A Coffee Conversation: Addressing Disability with Healthcare Disparities and Equity

This month’s Community of Practice coffee conversation and round table, will include a range of captivating thought leaders who will discuss and reflect upon improving healthcare disparities by the disabled and improving their equity through a person-centered approach.

Topics include:

  • Blue Print at National Council on Disability
  • Cultural competence
  • Disparities
  • Inclusion and Usability
  • Person-centered care and services

The round table members, many of who have “lived experience” as people with disabilities, will include:

Moderator and Thought Leader: Gary C. Norman, Esq. L.L.M.

Mr. Norman is a resolute public servant gifted with the ability to bring people of unrelated interests together. He is a valued leader, manager, collaborator, and team member in any setting, who actively engages with, leads, even envisions trending, prevailing public policy issues. He particularly cares as to elevate the policy voice and leadership by people with disabilities.

Mr. Norman started his public service career as a Presidential Management Fellow in 2000 with the federal government after graduating from Wright State University and Cleveland State University. He has the unique brand of serving on the public square with a special sidekick, guide dog Bowie. In 2022, he completed two Fellowships: One at the Wilson Center for federal executives to learn as to Artificial Intelligence; One within the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to pipeline diverse potential managers. He serves on the Board of the Presidential Management Alumni Association.

In 2021, the Baltimore Business Journal recognized Mr. Norman as a Leader in Diversity. He has long shared the disability experience – its benefits and challenges – in a society not yet as accessible as it should be for service animal teams. He consistently reminds colleagues that, while not perfect, this republic has achieved great progress in living to its tenants. He is known for his semi-regular salons in which he brokers thought leaders, including, the disabled and the able, having mentored a range of law students with disabilities.

In 2020, Mr. Norman received the Administrator’s Award at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for his work on healthcare accessibility and quality policy related to people with disabilities. In 2011, Mr. Norman obtained his Masters in Letters of Law at Washington College of Law. Where, as a Law and Government Scholar, he focused on the intersection among bioethics, civil rights, and regulatory policy.

Mr. Norman serves as Co-chair of the Board of Advisors at the Pieces of Me Foundation. Mr. Norman served as Chair of the Board of Commissioners at the Maryland Commission on Civil Rights from 2018 to 2021, co-leading the Agency to a new three-year strategic plan. He also formally served on the Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission as one of his concurrent roles as Chair.

Service to the Profession: In 2021, Chief Judge Barbarra appointed Mr. Norman to serve on the appeals committee of the Maryland Court of Appeals related to requests for reasonable accommodations to the Maryland Bar Exam. He is a member of the Board of Governors of the Maryland State Bar Association. Mr. Norman is a Fellow of the Maryland Bar Foundation. Mr. Norman has served on, and serves on, the Board for the Leadership Academy of the Maryland State Bar Association.

Consensus-Builder: In November 2019, he served as a Fellow at the invite-only Public Policy Conflict Resolution Fellowship. A program for high-level leaders convened under the auspices of the Md. Judiciary. At the Maryland Lynching Truth & Reconciliation Commission, he collaborated with his colleagues to broker various long-term relationships and special projects, including, a series of restorative justice trainings. In 2015, he served as a Visiting Fellow at the non-partisan Robert J. Dole Institute for Politics. He established a multi-year non-partisan symposium on animal law and policy brokering regional or even national experts together.

He is the past chief partnerships facilitator and Co-Executive Editor of The Mid-Atlantic Journal on Law and Public Policy: Animal and Disability Reporter. A non-partisan, law and public policy journal on animal and disability issues that he co-founded. He has a column in the Maryland Daily Record focusing on his adventures to influence policy as a lawyer with a guide dog. Additionally, he is a feature contributing author at GovLoop.

On a personal side, Mr. Norman enjoys reading and libraries, enjoys the theatre; as well as sharing time reading his books whilst drinking coffee. He is a shareholder member at the historic library Company of Philadelphia. His dog or dogs are usually near-by chewing on a bone or playing with toys.

Thought Leader: Daniel Hodges, J.D. Co-founder, C.E.O. and President of the Pieces of Me Foundation

Mr. Hodges is a coach, a consultant, and a public policy thought leader, who works at the intersection of disabilities, healthcare equity, and societal inclusion. He obtained his law degree at the University of Baltimore School of Law. He is a person who has multiple disabilities, thusly knowing the benefits and challenges of how a society identifies and accepts disability. 

Thought Leader: Daniel S. Davis, Policy Analyst, HHS

Daniel Davis serves as a Policy Analyst with the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Community Living’s Center for Policy Evaluation, Office of Policy Analysis and Development. As a person with an invisible disability committed to the full inclusion of people with disabilities and other disadvantaged groups in the realization of their American dream, Daniel has worked on policy and legislation impacting the lives of people with disabilities for nearly 20 years. 

The presentation slides and recording will be available following the session on Confluence. 


When: Thursday, October 27, 1 PM ET

Where: Zoom, meeting ID 813 1725 3712, pass 050855

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