2021 Focus Award Recipient - Retiree

Dean Brusnighan

Dean Brusnighan joined Purdue in 1990 and recently retired, at the end of 2020. While at Purdue, he held many positions in the area of Information Technology Accessibility. When Dean started at Purdue, he worked with Breaking New Ground, a program that assists disabled farmers, ranchers, and agricultural workers with disabilities, and, during his time at Purdue, Dean continued his work with Breaking New Ground for many years.

Throughout his time at Purdue, Mr. Brusnighan worked on numerous accessibility projects and made lasting impacts across campus. He improved the accessibility of PDF and Word documents and worked tirelessly to design classes with accessibility in mind. He also conducted numerous, important trainings, teaching faculty and staff about IT accessibility so classes and content could be more accessible. Dean helped bring life to the systems utilized at Purdue through the use of captioning.

Mr. Brusnighan was also part of The Purdue Universal Access Initiative, a volunteer group that presented on and answered questions related to electronic accessibility. He was involved with EPICS, a program in which teams of students partner with local and global community organizations to address human, community, and environmental needs. Mr. Brusnighan also chaired the committee responsible for the Web Accessibility Policy that passed in 2009. Dean was also a longstanding member of Purdue’s ADA People and Technology (“ADAPT”) committee, which will be forever grateful to Dean for his contribution, hard works, and dedication to accessibility at Purdue.

Dean has made a career out of helping every student succeed by always working to ensure Purdue’s programs, documents, graphics, and materials were accessible to all.