Pasadena resident Donna Pomerantz received the first Robert Gorski Access Award at Monday’s City Council meeting.
Pomerantz was selected by the Accessibility and Disability Commission as the first recipient of the award, which is named after long-time City employee and disability advocate Robert Gorski.
The award is presented to a Pasadena resident with a disability who has made significant contributions towards improving accessibility and quality of life for people with disabilities. Gorski was employed as the City’s Accessibility Coordinator from 1989 to 2016, and continued his work as a disability rights advocate into retirement until his passing in January 2020.
As a former Chair of the Accessibility and Disability Commission, Pomerantz advocated for several initiatives that positively impacted the quality of life of Pasadena residents with disabilities including an ordinance to ensure that people who use service animals or other mobility aids receive accessible and reliable taxi service, a project to install accessible pedestrian signals, and a successful campaign resulting in Pasadena receiving the Accessible America Award from the National Organization on Disability (2004). Pomerantz has also served on several national and local boards and committees, including the Los Angeles Metro Accessibility Advisory Committee and Access Services Paratransit Community Advisory Committee to ensure that transportation is accessible to people with disabilities.
Pomerantz and her husband have resided in Pasadena for nearly 20 years where she continues her efforts to improve access for Pasadena’s residents with disabilities.
“Donna and Robert are champions for the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Because of their unsung work in this space, the City of Pasadena is inclusive and accessible for all abilities,” said James Farr, Chair of the Accessibility and Disability Commission. “The Accessibility and Disability Commission is honored to present Donna with the inaugural Robert Gorski Access Award. We look forward to annually recognizing advocates who are instrumental in improving accessibility and quality of life for Pasadena’s disability community.”