Mason's Shane Kanady Featured in Georgetown University's Center for Public and Non-Profit Leadership News

In the Summer 2016 Certificate Program, Kanady met Kirsten Seckler, Chief Brand and Communications Officer, and Denis Doolan, Chief, Organizational Excellence, who are both with Special Olympics. An internationally respected organization, Special Olympics provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.

Special Olympics also focuses on youth & schools and health programming, as well as an Athlete Leadership curriculum that offers a variety of skills to promote success in all avenues of life. Seckler, Doolan and Kanady quickly identified the opportunity to link skill development with employment outcomes for the population served by both organizations. Since then, initial conversations and ideas about collaboration have turned into action.

This year at the Special Olympics USA Games in Seattle and 50th Anniversary celebration in Chicago, the organizations worked together to develop the Journey of Employment, the first-ever job fairs hosted for Special Olympics athletes. One of SourceAmerica’s main objectives of the fair was to ensure that they were reaching as many athletes as possible.

“Whether someone came up to us wondering about the job fair, or to ask for directions to the next event, we were really able to talk to so many of them about the opportunities that were being offered across the country,” Kanady said.