The JJs List Blog

People With Disabilities Make Great Entrepreneurs!

Posted by on March 31, 2016 - 6 Comments

Some say that entrepreneurs think about the world differently from other people. Well that’s certainly true of those of us who have disabilities!

People who don’t have disabilities often take life’s simple activities for granted – getting dressed, walking down the street, understanding an email – until they no longer have access to it. When you have a disability, you rely on outside-the-box thinking in order to facilitate access to just about everything. And guess what? It makes people with disabilities natural entrepreneurial thinkers and leaders who can – and should – change the world.Entrepreneur Name Tag Business Owner New Startup Company

There is a cool program for people with disabilities that can help you put your entrepreneurial skills into action. It’s called the Chicagoland Entrepreneurship Education for People with Disabilities and it’s happening at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Anybody with an idea and the motivation to turn that idea into a business can go and leverage the resources available through their Small Business Development Center. Staff will offer feedback on your initial idea, then give you actionable steps and goals to work toward. And, they will meet with you regularly to help you achieve those goals.

Once you have a marketable idea or product, their team and will help you promote and market your idea. We’ll provide you with ways to tell your own story from a position of achievement and empowerment.

We have disabilities. We have a voice that is as entrepreneurial as anybody else’s out there. So, communicate your idea, get help to put it into action, and always remember, It takes two people to have a conversation – someone to tell an idea and someone to critique the idea until it’s ready to generate revenue.

It’s a complicated entrepreneurial world out there and it takes a very unique type of person to make it as an entrepreneur. You can be that person!

UPDATE:  The CEED website is now live and you can reach them at @CEED_UIC!


BenheadshotBenjamin Lachman is the Business and Community Engagement Coordinator for



Coralie says:
Aug 06, 2015

Nice write up! It frustrates me to know end when I hear oh, I cant do that I am disabled…. HELLO I am too and working my bum off, you can too 🙂

Cassandra says:
Aug 10, 2015

I am interested. Can I get involved from home. I have transportation boundaries until I learn how to scoot down the stairs or get a stair chair and ramp.

JJ Hanley says:
Aug 17, 2015

You can get involved from wherever you are, as long as you have a mode of communications and an idea. Good luck!

matthew lachapelle says:
Aug 11, 2015

it will help me when working two jobs would be hard

Jon Rose says:
Aug 02, 2017

After becoming disabled, I started my own ADA consulting company in California by learning the state and federal accessibility laws and regulations.

I say, take your challenges and and use them to the best of your ability and create your own company. The opportunities are out there.

As a licensed Access Specialist in California, Texas and Minnesota, If you have any ADA questions, please do not hesitate to email me at

Stephanie says:
Oct 08, 2017

I designed a blanket for my grandson to wear in his car seat. we had them produced and was selling them at a children’s resale when a mom and her child in a wheel chair came up. She was so excited, the Bear Hug Blanket works great with a wheel chair. The back is open so it slips over the head and covers the shoulders.
Trying to get the word out.

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