Inclusion should be a "no-brainer."
The inclusion and expansion of opportunities for people with disabilities in physical activity, sports, recreation and leisure is simply a “no-brainer” to me. I learned growing up about inclusion, but mostly exclusion of family members with both intellectual and physical disabilities. Over the years I have worked with individuals with the most profound disabling conditions to elite athletes at Paralympic games. Whether as a family member, advocate, direct service provider, coach, assistive technology specialist, teacher, volunteer or friend; the one constant I have experienced is that people with disabilities have the same wants and desires to experience life with choice and dignity as anyone else. The benefits of physical activity, leisure and recreation to quality of life are unquestioned. I love that at NCA I can continue to pursue my passion and dedication for affecting change for equal access to those benefits and opportunities for everyone.
Dr. Sherril York is the Executive Director of the National Center on Accessibility. Committed to the full inclusion of people with disabilities in parks, recreation and tourism, Sherril oversees NCA operations, the cooperative agreement between Indiana University and the National Park Service, collaborative partnerships and national initiatives. Sherril has over 30 years of experience in accessibility and disability in physical activity development, recreation activities, and adapted sports. She can often be found talking directly to practitioners in the field on methods to successfully include people with disabilities. Sherril has provided consultation to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Stature of Liberty and Ellis Island, Central Park Conservancy, Grand Canyon National Park and a number of exhibit design companies on accessible exhibits. Currently, she serves on the program planning committee for the National Recreation and Park Association Congress.
Prior to joining NCA, Sherril was the Training/Outreach Coordinator at Oklahoma ABLE Tech, the state’s assistive technology program located at Oklahoma State University. In addition, she has served as Associate Director for the American Humanics Program, and Visiting Associate Professor in the School of Applied Health and Educational Psychology at Oklahoma State University, Associate Professor in the School of HPER at the University of Northern Iowa, and Associate Professor in the Department of Kinesiology at Iowa State University. She has a Ph.D. from Texas Woman's University with an emphasis in biomechanics and adapted physical education.