Judy Brewer is the Director of the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) at the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), where she works with an expert team of accessibility specialists, and a broad and vibrant web accessibility community. Since 1997, WAI has developed key accessibility standards, including the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG), User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG), and Accessible Rich Internet Applications (WAI-ARIA). Judy has helped drive accessibility standardization for W3C internationally, promoting awareness and implementation of Web accessibility, and promoting effective dialog among industry, the disability community, accessibility researchers, and governments on the development of consensus-based accessibility solutions. Judy Brewer’s leadership, coordination and advocacy in the development of accessible computing has been vital.

WCAG, first issued in 1999, updated in 2008, and most recently in June 2018, has influenced accessibility policy around the world, leading to more accessible websites for millions of people with disabilities, including people who are blind or low vision, Deaf or hard-of hearing, people with motor and dexterity limitations, and cognitive and neurological disabilities. Most governments around the world that have requirements for digital accessibility cite W3C’s WCAG. It has been adopted as an ISO standard (ISO/IEC 40500:2012), incorporated as a part of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act in the United States, and in the European Norm (EN) 301-549 (Mandate 376) which requires accessible technology procurement and development in all European Union countries. WCAG has officially been translated into 16 languages, and multiple other unofficial translations exist.

Judy is a Principal Research Scientist at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). Prior to joining W3C, Judy worked on several US-based initiatives to increase access to mainstream technology for people with disabilities, and to improve dialog between industry and the disability community. These initiatives included early work on Section 508; Section 255 of the Telecommunications Act; accessibility of the Windows 95 Operating System, and access to durable medical equipment for people with disabilities. Judy has a background in management, technical writing, education, applied linguistics, disability advocacy, and biotechnology. Judy is a tireless advocate, and has impacted technology and human rights policy around the world.