October 20, 2014, Alexandria, VA – Richard “Dick” Ginman, director of Defense Procurement and Acquisition Policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, received the NIB Spirit of Independence Award at the 2014 NIB/NAEPB National Conference and Expo this month. The award recognizes an individual in government who has demonstrated a commitment to advancing economic and personal independence for people who are blind.
Mr. Ginman has been a strong supporter of the AbilityOne® Program throughout his career, implementing policies and solutions that increase employment for people who are blind or have significant disabilities. He championed the AbilityOne Contract Management Support (CMS) program, which supports more than 75 Department of Defense (DOD) contracting offices. As a result of Mr. Ginman’s leadership, 162 upwardly mobile, direct labor contracting positions were created for people who are blind or have significant disabilities, and 19 people who are blind or have significant disabilities have been hired out of the CMS program into career positions with the federal government.
“The significance and spirit of this award is a reminder of the freedom for economic and personal independence each person who is blind deserves and can achieve through meaningful employment,” said Ginman. “You have my steadfast commitment that together we will seek innovative ways to support the AbilityOne mission.”
The NIB/NAEPB National Conference and Expo is an annual event hosted by National Industries for the Blind and the National Association for the Employment of People who are Blind (NAEPB) and attended by hundreds of employees, customers, business partners and supporters of NIB and its associated nonprofit agencies. The award itself is a tactile U.S. flag, specially designed and hand-crafted by the Daughters of the American Revolution for individuals who are blind or visually impaired, including blinded veterans.
“While I received the award, it is the entire DOD acquisition workforce that was honored,” said Ginman. “It’s not about what I did, but what the workforce does to support NIB and AbilityOne.”
About National Industries for the Blind
For more than 75 years, National Industries for the Blind (NIB) has focused on enhancing the opportunities for economic and personal independence of people who are blind, primarily through creating, sustaining and improving employment. NIB and its network of 94 associated nonprofit agencies nationwide serve as the largest employer of people who are blind through the sale of SKILCRAFT® and other products and services provided by the AbilityOne® Program, established by the Javits-Wagner-O’Day Act. For more information about NIB, visit www.nib.org.
Vice President, Communications