NEADS Timeline


  • NEADS is born at its first national conference “The Foundation” in Ottawa
  • Board of Directors is established, led by our first President, Jay Derrig
  • First NEADS Newsletter is published
  • Frank Smith joins the organization


  • NEADS sets policies, objectives and a mandate and begins developmental work
  • A list of campus disability service providers and disabled students groups and committees is developed


  • Second NEADS national conference “Visions” is held in St. John’s
  • Board of Directors becomes representative by province
  • Collinda Joseph is elected as President


  • NEADS publishes “Resource Directory on Disabled Student Services at Canadian Universities and Colleges”
  • Organization begins to focus on student financial aid


  • NEADS receives Commonwealth Youth Service Award
  • NEADS holds its third national conference “Access a Two-way Street” in Halifax
  • Steve Estey is elected as President


  • NEADS publishes “Resource Directory of Disabled Student Services at Canadian Universities and Colleges”


  • NEADS holds its fourth national conference “Education: A Key to Independence” in Vancouver
  • Sylvain Lepage becomes President
  • NEADS becomes a member of National Advisory Group on Student Financial Assistance (NAGSFA)


  • NEADS publishes “Study of Financial Assistance Available to Post-Secondary Students With Disabilities,” “Directory of Scholarships, Awards, and Bursaries” and “Resource Directory of Disabled Student Services at Canadian Universities and Colleges.”


  • NEADS holds its fifth national conference “Partners in Education” in Montreal
  • Stephanie Pollock is elected President
  • The Employer Advisory Council (EAC) to NEADS is established


  • NEADS publishes “Reflections and Actions for an Accessible Post-Secondary Environment”
  • Canadian Study Grants launched by Secretary of State with input from NEADS


  • NEADS turns 10
  • NEADS holds its sixth national conference “Futures: Tomorrow is what we make it” in Toronto
  • NEADS publishes “Employment Opportunities for Post-Secondary Students and Graduates with Disabilities” and “The Impact of Funding Options in the Future for Post-Secondary Students with Disabilities”
  • NEADS becomes a member of the Minister’s Task Force on Disability, Human Resources Development Canada
  • “Investing in The Future: A Mentorship Program For Post-Secondary Students With Disabilities" is launched


  • Kent Hehr is elected President
  • NEADS publishes “Transition From School to Work: Career Choices For Youth With Disabilities”
  • NEADS receives the grant portion of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt International Disability Award
  • “Organization of Students With Disabilities Guidebook” project begins
  • NEADS presents a brief to a Senate Subcommittee on Postsecondary Education
  • Initial work on a NEADS website hosted through INDIE
  • Victor Marques joins NEADS as its first Webmaster


  • NEADS holds its seventh National Conference “Commitment to Excellence: Building Leaders for the Future” in Ottawa
  • NEADS’ e-mail discussion list, NEADS-L, hosted by York University is launched
  • NEADS holds a Leadership and Employment Forum in Montreal
  • “Developing a National Approach to Services” Project begins
  • NEADS publishes “Organization of Students With Disabilities Guidebook”
  • NEADS becomes a member of the Council of Canadians with Disabilities (CCD)


  • Joby Fleming is elected President
  • NEADS publishes “ Working Towards a Coordinated National Approach to Services”
  • NEADS holds Leadership and Employment Forums in Calgary and St. John’s
  • Chris Gaulin joins as NEADS new Webmaster; more French content is added to the site


  • NEADS holds its eighth national conference “Networking, Educating, Advocating: Delivering Success in the New Millennium” in Ottawa; a Corporate Sponsorship program is introduced to support the event
  • NEADS launches its new website
  • NEADS publishes “National Directory of Financial Assistance Programs For Post-Secondary Students With Disabilities”
  • NEADS holds a Leadership and Employment Forum in Antigonish


  • Joby Fleming is re-elected as President
  • NEADS publishes “Faculty Awareness and Training in the Post-Secondary Community”
  • NEADS High School Outreach Project is launched
  • NEADS CampusNet project begins
  • NEADS holds Leadership and Employment Forums in Yellowknife and Winnipeg
  • NEADS becomes member of the National Library of Canada’s Council on Access to Information for Print Disabled Canadians


  • NEADS holds its ninth national conference “Opening Doors to Success” in Ottawa
  • CampusNet enters the pilot phase; is launched
  • NEADS publishes “Employment Connections: A Transition Tool Kit for Youth with Disabilities” and “Moving On: A Guide for Students with Disabilities Making the Transition to Post-secondary Education”
  • NEADS holds Leadership and Employment Forums in Toronto, Montreal, and Victoria
  • NEADS website is recognized in Jobboom: Top 100 Internet Sites For Learning and Employment (HRDC)


  • Rachael Ross is elected President
  • NEADS holds Leadership and Employment Forums in Calgary, Vancouver, Ottawa, and Halifax
  • NEADS launches the NEADS Online Work System (NOWS)
  • Access to Academic Materials for Print-Disabled Post-Secondary Students project begins
  • NEADS publishes “Access to Success: A Guide for Employers”


  • NEADS holds its tenth national conference “Right On!” in Ottawa; live internet streaming of the conference is tested
  • Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in College and University-Sponsored Activities project begins


  • Rachael Ross is re-elected President
  • NEADS publishes “Access to Academic Materials for Post-Secondary Students With Print Disabilities” and “Making Extra-Curricular Activities Inclusive”.
  • Job Search Strategies Forums Project is launched through funding by BMO Nesbitt Burns’ (now BMO Capital Markets)“Equity Through Education” program; forums are held in Toronto and Edmonton
  • MuchMoreMusic partners with NEADS to launch the MuchMoreMusic AccessAbility Scholarship
  • NEADS becomes involved in discussions around the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by preparing a brief and attending sessions


  • NEADS turns 20
  • NEADS holds its eleventh National Conference “Creating our Future: On Campus and Beyond” in Ottawa
  • Job Search Strategies forums are held in Victoria, Montreal, Halifax and Ottawa
  • NEADS is again awarded funding through BMO Capital Markets “Equity Through Education” program to support a new project involving development of: student scholarships and campus awards, a mentorship program and activities to promote the NOWS job site