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August 2, 2018 40 Under Forty 2018

Nicole Feeney

Photo | J. Fiereck Photography

Age: 38

Company: The NEAT Center at Oak Hill

Title: Director of AT Services

No. of years with current company: 9

Town where I live: West Hartford

Town where I work: Hartford

College: Southern CT State University

Highest degree: Master's degree in special education

Nicole Feeney oversees the provision of technology to individuals with disabilities of all ages through The NEAT Center's innovative services. She leads a team of skilled professionals conducting assessments and trainings across the continuum of assistive technology. Presenting at local and national conferences offers her the opportunity to promote community awareness and share unique and powerful benefits in using technology to support education, employment, independent living and community needs.

What's been the biggest professional accomplishment so far in your career?

I led a collaborative team through an assessment for a student transitioning out of high school. This student has Cerebral Palsy, which impacts his mobility, physical abilities and communication. He is a bright and determined young man seeking independence at home and opportunities for employment. We determined several recommendations in augmentative alternative communication, assistive technology and smart home solutions that can empower his independence and give peace of mind to his family.

How are you involved in the community?

I'm passionate about participating in events that bring awareness to services for individuals with disabilities and their families. I encourage my colleagues and my family to partake in events organized by the Miracle League of CT, Chapter 126 Sports & Fitness, Autism Speaks, Walk for MS, and Johnny's Jog.

Give an example of a people-skills habit you adhere to in your work and daily life that you feel has helped you succeed.

I truly believe that every person, no matter age, race or ability, can have a great impact in our community and world if their strengths, skills and unique qualities are what we focus on and treasure. I try my best to treat everyone I meet with this expectation.

What do you hope Greater Hartford will be like in 10 years?

As a Yard Goats fan, I am thrilled to attend baseball games in the city of Hartford. I would love to see the area around the stadium with unique storefronts and family restaurants that we can spend time in before and after the games.

Four reasons why you deserve to be a 40 Under Forty:

• Nurtures a team of professionals within disability services so they can empower people to meet their unique goals.

• Recipient of the Family Champion Award.

• Happiest when I can spread awareness about the potential impact that technology can have for people of all ages and abilities.

• Strength in foreseeing new developments in technology that can break barriers for individuals with disabilities and create innovative changes.

Fun Fact 

I scored 1,000 points on my high school basketball team.

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