Jami is a policy associate whose work is driven by a passion for promoting the autonomy of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. This passion is expressed through work to ensure that all individuals with IDD can access the diverse supports they need to thrive. Jami is particularly devoted to working with public agency staff to explore changes needed in IDD systems that better promote access to and use of supports, and to develop plans to implement needed changes. Jami is also highly skilled in helping governments to manage limited resources through the implementation of a supports budget framework that fosters equity and promotes self-direction of services. In addition to supporting clients in systems change and supports budgets, Jami also has deep experience in working with self-advocates and regularly contributes to the efforts of The Riot!, a platform for self-advocates to talk about the issues that are most important to them.
Prior to joining HSRI, Jami held a post-doctoral internship with Queens University: Multidimensional Assessment of Providers and Systems (MAPS) to assess and develop quality indicators for IDD support services. Jami was a special educator, including a head teacher, for 11 years and a service coordinator and direct support provider for 4 years. Jami is also a Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND) fellow, has interned with Disability Rights New Mexico, and has participated in ethics training and sat on human rights committees.
When not at work, Jami enjoys running, being in the wilderness, crafting, compulsively reading, and spending time with her favorite people in the world (Asa-husband, Ario-son, and Juni-daughter)!
- Doctorate in special education: social justice, advocacy, and public policy from the University of New Mexico
- Master's degree in special education: severe disabilities from the University of New Mexico
- Bachelor's degree in special education: language arts from Eastern New Mexico University