Thomas Webb, a veteran disability services advocate focused on equal opportunity for all students, started this week as the new director of the Office of Disability Services (ODS).
“I knew Wright State was on the map as one of the best in accessibility and support services,” said Webb. “About 13 years ago I even told a colleague, if I ever got a chance to go to Wright State, I’d love that opportunity. And here I am.”
Webb comes to Wright State from the University of Delaware, where he served as director of the Office of Disability Support Services.
As director at Wright State, Webb assumes the responsibility of sustaining and advancing high quality programs and services that support the individual needs and overall success of Wright State’s students. His experience and background have positioned him well to work with ODS staff and the community to continue setting national standards of excellence in the area of access and accommodation.
“What enticed me most about this position is how Wright State’s programs develop so organically around the foundation of student-centered services,” he said.
Webb said he will focus more on promoting Wright State’s accessibility and support services successes and sharing its practices with other universities in the region.
“We do phenomenal work here and I don’t think a lot of people know about it,” said Webb.
Another goal for Webb is to focus on nurturing partnerships with faculty to identify and create opportunities to improve course design for all students.
Webb has held director positions at McDaniel College and Chesapeake College, both in Maryland, and taught classes in undergraduate and graduate programs on disability studies, special education and special education law.
He served for two years in Washington, D.C., as a Kennedy Disability Policy Fellow, which included working with the 110th Congress on multiple policy issues related to education, labor and disability. His efforts in that role included negotiating and drafting the Americans with Disabilities Act of 2008. In 2009, he was appointed by the governor of Maryland as chair of the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council.
Webb earned his bachelor’s degree in political science and master’s degree in psychology from Washington University in Maryland, and is a doctoral candidate in education: innovation and leadership at Wilmington University in Delaware.