Joni Eareckson Tada, the Founder and CEO of Joni and Friends International Disability Center, is an international advocate for people with disabilities. A diving accident in 1967 left Joni Eareckson, then 17, a quadriplegic in a wheelchair, without the use of her hands. After two years of rehabilitation, she emerged with new skills and a fresh determination to help others in similar situations.
During her rehabilitation, Joni spent long months learning how to paint with a brush between her teeth. Her high-detail fine art paintings and prints are sought-after and collected.
Her best-selling autobiography "Joni" and the feature film of the same name have been translated into many languages, introducing her to people around the world. Joni's commentary on disability-related issues has appeared in The Wall Street Journal and TIME magazine. Mrs. Tada has also has visited more than 47 countries, has served on the National Council on Disability and the Disability Advisory Committee to the U.S. State Department and has helped guide evangelism strategies among people with disabilities worldwide. Joni currently serves on the Young Life Capernaum Board.