Image: Photo of a young Black woman with her hair straight and parted to the side. She is smiling and facing the camera sideways in her wheelchair. She is outside under the tree branches while wearing a white and black dress.
Contact Vilissa: Vilissa at rampyourvoice.com
Vilissa Thompson is the founder and CEO of Ramp Your Voice!, an organization that promotes self-advocacy and empowerment among people with disabilities. Vilissa is a Licensed Master Social Worker from Winnsboro, SC. As a disability rights consultant, writer, and advocate, Vilissa is a prominent leader and expert in addressing and educating the public and political figures about the plight of people with disabilities, especially women of color with disabilities. She has been featured in the Huffington Post, New York Times, Buzzfeed, Bitch Media, Upworthy, Black Girl Nerds, and The Atlantic, among others.
Vilissa created the #DisabilityTooWhite viral hashtag that addressed the lack of diversity within the disability community and how a lack of representation impacts disabled people of color and their ability to feel fully included and accepted within the community. She also established the Black Disabled Woman Syllabus, a resource that has garnered much attention and praise from those within academia and the disabled community for its focus on the experiences of a very underrepresented group.
Vilissa is available as a source, and for personal essays, opinion editorial, reported features, investigative journalism, public speaking, and conference panel discussions.
Additional communication availability: Phone, chat, videoconference
Languages: English (Fluent)