Rick Boggs (Vitae)
Rick Boggs is best known for his work as an actor/musician, motivational speaker, disability rights advocate, and entrepreneur. His history of providing accessibility services to people with disabilities includes his experience as Director of Described Media at VITAC and his current position as Executive Director at The Accessible Planet. His success as an actor includes over 35 television commercial appearances, roles in multiple films and television shows, and various roles in stage plays. Boggs' voice has been heard in dozens of radio ads, and he co-hosted years of innovative radio programs. His musical performances on stage have featured his original songs and his proficiency as a vocalist, gkeyboardist, guitarist, saxophonist, and drummer. As a motivational speaker, Boggs has addressed tens of thousands of people of all ages across the United States, speaking on topics that include diversity and equal opportunity employment, careers in the arts and media, corporate culture and team building attitudes, and eliminating unintended, negative impacts in support services. As an entrepreneur, he co-created a sports radio program that aired on 23 Dodger Radio network stations, co-founded CatchItCam, the hands-free video system supplier for sports television, and founded We See TV, the company that created employment opportunities for people with disabilities in the field of accessible media production. As an advocate for disability rights, Boggs efforts caused utility bills in Los Angeles County to become available in accessible formats for visually impaired consumers and dramatically improved accessibility and usability of the public transportation system in Los Angeles County.
Rick Boggs believes strongly in community service and serves on various Boards of Directors for nonprofit organizations and volunteers in key positions in advocacy efforts that benefit people with disabilities. he co-produced the Media Access Awards for four consecutive years, at the request of the California Governor's Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities. He currently serves on the Consumer Advisory Board of KCET, the Los Angeles PBS television affiliate. Additionally, Rick Boggs served as co-vice-chair and is a current member of the Tri-Union National Performers with Disabilities Committee (a SAG/AFTRA/Equity advisory entity).
Rick Boggs has received awards and commendations from numerous national organizations and government agencies for his civic leadership and social responsibility in his business. In 1993, he received commendations from the Mayor of Los Angeles, the County of Los Angeles, the California Legislature, and the Governor of California for his work co-creating and operating after school musical theatre programs. He has received awards from National Easter Seals, the American Foundation for the Blind, the California State Board of Guide Dogs, and the California Governor's Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities. In 2003, Rick Boggs was recognized by the American Association of Disabled People (AAPD) as one of America's top 30 emerging leaders.
Mr. Boggs earned an Associate Degree in Music and another in Broadcasting. From 1994 to 1996, he studied History and Ethnomusicology at UCLA.
In the early 1990's Mr. Boggs' efforts to make professional audio recording technology accessible inspired leading developers to make changes to their recording software which opened new employment opportunities for blind audio engineers. In 1992, his musical composition, merged with words from a famous speech by Martin Luther King Jr., took second place in a national competition to commemorate Martin Luther King Day.In 1997, he was commissioned to write a song which was performed for First Lady Hilary Clinton at the Democratic Governor's Conference. In 1998, Rick Boggs produced CD's for a contemporary rock group, Smile Empty Soul, which launched their very successful music career.
In 1999, Rick boggs founded We See TV which is committed to train and employ disabled persons in technical positions. For his work in this area, Rick Boggs received the prestigious California Governor's Trophy at the National Business Leadership Conference in 2003.
Rick became totally blind at age five due to detached retinas caused by ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. He and his three siblings were raised by a single parent in Los Angeles, California where He learned to swim, play Baseball, play basketball, ski, surf, golf, and even skydive!
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