Rich Luecking, TransCen
This presentation will highlight a model business development program which is designed to increase the hiring, advancement and retention of people with disabilities. The model was developed by the collaboration of business representatives, rehabilitation providers, local corporate leaders, and state vocational rehabilitation professionals. The goal of this private - public partnership model is to provide a business development program that can be replicated in other regions across the country. The model provides the public-sector critical insight into the needs of the business community from the corporate partnerships; and, the private sector will gain valuable information on the employment potential of people with disabilities and resources that will assist with hiring and accommodation issues and concerns. Dr. Luecking is President of TransCen, a position he has held since 1987 when he was charged by the Board of Directors as the organization's first employee to create improved linkages between schools, service providing agencies, government, business, and families so that youth with disabilities experience improved post-school employment outcomes. He has written, directed and/or overseen federal research and demonstration projects and foundation-funded projects that address school to work transition and employment services for people with disabilities. He is the author of numerous publications on topics related to employment of people with disabilities, business partnerships, school-to-work transition, and career development. He serves on the editorial board of Supported Employment Infolines and regularly contributes to publications targeting practitioners in employment service programs and education.