Center for Leadership in Disability Highlights Community Advisory Committee Member Ben Oxley
The Center for Leadership in Disability (CLD) features Community Advisory Council (CAC) members in a series of profiles that highlight individual CAC members, and give insight into who they are and their commitment to a working partnership with CLD.
The CAC is comprised of parents, self-advocates, community leaders, and representatives of organizations that share CLD’s mission of creating independent, self-determined, inclusive, and productive lives for people with disabilities and their families.
CAC members advise and inform the CLD Director and staff regarding the Center’s initiatives and programs. In addition, CAC members support, contribute to, and advocate for the Center and its programs.
Ben Oxley is in his second year as a CAC member. The 29-year-old identifies as an advocate for himself and for all persons with disabilities, and “enjoys most advocating for those that can not advocate for themselves.”
An Atlanta native, Oxley has been a warrior for disability rights for more than 10 years in the state of Georgia. He is a 2006 graduate of the Atlanta Alliance on Developmental Disabilities’ (AADD) Partners in Policymaking program, and has served on two councils: In 2007 on the Transition Council of Henry County and as Chairperson for the Region 6 Quality Improvement Council in 2012. Oxley is a graduate of My Voice. My Participation. My Board. 2015 class.
Ben Oxley in his own words:
Q: What drew you to become a member of the CAC?
Ben: I was drawn to the fact that CLD does a lot of community outreach and creates opportunities for people with disabilities to have a voice. I like that they use research to identify problems in the community and then they bring everybody to the table to come up with a solution to fix the issue.
Q: What is/are your favorite thing(s) about being a part of CAC?
Ben: I like being part of a group that is using their presence and their voice to make a change. We can make a difference to how people with disabilities are viewed.
Q: What would you like people to know about you?
Ben: My tattoos work as my introduction to getting people to know me, and then I advocate. I believe it’s important to allow people to not see disability first so they see you as a person and not a disability. Then that allows you to start the conversation about how they can be an advocate for disability rights and make a change.
Oxley is in his 10th year working with the Publix Supermarket chain and enjoys Rock music and watching football.
The Center for Leadership in Disability (CLD) is a University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), administratively located within the Mark Chaffin Center for Healthy Development and the School of Public Health at Georgia State University (GSU).