The AUCD Board of Directors has established five Councils to help address emerging trends and issues, and to communicate and engage with  AUCD network members:  

What do Councils do? 

Councils provide an opportunity for network members to address emerging trends and issues, highlight exemplary practices, implement the AUCD Strategic Map, and bring network priorities to the AUCD Board of Directors. Councils are led by a Chair or Co-Chairs, and one Chair from each Council has a seat on the AUCD Board of Directors (with the exception of COLA, which has two seats on the Board). Councils meet virtually throughout the year and meet in-person annually at the AUCD Conference in Washington, D.C. 

What are the benefits of joining a Council? 

Council members meet and network with others who share similar interests and roles, providing access to a wealth of experience that can be applied through collaborative discussion, brainstorming, problem-solving, development of grant proposals and/or program development. Members play a role in identifying and addressing priorities and emerging needs, which contributes to the ongoing growth and impact of AUCD’s national network. Councils also provide opportunities to take on leadership roles (Chair and member of Board of Directors, Co-Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary) within a national network. 

Who can join a Council? 

Councils are open to all AUCD network members at all stages of their careers, including trainees. 

How does someone join a Council? 

Any network member including trainees can join one or multiple Councils. If you are interested in joining a Council, visit and follow the link to the Council(s) of interest. On each Council page, look on the right side of the page to find the link to subscribe to the e-mail listserv for that Council. Click that link and sign up – it’s that easy! Alternatively, if you are included in the AUCD Directory, you can select Council membership in your Directory profile page. This will subscribe you to the Council listserv, and you will then get communications from/have access to send messages to the Council. Other Council members and leadership are not automatically notified that you joined, so introduce yourself on the listserv and update the AUCD Directory to reflect your membership (if you are unsure how to do this, check with your center’s Data Coordinator).  

What is the role of a Council member? 

All Council members are encouraged to actively participate and engage in Council opportunities to address priorities through discussion, developing/sharing resources, hosting webinars, and periodic meetings. Your participation in Council activities contributes tremendously to the effectiveness of the Council. Council members are encouraged to run for leadership positions within their Council and participate in voting per each Council’s guidelines and rules. 

How does a Council differ from a Special Interest Group (SIG)? 

Council Chairs sit on AUCD’s Board of Directors, contributing to the overall leadership and direction of the organization; this is not the case with SIGs. SIGs focus on specific disability-related topics such as employment or emergency preparation. Councils may focus on any disability-related topic. The focus of the Councils aligns with the specialties of the AUCD network that can be applied to any disability-related topic: research and evaluation, advocacy and inclusion, cultural competence, community education and dissemination, and training.