News & Information > News Releases

October 1, 2010
Melanie Mowry Etters
Communications Director
(850) 488-4257

State Recognizes Disability-Friendly Companies

TALLAHASSEE, FL - The state of Florida recognized seven businesses today in Tallahassee for being exceptional employers of people with disabilities. The large celebration at Tallahassee City Hall, 300 South Adams Street, also kicked off October’s Disability Employment Awareness Month.

Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) Director Jim DeBeaugrine, Deputy Director of Blind Services John Clarkson, and Director of Vocational Rehabilitation Bill Palmer handed out the awards today, honoring the businesses for their commitment to hiring people with disabilities. Tallahassee Mayor John Marks welcomed people to the event and spoke about the city’s efforts to have a diverse work force.

The award-winning businesses were:

Governor Charlie Crist said, "I am proud that state government is a leader in providing job shadowing and employment opportunities to persons with disabilities. Floridians with disabilities are an important part of our state's work force, and I encourage Florida's business leaders and employers to learn more about how to better utilize this pool of untapped talent."

APD Director DeBeaugrine said, "I am thrilled to be a part of this exciting recognition event. These employers have shown their commitment to employing people with disabilities, which is a win-win for all. The business gets a dedicated, long-term employee, and the company gets a great return on its investment in that employee."

More information on the winners:

The agency annually serves about 35,000 Floridians with developmental disabilities of mental retardation, autism, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, and Prader-Willi syndrome. For more information on the agency, call 1-866-APD-CAREs or visit