March marks Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month and as we observe #DDAwareness, it is important to continue to recognize and appreciate the many contributions people with disabilities bring to their communities. We at ServiceSource promote respect for people with disabilities and continue to educate others on the power of inclusive communities.
This year to recognize #DDAwareness, we selected to highlight Bill Baxter, an employee at our Dining Facilities contract in Colorado Springs, CO. Bill is not only a valued employee on the ServiceSource team, he is also a self-advocate, Toastmaster, recorded artist, YouTuber, college graduate, and published author.
In the interview below, Bill shares his story and insights about the importance of #DDAwareness, all year-round.
Q&A with Bill Baxter
Q: What is your connection with ServiceSource?
A: I’ve been with ServiceSource a little over eight years now as a full-time employee until last October when I retired. However, I felt the need to stay active and work a couple of days a week.
Q: What do you consider to be some of your greatest achievements?
A: An advisor encouraged me not to go to college, but I wanted to go anyways. I graduated from California State University, East Bay in 1979 against the odds and my advisor’s advice. I have earned an Associate of Arts degree at a local community college. I’ve also received the President’s Award and an Employee of the Year award at ServiceSource. Most recently though, I have become a published author, particularly of children’s books. I am also a recorded artist. I have a YouTube channel and a couple of albums.
Q: What advice do you have for people with developmental disabilities on how they can reach their goals?
A: You have to accept who and what you are, but the key is – don’t let your disabilities hold you back from goals you might want to achieve! Accept what you are, but don’t let it defeat you!
Q: Why do you think it’s important we talk about developmental disabilities?
A: The more we talk about disabilities, the more the person that has a disability can be more comfortable with themselves.
Q: As an author yourself, what is one book you would recommend to people reading your interview?
A: I’ve published over 120 books now, mostly children’s books. Two books for adults is W.E.B. Tales and W.E.B. Files. These books have a lot about self-advocacy, overcoming disabilities, and my autobiography.
Q: Where can people get your books if they want to read your story?
A: On Amazon! My pen name is William Edwin Baxter. You can search that and see my books.
Written interview edited for clarity
- For more information on developmental disabilities, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/developmentaldisabilities/facts.html
- For links to other websites on developmental disabilities, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/developmentaldisabilities/links.html