Eric Lipp, Executive Director/Founder, Open Doors Organization
Eric founded Open Doors Organization (ODO) after personally experiencing the restrictions that people with disabilities face in everyday life due to lack of awareness and knowledge by businesses. In the 15 years since, he has assisted countless companies, primarily in travel, tourism and transportation, to better serve the disability community while also encouraging individuals with disabilities to travel and participate fully in their communities. Eric has developed and conducted training for airlines, airline service companies and airports. He has traveled around the globe, working with over 30 foreign carriers. Eric also assisted in preparing Heathrow ground handlers for the Olympics and Paralympics in 2012. In 2013 he trained TSA’s Passenger Support Specialists and received their Community Partner Award.
Craig Kennedy, Consultant & Course Trainer, Open Doors Organization
Craig Kennedy works as a consultant and course trainer with Open Doors Organization, a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization based in Chicago, Illinois. With more than 20 years of experience, Craig has become highly knowledgeable on travel and tourism as related to travelers with disabilities. Craig began focusing on accessibility after personally experiencing the limitations that individuals with disabilities face in everyday life. In 1994, Craig moved from the Adirondack in upstate New York to Steamboat Springs, Colorado where a skiing accident left him paralyzed from the waist down just two years later. Now, he is a published author and Co-Founder of an adaptive travel resource company called Access Anything, with his wife Andy, and founder of CK Consulting. Craig has spent the last 20 years motivating people with disaibilities to look beyond their perceived abilities and to advocate for their rights as both people and travelers. He has spent the last 7 years as a founding Board Member and Program Director for Steamboat Adaptive Recreational Sports, helping to grow the adaptive sports program from the ground up while teaching others with disabilities how to recreate in the outdoors. Craig also works as a Whole Food Nutrition and Business Coach with the Juice Plus company, where he continues to bring positivity towards change, better health, and improved access to the world of disabilities.
When Pigs Fly – New DOT Regulations for In-Cabin Access & Inclusion
This session will give you the in’s and out’s on new regulations being slated for travel of Service Animals. There are new Canadian regulations and the US is looking to change its current regulations. You will have the opportunity to receive answers to all of your questions (even the ones you feared asking) and will gain insight on the rule making process. We will cover global regulations on service animals and the new steps being taken to stop fraudulent travelers with their pets.