2006 Trailblazer Awards

Michael Richardson, DO-IT program manager

DO-IT Trailblazer awards highlight DO-IT community members who have forged new pathways that will benefit others. For this award we have selected individuals who, through their work and accomplishments, have changed the way the world views people with disabilities and their potential to succeed in challenging careers and activities. The 2006 recipients of the Trailblazer awards are:

Imke Durre, Ph.D., Scientist, DO-IT Mentor

Imke was selected as a Trailblazer for accomplishments in increasing public awareness of the positive contributions of people with disabilities and providing a strong role model to students with visual disabilities. Specifically:

  • Imke is a terrific role model as a person with a disability in a challenging science field and a strong advocate for increased participation of people with disabilities in science.
  • She is active in DO-IT's electronic mentoring community, providing keen insight into accessibility, education, and employment issues.
  • Imke delivered a series of disability awareness presentations for first grade children through the DO-IT Show and Tell program, showing youngsters how people who are blind use technology to communicate, gain knowledge, and pursue college studies and careers.
  • She won the Washington Post-Secondary Education and Disability 2000 Outstanding Student Award.
  • Imke served on the advisory board for producing the fourth edition of the AAAS Directory of Scientists and Engineers with Disabilities and served as the National Climatic Data Center EEO/Diversity Committee for two years (2003-2005).

Julie Peddy, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) NW Fisheries Science Center, Program Manager, DO-IT Partner

Julie is recognized as a Trailblazer for accomplishments in integrating youth with disabilities in service learning programs and promoting the employment of people with disabilities in science fields. Specifically:

  • Julie coordinates job shadows and internships for DO-IT students and tripled the number of interns with disabilities hired by the NOAA nationwide from 2005-2006.
  • She arranges disability awareness trainings for NOAA staff nationwide and supports interns, supervisors, and mentors throughout all NOAA locations.
  • Julie is involved in national efforts to increase the number of students with disabilities in challenging careers by participating in programs such as EntryPoint!, the Access Job Fair, the Youth to Work Coalition, and the annual Job Accommodation Network Conference.
  • She has arranged workshops for the DO-IT Summer Study and has coordinated NOAA volunteers to help facilitate web design courses and participate in employer mock interviews with the DO-IT Scholars.