LivAbility Magazine
PHOTO: Ability360 President Phil Pangrazio sits in the crowded Chase Field baseball stadium.

By Phil Pangrazio
Photo by Loren Worthington

I am so very pleased to bring you this first edition of ABIL’s new quarterly publication, LivAbility. LivAbility is one part of ABIL’s new re-branding process that you will be noticing over the next six months. Why the name LivAbility, you might ask? Well, good question! Actually, there were several reasons why we chose LivAbility. First, we thought the name was clever and memorable. Or, at least some of us did. Second, you can still see ABIL in the name. I thought that was part of the cleverness. But most importantly, we thought LivAbility was encompassing of what we envision this publication to become and be about; people of all disabilities, with all kinds of abilities, just living their lives like everyone else.

Please be assured. We still envision LivAbility to continue the great tradition of The Bridge newsletter in providing current and reliable disability news, information and advocacy that you’ve come to expect from us. We will never change from that longstanding commitment. However, we also hope to explore bringing you other disability-related content that will be fun, interesting, and useful in your journey living life with a disability or with someone you love.

We also envision LivAbility to be collaborative with our community partners and be interactive. Thus, LivAbility will include news and information from a wide variety ideas and opinions. We’re not sure exactly where this might take us as it evolves, but we want to be as creative and open minded about it as possible. That’s where you come in. We want to hear from you. We want you to be a part of this. As we develop LivAbility over the next year or so, please tell us what you think. Tell us what you’d like us to publish. Eventually, we’ll create a web portal to facilitate this interactive process. Keep a look out for it in the future.

Finally, as a follow-up to my last newsletter message, I’d like to update you on our ABIL re-branding initiative. As I mentioned last month, ABIL is exploring ways to re-brand its public image to more accurately reflect what we do as an organization and who we serve. We also want to create better community awareness of ABIL and how we help people with disabilities. This includes becoming more consistent in everything we do and promote to the public.

Most prominent in all of this is ABIL’s name, Arizona Bridge to Independent Living, and our acronym ABIL. This has always been a challenge for us. By itself, people unfamiliar with ABIL don’t know what the acronym stands for. The full name is too long and sounds like a nursing home. Where does the Disability Empowerment Center fit in? What about the SpoFit? Thus, we felt like it was time to change our name and resolve some of the confusion. So, stay tuned as we roll out this exciting name change in October. I think you will find it to be encompassing of our mission and a welcome 360-degree departure from our current name.

Image of Ability 360 CEO Phil Pangrazio

Phil Pangrazio
President and CEO

Mr. Pangrazio has been the President & CEO of ABIL since 2000. His leadership and vision resulted in ABIL’s building of the Disability Empowerment Center, which opened in 2008, and the Sports and Fitness Center, which opened in 2011.