Katy Washington

Chief Accessibility Officer, serving as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)/Section 504 Coordinator, Office of Institutional Equity, Effectiveness, and Success

Katy Washington brings more than 18 years of higher education disability services and compliance experience to her new role as VCU’s inaugural Chief Accessibility Officer.  In this role, Katy serves as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)/Section 504 Coordinator for the university.  In addition, Katy ensures the appropriate federal- and state-required policies, processes and resources are in place across the university in compliance with relevant state and federal laws which directly impact equal access and inclusion of individuals with disabilities; administers the employment-related accommodation process; and provides guidance, consultation, and collaboration with workgroups and local partners across the university to provide an innovative approach to proactively removing physical and digital barriers to equal access.

Katy comes to VCU from the University of North Texas (UNT) where she served as the Director of the Office of Disability Access.  During her time at UNT, she revised processes within her unit to minimize barriers to students associating with the office and utilizing accommodations.  Katy also worked with campus partners to create more inclusive campus policies related to people with disabilities. Prior to this, Katy served as Director of the Center for Educational Access at the University of Arkansas. 

Katy has received a Ph.D. in Public Policy from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; J.D. from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law; M.S. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Central Arkansas.

Katy currently serves as President of the Board of Directors for the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) which is the leading professional organization for individuals committed to equity for people with disabilities in higher education.  She previously co-chaired AHEAD’s Racial and Ethnic Diversity and Disability (REDD) Knowledge and Practice Community; served as Board President-Elect and Secretary; and member of AHEAD’s Public Policy Committee.