2018 AUCD Young Professional Award

Jack Brandt

November 23, 2018

The AUCD Young Professional Award is presented to a person in the field of disabilities under the age of 40 who has demonstrated dedication and commitment to people with developmental disabilities and their families through work as a bridge between the academic sector and the community.

Jack Brandt, MS

Partnership for People with Disabilities Virginia Commonwealth University

“In a year that celebrates building inclusive communities, it is no surprise that Jack is leading the pack. His dedication to improving the lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) surpasses inclusion and extends to leadership. His leadership of the Council on Leadership and Advocacy and his work to create the medium-term track for Virginia Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (VA-LEND) both exemplify his commitment to leadership for and by people with disabilities and their families.

As Co-chair of the Council on Community Advocacy, Jack led an effort to examine the council’s operational rules in 2016. Under Jack’s leadership, it was renamed the Council on Leadership and Advocacy (COLA). Today, COLA works to cultivate and support current and new leaders with lived experience of disability, including their family members, to promote and bridge their leadership expertise in their respective programs and communities.

As the Disability Policy Specialist at the VA UCEDD and VA-LEND, Jack understands the crucial role people with I/DD and their family members play in historically shaping public policies and partnering with professionals. Bridging the gap between academia and community, Jack co-created the medium-term track so people with I/DD and family members have access to the interdisciplinary training program, to further lead in system-change activities. As a leader with a disability, Jack’s dedication to mentoring people with disabilities and family members on their leadership journeys is unwavering. It is at the heart of all that he does and who he is.”