As a leading provider of accessible media services including Audio Description (AD), Described Video (DV), and Live Description, Descriptive Video Works aims to serve the community of blind and low vision people, and the many others that benefit from accessibility services. As we look to the future, we want to expand our services and increase awareness to ensure that everyone, regardless of ability or disability, can enjoy media, games, and other new technology.
DVW has always worked with an advisory council to help us shape our business, services, and long-term goals. In the past, our council members were located in Vancouver, Canada, which is home to our primary studio. However, as our business has grown worldwide, we recognized the need to expand and diversify our council.
This year we decided to move from a local association to a global network of experienced accessibility consultants, and last month our new advisory council was launched at our first quarterly meeting.
Our members include Activists, Filmmakers, Writers, Creators, Bloggers, Gamers, Voice Actors, and Advocates from around the world, with a range of experience and expertise.
We are very excited to introduce our advisory council members:
Juan Alcazar – a legally blind filmmaker and accessibility advocate from California. Juan hopes to spread awareness about disability and blindness through the medium of film and video. @JC12209
Brandon Cole – a blogger, gamer, voice actor, and audio description narrator from Ohio. Totally blind from a young age, Brandon has a passion for making the world more accessible. @Superblindman
Chancey Fleet – a 2018-2019 Data & Society Fellow from Brooklyn, Chancey is a writer, organizer, and advocate that aims to advance public understanding and best practices in accessible technology.
Dr. Amy Kavanagh – a disability consultant, activist, and campaigner from England. Dr. Kavanagh uses social media to share her lived experiences as a blind Londoner alongside her guide dog. @BlondeHistorian
Shawn Marsolais – a Registered Clinical Counsellor from Vancouver, Shawn is also the Founder and Executive Director of Blind Beginnings, an organization that supports and inspires children and youth who are blind and partially sighted. @BlindBeginnings
Ross Minor – a retired paralympic swimmer, tech enthusiast, and accessibility advocate and consultant from Florida, Ross specializes in digital media and video games. @ross_minor
Nefertiti Matos Olivares – an educator, writer, and fervent advocate for equitable access from New York, Nefertiti is a bilingual Latina-American with a wealth of cultural and social expertise. @NefMatOli
Empish J. Thomas – a freelance writer, disability blogger, and consultant from Georgia. As a long-time volunteer and advocate, Empish continues to educate on issues that directly affect the disability community. www.empishthomas.com
The Descriptive Video Works team will work closely with our new advisory council to increase awareness, develop new resources and services, make advancements in Audio Description, and highlight and address accessibility issues and systematic barriers for people who are blind or low vision.
We hope that the new council will take an active role in helping to steer the company’s mission, values, and goals, and that each member will help us stay rooted in the key principles of quality accessibility services as we grow. Together, we can make the world more accessible.