Announcing Disability Lead's New Board Chair: Ann Manikas!

Disability Lead
March 2, 2022

We are excited to announce that Disability Lead Member and Board Member, Ann Manikas, was elected at the February Board of Directors Meeting to serve as Disability Lead’s Board Chair.

A seasoned leader with a disability, Ann works at American Medical Association as the Head of Organization Development and Learning. Her deep expertise in the areas of management coaching and development, team effectiveness, training development and delivery, large scale change, and mergers and integration will serve Disability Lead well as the organization continues to evolve and grow. Ann has held leadership roles in corporate and not-for-profit organizations.

“I am thrilled to be stepping into this role,” said Ann. “Disability Lead has made remarkable inroads in bringing disability leadership to tables of influence and power in the Chicago region, and there is more work to be done. I look forward to working with the Board and staff in my new capacity to help realize plans for increased impact.”

Ann has been a Disabiilty Lead Member since the organization launched and was known as ADA 25 Advancing Leadership, a program incubated at the Chicago Community Trust. She became a founding board member in 2019, when the organization was established as an independent 501c3. Ann also chaired the Program Committee, helping to provide strategic oversight and review related to Disability Lead’s programmatic work, and she was a member of the Hiring Committee, when Emily Blum, current Executive Director, was hired for her role.  

“Ann is a perfect leader for Disability Lead’s Board, and we are incredibly grateful for her service and commitment to the organization,” said Mary Anderson, Disability Lead’s out-going Board Chair. “I know how invested Ann is in the vision of the organization, and I’m excited to see how she will bring her talents, experience and insight to the role.”

The Disability Lead Board is consists of 11 individuals who reflect the diversity of the Chicago region, inclusive of disability. Half of the board are also Members of Disability Lead and lead with their disability identities.