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Category: Office Tales Blog

The Road to Work and Independence

By Michelle McHenry-Edrington, Non-Attorney Advocacy Coordinator

So you have a disability, and you want to remain or become as independent as you can. Maybe you want to go to school and get a job that turns into a career.

First of all, I can imagine that most people in your life have taken away or diminished your hopes and dreams regarding work and independence. Your dreams of living how you choose and being the best you can be are still yours to hope for and dream. Continue reading “The Road to Work and Independence”

Motivational Speaker, Performer, Music Teacher

by Gail Hamilton

 Title of your position:

 Motivational Speaker, Performer, and Music teacher

Is this a current position or a position you held in the past?


Brief description of your duties:


I write and edit materials, emails and social media, phone calls, manage one-person staff, prepare and polish presentations, support all types of people with various mental, emotional, age, and physical disabilities.


Required experience/ education/ skills needed  for your position:



  • Expert in my field-MA in Psychology and counseling and MM in vocal performance
  • Published my memoir “Soaring into Greatness, a Blind Woman’s Vision to Live her Dreams and Fly”
  • Member National Speakers Association; and National Speakers Association of Colorado-NSA Colorado
  • Graduate of Colorado Speakers Academy
  • Previous engagements in Colorado, Florida, Indiana, North Dakota, and California.
  • Fourth Runner up in the National Ms Senior America Pageant
  • Almost forty years teaching individual and group piano lessons to children, adults, and seniors



Accommodations/modifications which allow you to perform your job/position


Computer with screen reader/JAWS

AIRA; sighted assistance on demand – assist on and off stage, traveling, office work and more.

Professional assistant


Braille computer

Seeing Eye dog and/or white cane


How many hours a week do you work?


Outside the office, minimum 2/two; maximum 10/ten; however, this does not count the forty hours plus at home working.


What is a challenging aspect of your position and how do you work around it?


Obtaining sighted assistance for computer, websites, research, filling out contracts and promotional materials.

I’m getting around this by recently hiring an assistant and begun to use AIRA; however, I still need to acquire more visual help at a lower cost.


What is an enjoyable aspect of your position?


 Enjoyable aspect is touching and changing lives. Giving people the motivation to overcome and change any situation they find themselves facing. Giving others hope and knowledge they aren’t alone. And, inspiring them through my singing voice.


Anything else you want people to know about your position.


People who are blind face 90% unemployment rates still in 2019. Because of this, we sometimes are not seen as capable or valuable in the workplace. Most times, we are loyal, committed, and hard working. Accommodations allow us work and participate. We want to be seen as capable and work to be viable.

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