“Rise above, my friends, and reach back to help others climb the ladder of life.”
If ever there was a pioneer of inclusion, it was Ralph Braun. Known as the "Father of the Mobility Industry," Braun was the brilliant mind behind revolutionary mobility products, including the motorized scooter and the first accessible vehicle.
Born in 1947, Braun was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at just 6 years old, and was told he wouldn't live past his teen years. But that grim diagnosis didn't stop him. Braun was determined to not only live, but thrive. And did he ever.
Education, family, career; Braun achieved all that and then some. In addition to his life-changing inventions, Braun built his company, the Braun Corporation, from the ground up (literally. It started out as a part-time operation from his parents' garage). It is now a worldwide leader in wheelchair accessible vehicles & lifts with 800+ employees.
When he died in 2013, the Braun Corporation--which Braun still ran and loved--had this to say about it's founder:
"Ralph has left a permanent legacy in the mobility community and will be remembered as a... true pioneer of an industry that has brought freedom to hundreds of thousands of individuals across the world."
To learn more about this incredible man, you can hear from Braun himself in this video.
The ability to see not just what is but what could be is essential to making our world closer to what it should be. Braun absolutely embodied this mindset. He built his organization around it and lived his life by it. It's a mindset we at National Inclusion Project strive to live by every single day. We hope you'll consider giving a gift of $47 in honor of the year this incredible individual was born, and to support what inclusion could be in 2020 (and beyond).