HYBRID DC Metro Annual event featuring ODEP, GSA and EEOC sharing their leadership plans, policies and activities for 2023. For virtual attendees, use the following Zoom link. https://gdms.zoomgov.com/j/1610721974?pwd=b0RJNHd6... Speakers: Networking Begins 8:30-9:30 Program starts at 9:30 ODEP Assistant Secretary, Taryn Williams ODEP Deputy Secretary Jennifer Sheehy ODEP Director, Employer and Workplace Policy Team Lou Orslene EEOC Commissioner, Keith Sonderling General Services Administration, Ability One, Millisa Gary
Assistant Secretary Taryn M. Williams
Taryn Mackenzie Williams is the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Disability Employment Policy. In this position, she advises the Secretary of Labor on how the Department’s policies and programs impact the employment of people with disabilities and leads the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), which works with employers and all levels of government to promote evidence-based policy that improves employment opportunities and outcomes for people with disabilities. Previously, Williams was the managing director for the Poverty to Prosperity Program at American Progress, which works on progressive policies focused on a broad range of anti-poverty strategies. Before joining American Progress, she worked at ODEP on a variety of issues related to education, workforce policy, Social Security, Medicaid and civil rights. In her role as director of youth policy, Williams led agency efforts to coordinate education and employment policy in support of improved labor force outcomes for disabled youth. From 2014 through 2016, Williams served as ODEP’s chief of staff. She also undertook detail assignments as associate director for public engagement and liaison to the disability community at the White House from 2014 through 2015 and as a policy adviser on the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions from 2012 through 2013. Prior to joining the federal government, Williams worked as the research coordinator for leadership programs at the Institute for Educational Leadership and as the director of programs at the National Association of Urban Debate Leagues headquartered in Chicago. She holds a bachelor’s degree in public policy from Brown University and a master’s degree in education with a concentration in administration, planning, and social policy from Harvard University. She resides in Washington, DC.
Louis Orslene, MPIA, MSW, serves the Office of
Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor, as the Director for the
Employer and Workplace Policy Team. The Employer Team examines the policy
issues and barriers facing employers as they seek to recruit, hire, retain, and
advance individuals with disabilities in the workplace. The Team fulfills its
mission by encouraging adoption and implementation of disability employment
policies and practices that meet the needs of private and public employers and
individuals with disabilities.
Prior to joining ODEP, Lou served as a
Disability Policy Advisor supporting the Department of Defense Office of
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Lou has also served as the Co-Director of the
Department of Labor’s Job Accommodation Network (JAN). He has extensive
knowledge of workplace accommodations, Title 1 of the Americans with
Disabilities Act as amended in 2008 and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Lou has
more than 20 years of experience developing and implementing disability-related
public sector initiatives and 15 years of experience providing customized
training to private industry, public agencies and nonprofit
Lou graduated from the University of Pittsburgh
with Master's degrees in Public and International Affairs and Social Work. Lou
also holds a certification in Disability Management as well as a certificate in
Managing Public and Non-profit Organizations. He holds an undergraduate degree
in Human Resource Management.
Lou’s presentations are informed by 25 years in
the field of disability employment and through collaborations with groups such
as the Disability:IN, Disability Management Employers Coalition, Society of
Human Resource Management, National Business and Disability Council, Assistive
Technology Industry Association, and the American Association of People with
Disabilities, among others.
Lou is committed to increasing the employability
of individuals with disabilities. This commitment is continuously deepened
through the exploration of the nexus between the needs of employers and
abilities of individuals with disabilities
Keith E. Sonderling, Commissioner EEOC
Keith E. Sonderling was confirmed by the U.S. Senate, with a bipartisan vote, to be a Commissioner on the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in 2020. Until January of 2021, he served as the Commission’s Vice-Chair. His term expires July of 2024.
Prior to his confirmation to the EEOC, Commissioner Sonderling served as the Acting and Deputy Administrator of the Wage and Hour Division at the U.S. Department of Labor. Before joining the Department of Labor in 2017, Commissioner Sonderling practiced Labor and Employment law in Florida. Commissioner Sonderling also serves as a Professional Lecturer in the Law at The George Washington University Law School, teaching employment discrimination.
Since joining the EEOC, one of Commissioner Sonderling’s highest priorities is ensuring that artificial intelligence and workplace technologies are designed and deployed consistent with long-standing civil rights laws. Commissioner Sonderling has published numerous articles on the benefits and potential harms of using artificial intelligence-based technology in the workplace and speaks globally on these emerging issues.
Immediately before his confirmation to the EEOC, as Deputy and Acting Administrator of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division, Sonderling oversaw enforcement, outreach, regulatory work, strategic planning, performance management, communications, and stakeholder engagement. The Division accomplished back-to-back record-breaking enforcement collections and educational outreach events during his tenure. The Wage and Hour Division administers and enforces federal labor laws, including the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and the labor provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act.
Commissioner Sonderling also oversaw the development and publication of large-scale deregulatory rules and authored numerous Opinion Letters, Field Assistance Bulletins, and All Agency Memorandums. Additionally, he was instrumental in developing the Division’s first comprehensive self-audit program, which collected more than $7 million for nearly eleven thousand workers.
Before his government service, Commissioner Sonderling was a partner at one of Florida’s oldest and largest law firms, Gunster. At Gunster, he counseled employers and litigated labor and employment disputes. In 2012, then-Governor Rick Scott appointed Sonderling to serve as the Chair of the Judicial Nominating Committee for appellate courts in South Florida.
Sonderling received his B.S., magna cum laude, from the University of Florida and his J.D., magna cum laude, from Nova Southeastern University.
Jennifer Sheehy, Deputy Assistant Secretary ODEP
Jennifer Sheehy is the Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), U.S. Department of Labor. The mission of ODEP is to develop policy that increases job opportunities for youth and adults with disabilities. In 2016, she was also appointed by the President to the AbilityOne Commission. Prior to her current position, Jennifer spent ten years at the US Department of Education in many roles, including acting Director of the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, acting Deputy Commissioner of the Rehabilitation Services Administration and Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. Jennifer came to the Department of Education from the Presidential Task Force on Employment of Adults with Disabilities where she was Senior Policy Advisor and served a detail as Associate Director in the White House Domestic Policy Council. Before she joined the task force staff, Jennifer was Vice President of the National Organization on Disability and Director of its CEO Council.
Jennifer earned a B.A. from Cornell University and graduated with honors from Georgetown University, where she received her MBA. While in graduate school, she worked in marketing research with Anheuser-Busch Companies in St. Louis. Before graduate school, Jennifer also worked in marketing and management for Sheraton and Marriott. Jennifer has received many civic and achievement awards including the 2019 Presidential Rank Award, the Accenture Women in Government "Rising Leader" award, and the Diet Coke/ Glamour magazine "Women at Their Best" award. Jennifer lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband
Millisa Gary, GSA AbilityOne
GSA's Office of Government-wide Policy is pleased to announce the appointments of Millisa L. Gary as GSA's first AbilityOne program executive and Maria C. Swaby as GSA's new procurement ombudsman.
Millisa Gary Headshot
Millisa Gary is GSA's First AbilityOne Program Executive
AbilityOne, a procurement program aimed at increasing employment opportunities for American citizens who are blind or disabled, leverages a national network of more than 600 non-profit agencies that employ more than 40,000 people. It delivers fair market-priced products and services to the Government, with professional contract management. For many years, GSA has been very proud to be the largest civilian partner to AbilityOne and we anticipate significant changes coming out of the recent 898 panel recommendations. In her new role, Millisa will ensure that we award contracts and services at good prices, that we modernize the solution offerings, and that we support employing more Americans with disabilities.
I want to thank Millisa Gary for her great work as GSA's first procurement ombudsman. Millisa created the ombudsman program and used the role to improve the state of GSA's partnership with industry. Through Reverse Industry Training events, she enabled GSA to reduce its cost of acquisition, increase competition, and improve acquisition outcomes. She resolved hundreds of industry complaints, aided them in identifying the right agency or organization to resolve the issue, and used structured data analytics to aid collaboration. Millisa holds a B.S. from George Mason University and an M.B.A. from Averett University.