SOURCE: National Mobility Equipment Dealers Associations

National Mobility Equipment Dealers Associations

May 03, 2016 11:17 ET

Online Voting Begins Today for NMEDA's Local Heroes Contest

May Is National Mobility Awareness Month; Three Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles to Be Awarded in 2016 Contest

TAMPA, FL--(Marketwired - May 03, 2016) - Online voting begins today for The National Mobility Equipment Dealers Associations (NMEDA) "Local Heroes" contest in which three deserving individuals will be awarded a wheelchair accessible vehicle tailored to their needs. May is National Mobility Awareness Month, and marks the fifth year for its highly anticipated and successful annual contest.

The awareness movement and campaign designed to educate seniors, veterans, caregivers and people with disabilities about wheelchair accessible vehicles and adaptive mobility equipment options that enable them to live an active and mobile life, and have touched the lives of more than 10 million people across the United States and Canada through the Local Heroes Contest in the last four years. There are 18 million people living with disabilities in the U.S. and Canada making them the largest minority group. Major Sponsors providing the vehicles for the 2016 contest are FCA US LLCToyota Mobility and Valley Honda Dealers that will be customized by NMEDA Members BraunAbility and Vantage Mobility International (VMI) and ElDorado Mobility.

"It is rewarding to work on such an important project each year that literally changes the lives of people with inspirational life stories that demonstrate Life Moving Forward. It is their contributions and triumphs we recognize and celebrate through the Local Heroes contest," said Dave Hubbard, Executive Director and CEO of NMEDA. "We encourage caregivers, friends and family members to submit written or video stories of how they are triumphing over their mobility challenges and positively impacting the lives of the people around them," said Hubbard. Story submissions and votes can made by visiting Submission and votes will be accepted through May 31st. Winners for 2016 will be announced in mid June immediately following National Mobility Awareness Month in May.

In 2015, 914 entries received more than 1.3 million votes from across the country that resulted in four deserving Local Heroes in Oakley, California, Holland, Michigan, Derry, Pennsylvania and Emeryville, California, being awarded fully customized wheelchair accessible vehicles, and an additional two dozen Local Heroes contestants whose communities rallied to provide them with vehicles when they learned they had not been a contest winner through NMEDA.

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, contact Cheryl Parker at The 2016 National Mobility Awareness Month is supported by prominent spokespersons and advocates for those with disabilities, Mike Savicki and Chad Blake.

Mike Savicki Biography
NMEDA selected Mike Savicki as a spokesperson for National Mobility Awareness Month for a fifth year. Savicki is a 48-year old, C6, 7 quadriplegic, who is a Navy veteran, multi-sport athlete, passionate advocate and small business entrepreneur. He is a five-time Quad Division champion (and 18 time finisher) of the BAA Boston Marathon and, in 24 years of competition, has earned 85 gold medals in the National Wheelchair Veterans Games where he is also the 2013 Spirit of the Games award winner. He is also a husband and a dad to a beautiful young pre-school girl. Living more than half his life with a disability has not stopped him from achieving his goals. A self-proclaimed "car guy" with a love of antiques and classics, He drives a wheelchair accessible vehicle purchased from a NMEDA dealer. His personal website is

Chad Blake Biography
Chad Blake, Board of Directors President, NMEDA
Ability Center, San Diego CA
Chad Blake has been in the mobility solutions industry for more than a decade having started his career in Phoenix where he served as the Chair of the Phoenix Mayor's Commission on Disability Issues. He now serves as the President of the NMEDA Board of Directors and leads corporate sales for Ability Center in San Diego, California. Prior to his career in mobility solutions, Blake was a college soccer coach for six seasons at the NCAA D-2 and NAIA level, where he learned the fundamental importance of teamwork. He incorporates that teamwork philosophy in building successful work-place teams that provide exemplary service. He can discuss the safety significance of trusting your mobility solutions with a QAP certified provider.

About National Mobility Awareness Month: May is National Mobility Awareness Month and is the annual celebration that encourages seniors, veterans, caregivers and people with disabilities to enjoy active, mobile lifestyles. Founded in 1989 as a not-for-profit trade association, the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA) supports the awareness month with the assistance of approximately 600 mobility equipment dealers, manufacturers and driver rehabilitation specialists located in the United States and Canada dedicated to expanding opportunities for people with disabilities. For updates, please visit, as well as Facebook, Twitter (@NMEDAcom) and Pinterest.

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