Employment First Council

​​​​​Strategic Plan

Governor's Boards and Commissions Page​

​​Boards and Commissions Application


​Information About the Council: 

​Under Employment First legislation, a 28-member​ council was created. The role of the council is to:
  • ​Identify state policies that create disincentives for the employment of people with disabilities and develop recommendations to address and eliminate those disincentives.
  • Develop training resources on the benefits of competitive integrated employment of workers with a disability. 
  • Recommend the development and implementation of policies and effective practices for providers of supported employment services that increase employment opportunities for workers with a disability. 
  • Utilize appropriate metrics to assess progress of efforts. 
  • Lastly, submit an annual report by December 1st to the Legislative Research Commission, the secretary of the Education and Labor Cabinet, and the Governor, summarizing its findings and recommendations.

Council and Committee Officers: ​

  • ​Council Chair - Katie Wolf Whaley
  • Council Vice-Chair - Morgan Turner
  • Legislative Liaison - Diana Merzweiler
  • Amanda Friend
  • Amanda Owen
  • Amy Luttrell
  • Andrew Johnson
  • Annette Jett
  • Bill Bates
  • Dawn Gardner
  • Cora McNabb
  • David Allgood
  • Diana Merzweiler
  • Frank Huffman
  • Greta Hylton
  • Jeff Edwards
  • Jeff White
  • Jessica Beaven
  • Tal Curry
  • Leslie Hoffmann
  • Lori Norton
  • Merry Reid Sheffer
  • Morgan Turner
  • Rebecca Wilson
  • Robert "Larry" Taylor
  • Staci Cain
  • Thomas Hamilton
  • Todd Coffey
  • Zach Morgan

Committees Membership List:

  • Advocacy and Education
    • Amanda Owen - Chair
  • Employer Education and Engagement
    • Merry Reid Sheffer - Chair
  • Executive Committee
    • Katie Wolf Whaley - Chair
  • Provider Capacity
    • Jeff White - Chair
  • Public Policy
    • Diana Merzweiler - Chair
  • Transition
    • Jessica Beaven - Chair
    • Frank Huffman - Co-Chair

Council Administrator Information:
​Nanci J. Howard
Employment First Council
Vocational Rehabilitation Administrator
500 Mero Street, 4th Floor, NE
Frankfort, KY 40601