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Legacy HomepageNewsSpecial ReportsDisability Employment Awareness (Archive)



During National Disability Employment Awareness Month, we celebrate the many contributions of American workers with disabilities and reaffirm our admiration of the skills and talents they bring to today's workplace.”
For some, their disability came through service on far-flung battlefields. For others, it has been life-long. Whichever it is, no fundamental change has come to their worth or value.”




A colorful graphic displays the theme of the National Disability Employment Awareness Month observance.

Workforce Recruitment Program

The Workforce Recruitment Program for College Students and Recent Graduates is a federal-wide recruitment and referral program.

Workforce Recruitment Program Fact Sheet

The 37th Annual Disability Awards

The Annual Disability Awards Ceremony honors Defense Department components for outstanding achievements in the hiring, retention and advancement of individuals with disabilities. It also highlights the accomplishments and abilities of employees and service members with disabilities who have made significant contributions to and best demonstrate the core values of their respective organizations.

Portrait of Army National Guard Veteran Dan Nevins

Army National Guard Veteran Dan Nevins
Keynote Speaker

Dan Nevins began an extensive career with the Army National Guard right after high school as an enlisted paratrooper stationed in Germany. During his enlistment, he spent four years at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where he graduated from the Noncommissioned Officers Academy as a distinguished honor graduate. Shortly after, he began his professional career with Pfizer Pharmaceuticals as a sales representative.

His job was put on hold in February 2004 when he deployed to Balad, Iraq, as a squad leader. Later that year, an improvised explosive device detonated beneath his vehicle, resulting in a traumatic brain injury and the amputation of his left leg below the knee. After several years of recurring infections and countless surgeries, Nevins chose to surgically remove his right leg as well, making him a bilateral amputee.

Following his initial injury, Nevins spent 18 months at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in recovery. In his first days there, he received a backpack from the Wounded Warrior Project, a care package that would greatly affect his personal and professional life. Following medical retirement in 2006, Nevins relocated to Jacksonville, Florida, where he joined the staff of the PGA Tour.

Nevins' desire to help other service members continued to grow following retirement from the military, which was evident by his increased involvement with WWP. At the 2008 Courage Awards and Benefit Dinner, he received the highest award bestowed by Wounded Warrior Project: the George C. Lang Award for Courage. He credits the nonprofit organization for his successful rehabilitation, positive attitude, and most importantly, his passion for helping his fellow warriors in any capacity.

In 2009, Nevins decided to join the WWP team, serving in several key positions within the organization, but most recently as director of the Warriors Speak team. He embarked on a new career path as a certified yoga instructor to share the practice with fellow service members and civilians. Today, Nevins continues to serve his fellow injured warriors, and the mission of WWP, by traveling the country to share his story, his personal accomplishments and his passion for yoga.

Full Keynote Bio

Department of the Navy

The Department of the Navy is recognized with the Secretary of Defense Award for Achievements in Advancing Employment Opportunity for Individuals with Disabilities.

Among the military departments, the Department of the Navy achieved top scores in participation rate and permanent hire percentage of individuals with targeted disabilities. The Department of the Navy led all military departments by most effectively converting temporary internships from the Workforce Recruitment Program to permanent positions. Further, the Department of the Navy implemented a comprehensive operational plan for funding supplies, equipment, and services critical to providing reasonable accommodations for applicants and employees with disabilities.

Since 1775, the United States Navy has been a significant force, and remains as relevant today as it has been for the past 242 years. The times may change, but the mission of the United States Navy continues to be “to maintain, train and equip combat-ready Naval forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression and maintaining freedom of the seas.”

Defense Logistics Agency

The Defense Logistics Agency is recognized with the Secretary of Defense Award for the Best Mid-Sized Component.

Among mid-sized components, DLA achieved the top score in advancing employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities by effectively utilizing the Schedule A Excepted Hiring Authority. DLA demonstrated strong employment outcomes, and among mid-sized components, converted the most Workforce Recruitment Program intern positions to permanent employment positions.

DLA is the Defense Department's largest logistics combat support agency, providing worldwide logistics support in both peacetime and wartime to the military services as well as several civilian agencies and foreign countries. DLA's leadership and workforce are dedicated to fulfilling its mission every day: “As America's combat logistics support agency, the Defense Logistics Agency provides the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard other federal agencies and partner nations with the full spectrum of logistics, acquisition and technical services.”

Defense Media Activity

The Defense Media Activity is recognized with the Best Small-Sized Component Award.

Among small-sized components, DMA achieved the highest score by significantly improving its participation rate and permanent hire percentage of individuals with targeted disabilities. Further, DMA performed well in effectively utilizing the Schedule A Excepted Hiring Authority.

DMA was established in 2008 to provide a broad range of high quality multimedia products and services through all available media, such as radio, television, web and emerging internet and mobile communication technologies to inform, educate and entertain Defense Department audiences around the world. Specifically, DMA communicates messages and themes from senior DoD leadership to support and improve quality of life and morale, promote situational awareness, provide timely and immediate force protection information, and sustain readiness. DMA also provides U.S. radio and television news, information, and entertainment programming to active, Guard, and Reserve military service members, DoD civilians and contract employees, along with their families overseas and abroad. Further, DMA provides joint education and training for military and civilian personnel in the public affairs, broadcasting, and visual information career fields.

National Security Agency

The National Security Agency is recognized with the Best Intelligence Component Award.

Among the intelligence components, NSA stood out because of the participation rate and permanent hire percentage of individuals with targeted disabilities. NSA implemented an operational plan for funding supplies, equipment, and services for a comprehensive reasonable accommodations program, which is critical in providing reasonable accommodations.

NSA was established in 1952 by President Harry S. Truman to lead the U.S. government in cryptology. The Central Security Service was established by a presidential directive in 1972 to promote a more unified cryptologic effort between NSA and the service cryptologic components of the U.S. armed forces. This partnership is unique among the U.S. defense agencies because of its governmentwide responsibilities. NSA/CSS provides products and services to the Defense Department, the intelligence community, government agencies, industry partners and select allies and coalition partners. The director of NSA also serves as the chief of CSS.

National Security Agency

The National Security Agency is recognized with the Secretary of Defense Award for Achievements in Ensuring Accessible Information and Communication Technology in the Workplace.

NSA is recognized for its leadership and exemplary program to ensure accessible ICT for its employees with disabilities. NSA's leadership established a model comprehensive program to lead the intelligence community in accessible ICT development and production, making delivery of accessible ICT an agencywide priority. NSA significantly increased agency expertise and resource capabilities by implementing best practices and training tools to ensure that accessibility remains an integral part of the ICT development life cycle.

Related Special Reports

2017 Warrior Games

The 2017 Department of Defense Warrior Games.

2017 Invictus Games

2017 Invictus Games