Accessibility Stars Aligned: ilumino, the Ability App and a Doll Like Me in a New Constellation of Inclusivity
We are over the moon with joy to announce our recent connection and a budding relationship with Alex Knoll, the 14-year-old CEO of the Ability App. When we learned that Alex would be the keynote speaker at the Marketing Edge Conference, we knew immediately that we needed to be there to honor his dedication and the important impact he will have on people with all forms of ability.
You might recognize Alex from his appearances on The Ellen Show at the age of 12, in the Spring of 2017 and again in the Fall of 2017. He received seed funding for his nonprofit to complete the development begin developing Ability App, which “will help people with any type of disability (cognitive, hearing, vision and mobility) and caregivers navigate public spaces and search for specific disability friendly features. Users will be able to research the level of accessibility at any public space like a retail store, restaurant, hotel, park, theater, etc. prior to leaving the safety, functionality, and security of their own home.“
Alex’s focus on physical accessibility is a perfect complement to our focus on digital accessibility. Not only that, but we also saw a great opportunity to help him ensure that everyone who needs The Ability App can find and use it seamlessly in the digital space where it will exist. After his inspiring keynote address, we had the honor to present him with a “Digital Accessibility Trailblazer” Certificate and our donation of Accessibility Assessment services for The Ability App, his Nonprofit App Website, and his Speaker Website.
Another Star: A Doll Like Me
We also connected the dots with our existing nonprofit partner, A Doll Like Me. With each new client, ilumino donates a handmade look-alike doll for a child. As a special surprise, we were able not only to donate a doll in Alex’s name but also to have that doll with us so he could see for himself the impact it would have on its look-alike recipient, Cadence.
“From one kid to another, it’s so cool to be able to connect with people (and dolls!) like us,” Alex beamed. “This whole journey and today have been absolutely amazing.”
The Marketing Edge Conference: Technology, Accessibility, and Inclusion
All of this came to be thanks to our connection with the American Marketing Association’s (AMA) vast network bringing leading chapters AMA Cincinnati and AMA Houston together. Our mission to light the path to digital accessibility compliance with an honest, educational and genuine approach would be incomplete without the marketers and developers who are out there creating digital assets every single day. That’s why we were so excited when we learned about this year’s Marketing Edge, an annual one-day conference, which this year embraced all things technology, accessibility, and inclusion.
“Technology is changing at such a meteoric rate while connecting people and enabling people in the most amazing ways. We were thrilled to host innovators from across the country to share how we as marketers can best use technology professionally to create inclusive and diverse organizations and campaigns,” affirmed April Lundy, Co-Chair of Marketing Edge.
Shining Brighter Together
In his Ability App, Alex is giving us a glimpse of the future for web developers. One where developers will be purpose-driven stewards of humanity AND technology. The next generation of web developers will revisit the original concept that technology was meant to make all humans’ lives easier by not creating barriers for users. On the other end of the spectrum, A Doll Like Me Founder Amy Jandrisavits is changing the world one child and doll pair at a time. With Alex, Amy, the AMA, and ilumino connecting people, companies, marketers, and developers to inclusive design and accessibility for all, the sky really is the limit!