FCC to Honor 10th Anniversary of Accessibility Act

2:00 pm - 6:00 pm EDT
remotely via live Internet link

The Federal Communications Commission will recognize the 10th anniversary of the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA) and its importance in building a more accessible telecommunications world for people with disabilities with a public program on Oct. 8, 2020 beginning at 2:00 p.m. The event will be virtual and can be viewed online at www.fcc.gov/live.

During the event, winners of 2020 Chairman's Awards for Advancement in Accessibility (Chairman's AAA) will be recognized for their contributions to the advancement of accessible communications. The award winners for 2020 are: telecommunications attorney Karen Peltz Strauss, Executive Director Emeritus of Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Inc. (TDI) Claude L. Stout, and Tom Wlodkowski, Vice President of Accessibility and Multicultural Technology and Product at Comcast Corporation.

In addition to the awards ceremony, the event will include a panel discussion on the CVAA's major milestones and a look at the challenges that lie ahead. The Panel will feature the FCC's: Diane Burstein, Deputy Chief, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau (CGB); Suzy Rosen Singleton, Chief, CGB Disability Rights Office (DRO) and Will Schell, Attorney-Advisor, DRO; and the co-chairs of the Disability Advisory Committee, Isidore Niyongabo and Brian Scarpelli.

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. (EDT)
Panel Discussion on CVAA Milestones

3:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. (EDT)

3:15 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. (EDT)
The Chairman’s Awards for Advancement in Accessibility (Chairman’s AAA)

Registration is not required. To watch the event, visit www.fcc.gov/live on Oct. 8. To ask questions during the panel session, please e-mail your questions to livequestions@fcc.gov.

Open captioning will be provided for this event. Other reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request. Please send an e-mail to fcc504@fcc.gov or call the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice), include a description of the accommodation you will need, and tell us how to contact you if we need more information. Make your request as early as possible – last minute requests will be accepted, but may be impossible to fill.

The 2020 Chairman's AAA Winners

Image of Karen Peltz StraussKaren Peltz Strauss is a trailblazer whose decades-long career advocating for accessible technology for consumers includes many years as a public servant at the FCC. She has contributed to landmark legislation that has advanced equality in telecommunications access, including Sections 255 and 305 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (requiring telecommunications access and television captioning), Title IV of the Americans with Disabilities Act (mandating relay services), the Decoder Circuitry Act of 1990, and the CVAA.


Image of Claude L. StoutClaude L. Stout’s work spans technological generations, from TDI’s iconic work distributing its “Blue Book” of TTY numbers, to his efforts with the Coalition of Organizations for Accessible Technology (COAT) advocating for and helping to develop the CVAA. Prior to his time at TDI, he worked on behalf of people with disabilities at the state level in North Carolina and Missouri. Throughout his career, he worked collaboratively with industry stakeholders to achieve positive outcomes for consumers, and participated in numerous advisory groups and committees, panels, and conferences.


Image of Tom WlodkowskiTom Wlodkowski has been innovating for people with disabilities for 30 years. Prior to joining Comcast, Mr. Wlodkowski served as the Director of Accessibility at AOL for more than 10 years and held positions at the WGBH Media Access Group, home to the Descriptive Video Service, Caption Center and the National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM). His accomplishments include overseeing the development of a talking television guide that revolutionized access to video programming for people who are blind or visually impaired. He has been a tireless advocate for increased access to video programming, internet/broadband, and connected technologies.

For additional information:

Chairman's AAA
Email: ChairmansAAA@fcc.gov
Phone: Deandrea Wilson (202-391-6266) or Chantal Virgile (202-418-0056)

CVAA Milestones Panel
Email: dro@fcc.gov
Phone: 202-418-2517 or ASL Consumer Support Line at 1-844-432-2275 via videophone

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