Jim Parker

Jim Parker retired in 2014 after serving as director of the New Mexico Governor’s Commission on Disability for five years.  GCD is an independent State agency which works to fully integrate New Mexicans with disabilities, of all ages, into successful community living. He also worked four years for the Aging and Long Term Services Department managing a Federal ‘Real Choice, Systems Change’ grant and an additional nine years as a staff member for GCD. Over the past 37 years, he has worked on issues affecting people with disabilities, such as: in-home long-term services; Americans with Disabilities Act; accessible, affordable and available housing; accessible public transportation; assistive technology and disability-related legislation in State and nationally. He worked as the Access Coordinator for the City of El Paso, was a state and national organizer for ADAPT and traveled the country for the disability-rights struggle that utilizes civil disobedience as a tool for change, served as a VISTA Volunteer for the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities, and, began as a newspaper reporter, photographer, columnist and editor in Texas. He also worked at radio stations KUHF (Houston, mid-1960s) and KTEP (El Paso, mid-1980s). He has been living with a spinal cord injury since 1961, following a high school football game.