Many months of dedicated preparation by the Mayor’s Committee for Employment of Individuals with Disabilities, have brought about a very successful event – the 2018 2nd Annual Business Recognition Luncheon. More than 100 individuals attended the February 22nd luncheon, among them a great representation of public officials.

The luncheon, prepared by students of the Institute of Culinary Education at the College of the Canyons, was beyond expectations – delicious and professionally prepared and served. At the conclusion, the 20 students and their Chef Instructor, Cindy Schwanke, and her Associate Instructor, Michelle Bustillos, received a standing ovation.

Ken Wiseman, Chair of the Mayor’s Committee, introduced the dignitaries. Ken then gave a presentation about the current efforts of the Mayor’s Committee, and he shared their mission of trying to encourage businesses to hire individuals with disabilities, and working closely with the many organizations within the community that educate, provide vocational services, and counsel individuals in their efforts to find employment for their students with disabilities.

Mayor Laurene Weste spoke about recognizing the importance of the efforts of the Committee, and ensuring the City’s support. Mayor Weste introduced the guest of honor, student Stephanie Kamel, 1st place winner or the 2017 Art Contest for Students with Disabilities, who received resounding applause. Her wonderful artwork was the award being presented.

Charlene Lowe introduced the ‘Bias Buster’ theme and offered a slide show about how bias impacts the hiring of individuals with disabilities more than any other employment bias. Addressing, managing, and eliminating biases is a key component of increasing employment for these individuals. Brief, yet powerful, stories of bias were told by Ken Wiseman – from being an employer, Scott Shepard – from being a professional in the field of preparing individuals with disabilities for a career, and Tom Iland – from being an individual with autism in a hiring situation.

Awards were presented to twelve organizations recognized as having provided employment opportunities to individuals with disabilities. The Committee then awarded companies that had directly supported the Committee’s efforts to meet with potential employers. Organizations being recognized included City of Santa Clarita, Boston Scientific, Six Flags Magic Mountain, Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital, College of the Canyons, AMS Fulfillment, Jersey Mike’s, Neo Tech, Cardinal Health, Pacific Lock, Princess Cruises, and Lowes Santa Clarita Store #1510.

If you have any questions, or would like information about the Mayor’s Committee, please contact Ken Wiseman – – 661-775-0611.