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Joan M. Durocher

Joan Durocher headshot
Director of Policy and General Counsel
National Council on Disability

Joan Durocher is the National Council on Disability’s General Counsel and Director of Policy.  The National Council on Disability (NCD) is an independent federal agency charged with advising the President and Congress about the broad spectrum of issues of importance to people with disabilities. She has previously served as NCD’s Interim Executive Director and Senior Attorney/Advisor.

In 2002, she was appointed the Designated Federal Official for International Watch, an NCD Federal Advisory Committee tasked with advising on the development of policy proposals that will advocate for a foreign policy that is consistent with the values and goals of the Americans with Disabilities Act.  Since then, Ms. Durocher has spoken and written nationally and internationally on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD); US foreign assistance; and international development. She currently represents NCD on the United States International Council on Disabilities (USICD), and chairs USICD’s Membership Committee.

The President of the American Bar Association (ABA) appointed Ms. Durocher to be a Commissioner on the ABA’s Commission on Mental and Physical Disability Law from 2002 – 2005, and was appointed for another term from 2008 - 2011.  She also served as Vice-chair of the ABA’s Section of Business Law Diversity Committee.  In this capacity, she designed the Business Law Diplomat Program which was developed to demonstrate the Section’s commitment to lawyers with disabilities and promote opportunities for their advancement within the ABA and the legal profession.  She currently chairs the Subcommittee on Lawyers with Disabilities, and is on the editorial board of Business Law Today, a publication of the American Bar Association.  

Ms. Durocher has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Michigan State University and received her law degree from the University of Maryland, where she was awarded an Asper Fellowship and received the BARC Community Service and Leadership Award for her work at the Maryland Disability Law Center in Baltimore.  In 2002, she was awarded the National Disability Policy Fellowship by the National Council on Disability. She is a member of the State Bar of Michigan and lives in Vienna, Virginia.

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The Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Technologies is sponsored by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under grant number 90RE5007-01-00. The opinions contained in this website are those of the Wireless RERC and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or NIDILRR.