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University of Connecticut Assistive Technology Oral History Project

Jacquelyn Brand

Founder - Alliance For Technology Access

Date: November 1, 2007

Snippet 1: "How did you get so involved in assistive technology?" (7:05)

Snippet 2: "What has been the impact of assistive technology on your daughter?" (3:07)

Download: Full Transcript

Jackie speaks about her journey, beginning in the early 80's when she was a teacher and parent of a daughter with a disability, and not by nature or training a technologist.

From beginning with small meetings with parents, adults and children with disabilities, educators, medical professionals, and technologists--all interested in applying technology to positive and life-affirming purposes—she went on to conferences, meeting Allan Brightman and becoming involved with Apple.

Jackie's amazing story of growing from a small committee of local people to become the Alliance for Technology Access is one of a grassroots movement which became a national organization with many centers providing technology solutions, information, networking, and support for individuals of all ages.

She discusses the digital divide, the challenges of fund raising and dependence upon the non-profit sector, her film project, "Freedom Machines," the importance of universal design, and the creation of the Independent Living Network. Jackie finishes this interview with the story of her daughter's personal journey and development into an independent, contributing adult, truly a result of her mother's "work of love."