Lunch and Learn Upcoming Events

The Lehigh Valley Arts & Cultural Alliance hosts a free monthly Lunch & Learn series featuring nationally recognized guest presenters. The series focuses on art and accessibility — a pillar of our organizational mission — and aims to inform Lehigh Valley artists, art educators, arts supporters, and arts & cultural venues about ways to make the arts more accessible to all. We are currently developing a professional accreditation program for staff and volunteers of arts and culture organizations interested in creating accessible spaces and better serving disabled artists and patrons.

Registration is free and all events are held on Zoom unless otherwise specified. We hope you’ll join us at the next Lunch & Learn!

Principles of Audio Description and Launching into Audio Descriptions as a Career

A photo of Bronwen Andrea Okwesa, a Black woman with dark hair worn in a bun on top of her head and smiling at the viewer. She is wearing earrings, a necklace, and a dark red top.

Guest Speaker

Bronwen Andrea Okwesa

Professional Audio Describer at the Kennedy Center


Wednesday, April 19, 2023

12 pm – 1 pm EST

Audio description is a necessary practice central to all artforms. Workshop attendees, whether they are artists or administrators at arts organizations, will learn the basics of audio description, including: 

  • Why audio description is a necessity. 
  • Insights into blind and vision-impaired culture. 
  • Audio description guidelines, techniques, and best practices. 
  • How to design audio description that effectively meets the needs of blind and vision-impaired audiences.
  • How to launch a career as an Audio Describer


Bronwen Andrea Okwesa is professional Audio Describer, she has researched, written and narrated AD scripts in all performing arts genres,  also for community-based events, museums, meetings, conferences & social media. She has also worked on cruise ships; provided human guide services to individuals; provided training and consulting services to institutions, specifically in the Tourism and Arts sectors, trained new audio describers; and volunteers for UniDescription, a joint initiative of the University of Hawaii and U.S. National Park Service. She currently serves on the Audio Description Advisory Committee of the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals (AVCREP), a resource to its Subject Matter Expert Committee in developing standards and Certification for Audio Describers.  In 2018, she launched her company, SightlinesAD, which provides a unique range of community-based AD offerings in addition to traditional services.

Previous Speakers

Accessibility in Social Media

Alexa Heinrich looks at the camera and smiles slightly. She is a light skinned woman with dark hair shaved on the sides and worn in a topknot on top of her head. She is wearing bright red lipstick, multiple earrings, and a black shirt with gold colored necklaces on top.

Guest Speaker

Alexa Heinrich

March  15, 2023

Accessibility is a common priority when building websites and webpages. But have you considered how individuals with disabilities are engaging with your brand on social media? Are they experiencing accessibility barriers in your content? Are there things you could be doing to make your social media more inclusive? This session will outline practices you can easily implement to ensure the content you produce and the way you deliver it on social media is accessible for everyone, including disabled users.

Alexa Heinrich is an award-winning social media manager, the creator of the popular websites Accessible Social and Social Media Tea, and the author of Accessible Social: A Beginner’s Guide to Creating Inclusive Social Media Content.

DEI & the Arts

Tyrone Russell, a Black man with short black hair and a beard, wearing a dress shirt with a tie and a red vest. He is looking directly at the camera and smiling.

Guest Presenter

Tyrone Russell

February 15, 2023

This DEI and the Arts mini workshop presented by Tyrone Russell, CEO of FACES International, will focus on the intersection of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the arts. The workshop will explore ways in which the arts can be used to promote DEI and foster a more inclusive society. Topics will include the representation of diverse communities in the arts, the role of cultural institutions in promoting DEI, and strategies for creating more inclusive arts environments. This workshop will provide participants with practical tools and resources for implementing DEI initiatives in their own organizations or communities.

The Disability Arts Movement

Image of painted bust self-portrait depicting artist, Wendy Elliot Vandivier. White woman with shoulder red hair and small green beret on top, her hands are touching the right side of her cheek and chin. Her wrists have multiple colored medical bands. A prominent bright pink band has the word alert on it.
Guest Speakers
Vicki Landers & Connie Vandarakis

January 18, 2023

Join us as we discuss the history of Disability Arts and its importance in the Disability Rights Movement, and create actionable steps to bring Disability Arts to the forefront.

Our presenters for this event are Vicki Landers, Founder & Executive Director of Disability Pride PA and Connie Vandarakis, Arts & Cultural Director of Disability Pride PA.

What's LGBTQ About the Italian Renaissance?

Liz, a white woman with short hair and glasses, is shown from the shoulders up looking at the camera and smiling
Guest Speaker
Liz Bradbury (she/her)

November 16, 2022

A lot! After an explanatory discussion of the ingenious 15th century invention of perspective, we’ll be discussing the controversial same gender loving lives of Leonardo DaVinci and Michelangelo Buonarroti. Why do we think these men had more than a passing interest in other men? And does it matter in their work? Let’s see! We’ll also talk about the surprising 500 year old histories of some of their key works and explore what happened to them in the 20th century to make them even more famous. This will be a fun and funny presentation by Liz Bradbury, MFA, the Director of the Training Institute of the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center, on things they didn’t teach you in art history classes, but really should be considered none-the-less!

Demystifying Disability: What to Know, What to Say, and How to Be an Ally

Emily Ladua
Guest Speaker
Emily Ladau (she/her)

September 21, 2022

Celebrated disability rights advocate, speaker, and writer Emily Ladau will answer all your questions regarding disabilities. Learn how to be an informed ally to disabled people, with actionable steps for what to say and do (and what not to do) and how you can help make the world a more inclusive place.

Ladau’s Demystifying Disability is ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: NPR, Booklist • “A candid, accessible cheat sheet for anyone who wants to thoughtfully join the conversation . . . Emily makes the intimidating approachable and the complicated clear.” — Rebekah Taussig, author of Sitting Pretty: The View from My Ordinary, Resilient, Disabled Body