About Us

The goal of the Northeast ADA Center is to educate and empower the diverse range of stakeholders throughout New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands to increase their knowledge of the ADA, to support our stakeholders to include people with disabilities in local communities, and to implement the ADA in their own lives, workplaces, businesses, and communities.

The Northeast ADA Center is a member of the ADA National Network, which is funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR grant number 90DPAD0003). We provide information, guidance, and training on implementation of all aspects of the ADA. Our center is located at the Yang-Tan Institute in the ILR School at Cornell University. Our staff consists of individuals with and without disabilities who have extensive experience in the disability field.

the ADA staff networking at the 2017 Symposium event
ADA service animal session, 2017

Northeast ADA Staff

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Wendy Strobel-Gower, MS
About Wendy
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Joe Zesski, MDiv
Assistant Director
About Joe
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Michelle Alvord
Outreach and Dissemination Coordinator
About Michelle
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LaWanda H Cook, PhD, CRC
Senior Extension Associate/Training Specialist
About LaWanda
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Jennifer Perry
Access Specialist
About Jennifer
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Sarah von Schrader, PhD
Associate Director of Research
About Sarah
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Chris Sweet, MS
Technical Assistance/Outreach Specialist
About Chris
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Jeffrey Tamburo, LMSW
Senior Extension Associate/Training Specialist
About Jeffrey

Affiliate Staff

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William Erickson, MS
Senior Research Specialist
About William
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Nellyber Correa Rivera
Technical Assistance Specialist, Puerto Rico
About Nellyber

Our Partner Organizations

The Northeast ADA works with various organizations regionally and nationally:

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Resources for Independent Living, New Jersey Affiliate

Resources for Independent Living (RIL) is a community-based member organization whose purpose is to serve people with disabilities. Membership is open to all people with disabilities, and their able-bodied friends and supporters. RIL promotes personal growth and empowerment through choice, self-determination, and participating programs. These programs provide information, education, skills development, and networking opportunities.

Joe Zesski, a RIL staff person, provides training and technical assistance on behalf of the Northeast ADA Center. Through his work at an Independent Living Center, he provides us with insight into the needs of ADA stakeholders in New Jersey, helps to promote ADA implementation, and ensures training and information needs are being met throughout New Jersey.

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Movimiento para el Alcance de Vida Independiente (MAVI), Puerto Rico Affiliate

MAVI serves as our affiliate organization in Puerto Rico. This partnership is invaluable to promoting increased implementation of the ADA in Puerto Rico. It is critical that the Northeast ADA Center provide staff that not only speak Spanish, including Puerto Rican Spanish, but also understand the unique culture in this territory. Yessica M. Guardiola Marrero, an attorney with a vision impairment, serves as a trainer and technical assistance specialist on our behalf across Puerto Rico.

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The Disability Rights Center of the Virgin Islands (DRCVI)

The DRCVI serves as our affiliate in the US Virgin Islands. DRCVI was created on October 1, 1977, and was then known as the Committee on Advocacy for the Developmentally Disabled, Inc., and later as Virgin Islands Advocacy, Inc.

In its role as a Protection and Advocacy agency, the DRCVI provides legal advocacy services to eligible people with disabilities in the US Virgin Islands. As well as filling the role of the protection and advocacy agency for the US Virgin Islands, DRCVI offers information and training about the ADA in the Virgin Islands on behalf of the Northeast ADA Center. The DRCVI staff involved in this project include Amelia Headley Lamont, Archie Jennings, and Kishma Creque.


Would you like more information about the services we provide? Ask our technical assistance specialists.

Contact Us