Real People, Real Stories: A Podcast on Accessibility by TPGi
Real People, Real Stories Episode 9, 2021: Charlotte Dales from Inclusively and Aubrey Northam from Mobelux

Real People, Real Stories Episode 9, 2021: Charlotte Dales from Inclusively and Aubrey Northam from Mobelux

August 19, 2021

In this episode, Mark Miller, the host, and his producer Marissa speak with Charlotte Dales, co-founder of Inclusively, a professional network connecting employers with people with disabilities, and Aubrey Northam, her software developer. Charlotte talks about how her cousin Cameron inspired her to start Inclusively after Cameron became the first licensed aesthetician in the state of Florida with Down syndrome. Aubrey shares how she became interested in accessible programming, then they all talk about Inclusively’s challenges and successes. 

Real People, Real Stories Episode 8, 2021: Alvaro Silberstein, co-founder of Wheel the World

Real People, Real Stories Episode 8, 2021: Alvaro Silberstein, co-founder of Wheel the World

August 5, 2021

Mark Miller, the host, and his producer Marissa speak with Alvaro Silberstein, co-founder of the accessible travel agency, Wheel the World. In Alvaro’s own words, “We make people with disabilities travel the world. That's pretty much what we do.” The three discuss Alvaro’s lifelong dream of visiting Torres del Paine, which, for a long time he believed would never come true due to his confinement to a wheelchair. However, he ultimately decided to make it happen with the help of a few friends, which sparked the idea for Wheel the World. 

Alvaro regales Mark and Marissa with stories of people his company has helped travel to places they never dreamed they’d go, and what goes into planning such extensive trips around the world. 

Real People, Real Stories Episode 7, 2021: Anthony Ferraro, blind Paralympic athlete, musician, and motivational speaker

Real People, Real Stories Episode 7, 2021: Anthony Ferraro, blind Paralympic athlete, musician, and motivational speaker

August 2, 2021

Mark Miller, the host, speaks with Anthony Ferraro, a blind Paralympic athlete, musician, and motivational speaker. Anthony currently competes in judo, but he explains that before he learned judo, he was a high school wrestler. Anthony’s brother started to make a film about Anthony’s wrestling journey and the trailer went viral, which attracted the attention of the U.S. Paralympic Committee. The Committee asked if Anthony would compete in judo (the Paralympic sport closest to wrestling).

Real People, Real Stories Episode 6: Elsa Sjunneson, professor, historian, media critic, author, sensitivity reader, and editor

Real People, Real Stories Episode 6: Elsa Sjunneson, professor, historian, media critic, author, sensitivity reader, and editor

July 7, 2021

Mark Miller, the host, his producer Marissa, and marketing intern Dara, speak with Elsa Sjunneson, self-described “Deafblind hurricane in a vintage dress” and professor, historian, media critic, author, sensitivity reader, and editor. She is also the first deafblind woman to win a Hugo.

Elsa first discusses her approach as an editor: prioritize diverse voices and then “get out of the author’s way.” She then emphasizes the importance of adaptive aids, describing them as an extension of a person’s body rather than a "nice to have." Elsa goes on to explain the purpose of a white cane and points out that media rarely shows characters using one correctly. She then shares her thoughts on how a writer without a disability should conduct research in order to create  a realistic character with a disability. At the end of the podcast, Elsa talks about her love of fencing and how societal bias can affect writing and real life.

Real People, Real Stories Episode 5, 2021: Isaac Shapiro, Co-founder and CEO of the Beauty Brand Cleanlogic

Real People, Real Stories Episode 5, 2021: Isaac Shapiro, Co-founder and CEO of the Beauty Brand Cleanlogic

June 11, 2021
Mark Miller, the host, his producer Marissa, and marketing intern Dara, speak with Isaac Shapiro, co-founder and CEO of the beauty brand Cleanlogic. Every product at Cleanlogic has Braille packaging and Isaac shares that his mother, who is blind, motivated this decision. Isaac goes on to describe how the Braille packaging creates a conversation around blind and visual impairment and how most people don’t know that blind or visually impaired people could do certain things. Isaac also introduces the nonprofit he founded, the Inspiration Foundation. At the end of the podcast, Isaac explains the importance of being a “social enterprise” and doing good as a business.
Real People, Real Stories Episode 4, 2021: Angie Ause, PGA Golfer and Teacher

Real People, Real Stories Episode 4, 2021: Angie Ause, PGA Golfer and Teacher

May 20, 2021

In this episode: Mark Miller, the host, his producer Marissa, and marketing intern Dara, speak with Angie Ause, a LPGA golf pro and instructor who teaches adults and kids who are blind or have low vision how to golf. Angie shares a memory from her childhood of a man with low vision who played golf and how that influenced her current activities. She discusses the various accommodations at Blind Golf Association Tournaments, like guides and grip molds. Finally, Angie reveals that when she first played golf, she hated it and only came to love the sport later.

Real People, Real Stories Episode 3, 2021: Preston Radtke, Web Accessibility Specialist and Part-Time Instructor for a course in IT and Web Accessibility

Real People, Real Stories Episode 3, 2021: Preston Radtke, Web Accessibility Specialist and Part-Time Instructor for a course in IT and Web Accessibility

April 7, 2021

In this episode, Mark Miller, the host, and his producer, Marissa Sapega, speak with Preston Radtke, a web accessibility specialist and part-time instructor for a course in IT and web accessibility at Rutgers University. Radtke explains how he teaches about web accessibility and why it is an important subject. Topics covered include: the disability etiquette/customer service and testing/web development modules of the class, how Radtke feels that, as he is legally blind himself, working in digital accessibility is a way to give back to the community, the experience of being a professor with a disability, the curb cut effect and how accessible solutions are often adopted by the wider population as convenience, how the Google search engine is like a “blind user,” the growing need for web accessibility, and the frustration of using screen readers.

Real People, Real Stories Episode 2, 2021: Cara Conway from Paws with a Cause

Real People, Real Stories Episode 2, 2021: Cara Conway from Paws with a Cause

April 6, 2021
In this episode, Mark Miller, the host, and his producer, Marissa Sapega, speak with Cara Conway, the Public Relations Coordinator of Paws with a Cause. Paws with a Cause is a nonprofit organization that custom trains assistance dogs for people with a wide variety of disabilities. Conway explains about assistance dogs in general and about the work of Paws with a Cause in particular. Topics covered include:  the various jobs of a hearing dog, how assistance dogs can help children with autism, what happens when a dog and person aren't a good fit, assistance dog retirement, and how Paws with a Cause began.
Real People, Real Stories Episode 1, 2021: Shirley Ruch, Sarah, and Scott from South Fork Bakery

Real People, Real Stories Episode 1, 2021: Shirley Ruch, Sarah, and Scott from South Fork Bakery

April 6, 2021

In this episode, Mark Miller, the host, and his producer, Marissa Sapega, speak with Shirley Ruch, the founder of South Fork Bakery as well as Sarah and Scott, employees at South Fork Bakery. South Fork Bakery is a nonprofit bakery that employs people with disabilities. Ruch shares why she founded the bakery and Sarah and Scott explain the bakery’s current day-to-day operations.  Topics covered include:  the therapeutic value of baking, the social aspect of selling food at a farmer’s market, the importance of workplace accommodations for employees with disabilities, possibilities for replicating the South Fork Bakery model, and the confidence working at the bakery gives employees.

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App