevens worked for eight years at a nonprofit organization that provided instruction to those who were newly experiencing blindness. She hopes to normalize and remove the mystery of disabilities in the workplace.

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