Dr. Therese Willkomm Receives the 2017 New Hampshire Governor’s Accessibility Award

September 20, 2017

Dr. Therese Willkomm & NH Governor Chris Sununu

Dr. Therese Willkomm & NH Governor Chris Sununu

DURHAM, N.H. – On Tuesday, September 12, 2017, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu presented Dr. Therese Willkomm with a 2017 Governor’s Accessibility Award. This award honors those who embody the spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and Dr. Willkomm received it for her work as the director of the Assistive Technology in New Hampshire program.

“Therese Willkomm has an infectious love for all things adaptable that can lend an assist to anyone in need,” shares Ann Dillon, a member of the Governor’s Commission on Disability and Coordinator of the NH Leadership Series. “Her job requires her to do specific tasks, but her heart and soul give to this community far beyond the framework of a job. She has helped students, farmers, firemen, and people from all walks of life adapt to new disabilities or create more choices and control for people who have lived with disability all of their lives.”

Dr. Willkomm received the Accessibility Award alongside Karen Johnson, Director of The Bridge Program, Susan Silsby, Senior Vice President of Programs at Easterseals NH, and Michael Constance, Executive Director for Camp Allen and a graduate of the 2017 NH-ME LEND program.

Therese Willkomm, Ph.D., ATP, directs the NH Statewide Assistive Technology (ATinNH) program with the Institute on Disability and is a clinical associate professor in the University of New Hampshire’s Department of Occupational Therapy. Known internationally as “The MacGyver of Assistive Technology” and more recently as an expert in iPad modifications and apps for individuals with disabilities, Dr. Willkomm has provided AT services for over 30 years. During that time, she has designed and fabricated over 1,200 solutions for individuals with disabilities including her patented A.T. Pad Stand, a multi-use assistive technology mounting device to provide hands-free holding solutions for individuals who experience paralysis. She has appeared on RFD TV, CNN, NPR Science Friday and has received numerous honors and awards including being invited to speak at the 2016 White House Summit on Technology and Disability. For more information visit www.atinnh.org.

The Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire was established in 1987 to provide a coherent university-based focus for the improvement of knowledge, policies, and practices related to the lives of persons with disabilities and their families. Its mission is to promote full access, equal opportunities, and participation for all persons by strengthening communities and advancing policy and systems change, promising practices, education, and research. For more information, visit www.iod.unh.edu.

The University of New Hampshire, founded in 1866, is a world-class public research university with the feel of a New England liberal arts college. A land, sea, and space-grant university, UNH is the state's flagship public institution, enrolling 12,200 undergraduate and 2,300 graduate students.