Conference Presentations and Talks

What Letter Are You? An Alphabet of Accessibility Issues

IA Summit Announcement card for March 25 2018 talk


  • Workshop at Vertex (2021)
  • Button (2020)
  • Workshop at World IA Day Pittsburgh (2019)
  • Accessibility talk for Drexel (Slides – PDF)
  • Internal accessibility conference at Vox Media
  • Global Accessibility Awareness Day internally at Boomi (2019)
  • EdUI Conference (October, 2018) – Slides(86ish mb, pdf)
  • IA Summit (March, 2018) — Slides (86mb, pdf)
  • World IA Day Philadelphia (February, 2018).
  • Internal presentations at Vertex (2021).
  • Internal presentations at Bill (2023).
  • Society for Technical Communication, Philadelphia chapter (February 2023)


Every one of us needs the internet to be accessible. Our needs may not surface today, but they will in the future. Do we know enough about what accessibility needs look like — beyond the stereotypes of people with disabilities that we’re all too aware of? And how do we get from “I know my site has problems” to “I know how to approach them?”

This talk, based on Anne’s 2014 articles “An Alphabet of Accessibility Issues” and “Reframing Accessibility for the Web,” will frame accessibility through the lens of 26 people who need accessibility considerations.

What You’ll Learn

  • Four broad categories of accessibility needs that we must be aware of: visual, auditory, physical, and cognitive and neurological
  • Twenty-six people who need us to design accessibly. Some of them you’ll recognize as being disabled, and some of them may come as a surprise
  • An approach for designing accessibly by concentrating on the functional changes we can bring to our project work
  • Emphasis on keyboard use, images, and forms

Attendees will learn about accessibility issues, both common and surprising, and leave with a framework for approaching accessibility problems based on what websites need to do instead of based on what people can’t do.

Decide to Give a Damn: An Alphabet of Accessibility



For a long time we’ve talked about how we need to design accessibly for people with disabilities. We’ve also assumed that everyone in our industry knows who “people with disabilities” are. It turns out that “people with disabilities” is a much wider field than “that totally blind guy and that totally deaf guy.” Ableism —discrimination and social prejudice against people with disabilities— tends to limit our knowledge and understanding of the very disabilities we need to design and develop for.

This talk, based on Anne’s 2014 article “An Alphabet of Accessibility Issues” and a short talk called “Your Ableism is Showing,” will frame accessibility through the lens of 26 people who need accessibility considerations. It will also call out how we can defeat ableism in design and development.

What you’ll learn

  • 26 examples of people with disabilities, some of which you will recognize and some of which may surprise you
  • Examples of ableism in our industry and ways we can work against it
  • A deeper understanding of who we’re serving and their visual, auditory, cognitive, and motor needs

Systems, tools, and scale: a roundtable about content strategy and design


  • Online, Content Strategy DC (May 22, 2024)


This roundtable included a number of speakers discussing multiple problems with design systems and content strategy. My specific section was about the fact that design systems documentation tools are subpar at content strategy compared to simple and easily available tools such as WordPress, Confluence, and Sharepoint.

  • Slides (Mine are slides 10-22)