President Biden nominates nine to U.S. Access Board

Feb. 8, 2022
The board is an independent federal agency and a leading source of information on accessible design.
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President Joe Biden has nominated nine members of the public to be part of the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (U.S. Access Board).

The U.S. Access Board was established in 1973 and is structured as an independent federal agency dedicated to providing access for people with disabilities. The board develops and maintains design criteria for the built environment, transit vehicles, telecommunications equipment and for electronic and information technology. It also provides technical assistance and training on these requirements and on accessible design and continues to enforce accessibility standards that cover federally funded facilities.

The nine nominated to the U.S. Access Board are:

  • Elver Ariza-Silva, who has previously served as vice-chair of the Accessibility Advisory Committee Board of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority;
  • Heather Dowdy, who brings expertise in the development and demonstration of accessible technology in mobile, web and artificial intelligence;
  • Gregory S. Fehribach, who is an incumbent and currently serves as the chair of the U.S. Access Board. He is credited with helping Indianapolis to become one of the top accessible American cities;
  • Dr. Mozhdeh Amelia Hamraie, who is a disabled designer and scholar, with expertise in architectural and digital media accessibility;
  • Hannah Raissa Ibañez, who is an attorney based in the Los Angeles region where she provides legal services to vulnerable residents and has served on several advocacy boards;
  • Alexis Ander Kashar, who is a civil rights attorney, business leader and technologist;
  • KR Liu, whose work has focused on inclusive design and marketing particularly in the area of disability inclusion and LGBTQ rights;
  • Benjamin William Julian Nadolsky, who is principal of a firm specializing in education, accessibility and disability rights; and
  • Madeline Rose Ruvolo, who is a transportation planner on the Accessible Services team at the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency where she specializes in the accessibility of active transportation and emerging mobility projects and programs.

“I am honored that President Biden has reappointed me to the United States Access Board, and I look forward to working with the new appointees from the Biden-Harris team as we serve Americans with Disabilities. I would also like to acknowledge my colleagues who will be leaving the Board and recognize them for their selfless service and time that they have given our country,” said Fehribach. 

The U.S. Access Board is comprised of 12 members from federal departments and 13 members of the public appointed by the president to four-year terms.

More information on the U.S. Access Board is available at

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Group Editorial Director

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine and group editorial director of the Infrastructure and Aviation Group at Endeavor Business Media. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the editorial direction of the group and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.