Become A Partner

The Bender Leadership Academy provides scalable and sustainable, cost-efficient delivery of career and leadership programs for students with disabilities in partnership with employers and community leaders.

Premiere Partners
Bender Consulting Services, Inc.

Bender Consulting Services, Inc.

Bender Consulting Services is a for-profit firm focused on creating an inclusive workforce. Bender’s products include talent programs and workplace mentoring, training, disability inclusion strategic planning, digital accessibility testing and remediation, and software solutions.


Highmark, Inc. is one of America’s largest health insurance organizations. The organization services Pennsylvania, Delaware, and West Virginia. Some of Highmark’s subsidiaries and affiliates include United Concordia, HM Insurance Group, Allegheny Health Network, and The Highmark Foundation.


AudioEye, Inc.

AudioEye, Inc. is the industry-leading SaaS accessibility platform delivering website accessibility compliance to businesses of all sizes.

Yoshiko and Justin Dart

Yoshiko Dart is a founding sponsor of Bender Leadership Academy. Yoshiko is a disability rights advocate and was instrumental in advocating for the Americans with Disabilities Act, alongside her husband Justin Dart. Her generosity has supported the Bender Lead On Team, named for Justin, the Mary Brougher Mental Health Initiative, and other programs which develop leadership skills for youth with disabilities which honor the sense of community, advocacy, and love that is Justin’s legacy. Yoshiko Power! Justin Power! Lead On!

Yoshiko Dart
Karin Slaughter

Karin Slaughter

Karin Slaughter is an esteemed mystery author who has published 19 books. Karin has partnered with Bender Leadership Academy as a part of the We Will Slaughter Stigma campaign. This campaign is geared toward educating the community about misconceptions and bias, while taking action to end stigma against all people, including people with disabilities.

Pennsylvania’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation

The state of PA’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) partners with Bender Leadership Academy to provide pre-employment transition services funding. PA OVR provides services to individuals with disabilities to assist them with preparing for, obtaining or maintaining employment. PA OVR also is responsible for providing programming that support employers in the areas of disability workforce development.

Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation
Calgon Carbon
Peoples Gas

Edith L. Trees Charitable Trust

FISA Foundation

Nancy and William Ris Charitable Gift Fund

William Stuck Hansen and Nancy K Hansen Fund

2022 Disability Mentoring Day Partners
Champion Sponsor
HighMark BCBS AHN Health
enGen Logo
UPMC Life Changing Medicine
Accessibility Sponsor
PNC Logo
Partner Sponsor
Highmark Wholecare
American Eagle Outfitters
BNY Mellon Logo
Bender Leadership Academy Logo
Calgon Carbon Logo
Advocate Sponsor
Dollar Bank
NOVA Chemicals
ServiceLink Logo
Friend Sponsor
Epilepsy Association 50 Years Logo
Goodwill Southwestern PA
Geneva College
  • PA Office of Vocational Rehabilitation
    • Pre-employment Transition Services Funding
  • Individual contributions
  • Healthcare; Financial & Technology Start-up Funding
    • Curriculum Sponsorship
  • Charitable Foundations
    • Funds National Expansion
  • Government Grants
    • Apprenticeship Programs
  • Local Businesses & Government Agencies & Labor Unions
    • Mentoring
    • Job Shadowing
    • Work-based Learning
    • Employment
  • Not-for-profit Organizations
    • Mentoring
    • Job Shadowing
    • Work-based Learning
    • Employment
  • Highmark – Health & Wellness
  • Financial Literacy
  • Technology Companies
    • Google – Classroom
    • Microsoft Imagine Academy
  • When We All Vote
  • Disability Organizations
  • Public Libraries
  • School Systems
    • Program Delivery & Student Referrals
  • Not-for-profit Organizations
    • Grants & Collaborations
  • Trade Associations & Labor Unions
    • Network Outreach
The transition from youth to adulthood is challenging for almost every young person and this is particularly true for young people with disabilities. Part of a successful future includes finding and keeping employment. There continues to be a dilemma facing youth with disabilities. In spite of supportive legislation (e.g., the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act) and effective practices, many of these youth continue to experience high unemployment as well as insufficient opportunities to obtain competitive employment with the potential of career growth.
Guideposts for Success, National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability

Ready to Become A Partner?