Bring in talent with diverse perspectives to solve business challenges, using PwC’s disability inclusion data to develop customized recommendations.


PwC’s leaders opted for the Disability Inclusion Accelerator™ to chart a path forward. PwC collaborated with NOD to understand the analysis of its Disability Employment Tracker results and built a high-level action plan to accelerate company-wide efforts to recruit top talent with disabilities.


“Our Tracker report showed our strengths and insights into other high-level benchmarks we could aspire towards in our disability inclusion journey. We obtained a different lens to direct our focus on talent that we next opted for NOD’s Disability Inclusion Accelerator™. The Accelerator gave us an even more data-rich, customized benchmarking, plus a specific action plan that would help us chart our short-term, medium- and longer-term initiatives and a roadmap for senior management’s evaluation. Our team was very pleased with what we learned and we’re now moving ahead with greater confidence with these new tools in hand.”

Brad Hopton | Partner, PwC


Lowe’s + NOD: Case Study


To provide assistance in recruiting and hiring people with disabilities at four of Lowe’s distribution centers and to provide training to Lowe’s staff, managers, and local partners.


Lowe’s hired more than 150 new workers with disabilities in the first year, and an additional 250 workers in the following 18-month period. NOD provided training for more than 400 staff members and helped Lowe’s develop a local lead partner and a recruiting pipeline.

Among the new hires, turnover and absences were lower than or equal to that of other Lowe’s employees

After 18 months, with transition support from NOD, Lowe’s committed to expanding the program nationally, hiring a full-time disability employment expert to oversee the process


“Everybody wants to do the right thing. And everybody’s on a different part of their journey. What’s great is that NOD can play in all parts of that journey to help people be successful. It’s not only the right thing to do – it’s right for business.”

“Lowe’s has worked with the National Organization on Disability and many state vocational rehabilitation agencies to assist in hiring and increasing awareness of employment opportunities for people with disabilities. NOD has been a valued resource for Lowe’s and we commend them for the work they are doing…”

Steve Szilagyi | Supply Chain Executive, Lowe’s Companies, Inc.

Giant Eagle + NOD Case Study

Giant Eagle + NOD | ‘A customized workplace solution from the ground up’


To architect a plan to implement universal design principles – a designed environment that can be utilized by all people, regardless of their age, size, disability – in Giant Eagle’s distribution facility to make every job position within the facility available to people with disabilities.


When Giant Eagle made the decision to extend their diversity and inclusion goals beyond retail outlets to distribution centers, they brought in experts from the National Organization on Disability (NOD) to help. NOD conducted interviews with Giant Eagle team members and held a collaborative workshop to tailor a plan unique to Giant Eagle’s goals and worksite. NOD also analyzed jobs at Giant Eagle, including assessing how work gets done, and identified feasible changes to job structures, roles and shifts. Giant Eagle attributes much of the success of the six-month engagement to NOD’s inherent knowledge of and experience in the business world, as well as NOD’s ability to build trust across the company during a time of change.


“The NOD team was incredibly professional. They clearly are experts. They took time to figure out our culture. They took the time to meet the right people. They brought the right people to the table, from the HR staff to the operations staff to the union representatives. And really built trust across all of the teams. You know, when we’re talking about making changes, not everyone is always open to that. NOD was just so good at making sure that they were leveraging their expertise, all the while making the team feel like they were developing the strategy themselves. And I think that that’s so important for the long-term ownership of the plan. I absolutely would recommend NOD to any company that’s trying to improve their disability inclusion. I know they helped us and their professionalism and expertise is unrivalled.”

Jeremy Shapira | Special Projects, Inclusion and Diversity

Five Questions with Michele Meyer-Shipp of Prudential Financial

Michele C. Meyer-Shipp, Esq. is a diversity leader, who has built a track record of success by using D&I strategies to drive business results at Prudential Financial. As vice president and chief diversity officer, Michele is responsible for leading and directing all diversity initiatives for Prudential and ensuring ongoing compliance with federal and state equal employment opportunity/affirmative action laws. And, as a person with a disability and parent to a child with a disability, Michele is working hard to promote disability inclusion in the workforce, including serving on the National Organization on Disability’s (NOD) Board of Directors.

The National Organization on Disability recently sat down with Michele to find out what drives her passion for workplace inclusion—and learn more about her strategies for success.

1. What led you to choose a career in diversity inclusion?

I began my career as an attorney, specializing in employment and labor issues, and was later appointed to serve as the lead equal employment opportunity and affirmative action officer for the State of New Jersey by its then governor. So, when this job as Chief Diversity Officer became available, it was a natural fit for me. I have a passion for equality in all shapes and forms, am an advocate and work tirelessly for the underserved. Working to raise awareness of workplace diversity and inclusion issues, and being a catalyst for change, has been the opportunity of a lifetime.

2. Why has Prudential made disability a central part of its inclusion efforts?

Prudential is proud to be known as a leader in the disability inclusion space. We were recently informed that Prudential’s percentage of employees who have self-identified as having a disability is above the average found in NOD’s annual corporate survey, the Disability Employment Tracker™, which we can attribute in large part to our “Count Me In” campaign. “Count Me In” is about building awareness, trust, and appreciation, and these are the same ingredients that are important to engaging our workforce in general. “Count Me In” has helped some of our employees find their voice and share their full identity in a way they had not previously done at work.

We have a disability strategy in place and have partnered with NOD on a Disability Inclusion Accelerator™ briefing, which allowed us to go deeper in our benchmarking, assess progress against our plans, and identify new actions we need to incorporate into our future plans. Prudential is deeply committed to this work, and we are not resting on our success – we are looking to raise the bar even higher.

3. What elements of your strategy have been most instrumental in building a culture of inclusion at Prudential?

We have done a lot to communicate our commitment to disability inclusion – our ADAPT Business Resource Group is very active and has held numerous events to create awareness about disability in the workplace.

We track a wide-array of metrics that help us tell an evidenced-based story – we have built the business case and secured the commitment and investment needed to make change across the organization.

Also, I believe that the engagement of multiple leaders in this journey has been extremely instrumental in building a culture of inclusion at Prudential. This includes both senior business leaders and partners across corporate HR (Staffing, Employee Relations, Learning and Development and Health & Wellness to name a few). We have been able to bring these partners to the table to help us improve our ability to provide accommodations – and they all recognize the business case for creating an inclusive environment that allows Prudential to attract and retain the best talent.

4. What are you most proud of regarding your efforts at Prudential and elsewhere?

One of the things I am most proud of is the executive level support we’ve gotten for D&I efforts across the company. The high level of real-time commitment to the work of D&I by our senior leaders and corporate partners is extraordinary. They understand that D&I is not merely the work of the D&I professional, but the work of ALL. We have a terrific team of dedicated people working to drive inclusion and diversity and are making progress.

I am also proud of external recognition that Prudential has received for its diversity and inclusion efforts. While it is evidence of our commitment and progress, it is not why we do it. We do it to attract, hire and retain the best talent and to create a fair and inclusive work environment.

5. What drew you to want to serve on the board of the National Organization on Disability?

As a leader and change agent, it was a chance to advocate for those in need. Being on the board is an opportunity to lend my knowledge, skills and experience to help create awareness and more opportunities in terms of recruiting, retaining and providing an inclusive work environment for people with disabilities.

As a person with a disability, and the mom of a son with a disability, it is personally meaningful for me to support this community.

Learn more about Michele Meyer-Shipp and Prudential Financial.

REI + NOD: Case Study



To recruit and employ people with disabilities to join the REI team at the state-of-the-art distribution center in Goodyear, Arizona. REI is already known for creating a progressive work environment that is inclusive and respectful. Through their partnership with NOD, REI had a goal of building a workforce reflective of the community and their customer base, by including people with disabilities.


In previous efforts to create a working environment welcoming to people with disabilities in other REI facilities, the company noted how long the transition typically took. Working with the NOD team, REI saw near immediate results in the facility’s culture, including employees who took it upon themselves to learn sign language to communicate with a new co-worker who uses sign. NOD’s training program – created for all levels of employees, including leadership – taught the REI team how to work with and lead team members with disabilities. These training sessions, including etiquette and awareness lessons, were delivered to more than 30 REI managers and 120 staff members in anticipation of hiring more people with disabilities from the greater Goodyear area. Another key portion of the REI and NOD partnership was a comprehensive review of their existing inclusion policies resulting in specific recommendations to advance their inclusion goals.


“If anybody were to ever ask me if I’d work with the National Organization on Disability, my answer is a heartfelt ‘yes!’ They’ve been a fantastic partner to us and most importantly it wasn’t about them having a canned program that they had set that they would roll out to every employer. They truly take the time to understand you, understand your business, understand the opportunities in your business and really match those up. There’s no force fed, pre-programmed set of ideas they have for you. They really work with you to make something right for your company. I really appreciate that and I’d highly recommend the National Organization on Disability as a key partner on your initiative to find, recruit and employ great talent.”

Chris Joyce | Director of Operations, REI

“The NOD really set the foundation for us and gave us a base and a ground to really start walking. We were there, but I think we were more crawling towards that direction. The NOD really got us walking and really got us to run towards the goal we had. They were a great coach and mentor.”

Christian Saldana | Operations Supervisor, REI



Reimagine Recruiting


On November 17, 2016, leaders and practitioners in campus recruiting, diversity & inclusion, human resources and compliance gathered in Cambridge, MA for Reimagine Recruiting. The annual NOD Corporate Leadership Council forum offered attendees an exclusive opportunity to network with peers and learn about leading practices in recruiting and hiring college students and recent graduates with disabilities.

Attendees gained insights from prominent employers, including NOD Corporate Leadership Council member EY, JPMorgan Chase, Lockheed MartinNorthrop Grumman, State Street and ULTRA Testing, as well as from the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Work Without Limits, and Working Mother. In addition, students with disabilities, student veterans, and college representatives shared ways employers can effectively tap into talent on campus.

Welcome remarks by NOD President Carol Glazer

Welcome from David D’Arcangelo, Director of Massachusetts Office of Disability

Welcome from Michael Stein, J.D., Ph.D., Executive Director, Harvard Law School Project on Disability

NOD Directors, John Quain and Luke Visconti of DiversityInc

Pete Rutigliano, Sirota and Barbara Spitzer, NOD present “A Data Driven Approach to Accelerating Disability Inclusion”

Reimagine Recruiting Attendees

Robert O’Brien, Lockheed Martin; Mark Estrada, State Street Bank; Andrea Shkane, JP Morgan Chase; and Lori Golden, EY speaking during “Disability Inclusive Diversity Roundtable Employer Discussion”

Sue Meirs, NOD moderates “Disability Inclusive: Diversity Roundtable Employer Discussion”

Keynote speaker Frank Kineavy, staff writer for DiversityInc and Villanova University Graduate

Carol Glazer, NOD, with Krista Carothers, Working Mother, presenting “Experiences of Disability in the Workplace”

Career Services and Disability Services Directors from Ball State, University of California Riverside, Southern Connecticut State University, and Northeastern University presenting at “Higher Education Best Practices” panel

Francisco Urena, Secretary of Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services during the “Veterans in the Workforce” panel

Doc Massard, Northrop Grumman, participates in the “Veterans in the Workforce” panel

Student Veterans Jessica Mack and Marshall Ireland speak during the “Veterans in the Workforce” panel

“Campus to Careers: A Boston Pilot” with Sue Meirs, NOD; Alan Muir, COSD; and Kathy Petkauskos, Work Without Limits

ULTRA Testing’s Brian King presenting on Aspergers inclusion during “Opportunity Makers: Employment and the Neurodiverse Workforce”

Dr. Ernst VanBergeijk, Lesley University, presents during panel discussion on “Finding and Developing Partnerships that Foster Employment for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities”

Dan Rivard and Kelsie Salas participate in “Finding and Developing Partnerships that Foster Employment for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities”

Jessica Mack speaks during Student Led Discussion Group “Authentic Answers to Unspoken Questions”

Kelly Molloy in “Authentic Answers to Unspoken Questions”

Justine Weatherman in “Authentic Answers to Unspoken Questions”

Alan Muir, COSD, with David D’Arcangelo, Director, Massachusetts Office of Disability

NOD Staffer Receives Disability Award

Margaret Ling, NOD’s Event & Administrative Associate, received a citation this week for her work while Vice Chair of City University of New York’s Coalition for Students with Disabilities (CCSD).

The citation is an acknowledgement of New York residents who dedicate their efforts to advocating and serving the disability community.

Michael Miller, Michael Simanowitz, and Aravella Simotas, representatives from the New York State Assembly, awarded Ms. Ling and the CCSD executive board members with the citation. In addition, Dr. Christopher Rosa, Interim Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, City University of New York, was in attendance at the ADA anniversary event, held at Queens College.

Photo includes: Assemblywoman  Aravella Simotas and NOD’s Margaret Ling.

Photo includes: Michael Miller, Michael Simanowitz and Aravella Simotas of the New York State Assembly, with Samantha Wong, Chair of CCSD, and Dr. Christopher Rosa, Interim Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, City University of New York.

Photo includes: Executive board and members of CCSD with members of New York State Assembly and Interim Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, City University of New York.

NOD Kick Off National Disability Employment Awareness Month at the RIT Career Fair

To jumpstart NDEAM, a coalition of national organizations are shining a spot light on one critical issue facing companies seeking to meet federal disability employment targets: a broken pipeline between employers and universities who are graduating students with disabilities—and what’s being done to address it. Representatives from NOD, with National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE); Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD); General Electric Aviation; National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID); and Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) will address the urgency of connecting graduates with disabilities to employers during the college’s Career Fair.