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Web accessibility expert to kick off new Green & Grey Alumni Speaker Series

| By Ashleigh Aldridge
Green & Grey Alumni Speaker Series

Loyola University Maryland will host the inaugural Green & Grey Alumni Speaker Series featuring Jonathan Lazar, Ph.D., on Wednesday, Nov. 15, at 6 p.m. at McManus Theatre.

Lazar, a 1995 graduate of Loyola, is a professor in the department of computer and information sciences at Towson University. Lazar is involved in teaching and research on web accessibility for people with disabilities, user-centered design methods, assistive technology, and law and public policy related to human-computer interaction (HCI).

His talk, “Crossing Disciplines and Breaking Down Barriers,” will focus on his work on web accessibility for people with disabilities. Seating is limited and registration is recommended. For more information and to register, go to loyola.edu/green-and-grey.

Twice each academic year, the Green & Grey Alumni Speakers Series will invite alumni who were members of Loyola’s Green & Grey Society to speak on the Evergreen campus. Since 1989, Loyola University Maryland has selected a small number of men and women from the senior class who demonstrated excellence in academic, personal, and spiritual integration and committed service to Loyola. In the spirit of Jesuit ideals, the Society has served as advisors to the University leaders by identifying and communicating issues of significance present in the lives of community members.

Lazar served as Towson’s director of the undergraduate program in information systems from 2003-2017 and founded the Universal Usability Laboratory and served as director from 2003-2014. He has been granted two U.S. patents for his work on accessible web-based security features for blind users. Lazar frequently serves as an advisor to government agencies and regularly provides testimony at federal and state levels, and multiple U.S. federal regulations cite his research publications. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation; National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR); American Library Association; and TEDCO. 

He has authored or edited 11 books, including Research Methods in Human-Computer Interaction (co-authored with Heidi Feng and Harry Hochheiser), Ensuring Digital Accessibility Through Process and Policy (co-authored with Dan Goldstein and Anne Taylor), Disability, Human Rights, and Information Technology (co-edited with Michael Stein), Universal Usability: Designing Computer Interfaces for Diverse User Populations, and Web Usability: A User-Centered Design Approach. He has published more than 140 refereed articles in journals, conference proceedings, and edited books. 

He currently serves on the executive board of the Friends of the Maryland Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped and the State of Maryland Work Group on Increasing the Teaching of IT Accessibility Concepts in State Universities. He has served in multiple roles in the Association for Computing Machinery Special Interest Group on Computer-Human Interaction (ACM SIGCHI), most recently, adjunct chair of public policy (2010–15) and Digital Accessibility Chair (CHI 2014). 

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