Host: Makoto Ueki

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Web Accessibility Consultant in Japan. Makoto has been contributing to the JIS (Japanese Industrial Standard) Working Group and W3C AG (Accessibility Guidelines) Working Group. He is currently working on the WCAG 3 as a web accessibility expert. And he was a chairman of the Web accessibility Infrastructure Committee (WAIC) in Japan from 2012 to 2019. He is the first Japanese who got certified as the IAAP's Certified Professional in Web Accessibility (CPWA). He gave his talks several times at a11yTO Conference since 2017. In 2023, he will be back to Toronto for the first time since the pandemic in order to host this year's a11yTO Conference.

Michele A. Williams

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Dr. Michele A. Williams is owner of M.A.W. Consulting, LLC - Making Accessibility Work.

Her 18 years of experience include influencing top tech companies as a Senior User Experience (UX) Researcher and Accessibility Consultant, and obtaining a PhD in Human-Centered Computing focused on accessibility. A W3C-WAI Invited Expert, international speaker, published academic author, and patented inventor, she is passionate about educating and advising on technology that does not exclude disabled users.

Steven Faulkner

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Steve is the Chief Accessibility Officer at TPGi. He joined TPGi in 2006 and was previously a Senior Web Accessibility Consultant at Vision Australia.

Steve is a member of several groups, including the W3C Web Platforms Working Group and the W3C ARIA Working Group. He was an editor (until May 2023) of several specifications at the W3C, including ARIA in HTML and HTML Accessibility API Mappings 1.0.

He also writes on HTML5accessibility and the JAWS bug tracker/standards support.

Marcela Correa Villada

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Marcela Correa-Villada (she/her) is the Senior Advisor, Accessibility, Metrolinx (PRESTO). With a MASC in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Toronto combined with years of experience supporting individuals with disabilities with their technology needs, Marcela integrates creative and practical approaches to a client focused philosophy.

Marcela is also a dance instructor, soccer coach, hiker and dog mom.

Alpesh Danabhai Ahir

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Alpesh is a manager in the accessibility services team at Level Access and has been in the digital accessibility field for four years.

Alpesh holds a master's degree in Computer Science and several certifications, including Certified Professional in Accessibility Core Competencies (CPWA), DHS Trusted Tester, and Certified Accessible Player Experiences (CAPXP).

His goal is to take accessibility beyond the web. In his spare time, Alpesh loves hiking and cooking.

Jennifer Strickland

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Jennifer Strickland is a Designer & Dev in D.C. with 30 years of experience across the private and public sectors in so many organizations, start-ups, enterprise, etc.

Currently, Jennifer serves the public interest at The MITRE Corporation as a Human-Centered Design & Accessibility Engineer supporting several U.S. federal agencies.

Jennifer volunteers with the U.S. Digital Response to support local government with digital services.

Jennifer Zhang

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Jennifer X Zhang is the Director of the Accessibility Program and Innovation at RaLytics, a small business owned by veterans and people with disabilities.

She focuses on embedding accessibility skills, processes, and governance into RaLytic's vendor offerings with a focus on human-centred accessibility so customers can eventually learn to fish for themselves in the digital accessibility ocean.

Karl Groves

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An unstoppable force for change and thought leader in an industry regarded for saying ‘No,’ Karl would rather lead by example in saying ‘Yes, and here’s how…’ He seeks to offer solutions to complex problems relating to universal usability. He believes that together we can meet both our goals: your business goals and his goals to lead the way in accessible user experiences. Karl has over a decade of experience in doing IT consulting for the biggest companies in the world and biggest agencies in the U.S. government. Widely regarded as a pragmatic solution-finder, his work is cited in nearly a dozen books and used on curricula in Human-Computer Interaction across the globe. He leads by doing, teaches from experience, and succeeds by facilitating others’ success. When others say, ‘That can’t be done,’ Karl shows them how.

Jessica Oddi

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Jess is a disabled designer, focusing on accessibility and representation through branding, websites, and illustration. She has been freelancing for 11 years. Carving her own work environment has brought opportunities, challenges and perspectives. Based in Canada, she collaborates to empower communities. And has had the privilege of working alongside incredible groups across the globe.

Patrick H. Lauke

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Patrick H. Lauke works as Principal Accessibility Specialist at TetraLogical. In a previous life he was Principal Accessibility Engineer at The Paciello Group, and before that worked as Web Evangelist in the Developer Relations team at Opera Software.

He's been involved in the discourse around Web Standards and Accessibility since 2001, actively speaking at conferences and participating in early initiatives such as the Web Standards Project (WaSP).

Nowadays, he acts as a WCAG trash panda, contributing to the specification in the hopes of making the standard both robust and pragmatic. He is also co-editor of ARIA in HTML, W3C Pointer Events Level 3, and W3C Touch Events Level 2.

His personal corner of the web can be found at www.splintered.co.uk.

Alyssa Panetta

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Alyssa Panetta has been designing and developing websites by hand since Y2K. She has worked for educational mathematics software companies and is currently a Web Designer/Developer for the University Libraries, University at Albany.

After a diagnosis of brain cancer in 2020 and subsequent treatment, Alyssa started a website where she writes letters to her removed tumor that is preserved in a tumor research bank: deartalula.com.

David Tisserand

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David is the Director of Accessibility at Ubisoft. He manages a team of six people dedicated to making accessibility part of the company's DNA so we deliver an accessible end-to-end user experience to our players.

Joe Humbert

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Joe is a native mobile accessibility specialist. He is passionate about and has a background in mobile accessibility, web accessibility, digital device accessibility and assistive technology. He has led over 1500 hours of in-person and remote accessibility training sessions.

Joe has spent almost 10 years in higher education. He is a Certified Professional in Web Accessibility and has a Master of Education in Special Education from Purdue University. Joe enjoys spending time with his family including two kids, two dogs and a cat.

Robert Carr

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Robert is the internal accessibility lead at Publicis Sapient. Robert was first introduced to accessibility when a previous manager said, "Somebody has to do this."

Robert also worked at the CBC and is a Certificated Professional in Web Accessibility, according to the IAAP.

Ryan Bigge

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Ryan Bigge spent a decade as a freelance print journalist before going digital. He’s currently a staff content designer at 1Password, working on the design system team. Before that, he spent over four years as a senior content designer at Shopify, where he helped launch Shopify Marketing, Starter Loans, and Shopify Balance.

Ryan has spoken about storytelling in content design (Confab 2022), content maturity in design systems (Meetup 2020), boring UX (Abstractions 2019), and improving the web with plain words (a11yTO Camp 2017). He plans to complete his Master’s in Inclusive Design from OCAD University in September of 2023.

Dirk Ginader

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Dirk started building websites professionally in 1997 when it was harder to make them inaccessible than accessible. Since then, he has worked even harder to make the same thing, accessible products.

Dirk has worked with Google for over ten years and is now leading the Accessibility UX Engineering team of one of Google's largest organizations with the goal of making all of our products accessible to everyone.

Elana Chapman

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Elana Chapman is a CPWA certified Accessibility Research Manager with a background in sign language linguistics. Since joining Fable in 2020, she has worked with assistive technology users and clients to create exceptional and inclusive product experiences.

Améliane Chiasson

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Améliane is an Accessibility Lead, her background is in UR and QA. The overlap between product quality and user well-being has always been the driving force for her initiatives. Améliane is also a huge fan of horror media, music and overall advocacy for disability rights, DEI, feminism and everything surrounding sexual safety and sex work.

Maria Acevedo

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Maria is a UX Manager and Co-Founder of Avanade's Accessibility and Inclusive Design Practice. She holds a Master's degree in IT management and a specialty in usability.

Maria has over a decade of experience developing world-class solutions. Her focus is on training companies and teams to develop accessible product development as well as an inclusive workplace culture.

Maria enjoys painting, biking in the summer and doing 1000-piece puzzles.

Léonie Watson

Leonie Watson Headshot

Léonie is Director of TetraLogical; a member of the W3C Board of Directors, and co-Chair of the W3C Web Applications Working Group. She's also co-organiser of the Inclusive Design 24 (#id24) conference; co-author of the Inclusive Design Principles and the Do No Harm Guide: Centering accessibility in data visualization.

Wendy Reid

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Wendy Reid is the Accessibility and Publishing Standards Lead at Rakuten Kobo. She is responsible for Kobo’s Accessibility and Standards work, with a focus on digital accessibility across a number of different products and publishing standards.

Much of Wendy's time is spent on helping colleagues understand the importance of digital accessibility and how to make their products more inclusive and usable for everyone.

JJ Hunt

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JJ Hunt is a Describer and Storyteller who has been crafting description-rich content for over twenty years. He has written and narrated Audio Description for film, television, and digital media; Visual Description for museums and galleries; and Verbal Description for live events and guided tours. His descriptions of the visual world can be heard weekly in the innovative, award-winning podcast Talk Description to Me.

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