Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) and the partners of the Self Advocacy Resource and Technical Assistance Center (SARTAC) are pleased to announce the 2022-2023 SARTAC Fellowship Award recipients.
Six Fellows were chosen through a competitive application process to carry out independently designed self advocacy leadership and policy-related projects. This is the fifth group of SARTAC Fellows. Fellows are listed below with their hometown, brief biography, title and summary of their project, and Host organization.
To learn more about the SARTAC Fellowship, these outstanding self advocates, and the previous class of Fellows, click here.
SARTAC Fellows 2023-2024
Dora Martinez - My pronouns are she, her, her.
SARTAC Fellow from Reno, Nevada
Fellowship Project: Leadership Academy
Dora is the chairperson of the NV Council of the Blind. She showed others how to give testimony at the council and spoke about Nevada’s Effective Absentee System for Election Video at the Governor’s Council on DD. Dora presented with Assemblywoman Tracy Brown-May on Self Advocacy and the Legislative Process. She also was in Partners in Policymaking class.
Project Summary: Leadership Academy will train people with disabilities on their rights and help them to advocate for themselves.
CG Matovina - My pronouns are they, them, their.
SARTAC Fellow from Worcester, Massachusetts
Fellowship Project: Disability Justice in Action
CG is a 27-year-old non-binary, queer, fat, autistic, chronically ill, and disabled self-advocate. CG has been working as an educator and advocate for 6 years. They are passionate about disability justice, the neurodiversity movement, disability rights, dynamic or invisible disabilities, mental health psychiatric survivor support, self-determination, and advocacy.
Project Summary: Disability Justice in Action will create training and resources to teach the 10 Principles of Disability Justice. The training and resources will focus on listening to the voices of people who feel left out. We will build a community to support each other with self-advocacy, self-determination, and decision-making.
Anna Montaldo - My pronouns are she, her, hers.
SARTAC Fellow from St. Louis, Missouri
Fellowship Project: Teamwork Makes the Dream Work!
Anna is a young adult with Cerebral Palsy or CP. She started CP Life in 2017 when she was in high school. Anna is part of the Boundless Babe Society, an international women-owned group that empowers women with disabilities. She is the president of her local People First chapter. She is training to be a paid Charting the LifeCourse or CtLC Trainer and Mentor. She is certified in person-centered planning, CtLC Ambassador Stakeholder, and Good Life Group facilitator.
Project Summary: Teamwork Makes the Dream Work will create a course that teaches people with intellectual disabilities basic leadership skills and etiquette or good manners in speaking and working together with influential people, such as legislators, and how to behave professionally. Talking with videos should make the content engaging, understandable, and easy to remember.
Ocean Poet - My pronouns are he, him, his.
SARTAC Fellow from St. Paul, Minnesota
Fellowship Project: The Self-Advocate Artistic Movement
Ocean is a 58-year-old, multi-raced, transgender male, artist, writer, poet, musician, and animator living in St. Paul, Minnesota. Ocean has published seven books, including a graphic novel, self-help, and poetry. Ocean believes art is helpful in self-advocacy because it allows people to express themselves. He believes that your art is your words, your words are your art, and your art is your protest.
Project Summary: The Self-Advocate Artistic Movement will focus on bringing people with disabilities together in the community to learn about self-advocacy and self-expression through art. This project will help elevate a community that is often marginalized or left out and whose history gets erased. They tell stories and show people that the disability community has always existed.
Deziree Tacub - My pronouns are she, her, hers.
SARTAC Fellow from Lihue, Hawaii
Fellowship Project: Video Guide to Employment
Deziree, “Coobie,” participates in self-advocacy daily and has been part of the Hawaii Self-Advocacy Advisory Council for six years. She has been the Kauai Self-Advocacy Advisory Council Chair for the last two years. Deziree advocates for herself and others by providing testimony to the legislature on bills and makes short videos telling her story that is shared with legislators. Deziree has been employed part-time for almost two years. She works two part-time jobs where she learns new skills and inspires other individuals with disabilities in her community to obtain work. Deziree is from Hawaii and lives on the island of Kauai, and in her spare time, she participates in Special Olympics.
Project Sumary: The Video Guide to Employment videos the Fellows and Host will make to help other people get jobs. The videos will be small, short videos, each on a different topic. The videos will go on YouTube and social media so people with developmental disabilities anywhere can watch them. She believes employment for individuals with developmental disabilities is important and advocates for equal rights.
Kelsie Weaver - My pronouns are she, her, hers.
SARTAC Fellow from Martins Ferry, Ohio
Fellowship Project: ‘Liberty and Justice for All Means All!’ A look into Disabled Women and Girls’ Involvement with Civic Engagement
Kelsi is studying Social Work at Ohio University Eastern. Kelsi is passionate about disability rights and ensuring that people with disabilities voices are heard. Her goal is to someday work in disability policy.
Project Summary: ‘Liberty and Justice for All Mean All!’ - A Look into ‘Disabled Women and Girls’ Involvement with Civic Engagement will create a guide that empowers disabled women and girls to take the next step in getting involved, from voting to running for office!
If you would like to contact the SARTAC Fellows, please email Teresa Moore (email@example.com).