Empowerment Forum For People with Disabilities

5th Annual Empowerment Forum for People with Disabilities

Thursday August 17, 2017

Hilton Garden Inn Auburn Riverwatch

14 Great Falls Plaza, Auburn, Maine, 04210.

Each year, the Empowerment Forum provides an opportunity for people with disabilities to learn about self-advocacy opportunities and skills through speakers, workshops on specific issues, and panel discussions.

Keynote Speaker - Sue Wiygul Martin

Sue Martin skydivingThe course of Sue Martin’s life has not been an easy one. Her first two decades on earth were pretty cool but then “real life” happened and she was, in no way prepared to face it. Following a series of devastating “tough breaks” Martin’s life changed forever.

In the early days of her life with blindness everything was a struggle. Support from her friends, family, community, and two amazing teachers showed Martin she could live again.


8:30- Check-in

9:00- Welcome & introductions

9:15- Keynote Speaker: Sue Wiygul Martin

10:45- Break

11:00- Avenues for Letting Your Voice be Heard

12:15- Lunch (provided)

1:15- Panel Discussion: Navigating the Challenges of Hidden Disabilities

2:45- Wrap-up & evaluations



  • Person with disability - NO CHARGE
  • Provider or Other ($50.00; check payable to Maine Statewide Independent Living Council)

Register Now


Interpreters will be available. All other accommodations, including dietary restrictions, must be made by July 27, 2017. Requests received after that date cannot be guaranteed, however, we will make every effort to honor the necessary accommodation.

If you have questions or need assistance, please contact C.A.R.E.S., Inc. at 207-377-7055. 

Space is limited.

Deadline for registration is August 10, 2017.


Last Year's Forum

Thursday, August 18, 2016 

4th Annual Empowerment Forum for People with Disabilities

Travis Mills and Family

Keynote speaker SSG Travis Mills, retired United States Army Staff Sergeant, a recalibrated warrior, motivational speaker, actor, author and an advocate for veterans and amputees. Despite losing portions of both arms and legs from an IED while on active duty in Afghanistan, Travis continues to overcome life’s challenges, breaking physical barriers and defying odds.Travis lives by his motto:

“Never give up. Never quit.”


The Empowerment Forum is hosted by the Five+ Councils Collaborative who represent the Statewide Independent Living Council, State Rehabilitation Councils for VR & Division for the Blind & Visually Impaired VR, Commission for the Deaf, Hard of Hearing & Late Deafened, the State Workforce Board’s Commission on Disability & Employment, and the Consumer Council System of Maine.