In a moving ceremony, former Chief Executive of DPA Gary Williams (Ngati Porou) was inducted into the Attitude Awards Hall of Fame for his life-long service on behalf of disabled people, on 3 December 2015.
Gary was part of the committee who developed the United Nations Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, between 2002-2006, and part of the delegation who went to the United Nations on behalf of New Zealand to sign the Convention in 2008.
Right now Gary and his wife, Ruth Jones, are Christchurch-based consultants. Gary is active in the governance of various sector-related NGOs. He co-chairs the national leadership group of Enabling Good Lives, chairs Standards and Monitoring Services and sits on the boards of the Barrier Free Trust, Access Ability, Imagine Better, Manawanui in Charge, the Funding and Support Advisory Service and the Earthquake Disability Leadership Group.
Gary thinks that there are many equally important issues facing our complex sector including access, housing, employment, education, poverty and the right to live. He believes the latter will emerge as the most important.
Gary was Chief Executive of DPA from 1999 to 2009 and he remains a DPA life member.