It is hard to believe it has been 25 years since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This nation has come a long way since the passing of this historic civil rights act. Before the ADA, I heard stories of individuals who had to crawl on their hands and knees to go up a flight of stairs at a school or a court house, who couldn’t ride a bus because there wasn’t a lift and individuals couldn’t attend a baseball game with their own family due to inaccessibility at the ball park. Millions of Americans were denied access to their own communities – and because of that they were denied access to the American dream.
I saw this denial firsthand in the life of my older brother Frank, who was deaf. He was the inspiration for my sponsoring the ADA, and for my lifelong work on disability rights. We’ve come so far as a country since passage of the ADA. However, the work is far from over. We must continue the fight for policies that will make the goals of the ADA a reality: equal opportunity, full participation, independent living and economic self-sufficiency for people with disabilities and their families.
While books, buildings, and baseball stadiums may be far more accessible to people with disabilities than they were before the passage of the ADA, one area stands as a disappointment to me: employment. We have barely seen any increase in employment of people with disabilities since 1990 despite what every survey and study says – that people with disabilities want the benefits, dignity and power of work.
But I have hope we can build a better future for those who want and can work. Over the past year we’ve seen some improvements in disability employment with almost 400,000 workers with disabilities entering the workforce in the past year. We are also seeing dedicated businesses commit to making their workplaces accessible and to hiring people with disabilities. Walgreens, Microsoft, Wells Fargo and many other companies are making great strides in hiring, retaining and promoting people with disabilities.
We have seen some good news from government, too. Five years ago, on the 20th anniversary of the passage of the ADA, the president issued an executive order with the goal to hire 100,000 new employees in the federal government over five years. That goal is very close to being met. In another executive order issued in 2014, the president raised the pay of employees on federal contracts, including those with disabilities, to $10.10 an hour. In 2013, the office responsible for all federal contracts established a goal that seven percent of the workforce of federal contractors be people with disabilities. And at the state level, in 2013, Gov. Markell of Delaware made increasing disability employment the goal of the National Governors Association.
These efforts make me hopeful that we are beginning to address the challenge of un- and underemployment of people with disabilities.
Twenty-five years ago the passage of the ADA affirmed the foundation of civil rights for people with disabilities. We have been building an accessible society on that foundation for the past two and a half decades. Like any other foundation, it is what is built on top of it that is important in our daily lives. The civil rights ensured by the ADA can only be guaranteed if we are vigilant about protecting them. As we move forward into the next quarter century of the ADA, let’s all pledge to protect those rights in all parts of our lives. Onward!
Tom Harkin is a former U.S. senator from Iowa. Tom’s signature legislative achievement was the Americans with Disabilities Act. To preserve the intent of the ADA after several court rulings weakened its standards, Tom and Sen. Orrin Hatch introduced the ADA Amendments bill to ensure continuing protections from discrimination for all Americans with disabilities. It was signed into law in September 2008. For more info
CMI-VETERANS DAY PROMOTION
As CMI enters its 34th year of service to business, on this eve of the U.S. celebration of Veterans Day, we would like to take this opportunity to thank all the Veterans who have served our country. You served admirably, now let us serve you.
Since moving to our new office on 23rd Street, we see our Vets on the NYC Metrobus on their way to and from the VA NY Harbor Healthcare System Manhattan Campus on 23rd and First Avenue in New York City. We salute them for their bravery and commitment.
But we’re going to take one marching step further than a salute, by offering to all veterans who become first-time customers, a 23% rebate on CMI basic web design services this month up to November 23, 2014. Register now.
Vets, you may have a web site that you need to be set up and launched, an ecommerce opportunity you have been hoping would take you to the next level of income after your service. You must take advantage of this offer and execute a signed agreement before the 23rd to be eligible for this one-time offer.
Veterans must submit proof of their current U.S. veteran status. Register now.
CORNING MUSEUM of GLASS UNVEILS INTERNATIONAL MOTORCOACH ENTRANCE
CMI designed the exterior signs and large-scale maps that orient visitors and encourage travel throughout upstate New York. QRCodes and video monitors are embedded in the Discover New York State wall to encourage visitors to explore more. MORE IMAGES ON CMI FB PAGE
CMI DESIGNS MUSEUM CASE LABELS WITH TOUCHSCREEN TECHNOLOGY
The latest exhibit at The Rockwell Museum features more than 100 pieces of top-quality southwest pottery from the Nancy and Alan Cameros Collection. The new exhibit, prominently displayed in custom, purpose-built mahogany casework, is a special collaboration that builds on the decade-long relationship between The Rockwell Museum and the Cameros family.
CMI streamlined the visitor experience by making object labels available in digital format at the point of interpretation and on user devices enabling easy access and an uncluttered view of this extraordinary collection.
"We are focused on providing information in a user-friendly way to our guests. This sleek and contemporary software application provides a platform for The Rockwell to be innovative and creative while enhancing the visitor experience," says Kristin Swain, Executive Director of The Rockwell Museum, Corning NY.
MASSIMO VIGNELLI GAVE ME DESIGN WINGS
We are sorry to hear that Massimo Vignelli died on May 27, 2014 in his Manhattan home. He was an inspiration to design practitioners and students of design around the world. To a certain designer, he was the driving force behind the notion that "I can design anything" based on a disciplined, appropriate problem solving approach with a little ambiguity that distinguishes the design to make it more memorable.
Massimo, you are now with the Great Designer in paradise. More on Massimohttps://segd.org/massimo-vignelli-you-can-design-everything
CMI is proud to congratulate the New-York Historical Society and the BlackFives Foundation on producing the first-ever comprehensive museum exhibition on the Black Fives Era of basketball.
TUESDAY 21 JANUARY 2014
AIGA TURNS 100 TODAY
One hundred years ago today at the National Arts Club in New York City, the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) began as the preeminent professional association for design. Since then, the organization has grown from 40 founders into 25,000 members, and evolved into a national resource and creative community for a variety of disciplines. AIGA will be celebrating this milestone throughout 2014 with special programs, events and initiatives. CMI is proud to have been among the attendees at the first national conference (Boston) in 1984.
CMI CEO ATTENDS OMAN ROADSHOW
CEO Crystal McKenzie attends The OMAN Business Road Show at the world-famous Waldorf Astoria Hotel, NY. There, she made connections with leaders of this emerging market that want to court NY-based businesses to leverage intellectual insight into marketing for the Sultentate of Oman. See Video
CMI TO LUNCH WITH SUBJECT MATTER EXPERTS
Brian Jones, COO / Creative Director, will enjoy the dining fare with Gotham Networking's Expert Witness Group in a year-end wrap-up luncheon discussing web design for Expert Witnesses on Monday, December 10, 2012 from 12:15-2:00 pm at Fabio Piccolo Fiore Restaurant (230 E.44th between 2nd and 3rd Ave.).
Gerald Goldhaber, chair of the experts group says, "They are the company that recently overhauled my own company's web site (www.goldhaber.com) and will be making an interactive presentation to us about key points we need to consider with regards to our web sites."
CMI ENGAGED TO OPTIMIZE SEARCH RANKINGS FOR HEALTHCARE INFORMATION WEB SITE
CMI is in the process of helping HealthPower for Minorities (HPFM) increase traffic and market-share in the broader health community and the target markets it serves.
HPFM is committed to improving the health of multicultural/racial and ethnic minority populations. This national web site is identified by Google as the leading source of "health information for minorities," and the second leading source of "minority health information" (led only by the U.S. Office of Minority Health).
CMI DEVELOPS REAL ESTATE WEB SITE
CMI developed this subject matter expert web site to increase sales and project acquisition for a real estate company. CMI applied key characteristics of successful, high-traffic web sites to ensure maximum traffic and visitor engagement, to communicate an “open-for-business” look and feel, including a call-to-action and blog; and, to foster customer loyalty and be distinguished in the real estate market through a professionally organized site. CMI used a Content Management System (CMS) that enables the client to make content changes to their site.
The Meranth Company is an advisor and consultant to the real estate development and investment industry, specializing in project development and strategic planning solutions for developers, investors, organizations and projects in Florida, Texas, Illinois, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, California, Ohio, Canada and The Bahamas.
CMI WELCOMES TIFFANY&CO. TO THE FLATIRON DISTRICT
Tiffany&Co. was moving its headquarters, previously located on Fifth Avenue uptown, to the trendy Flatiron District at 200 Fifth Avenue during the month of June 2011. To welcome the employees of Tiffany&Co. and make them feel at home in their new neighborhood, Crystal McKenzie Inc. (CMI) started a promotional raffle to give each of the 600 employees the chance to win one of 10 copies of Alice Sparberg Alexiou’s book "The Flatiron: The New York Landmark and the Incomparable City that Arose With it." CMI designed the Alexiou website that currently promotes her book and blog.
CMI created an online flyer to put in the Tiffany&Co. intranet where employees, upon settling into their new office, could click on a link that would take them to a landing page for participation in the raffle. The winners will be announced mid-July.
CMI HELPS BRAND IT ACQUISITION
The integration of System One and Link2Consult required precision timing and quick turnaround to launch the acquisition of Link2Consult by System One on Feb.16, 2011. CMI was responsible for integrating the new L2C tagline: "A Systems One Holding Company" into the L2C logo on Link2Consult’s web-based, hosted platform interface designed in 2009 by CMI. L2C founder Peter McCree will remain in the role of President of Link2Consult. “The alignment with System One represents a direct channel to expand Link2Consult’s reach,” said McCree.
November 9, 2010, Brian Jones, COO / Creative Director of Crystal McKenzie, Inc. (CMI), spoke to 35 young people at >AHRC about his career, work life and expectations around what it means to be an intern at CMI. CMI endeavors to give back to the community by exposing young people, who have the internal drive, to reach their highest potential through work experience at CMI.
AHRC New York City, a family governed organization, is dedicated to enhancing the lives of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.
AHRC programs are designed to prepare students with cognitive and developmental disabilities for adult life through higher education and campus life, career exploration and preparation, self-awareness, personal improvement, community participation and socialization.
CMI CREATES DIGITAL MARKETING AND EVENT MARKETING VEHICLES FOR JBRC
CMI helps JRBC market their programs and initiatives to their constituents. For example, the 2010 Annual Awards Gala event email was a communications vehicle where CMI used ecommerce solutions embedded in an email for instant conversion of ticket sales and to drive traffic to the JBRC site, still under construction.
Jamiaca Business Resource Center (JBRC) was designated in 1994, through Presidential
authorization, to become the national model and pilot for former President Clinton’s “One Stop Capital Shop” small business program. This program was developed at the White House Office of Management and Budget and administered nationally by the United States Small Business Administration.
JBRC assists small business clients in creating or retaining hundreds of jobs by providing business research and planning; profit and loss management; legal and accounting; marketing and procurement; capital access; credit counseling; and other forms of technical assistance.
CMI CREATES WEBSITE FOR THE PERFECT DAY
For the Perfect Day (FTPD) is a full-service public relations and event planning company that produces corporate, not-profit and social/private events in the Consumer Products and Services, Food and Spirits/Hospitality, Not-For-Profit and Business-to-Business sectors.
CMI HELPS AMERICAN JEWISH HERITAGE ORGANIZATION LAUNCH HIGH HOLIDAY SERVICES WEBSITES
MAY 2010 - CMI designs Corning Museum of Glass (Corning, NY) blockbuster exhibition, "Medieval Glass: Popes, Princes, and Peasants."
MAY 2010 - CMI SPONSORS SECOND ANNUAL "ON THE HORIZON: A BREAKFAST SEMINAR FOR ARCHITECTS AND ENGINEERS" AT THE PRESTIGIOUS PRINCETON CLUB, NEW YORK
INSPIOR, the marketing firm, will bring together contracting, real estate, and finance experts as a resource for the latest forecasts on economic trends of the region. “On the Horizon” will provide insight, and analysis for decision making, thoughts on globalization and an overview of the global economy.
AUGUST 2009 - CMI HELPS GREATER JAMAICA DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION LAUNCH E-NEWSLETTER
"Destination Jamaica" is the title of the new e-marketing tool that connects the urban development corporation to the community and consituents in the Borough of Queens, New York City. CMI developed the DJ logo and format that GJDC now uses to stay in touch with its audience.
MAY 2009 - CMI SPONOSRS FIRST ANNUAL "ON THE HORIZON: A BREAKFAST SEMINAR FOR ARCHITECTS AND ENGINEERS" AT THE PRESTIGEOUS PRINCETON CLUB, NEW YORK
INSPIOR, the marketing firm, will bring together contracting, real estate, and finance experts as a resource for the latest forecasts on economic trends of the region. “On the Horizon” will provide insight, and analysis for decision making in the “recession bunker,” upcoming projects in the region, thoughts on globalization and an overview of the stimulus package. It will also target questions to uncover buyer motivations.
The annual seminar gathers some of Forbes Magazine’s Top 50 U.S. A&E Firms such as AECOM, RTKL Associates, Skidmore Owings and Merrill, WSP Cantor Seinuk, Cannon Design, Thornton Tomasetti, Kohn Pedersen Fox, Einhorn Yaffee Prescott and Gensler.
Maxinne Leighton, the director of the marketing, business development and public relations effort in the New York and Washington DC offices of Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners LLP, moderated the conference.
AUGUST 2007 - CMI COMPLETES INTERIOR SIGNAGE FOR COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY STUDEBAKER BUILDING
Crystal McKenzie, Inc. (CMI) provided the design and production of the interior signs for the Columbia UniversityStudebaker building renovation. Skanska Full Spectrum Joint Venture project managers James Nimon and Jude Alibey worked closely with the CMI team lead by CMI's Creative Director Brian Jones to achieve the University's flagship renovation in Manhattanville, NY.
Renovation of the Studebaker building is an example of Columbia University's commitment to MWL business enterprise participation in its construction efforts. Construction management for this project is a joint venture between Skanska and Full Spectrum Development of New York, a Harlem-based construction firm. Architectural design for this project is being performed by the Switzer Group, a leading New York City-based business enterprise.
CMI LAUNCHES CCFL TRAINING WEB SITE
September, 2008 - Corning Center for Learning (CCFL), a non-profit learning organization received a 200% boost in customers due to the newly revitalized brand and web site developed by brand strategy firm, Crystal McKenzie, Inc. (CMI). While CCFL may not get the instant notoriety of Joe the Plumber, it now stands tall in the learning and training sector, thanks to a newly branded marketing communications program targeted to serving its corporate clients in the health care, manufacturing, and technology sectors.
The 60+-page site maximizes usability and customer usefulness by explaining Accreditation Programs, Training Courses, and Instructional Design. It also has a robust back end that supports and education portal, allowing users, instructors and client organizations to participate in distance learning modules and create their own web portal relationships with customers and user groups.
CCFL training helps maximize business performance through customized classes and learning workshops that train employees to focus on the tactical and specialized functions of within business and to connect corporate strategy to stakeholders. CCFL helps clients to build their businesses with dynamic, effective training.
Corning Center for Learning (CCFL) is a leading provider of integrated learning solutions to global companies, strengthening businesses and non-profit organizations since 1961, with industry-leading expertise in training effective management, creating profitable, high quality outsourcing, applying the latest research to raise performance, and carefully targeted, personalized consulting.
CRYSTAL MCKENZIE, INC. (CMI) ABOUT TO UNVEIL THE NEW BUSINESS STRATEGIST FOR THE WEB DEVELOPMENT ARM OF CMI
End of One Year CMI Search Committee
CMI, a strategic brand identity and communications firm, is about to unveil their New Business Strategist. The new Business Strategist will report to the Chairman and Founder Crystal McKenzie. The Business Strategist will formulate and execute major policies, programs and objectives to promote and ensure the 28-year-old company's success and continued growth.
The CMI Search Committee reviewed national and international candidates to find the right executive to execute strategic and tactical operational growth plans for the company, with particular emphasis on the candidate's ability to lead the continued expansion into new products/services and markets.
Key issues in the lengthy process were selecting a candidate who could take a leadership role in formulating and articulating the company's vision and mission to achieve maximum efficiency and profit objectives. Top of the list were ongoing strategic/market vision, track record with formulating sound operating business plans and processes, with the charisma necessary to effectively focus and motivate employees were also key considerations. The leading candidate has an extensive track record establishing and maintaining strong relationships with industry peers and major corporate players; and, has a passion for customer service and the experience necessary for ensuring the company's continued growth.
The CMI Search Committee expects that the successful candidate will be a high impact, dynamic, and visionary leader, since they are arriving in the new position with a record of achieving results individually and through others; as an intelligent, strategic thinker with broad knowledge and experience in brand positioning.
The company will be offering an aggressive compensation and benefits package.
APRIL 2007 - CMI COMPLETES JEWISH DAILY FORWARD EXHIBITION DESIGN FOR MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK
"The Jewish Daily Forward: Embracing an Immigrant Community," an exhibition celebrating the 100th anniversary of the "Jewish Daily Forward," on exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York from April 22 - November 25, 2007.
SEPTEMBER 2006 - CMI COMPLETES "BLACK STYLE NOW" EXHIBITION DESIGN FOR MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK
"Black Style Now," an exhibition of African American fashion and hip hop designers' influences on Western culture and global fashion.
JANUARY 2006 - CMI DESIGNS AND PRODUCES "SLAVERY" TRAVELING EXHIBIT
To augment the current exhibition "Slavery in New York," the New-York Historical Society commissioned CMI to translate the 8-gallery permanent exhibit into a traveling panel show that premiered at the New York Public Library, Bronx and Staten Island branches.
The exhibit was so well received that Federated Stores reproduced it in their flagship Macy's store on 34th Street in New York City, adding components from the permanent exhibition as part of their Black History month initiatives.
APRIL 19, 2005 - CMI CONDUCTS ENVIRONMENTAL GRAPHIC DESIGN SESSION AT PERKINS EASTMAN, LLC
Over 60 Perkins Eastman architectural associates attended a 90-minute educational session on the definition, purpose and value of environmental graphic design as it relates to architectural practice.
Topics of discussion included way-finding, graphic design development process and the benefits of using environmental graphic designers in architectural practice.
Further discussion centered on branding in the built environment; and, if architecture is a strong enough communication not to require supplemental graphics or way-finding devices vs. bringing in graphic designers in to the master planning process at an earlier stage to positively effect the final results of the built environment.
CMI addressed several questions including: working within architectural styles; the design and cost criteria for retrofitting new signage to legacy sign programs; and, branding as it relates to environmental graphic design architectural and public spaces.
CMI knows that effective learning links training goals directly to employee performance objectives. We also understand the connection between employee performance and business improvement.
CMI Interactive can help - not only with implementation, but also with your strategic plan. Ultimately, CMI can help clients gain a significant competitive advantage - through more highly skilled and more productive employees.
Since its founding in 1981, Perkins Eastman has become a leading international architecture, urban design, and interior design firm offering programming, planning, design, strategic planning and consulting, real estate and economic analysis, and program management services.
Forging a multifaceted practice around the interests of our principal designers, we have cultivated a diverse portfolio of projects for private- and public-sector clients in the following practice areas: Corporate interiors, Cultural, Education, Healthcare, Hospitality, Housing, Laboratories, Mixed-use, Public sector, Religious, Senior living, Urban design.
The firm is united in the belief that innovative design is the result of an understanding of client goals, building type, context, and budget, and the synthesis of these issues by the proven design abilities of principal-level architects. This philosophy allows them to produce award-winning projects and earn the respect of their clients, resulting in many long-term relationships.
ATTRACT NEW CLIENTS FROM AROUND THE WORLD . . . OR AROUND THE BLOCK
CMI is pleased to offer an innovative marketing skill development workshop
designed to aid business owners in navigating the often-difficult task of
competing in the open marketplace.
During marketing skills development sessions, each business owner will
develop marketing SWOT Analysis to present in their business. From this hands-on analysis, business
owners will develop the short and long-term marketing goals that will help
them build on their firm's strengths and mitigate their firm's weaknesses.
The course material will focus on these key areas:
After completing the three-day sessions of 2 1/2-hour each-day session,
each business owner will have the opportunity to work interactively with a
business counselor who will guide him or her through the process of
implementing the short and long-term marketing goals for their business.
The Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone recently named CMI as
the creative services provider of choice to its small business customers in
need of assistance with business services critical to their success.
The Empowerment Zone seeks to revitalize distressed communities by using
public funds and tax incentives as catalysts for private investment.
UMEZ Applications (Download, Print, Fill Out Form(s) and Return to UMEZ in
Person or by Mail) click download