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Disability Inclusive Grantmaking is the mission of DFN: inclusion of disability in grantmaking programs and inclusion of people with disabilities in grantmaking organizations.

“Bill Diaz . . . lives in our hearts, and we will carry on his work.” Gloria Rubio-Cortes, Chief Operating Officer, Community Technology Foundation of California

William Diaz Award Acceptance Speech

April 26, 2004

I am honored to receive the Disability Funders Network’s William Diaz Impact Award.

We all know this work cannot be achieved alone by one person or one organization. It is achieved through partnerships. I would like to acknowledge some of those partners who also provided inspiration:

  • CTFC Board members

    • Jackie Brand, CTFC Chair, who is featured in Freedom Machines the film we will see later this evening;
    • Roger Cazares and Anni Chung, who are present tonight; and
    • Betsy Bayha, who was a producer of Freedom Machines.
  • Tessie Guillermo, president and CEO of CTFC, for her vision and focus on our values, particularly building nonprofit competency around disability issues in concert with technology and cultural competency.
  • Alicia Lara, of The California Endowment, for her personal drive and passion for underserved communities and support to start our first partnership devoted to funding efforts to help people with disabilities to work without losing their health care through Ticket to Work
  • Tom Morales, a partner at the Alliance for Technology Access, who passed away unexpectedly last year and told me more than once, “We are only temporarily abled.”
  • Luz Vega-Marquis, who hired me at CTFC, and gave me my first opportunity to learn about these issues and to make a difference.
  • Bill Diaz, a trail blazer and inspiration to the many who knew him. He lives in our hearts and we will carry on his work.
  • CTFC grantees, including Familia Unida, Living with Multiple Sclerosis, in Los Angeles which is helping Spanish-speaking adults confined to their homes by MS to connect with others using technology.
  • My friends here tonight and my husband Mike Cortes in San Francisco.
  • And CTFC colleagues here tonight — Phillippe Wallace, chief financial officer; Tim Wu, director of programs; and Karen Hanson, manager of the ZeroDivide Fellowship — who have the privilege of working daily to achieve the dream: social justice, equity and access through community technology.