Title: The National Landscape for Tech First: Past, Present, and Future
Presenter: Dustin Wright, Founder, Disability Cocoon
What an amazing time to be providing services and supports to people with disabilities! The technological age we live in is enabling more and more possibilities for everyone. However, this transition in how we provide services represents a fundamental change in how we define supports, and nobody likes change.
This session will 1) highlight the 17-year history of remote supports as an example of the pace of this Tech First change, 2) describe the efforts it takes to switch to a Tech First mindset, 3) provide an overview of the current national Tech First landscape, and 4) will give us a glimpse into an exciting Tech First future, where using various forms of enabling technologies can create amazing possibilities.
Learn more about Disability Cocoon at disabilitycocoon.com
Dustin Wright has been supporting people with disabilities for 20+ years. He is proud to state he began this career track as a Direct Support Professional (DSP) while pursuing his education at Purdue University. After graduation, he worked through the ranks and ultimately served as a Director of Program Services for the same organization – overseeing and ensuring services for approximately 300 individuals.
In 2006, Dustin co-founded a remote supports company, Rest Assured, and served as the Executive Director until 2019. In this role he has overseen the provision of remote supports to thousands of people with varying abilities in 24 states.
He is a 2018 Coleman Institute for Cognitive Disabilities and Technology DIGS Grant recipient. Dustin has also assisted the States of Tennessee, Ohio, Maine, the District of Columbia, and other states in developing and modifying Medicaid Waiver regulation and funding structures to include more options for technology enabled supports.
Dustin founded Disability Cocoon in May 2018. He describes it as a disability technology catalyst organization that helps the disability community discover, learn, and implement enabling technology solutions that foster opportunities for increased independence.