A Hello from Joe

By , September 8, 2011

I’m really happy to be a part of the Hire Learning blog. Think Beyond the Label asked me to participate based on my unique experience with disability policy in both a personal and professional capacity.

I experienced disability at the age of 16 after a sports-related spinal cord injury and realized early on the limitations of private insurance in regards to the need for access to long-term care coverage. This was a crash course in healthcare and public policy, which initiated my interest in a career in policy.

After receiving my master’s degree I began working at the Veterans Administration in Madison, WI, providing counsel around substance abuse and mental health. I then spent five years as a benefits specialist and employment consultant for ERI, Inc., which gave me a much-needed foundation of knowledge around the current status of public policy, particularly regarding disability and employment systems.

Since that time I have worked as a policy analyst for various employers including the University of Wisconsin, the state of Wisconsin and several national private businesses. At HDA, I work with/on everything from healthcare and employment policy to resource mapping and informatics.

My experience and background has let me view the world of employment and public policy through a global lens as someone who has utilized the services/support innovations and as someone who helps develop, analyze and implement policy. I certainly understand the ideas, issues and disconnects from both the world of business and the world of disability. It is this disconnect that fuels my desire to see a more cohesive connection between the two.

I look forward to sharing my thoughts and ideas around disability employment policy from the perspective of businesses, policymakers and the disability community alike.

Author: Joe Entwisle

Joe Entwisle is a policy analyst for Health & Disability Advocates in the areas of healthcare, employment and work incentives. He has worked as a policy analyst for the state of Wisconsin, the University of Wisconsin and several private businesses. As an individual with a disability, Joe shares the unique insights of the public and private systems he works with. He also starred in one of Think Beyond the Label’s national T.V. ads in 2010, appearing as a potential job candidate with a disability.