AbilityHacks is a community of people with disabilities and volunteers devoted to addressing specific, unmet ability challenges. We are a diverse talent pool focused on finding solutions that include adaptive technologies, innovations, and inventions.
Assistive solution companies can only address needs that have high awareness, a large market, and substantial profit potential. They help many, but they’re unable to meet countless people’s needs.
AbilityHacks includes people from many backgrounds and disciplines, all volunteering to make a meaningful difference in people’s lives. We are particularly driven to find ways to expand possibilities for people, to improve their quality of life. Some needs we address are unique and complicated, while others have simply not received the attention they deserve. We build a unique team for each challenge, which collaborates independently and draws upon on our broader community when needed.
AbilityHacks teams are truly collaborative. Clients are as much a part of the team as any other member. All take ownership of the challenge and work closely to identify, personalize, and ensure ongoing usefulness of solutions.
AbilityHacks members, whether currently on a team or not, remain ready to take on specific challenges while continually helping us grow and strengthen our community.
Andrew “Drew” McPherson is one of three Co-founders and Board Chair. Drew has a passion for creating assistive technology stemming from his own experience of becoming paralyzed in 2006. He was also a co-founder, president and instructor of EnableTech at UC Berkeley. While at Berkeley, Drew earned his BS and MS in mechanical engineering, taught as a lecturer on prosthetics and orthotics and served as a design fellow in the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation. He is most passionate about empowering those experiencing disability related limitations to create solutions to live their lives as the wish.
Francisco Peralta is a founding member and currently serves as the Vice-chair and Treasurer. Francisco was born with Proximal Femoral Focal Deficiency (PFFD) and was amputated months after birth. As an amputee growing up in the 21st century, he has experienced first hand the improvements of assistive technology which have allowed him to walk and run, and is optimistic that these technologies will continue to improve and will become more affordable in the future. Francisco received a BA in Cognitive Science at UC Berkeley where he co-founded EnableTech and facilitated a student-led DeCal on assistive technology.
Kandea Mosley comes to the Board with a professional background that includes social enterprise management in the solar and workforce development sectors. She has a passion for improving assistive tech for people who also have upper-body mobility challenges that affect their use of computing devices. She received her MBA from the Johnson School of Management at Cornell University and her BA in African American Studies with a Philosophy Concentration from UCLA.
Kevin grew up loving his sisters (who both have Cystic Fibrosis) and making things. He received a BS, MS, and PhD in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley. His professional experience includes consultancy and development work in rehabilitation, robotics, and home automation. Today, he is motivated to create technology with social impact which serves unmet needs, both personally and by empowering others to make.