Claire Bible is a self-advocate from Madison. She was recently appointed to the BPDD and, before her appointment, she served as an AmeriCorps member by working as a legislative liaison intern between BPDD and People First Wisconsin. Claire is a student teacher for the Waisman Early Childhood Program and she is involved with the Madison Area Down Syndrome Society. She is also a poet and a writer.
Why were you interested in becoming a member of BPDD?
I’ve always been aware of BPDD and its work and over the years I’ve grown to be fascinated by it. BPDD has its own energy that is wonderfully electrifying and is just infectious. I was – and am – interested in being a member because of all the incredible work it does. I feel lucky and very amazed to have this opportunity of being a part of something that is so electrifying and bigger than myself.
What in BPDD’s current State Plan are you most passionate about working on?
Everything. It s not just one thing for me – it’s the combination of everything that I love. Meaningful employment and education are prominent issues in my mind. But they are just as prominent to me as encouraging self-advocacy and self-determination.
What advocacy activities have you participated in?
I’m a huge advocate, so it’s natural for me to stand up for others. Advocacy is something I’ve always done and will continue to do. It’s in me to always advocate and push for change. I’ve done this in many ways through my writing of both novels and poetry. I’ve met with and spoken to policymakers and I have even testified.
What do you want to see changed for people with disabilities in Wisconsin?
There’s a lot I want to see changed and a lot of change I want to bring about. Education is one area I want to be continuously improving and investing my energy into. I feel the exact same way when it comes to employment. I want to work for a better tomorrow for the generations that will follow me.