Gary smiling against a gray background.

Gary Arnold

Illinois Council on Developmental Disabilities
Program Specialist

Gary Arnold has more than two decades of professional experience working in the disability community. In July of 2023, Arnold started working as a Program Specialist with the Illinois Council on Developmental Disabilities, an Illinois State Agency dedicated to inclusion and opportunity for people with developmental disabilities. Prior to that, Arnold served as Program Director for Progress Center for Independent Living for nearly six years. Progress Center is the Center for Independent Living that serves Suburban Cook County in Illinois. Staffed and governed by a majority of people with disabilities, centers for independent living equip people with disabilities with tools and resources to pursue independence. Before Progress Center, Gary served as the Manager of Public Affairs for Access Living, the center for independent living serving Chicago.  A person with dwarfism, Gary sat on the Little People of America (LPA) Board of Directors for 11 years.  Little People of America is a national membership organization for people with dwarfism and their families. Gary served as Public Relations Director between 2006 and 2011, and as President between 2011 and 2017. Gary represents LPA on the National Disability Leadership Alliance, a coalition of 16 national organizations led by people with disabilities. A resident of Oak Park, Illinois, Gary serves as chairperson of the village’s Disability Access Commission. Gary lives in Oak Park with his wife Katie and son Matthew.

Arts and Culture, Civil Rights, Disability Rights, Social Services
Development, Marketing/Communications, Program Development, Public Relations