National Leadership Program, Fall 2022
Reagan Martin (she/her/hers) is an Entertainment and News Media Apprentice in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Fall 2022. RespectAbility is a national nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.
Martin is a proud disabled and chronically ill actor, advocate, and graduate student based in North Texas. She is a former Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Young Scholar and College Scholar, having worked with the Foundation from 2008 until 2020. Martin graduated with distinction from the University of Oklahoma in 2017. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in History with concentrations in American History, Jewish History, and Intellectual and Cultural History. During her time at OU, Martin served as an orientation counselor, first-year teaching assistant, and peer educator with the Gender + Equality Center. Martin was also the inaugural recipient of the Elizabeth Garrett Award for History. She is a proud initiate of Phi Beta Kappa, member of the American Historical Association, and alumna of Gamma Phi Beta International Sorority.
Martin was diagnosed with lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, pollen food allergy syndrome, and hyperhidrosis during her college years. Having grown up with a sibling with intellectual disabilities, Martin understood the importance of disability advocacy and accessibility as a sibling and caretaker, but she then had to become her own advocate within her work and educational settings. As an individual with invisible disabilities, Martin understands the importance of self-advocacy, but she is passionate about improving accessibility, equity, and representation to benefit everyone.
In addition to academia, Martin is passionate about the arts. Her love for the acting and the entertainment industry led her to work at the Walt Disney World Resort as a participant in the Disney College Program. This experience encouraged Martin to pursue her passion of acting after graduating college, and she has been acting professionally in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex since 2018. Martin has appeared in short films, commercials, and theatre and is trained in Meisner, improv, and classical voice.
Martin is passionate about accessibility and representation within the arts, which led her to apply for RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program. As an Entertainment and News Media apprentice, Martin knows she will learn how to connect with media professionals to advocate for authentic casting, disability representation, and intersectional identities in all divisions of the entertainment industry. Her career goals include acting professionally and working for a film studio or an arts non-profit to advocate for disability representation from the inside out.
In her free time, Martin loves visiting theme parks, seeing live theatre productions, and finding new boba shops.
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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.