Garrett Brumfield is from Roanoke, Virginia. He is no stranger to facing and overcoming obstacles. Having been three months premature with a grade IV brain bleed, which resulted in his Cerebral Palsy, he's been overcoming those obstacles since day one. While Cerebral Palsy has always limited his mobility, growing up he never let that stop him from being like his able-bodied peers - as evident by his attendance in regular classes in school, playing basketball on a traditional recreational team in middle school, and even learning to drive by the time he was 17. He graduated with honors from Radford University in 2012 with a degree in Media Studies. He joined The Delta Chi Fraternity and began studying radio and television - which lead him to working at the campus radio station. Garrett more recently founded the motivational movement Overcome Yours in January 2014. Through this movement, he strives to empower individuals to overcome whatever obstacles they may be facing by sharing his story and the stories of others who've overcame seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Garrett has been named a Brand Ambassador to The Abilities Expo, a board member for Virginia’s State Rehabilitation Council and The Blue Ridge Independent Living Council, and a “Big” in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. In his free time he enjoys working out, attending festivals and spending time with friends and family.
Laura Wimmer, Board Chair
Jon Weems, Member
Jon is a singer/songwriter/motivational speaker. He has been playing music most of his life. Jon sustained a spinal cord injury in 1992 in a diving accident and learned to play music one note at a time using a typing stick. He has performed at festivals, galas, benefits and churches over the years and really encourages people not to give up on what they enjoy. He is currently employed at Blue Ridge Independent Living Center where he helps people with disabilities get the home modifications and skills they need to live as independently as possible.
Ross C. Hart, Board Vice-Chair
Emily is from Snowville, VA and currently resides in Radford, VA. Upon graduation from Pulaski County High School
in 1995, Emily obtained her Bachelor of Science Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from Radford University in May of 2000. After graduating from college Emily taught Kindergarten, Second Grade, Third Grade, Fourth Grade, and High School Special Education. Emily retired from teaching after 10 years and has since become an active supporter of the Ms. Wheelchair Virginia Program, since being crowned "Ms. Wheelchair Virginia 2011-12." Her Titleholder Platform was “Educating Our Future on How There is Ability in DisABILITY” and her Motto of Inspiration was “There is ability in disability”. Emily completed her reign as Ms. Wheelchair Virginia and attended the Ms. Wheelchair America competition in Grand Rapids, Michigan while advocating to be a voice for those with disabilities. Emily lives with her boyfriend Ken and together they have two Walker Coon Hounds and five cats that keep them entertained and provide a bright spot in their lives. In addition to Ken, Emily has a “village” of supporters who make it possible for her to live independently and be active within her community.
Emily McGrail, State Coordinator
ROSS C. HART with Hart Attorneys, LTD. in Salem, Virginia, is a third generation lawyer following his grandfather and father in the Roanoke Valley. He concentrates his practice in estate planning/administration, special needs planning, adult guardianship and elder law. He also has significant experience in real estate matters and landlord tenant law. Mr. Hart was appointed by Gov. Baliles as the first Citizen member of the Virginia Board of Medicine where he served for nine years. He is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and a board member of its Virginia chapter. He is also a member of the board of directors for the Legal Aid Society of the Roanoke Valley. Mr. Hart received his B.A. from Monmouth College, Illinois, in 1973 and his J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1976. Ross is known to speak plainly and somewhat unconventionally. He occasionally writes on his blog, “Rossiferous” a name coined by his wife which reflects his speaking style.
Laura worked as a health educator for over 25 years. Her background includes a BA in History and Masters of Library Science from Kent State University. After positions in an engineering library and medical library, she began her career in health education at the American Lung Association where she spent 7 ½ years. She went on to the American Cancer Society, the Arthritis Foundation and most recently worked with a grant from the CDC (Centers for Disease Prevention and Control) in heart attack and stroke prevention through the Virginia Department of Health. She and her husband now own a local business providing appliance repair to the major metro Richmond area. Laura’s other volunteer activities include Ms. Wheelchair Virginia, the Alzheimer’s Association, Women’s Health Virginia and the Henrico Pops Chorus and the Good Vibrations Chorus.
Garrett Brumfield, Member