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Bio – Fellow – Past Fellows

Claudia Runk, Public Policy Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Claudia Run

Claudia Runk is a Public Policy Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

Runk earned her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a minor in Sociolegal Studies from Loyola University Chicago. Through her time at Loyola, she was a member of Active Minds, a club dedicated to educating students on mental health and de-stigmatizing mental illness on campus. She hopes to pursue a career in public health policy with a specific interest in mental health advocacy. [continue reading…]

Alexandra Seddon, Entertainment Media and Communications Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Alexandra Seddon

Alexandra Seddon is an Entertainment Media and Communications Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

Seddon received a Bachelor’s degree in Television Film and Media from California State University Los Angeles in the year 2020. She also attended and studied abroad at The University of Arts London, also known as UAL.

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Mary Elizabeth Mellon, Nonprofit Management Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Mary Elizabeth Mellon

Mary Elizabeth Mellon is a Nonprofit Management Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

Mellon was previously a Fellow with RespectAbility in 2015. Her main tasks include researching donor prospects, writing op-eds, and other print material. She has worked in fundraising in Washington, D.C., and New York City, interned at Mental Health America of Illinois, and volunteered at numerous nonprofits including Sarah’s Circle, an organization that serves homeless women in Chicago. [continue reading…]

Taylor Easley, Civic Engagement Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Taylor Easley

Taylor Easley is a Civic Engagement and Coalition Bulling Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

As a teen, Easley moved from Baltimore to Richmond to receive a better education and to have more opportunities. She has earned an Associate of Social Science degree with a minor in pre-social work, a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree, and is working on both her Master of Social Work (MSW) degree at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) and certification of nonprofit management at L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs school. [continue reading…]

Nakia Hillary Sims, Public Policy Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Nakia Hillary Sims

Nakia Hillary Sims is a Public Policy Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

Sims is a policy analyst, motivational speaker, advocate for affordable housing and a champion for diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace. She received her B.S. from the University of Houston and her Juris Doctorate from the University of Texas School of Law. Prior to starting Hillary Consulting Services, her work as a Mickey Leland Congressional Intern and a Texas House of Representatives Business and Industry Committee Clerk allowed her to keep a pulse on policy and regulatory changes. She honed legal research and writing skills while working as an Administrative Law Judge and a summer law clerk in the litigation department at Vinson & Elkins LLP. [continue reading…]

Morgan A. Davis, Public Policy Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Morgan A. Davis

Morgan A. Davis is a Public Policy Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

Born with Cerebral Palsy, Davis has always felt a desire to help others impacted by disabilities. In 2013, she graduated as one of the five Valedictorians. Because of her outstanding academic grades, she was awarded an academic letterman’s jacket for her 4.0 GPA. As a high school student, Davis participated in local campaigns and also volunteered at both the Infant Crisis Center and the Oklahoma Food Bank. She accomplished all of this while also being a concurrent student, attending both high school and college. [continue reading…]

John McSween, Nonprofit Management Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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John McSween

John McSween is a Nonprofit Management Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

McSween is a rising senior at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he is majoring in Community Health with a concentration in Health Planning and Administration. He is also pursuing a business minor. After graduation, McSween intends on attending a graduate program in healthcare administration with the hopes of mitigating health disparities among all minorities, but especially among people with disabilities. McSween is passionate about making the healthcare system more accessible to those with disabilities who are in need of care. [continue reading…]

Jill Feder, Nonprofit Management Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Jill Feder

Jill Feder (she/her) is a Nonprofit Management Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

Feder enrolled in RespectAbility’s Fellowship program so that she could be part of the solution in ending discrimination and biases against people with disabilities. She is excited to help RespectAbility earn the grants and donations it needs to maintain its life-enhancing services. [continue reading…]

Gabriella Marquez, Public Policy Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

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Gabriella Marquez

Gabriella Marquez is a Public Policy Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for Summer 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

Marquez earned her Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Physiology from Florida State University and will be attending American University Washington College of Law in August where she plans to devote her studies to public interest law. [continue reading…]

Taylor Ragano, Community Outreach & Impact Fellow

National Leadership Program, Spring 2021

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Taylor Ragano

Taylor Ragano is a Community Outreach & Impact Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for the Spring of 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community. [continue reading…]

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