Marcus Harrison Jr. Leadership Award

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Anya Corzo emerged onto the Arizona disability scene in 2014, when she was elected by her peers to serve on the Leadership Team for Arizona Youth Leadership Forum (AZYLF), from which she is a distinguished graduate.

Anya has continued to mature in the movement by serving as a staff member, the first ever Alumni Team Leader, Secretary, Treasurer, and Chair of the AZYLF Alumni Association. She is also a graduate of the Arizona Youth Engagement Academy (AZYEA), an intensive training experience designed to build capacity in youth who have disabilities to assume leadership roles, and provide peer to peer mentoring, training, and support.

She was the Youth Engagement Coordinator for the Diverse Ability Incorporated Emerging Me; Middle School Matters project, where she coordinated disability related, youth peer to peer training, throughout the state of Arizona. Anya is an experienced self-advocate, and is often sought after to present at conferences, lead workshops and training sessions, and serves as the voice of youth who have disabilities on several committees, workgroups, and boards, including serving as Secretary of the Arizona Community of Practice on Transition Statewide Core Team. Anya is a national presenter, having spoken at the Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living and SILC Congress conferences.

Anya is the 2017 national Advocates in Disability Award recipient, has provided Take Charge workshops on the Navajo Nation, and in 2018 implemented Project Dignity: Reducing Stigma and Fostering Disability Pride among the Hopi People, on Hopi Lands, through Diverse Ability Incorporated. Anya is an enrolled member of the Laguna Pueblo, and is equally proud of her Hopi, Lakota, and Seneca heritage.

As a mommy to adorable Judah and Marceline, connecting to and embracing her ancestry, and passing along those lessons, is extremely important to Anya. I have worked closely with Anya throughout the years, mentoring, and supporting her personal advocacy journey, and am well aware of, and impressed by her commitment to both the disability community, and to the culture of indigenous peoples.

I wholeheartedly believe that Anya Corzo is most deserving of the Marcus Harrison, Jr. Leadership Award.

Submitted by
Melissa Santora
Director of Innovation
Arizona Statewide Independent Living Council

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