Gerri Pomeroy: A Journey of Personal Preparation

Gerri Pommeroy Gerri Pomeroy’s leadership journey didn’t start with the intention of gaining any leadership position, but five years later she now finds herself being elected President of the Disabled Persons’ Assembly.

Gerri became involved in the DPA at a local level in the early 2000s. Throughout her journey into disability, Gerri says she was shocked by the level of disadvantage within the access community. But she was also impressed by the level of empathy, insight, resilience and richness within this community. "I didn’t feel I could be there and not do anything".

She felt she wanted to bring about a change conversation, and a leadership programme could enable her to prepare herself for that. That is why she decided to apply for the 2012 Be. Leadership Programme. It added value to her personal involvement in the sector.

“When you’re dealing with disability, you get caught up in the practicalities of it all. It gave me the space to really think about what being part of a civil society meant, and different ways of interacting as a disabled person. You think you can work through things by yourself but it’s really helpful to have a broader picture”.

"You're aware how life is different for people with disabilities but you’re not aware about the structures that impact people with impairments that disable them".

She also says that she valued the opportunity to take the time out and explore 'thinking' as a practice. It improved her confidence in voice and thought, especially while going through the journey as a group.

Five years later she has now been elected President of the DPA by members across the country. She feels "humbled" that people around the country think she is up for the position.

Her collaborative approach to leadership allows her to be able to bring individual voices to the table. She believes individual voices can make a difference, particularly in the access community which is filled with problem solvers who think outside the box. Her mission is to make society understand that we have a contribution to make in the world. 

Applications for the 2018 Be. Leadership programme are now open until the 31st October 2017.