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Introduction

From: Susan Hewitt <susan.hewitt@deque.com>
Date: Wed, 4 Nov 2015 13:10:03 -0600
Message-ID: <CAAMvKsmmJXNwYJFWuTfh73Ajp+yuD0XdKbOfiaTiJ-AJ077Lkw@mail.gmail.com>
To: w3c-wai-eo@w3.org
Hello,

I'm Susan Hewitt and I spoke to some of you on last week's call. I'm very
excited to join the group.  Some information on me:

I live in Austin, Texas and am a senior accessibility specialist with
Deque. I work directly with clients performing assessments on a wide-range
of projects: websites, applications, software, wireframes, mobile websites,
and native apps. Some of these projects involve training clients to
integrate accessibility into their own processes and helping the developers
learn how to code accessibly.

Previous to Deque I was the accessibility coordinator for the Texas
Department of State Health Services. With 12,000 employees, DSHS is one of
the state's largest agencies. I was responsible for coordinating and
ensuring accessibility of all of our electronic resources. I worked with
executive management to establish policy and procedures; procurement
offices to ensure purchase of Section 508 compliant products; inside
developers and outside vendors to assess compliance with accessibility
policy; and managed testers and remediators.

In the rest of my Texas state government career I've held development and
accessibility positions at the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative
Services, the Comptroller of Public Accounts and the University of Texas I
held positions including development and new media adviser to student
journalists and broadcasters. My work in the private sector has included
start-ups and media companies in Houston, Austin, Dallas, and New York.

I began working in Web design and development 20 years ago during my senior
year at UT where I was a double major in Plan II Honors and English. I was
using tools such as Veronica to research my senior thesis on the Bronte
sisters' juvenilia when I discovered the browser Mosiac. I began to teach
myself HTML by creating a website to gather my research (which I'm a
embarrassed to say was called "Charlotte's Web.") Many universities linked
to it and I was surprised to receive an email from someone in Japan saying
she couldn't read my brown text on brown background. I'm ashamed to say
that I told her I could see it just fine and it fit in with my design. I
hope I've now made up for that mistake.

I intended to pursue a PhD in English Literature but companies began to
recruit me for design and development positions. This surprised me as I
didn't realize that this Web stuff could actually be a career. I decided to
put my PhD plans on hold for a couple of years and stash away a little
money. I never went back for that degree.

Accessibility has reignited my passion for my career and I'm a strong
believer in the need for evangelism. I'm particularly interested in mobile
and cognitive accessibility as well as the wider issues of disabilities in
those living in poverty and the aging population. Extracurricularly, I
serve on the certification committee of the IAAP and as a judge for the
Knowbility OpenAIR competition.

Besides tech work, I read anything and everything, write on my typewriter
when I get a chance, and take care of our hoard of rescued dogs, cats, and
a flock of chickens.

I look forward to working with all of you,
Susan

-- 
Susan Hewitt
Sr. Accessibility Specialist
Deque Systems
Office: 703-225-0380 ext. 133
Mobile: 512-784-3522
Received on Wednesday, 4 November 2015 21:20:38 UTC

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