AOL AdvocateBy Careers and the Disabled, Vol. 17, No. 2, pp. 12-13
Publication Date: Winter 2002/2003
Article discusses the career of Tom Wlodkowski, who is responsible for overseeing America Online (AOL)’s Accessibility Policy, which outlines the company’s commitment to ensure that its products and services are accessible to all members, including those with disabilities. He strives to ensure that AOL employees are aware of both the challenges faced by members with disabilities and the implementation of technological solutions that make AOL more accessible. Wlodkowski, who is blind, is extremely aware of the positive impact that assistive technology has on people with disabilities. While working at the National Center for Accessible Media, he developed audio menus to help make DVDs more accessible, and he co-authored guidelines to make science and mathematics-based multimedia software accessible to people with disabilities. Wlodkowksi’s work with AOL Accessibility Policy addresses the needs of a wide range of disabilities, including visual, auditory, cognitive, and mobility impairments. Examples include AOL 8.0, which has accessibility benefits such as customized instant messenger sounds that allow members who are blind or have low vision to easily identify the sender. Audio cues are also provided to alert members to the arrival of new e-mail. Wlodkowski discusses issues related to advocacy with the author, and provides advice to potential job seekers.
Published by: Equal Opportunity Publications, Inc. (Website:http://www.eop.com)