Northwest Association for Blind Athletes (NWABA)—headquartered in Vancouver, WA—welcomed its first Idaho Program Manager, Sam Picciano, as the organization expands programming across the state. Picciano will oversee and lead program and service delivery in the state of Idaho helping NWABA increase its footprint with the goal of providing life-changing opportunities to individuals who are blind and visually impaired.
Picciano holds a M.S. in Visual Disabilities Education from Florida State University, is a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist via the Academy of Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals (COMS) and has Certification as a Teacher of the Visually Impaired (CTVI).
“I am most excited to bring blindness sensitivity training and blindness awareness to Idaho. With blindness being the lowest incidence disability, there are few organizations specifically creating, maintaining, and scaling quality programming catered to the blindness population. Explicitly targeting sports and physical activity is poignant, as our programs fracture the stereotype of blind individuals leading sedentary lifestyles. However, our programming is not solely focused on being active; our programs champion bold and independent strides, foster community, and empower all who engage, to reach higher. I truly regard and embody NWABA’s mission of providing life-changing opportunities and look forward to continuing to develop the quality of NWABA’s programming and to bolster community commitment as I carry my diverse skillset into Idaho.” – Sam Picciano, Program Manager, Idaho
“With deep experience in blindness, program delivery, and leadership, Sam and her team will truly take our programs across the state to a new level. I look forward to working with her in the years ahead to grow our impact and serve every individual who is blind in Idaho who needs NWABA’s programs and services.” – Billy Henry, Founder, President & CEO
Sam will lead a team of two other program specialists based in NWABA’s new Idaho office in Boise—located at 1444 S. Entertainment Way, Suite 201—to expand and enhance programs and services across Idaho to improve the quality of life for more children, youth, and adults who are blind or visually impaired.
The mission of Northwest Association for Blind Athletes (NWABA) is to provide life-changing opportunities through sports and physical activity to individuals who are blind and visually impaired. A group of students who were visually impaired formed the association in 2007 to ensure that people who are blind were participating in sports and physical activity. Today, NWABA is a rapidly expanding 501(c)(3) charitable organization that provides more than 1,900 children, youth, adults and military veterans with visual impairments tailored programming which improves self-confidence and self-esteem, promotes independence, creates an inclusive community of supporters, and builds the skills necessary to succeed in all areas of life including school and employment.