The leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome.

National Down Syndrome Society
8 E 41st Street, 8th Floor
New York New York 10017
[email protected] 

2017 Registration, Hotel & Schedule

Conference Logo



Cost and Registration 

Registration for the #DSWORKS® Employment Conference is now open. Click here to register today! The registration deadline is Monday, March 27, 2017.

The cost for the #DSWORKS® Employment Conference is $30 per person. 

The cost for the Buddy Walk® on Washington, held on April 4-5, 2017, is $50 (ages 5 and under are free). 

Those who register for both the #DSWORKS® Employment Conference and the Buddy Walk® on Washington may receive a $10 discount; upon registering for either conference, registrants will receive a confirmation email that contains an offer code to use when registering for the other conference to save $10 per person.

Hotel Information

The 2017 #DSWORKS® Employment Conference and Buddy Walk® on Washington will be held at the Westin Arlington Gateway Hotel, 801 North Glebe Road, Arlington, Virginia 22203.

Update on February 27, 2017: The NDSS room block at $239 per night at the Westin Arlington Gateway is sold out, but there may be rooms available at a higher rate. To check, call 888-627-7076 and mention "NDSS". Alternatively, we have arranged for a room block at another hotel within walking distance of the Westin:

  • Holiday Inn Arlington at Ballston, 4610 Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA. $239 per night. To reserve a room at the Holiday Inn, click here or call 866-876-4238 and mention "NDSS overflow". The deadline to reserve a room at the Holiday Inn is 5:00 PM Eastern time on March 17, 2017.


The #DSWORKS® Employment Conference is scheduled for April 3, 2017, from 1:00 – 6:00 PM ET, followed by the NDSS Buddy Walk® on Washington on April 4-5, 2017. Both events will be held at the Westin Arlington Gateway Hotel, 801 N Glebe Road, Arlington, VA. (For a map of the meeting rooms at the hotel, please follow this link and scroll to the second page.)

12:30 – 1:00 PM –


1:00 – 1:25 PM – 

Welcoming Remarks

Sara Hart Weir, President, NDSS

Ashley DeRamus, Co-Founder of Ashley DeRamus Foundation

1:25 - 1:40 PM - 

Voya Financial Presentation

Jessica Tuman, Head of Center of Excellence, Voya Financial

1:40 - 2:05 PM – 

Keynote: The Case for Hiring People with Disabilities

Amy Wright, Owner, Beau & Bitty's Coffee

Ben Wright, Board Member, NDSS

2:05 – 2:20 PM – 

David Egan's Employment Success Story

David Egan, Public Policy Fellow, Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Foundation

2:20 – 2:35 PM –

Snack & Break

2:35 - 4:00 PM –

Parent and Caregiver Track: 

Postsecondary Programs Lead To Positive Employment Outcomes

Dr. Beth Myers, Taishoff Center for Inclusive Higher Education, Syracuse University 

Self-Advocate Track: 

Hire Me! Selling Yourself With Your Resume

Adrian Forsythe Korzeniewicz, Advocacy Program Assistant, NDSS

Karen Leggett, Journalist and Writer

Nadia Abouraya, Graduate, Montgomery County Public School

Nicolette Stearns, Director of Leadership Programs, ArtStream Inc.


Stand Up For Downs Presents... Project Spotlight: Becoming An Improvisation Ninja!

Rob Snow, Founder/Dad/Occassional Comic, Stand Up for Downs

4:00 – 4:10 PM –


4:10 – 5:30 PM – 

Preparing For The Transition To Independence Panel: From Home To The Workplace 

David Egan, Public Policy Fellow, Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Foundation

Dr. Kathleen Egan, Retired Government Executive

Adrian Forsythe Korzeniewicz, Advocacy Program Assistant, NDSS

Dr. Roberto Patricio Korzeniewicz, Professor and Chair of Sociology Department, University of Maryland

Blake Pyron, Owner, Blake's Snow Shack

Mary Ann Pyron, Senior Branch Manager, City Credit Union

AnnaRose Rubright, College Student, Rowan College

Lin Rubright, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Anna Foundation For Inclusive Education

Panel Moderator: Kandi Pickard, Chief of Staff, NDSS

5:30 – 6:00 PM –

Concluding Remarks

Travis Akins, Executive Director, Growth Through Opportunity

Tyler Caldwell, Cadet, Growth Through Opportunity

Schedule is subject to change*


For more information, please email NDSS at [email protected].

  • Buddy Walk
  • NDSS Yourway
  • NDSS DS-Ambassadors