Get to know the PDAC Members

William CampbellWilliam F. Campbell, Jr., Chairperson

Haley Pass

Haley Pass, STRIVE, Vice Chairperson

John LeMieuxJohn LeMieux
Karen PerryKaren Perry 
Derek OBrienDerek O’Brien, 
Alpha One
Ken ShapiroKen Shapiro, 
UNUM

William F. Campbell, Jr., Chairperson

I became involved with the Portland Disability Advisory Committee (PDAC) because I have been challenged by varying stages of a physical disability throughout my life.

Our committee’s focus is to work with the public to identify barriers and obstacles to accessibility in our city, and to bring them into full compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on a physical or mental disability. It creates a more accessible and safe environment for all life activities through thoughtful, common sense adaptations.

The result of ADA compliance is beneficial to all residents, including those who are temporarily impaired because of life changes, by providing a safe, more accommodating environment.

Haley Pass, STRIVE, Vice Chairperson

I chose to get involved in the Portland Disability Advisory Committee because I would like to educate people on disabilities. I am someone who has a disability so I know what people with disabilities go through on a day to day basis.

The area of focus I am most excited for the Committee to devote time to is the closed captioning campaign because it is one of the most important aspects within the City of Portland to have.

The misconception that I would like to clarify about individuals with disabilities is they are not different, they are the same as everyone else all wanting the same thing; to be accepted to who they are.

Hanna Aistrop

Lisette Belanger

Bud Buzzell 

John LeMieux

I chose to get involved in the Portland Disability Advisory Committee to help those who live in and visit Portland who have disabilities that may limit their enjoyment of all that Portland has to offer and to make sure that city government understands and addresses the points of view that the disabled may bring to any particular issue.  I also am the Board President of the Amputee Association of Maine.

The areas of focus I am most excited for the Committee to devote time to are related to mobility (sidewalks, streets, buildings) and recreation facilities (parks, paths, golf courses, courts).

The misconception that I would like to clarify about individuals with disabilities is that just because I am different doesn’t mean we are not the same.   “I was you, until I wasn’t”.

Karen Perry 

I chose to get involved in the Portland Disability Advisory Committee because I have always been concerned about the rights of disabled people, whether it is a visible or invisible disability.

The areas of focus I am most excited for the Committee to devote time to are events that will educate people and give them access to opportunities available to them.  We can focus on persons with seen and unseen physical, mental, & emotional conditions in order to challenge traditional perceptions of disabilities and their impact on the Portland community.

What I would like to clarify about individuals with disabilities is that disabilities are individual as well as unique, like people are.  They affect everyone differently. 

Jessica Russell

Michelle Ames, Disability Rights Maine

James Devine, Homeless Voices for Justice

Steve Leighton, Woods-Oakdale Neighborhood Association

Derek O’Brien, Alpha One

Derek H. O’Brien, is from Portland, Maine. I am a quadriplegic. I broke my neck on July 23, 2005 at c6-c7. I had a diving accident. I did photography during high school and studied architecture at Catholic University of America until my junior year. I went to college at UMaine, studying New Media, and graduated in 2013. I work for Portland Media Center in Portland as a video editor. I also sit on the board for RTP (Regional Transportation Program) and Alpha One. There’s no better feeling than knowing you are being a voice for others.

Ken Shapiro, UNUM

Ken Shapiro has been a Knowledge Management Consultant at Unum since 2007. In 2010 he suffered a brain hemorrhage and stroke which caused left-side weakness and mobility issues. His disability has also granted him the perspective and desire to lead Unum’s Disability Employee Resource Group, support other Unum employees with disabilities, and use their disability experiences to inform the way Unum as a disability benefits company conducts business.