Governor's Liaison to the Disability CommunityJonathan Slifka
In January 2014, Governor Dannel P. Malloy appointed Jonathan Slifka as the Governor’s Liaison to the Disability Community. As the Governor’s Liaison to the Disability Community, Mr. Slifka’s mission is to increase outreach between the Governor and the executive branch agencies to those in the community with disabilities. This position allows for recommendations to be presented on behalf of those with disabilities regarding areas of development such as programs, services, employment, and advocacy. He oversees the 17-member Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Working Group to ensure services are provided to people with disabilities in the most efficient way possible. He also works to improve communication on behalf of the state with individuals with disabilities.
A resident of West Hartford, Mr. Slifka most recently worked in the Admissions Office at Goodwin College and has served in numerous voluntary roles to advocate for people with disabilities, including as Commissioner in the West Hartford Advisory Commission, member of the Board of Directors for the Miracle League of Connecticut, and Representative for the West Hartford Democratic Town Committee. He also continues to devote 1 week every summer to coaching/and mentoring children with disabilities at the Ivan Lendl Adaptive Sports Camp, which his mother started in 1991.
Not only has Jon advocated for others living with disabilities, but he has also taken risks in regards to his own. He was one of the first students with a disability mainstreamed through the West Hartford Public School System. Mr. Slifka also strove to succeed athletically and became the first member of the West Hartford Little League to have a disability. He continued on to be the first student in a wheelchair to play on the West Hartford High School Tennis Team. Mr. Slifka, who received his Bachelor of Arts in Communications from St. Andrews Presbyterian College in Laurinburg, North Carolina, continues to break barriers for individuals living with disabilities.