Disabilities Fund

Disabilities Fund logo

Advancing Inclusion of People with Disabilities

The Disabilities Fund of The Chicago Community Trust promotes the development of programs, policy and public action that expands the empowerment, equal opportunity, inclusion and participation of diverse persons with disabilities in the Chicago region. The Fund partners with and advises The Chicago Community Trust about disability inclusion and priorities for data-driven actionable solutions in the areas of employment, education, community inclusion and technology.

The Disabilities Fund was established thanks to the generosity of Shawn Donnelley and the Naomi Williams Donnelley Fund.

Advisory Board Members

  • Jack Catlin, FAIA, LCM Architects, Co-Chair
  • Karen Tamley, Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities, Co-Chair
  • Zully Alvarado, Causes for Change
  • Adam Ballard, Access Living
  • Jackie Burgess-Bishop, Cook County Health & Hospitals System
  • Deborah Grisko, Almost Home Kids
  • Suzanne Kenney
  • Kathy Lavin, Lekotek
  • Tuyet Le, Asian Americans Advancing Justice
  • Ben Lumicao, Allstate
  • Nancy Nauheimer, Northern Trust
  • Dorelia Rivera, Horizon
  • Kathy Ryg, Former State Representative
  • Gerald Skoning, Seyfarth Shaw LLP
  • Erin Smith, OCC
  • Sidney Smith


Recent Work

Fact Sheet: Youth and Disability

Did you know that students with disabilities are suspended at twice the rate of students without disabilities—and that only 30% will graduate high school? Learn more about the challenges facing youth with disabilities in our region in this Youth and Disability Fact Sheet, the first in our Inform And Act series of topical briefing papers.

What can you do? Take disability into account when addressing the challenges facing our youth. Want to know more about the challenges facing our youth with disabilities? This addendum includes supporting statistics, references and more information on our Youth and Disability Fact Sheet.


ADA 25 Chicago

ADA 25 Chicago was a year-long initiative celebrating and leveraging the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 2015. As the leader supporter, the Chicago Community Trust has continued its legacies with ADA 25 Advancing Leadership and other programs. To learn more about ADA 25 Chicago, please visit the archived website.


Renewing the Commitment Guide

The Renewing the Commitment Guide is for nonprofits to review and evaluate their obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The guide provides general guidelines as well a tip sheets and interactive evaluations.

ADA Compliance Guide, PDF Format

Guide summary, PDF format

This guide was originally created in 2010 at the 20th anniversary of the ADA, and has been updated with current information for 2015.


Quest for Equality: Breaking the Barriers for People with Disabilities

The 2010 white paper identifies three areas with the most opportunities since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act for full inclusion of people with disabilities; education, employment, and community living. The paper outlines goals within each area, all of which are still applicable seven years later.

Read and share the white paper (PDF format)


Contact Us
Risa Jaz Rifkind