past event
Identity and Equity

Project on Belonging Easterseals Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) Convene

Easterseals Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) Convene

October 18th-19th
Aspen Institute Headquarters

The Aspen Institute’s Project on Belonging is partnering with Easterseals on IDEA Convene, an executive learning experience focused on advancing inclusion, diversity, equity, and access for people with disabilities in the workplace. Corporate leaders will gather at Aspen Institute headquarters near Dupont Circle to learn from leaders in the space and to workshop strategies for executives committed to a culture of belonging for all within their companies.

The Aspen Institute Project on Belonging encourages all interested organizations to register to join us for insightful discussions on making inclusion and access a reality in our workplaces. Please email

Featured voices:

Kendra Davenport came to Easterseals with three decades of nonprofit experience, having managed development and communications portfolios and teams ranging in size from 50 to 1500 for several national and international organizations. Before joining Easterseals in March of 2022 as President and CEO, Kendra led global philanthropy, communications, and brand marketing for Operation Smile. She is a passionate collaborator and places tremendous emphasis on transparency and trust as she works to support Easterseals’ Network of 71 Affiliates, elevate the brand, and raise transformative funding and awareness of Easterseals’ mission – to promote equity, inclusion, and access for people living with disabilities, older adults, and veterans.

Rodney O. Martin, Jr., is executive chairman of Voya Financial, Inc., a leading health, wealth and investment company. Martin is a veteran of the retirement, insurance and financial services industries with more than 40 years of high-profile experience. He joined Voya as CEO in 2011 and served as the company’s chairman and CEO for more than a decade before assuming the role of executive chairman.  As Voya’s CEO, Martin advanced a significant financial, operational and cultural transformation and evolved the business portfolio to one focused on delivering health, wealth and investment solutions that enable Voya’s approximately 14.7 million individual, workplace and institutional clients to achieve their financial wellness goals with confidence. 

Nayyera Haq is a broadcast journalist and host who tells the stories of how democracy works — and doesn’t work — for all kinds of people. Nayyera has interviewed global leaders and local activists, drawing on years spent in the trenches of the nation’s most competitive campaigns and in the halls of government working to resolve global challenges. Nayyera is the rare host with a nuanced understanding of both domestic and international current affairs.

Robin Glasco is an executive search consultant and payer lead in Spencer Stuart’s Healthcare Practice with a compelling track record of seizing and delivering growth opportunities through new ventures, product development and business line expansion in public, private and third sector entities. Robin’s executive leadership experience in corporate and business line strategy, innovation, clinical operations, venture investments in commercial and government markets has earned her the reputation for helping clients navigate complexity to drive substantive and equitable change for all communities they serve.

James Emmett is Founder and CEO of James Emmett & Company (JEC). JEC of the most recognizable brands in the field of disability inclusion. James has worked on many of the most visible disability inclusion initiatives with companies like Advance Auto Parts, Walgreens, Best Buy, Office Depot/Max, PepsiCo, and Mercy Health. James helped plan & execute initiatives that have resulted in over 100,000 jobs for people with disabilities and numerous awards for innovation related to company-owned disability inclusion. James’ career vision is to forever change the business and disability communities by helping hundreds of companies create disability inclusion brands.

Roberta Mather is the Chief Communications Officer for the Bureau of International Labor at the U.S. Department of Labor. As the CCO, she oversees the strategy for ILAB’s mission to strengthen global labor standards, enforce labor commitments among trading partners, and combat international child labor, forced labor, and human trafficking. Before this role, Roberta served as the Senior Advisor for Employee Communications with the U.S. Department of State, leading the strategy and delivery of employee messaging to the Department’s over 75,000 employees worldwide. She coordinated the Secretary of State’s engagement with the workforce, ranging from global town halls to digital communications. Roberta’s work spans across marketing, logistics coordination, project management, and policy amplification. As an international speaker, Roberta’s platform includes Diversity of Thought, global equity, and the power of storytelling.

Donna K. Elbrecht has been in leadership positions for disability service organizations for more than 30 years, currently as CEO of Easterseals Northern Indiana, a network that provides services and supports to more than 7,000 people with a dedicated team of 1,200. Elbrecht has been instrumental over the years increasing diversity, equity, inclusion, and access to people with disabilities so they can live their best lives. Elbrecht’s most recent work involves health equities and health outcomes, with value-based payments improving preventative care and social determinants of health. In addition to her role with Easterseals, Elbrecht is current chair of the board for the Indiana Association of Rehabilitation Facilities, and an officer on the Cameron Hospital board.

David Dreith has been the CEO of Easterseals Crossroads located in Indianapolis since March 2020. During a career that began in 1992, he has led efforts in innovating the way people with disabilities access and contribute to their communities. He has played key leadership roles in the launch and operation of numerous social enterprises, earned income ventures that support an organization’s mission of employing people with disabilities while generating unrestricted income to support other initiatives of that non-profit. Currently, he is leading Easterseals Crossroads as it seeks to radically change the concepts of equity, inclusion, and accessibility for people with disabilities in central Indiana. David holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University.

Elizabeth (Lizzy) Ragan is from Beavercreek, Oregon and is a member of the current White House Fellowship class (’22-23) for which she is placed at the Office of Science and Technology Policy to support implementation of the American Pandemic Preparedness Plan in the Health Outcomes Division. Lizzy is a public health professional with technical and operational expertise in global and domestic health programs and research. She has managed programs on maternal health, substance use disorders, and various infectious diseases including tuberculosis, HIV, and COVID-19 for which she has spent considerable time abroad, predominantly in the sub-Saharan African region. In response to COVID-19, Lizzy worked with Boston Medical Center leadership to triage and prioritize research efforts in the context of a strained clinical environment at the largest safety net hospital in New England. Lizzy is a disability and DEIA advocate, and is a former appointed member of Oregon Health Authority’s Health Equity Committee.

Jason Green is the bestselling co-author of Blended Learning in Action and Co-Founder and Co-CEO of LINC (Learning Innovation Catalyst). Inspired by his youth development and nonprofit work as a student at Morehouse College, Jason Green has dedicated his career to creating positive change in education. Jason has helped hundreds of schools and districts reimagine and implement next generation teaching and learning. Through a research partnership with Stanford University Graduate School of Education’s Dr. Arnetha Ball, Jason develops and implements professional learning experiences designed to help educators build their mindset and practice of 21st century, student-centered learning. Jason holds an MBA from the Wharton School, a M.S.Ed from the University of Pennsylvania, and has spoken at leading universities and conferences around the world. Connect with Jason on Twitter @jasontoddgreen.

Sponsored by Easterseals through support from Delta Air Lines, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, and Voya Financial:

Easterseals is leading the way to full equity, inclusion, and access through life-changing disability and community services. Trusted by families for more than 100 years, we have worked tirelessly with our partners to enhance quality of life and expand local access to mobility and transportation, healthcare, education, and employment opportunities. And we won’t rest until every one of us is valued, respected, and accepted. Through our national network of Affiliates, Easterseals provides essential services and on-the-ground supports to millions of people each year – from early childhood programs for the critical first five years, to autism services, medical rehabilitation and employment programs, veterans’ services, and more. Our public education, policy, and advocacy initiatives positively shape perceptions and address the urgent and evolving needs of the one in four Americans living with disabilities today. Together, we’re empowering people with disabilities, families, and communities to be full and equal participants in society. Learn more about Easterseals and Easterseals IDEA Convene at

Event information
Wed Oct 18, 2023 - Thu Oct 19, 2023
Aspen Institute Headquarters
2300 N Street NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC