Gregg Vanderheiden

Gregg Vanderheiden (with [ATTN GREGG] in the subject)

Gregg Vanderheiden is a professor of Industrial and Biomedical Engineering, and founder and director of Trace R&D Center Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has worked in technology and disability for more than 39 years and currently directs the NIDRR Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center (RERC) on Universal Interfaces and Information Technology Access, and co-directs the RERC on Telecommunications Access (joint with Gallaudet University).


Gregg pioneered in the field of Augmentative Communication (a name taken from his writings), working with people having physical, visual, hearing and cognitive disabilities. His work with the computer industry led to many of the access features that are standard today. For example, access features developed by Dr. Vanderheiden and his team (e.g., StickyKeys, MouseKeys, etc.) have been built into the Macintosh OS since 1987, OS/2 and the UNIX X Window system since 1993, and more than half a dozen were built into Windows 95, 98, NT, 2000, XP, Vista and now System 7.

His work is also found in built in access features in ATMs, Point of Sale terminals, and cross-disability accessible Automated Postal Stations, Amtrak ticket machines, and airline terminals. Dr. Vanderheiden has worked with over 50 companies and served on numerous professional, industry and government advisory and planning committees including those for the FCC, NSF, NIH, VA, DED, GSA, NCD, Access Board and White House. He is co-chair of the W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines working group and editor of the HFES 200.2 Standard on Software Accessibility. He has received over 30 awards for his work on technology and disability include the ACM Social Impact Award for the Human-Computer Interaction Community, the Ron Mace Award, the Access award from the American Foundation for the Blind, the Yuri Rubinski Memorial World Wide Web Award (WWW6), and the Isabelle and Leonard H. Goldenson Award for Outstanding Research in Medicine and Technology (UCPA).