Who we are


  • We are the only funder solely dedicated to the communication needs of people with disabilities. We are continually learning and developing our knowledge in this field to best support it. At the core of our mission is the recognition of the diversity and unique capabilities of people with disabilities. 
  • Ability Central is looking to expand our collaboration with the disability community, our grantees, and other funders who are passionate about serving people with disabilities. 
  • We believe the ability to communicate is a fundamental human right and our quest is to ensure that more people enjoy this right fully. Ability Central also speaks to our role as an ally, a convener, and a funder as we foster collaboration and serve as a resource hub to the disability community.



Picture of Silke Brendel-Evan



Silke Brendel-Evan, Associate Program Officer




Lisa Galloway, Grants Program Associate 



Our Advisory Group consists of dedicated individuals with disabilities and/or individuals with strong ties to the field of disability & communication. 

  • Karen Baca
  • Matthew Chaney
  • Tim Jin
  • Joshua Miele
  • Katie Murphy
  • Eli Weil
  • David Weiss
  • Michelle Yook
  • Juan Zepeda

board of directors

Ability Central’s Board of Directors consists of dedicated individuals that have strong ties in the disability community. 

  • James Gilroy, Chair
  • Mariano Diaz, Vice Chair
  • Charlotte Harper, Secretary
  • Lois Jean Brady, Director
  • LaVal Brewer, Director
  • Jesus Gonzalez, Director 
  • Dr. Philip Prinz, Director
  • Walter Raineri, Director
  • Sarah Slaughter, Director
  • Barry Saudan, President & CEO 


  1. To promote the expansion of quality communications access programs and services to individuals with disabilities. 
  2. To strengthen the sector of providers of communications access for people with disabilities. 
  3. To educate other grantmakers about the communications access needs of people with disabilities.


James Gilroy, Chair