Kara Krause, Executive Vice President, Event Marketing and Communications, E.J. Krause & Associates Inc.
Francesca Cesa Bianchi, Vice President, Institutional Relations, G3ict
Ladies and gentlemen, at this time, please welcome to the stage, from the E.J. Krause & Associates, Ms. Kara Krause!
Kara: (Approaching) good afternoon, and welcome to the eighth annual M-Enabling summit!
My name is Kara Krause, with E.J. Krause & Associates, coorganizer of the M-Enabling summit. Along with G3ict.
And it's my great privilege to welcome each of you here today. It's an exciting time for our team to welcome back returning participants, who have been with us from the very beginning, as well as many new attendees whose background and interests continue to evolve with the technology, and ever-expanding accessibility innovations, and applications.
The M-Enabling summit is an extremely special event for us. The issues that we discuss here today, are not only important, but transformative. This year's conference falls under the theme "accessibility, transforming users' experience." We're excited to be a platform that promotes umpowering technologies and focus on next generation innovations and breakthroughs for users of all abilities, I want to thank everyone here for participating, and making this event a truly unique, and collaborative venue for all stakeholders.
Academia, and experts.
Of course, none of this would be possible without our amazing support from our generous sponsors.
Thank you, to you-all!
I also encourage you to check out the 50 plus exhibitors outside, displaying some exciting new products and services, which integral part of shapeing the industry, again, I hope you have a fabulous next three days now let me turn it over to our colleagues at G3ict!
Good afternoon, everyone, thank you, Kara, thanks to EJK for a terrific organization and teamwork with G3ict, my name is Francesca Bianchi, vice president of the institutional relations for G3ict. I would like to thank all of you for your continued support over the past eight years, and for following us, create a true global hub for innovation, connecting innovators industry advocates social entrepreneurs and government agencies, trying to make our work more accessible.
And thank you, to many of you coming from distant countries.
I in particular, today, I would like to recognize -- to recognize, two special guests who are with us today.
His excellence ambassador Luis Gallegos a permanent representative of Ecuador to the United Nations in New York.
We are fortunate to Gallegos as the chair of the board of directors. He has just chaired. The convention on the rights of persons with disabilities which was held last week at United Nations headquarters in New York, he's accompanied today by Mrs. Maria Soledad, Reyes of Chile, who was appointed by U.N. secretary general Antonio Gutierrez as his special envoy of disability and accessibility.
Francesca: (Continuing) if you are also coming from a country other than the United States -- United States, please stand up, or wave, or make yourself noticeable, please -- join me in welcoming, all our international participants, from more than 26 countries. Including me!
Francesca: I'm already here!
Francesca: (Continuing) thank you, to the International TeleCommunications Union for their support and cooperation, and to the FCC, the Federal Communications Commission, to continue participating with great experts and staging the FCC chairman award for advancement in accessibility at the M-Enabling Summit.
We have a couple of very exciting events during the eighth M-Enabling summit. This year.
I mentioned some. The IAAP fifth anniversary honors recognition events tonight.
The U.S. secretary of transportation Elaine Chao address tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. The FCC chairman Ajit Pai, keynote and awards tomorrow at 4:55 p.m. Our first smartcities for all forum and, of course, our IWAP, our first lifetime advocacy achievement award going to one of our undisclosed community leaders.
We will not mention it, so don't miss it after the FCC awards, closing session with the industry forecast, with Andrew Johnson and the results of your own thoughts, about upcoming accessibility innovation.
You will receive -- or you're about to receive a survey, please take it and let us know your thoughts.
Finally: The 2019 award which will be selected by participants, in 4 categories.
Preparing the summit would not be possible without tremendous support of many friends and colleagues, our program committee; and incredible strong faculty of 170 speakers, panel chairs, our IAWAP colleagues smartcities for all colleagues supporting viviana our program officer and all our volunteers led by Christine Leblois, looking back it is truly amazing to read the agenda of our first time meeting in 2011, when we were debating on how new accessibility features taken for granted today, were just emerging.
What an incredible journey so far. So as we celebrate so much accessibility innovation, our program committee chose to focus this year, on the summit on accessibility, transforming user experience.
Exploring the considerable changes that are occurring in our -- people -- in how people use accessible technologies to communicate, play, socialize, learn, or work.