After going blind at the young age of eight, Nancy encountered overwhelming obstacles. “Stop. You’re aiming too high. Your plans are too bold.” These were words Nancy heard a lot growing up. The only one in her family to go to college, Nancy earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree. She went on to teach in the Austin Independent School District for more than two decades, something the experts had said would be impossible to achieve due to her blindness. During Nancy’s teaching career, her story of triumph in the face of adversity appeared in the magazines of the Texas State Teachers Association and the National Education Association. She was featured in an Associated Press article which appeared in nearly every Texas newspaper. Nancy has also been a guest on numerous radio programs and several local TV programs. Nancy has also been the cover story for the Austin Family Magazine. Following her successful 21-year teaching career from 1981-2002, she founded Prove Them Wrong®, LLC whose mission is to give a voice to courage by telling real-life stories of people who prove that we can all do more than most believe to be possible. Today Nancy is an award-winning author, professional speaker and trainer, successful businesswoman, and community volunteer. Nancy has a long history of serving her state of Texas with five gubernatorial appointments –
- 2013-2017 – Appointed by Texas Governor Rick Perry to serve a four-year term as a member of the Special Education Continuing Advisory Committee.
- 2002-2008 – Appointed by Texas Governor Rick Perry to serve three two-year terms as a member of the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities.
- 2000-2002 – Appointed by former Texas Governor George W. Bush to serve a two-year term as a member of the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities.
- In 2003, Nancy, along with volunteer Becky Hare, founded the Kids Walk to Cure Diabetes school program benefiting the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. In its third year, just as a local program, it raised $250,000 for diabetes research. In 2007, the program became a national program for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation!
Nancy is a member of
- Women’s Chamber of Commerce of Texas
- National Education Association & Texas State Teachers Association
- National & Texas PTA
- Lions Clubs International & South Austin Lions Club
“Nancy, your presentation at the Texas Rehab Action Network (TRAN) Annual Conference in San Antonio was so inspirational to all of us. When I was in the hall the only comments I heard were how exceptional you were. The living proof examples that you presented delivered a positive impact to the audience. I personally enjoyed it tremendously and am looking forward to continue partnering with you.” -Raul Tello TRAN President
Awards and Honors:
- 2014 Class of Leadership Texas
- 2014 TEDx conference speaker – hosted by Texas Tech University (2/8/2014)
- 2013 Blazing Star Award recipient – Women’s Chamber of Commerce of Texas
- 2010 Barbara Jordan Media Award recipient – Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities
- 2005 Five Who Care Community Service Award recipient – KVUE-TV (ABC affiliate in Austin)
- 2005 Volunteer of the Year award recipient – Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Austin Chapter
“Nancy’s presentation was great, dynamic speaker and good information. What I liked best was how Nancy kept saying Don’t Give Up! I would tell my peers that she overcame many obstacles and anyone can too.” -Gilda Lopez El Paso, TexasA native Texan, Nancy enjoys swimming, hiking, writing, speaking, taking cruises and traveling with her Guide Dog Porsche.
Guide Dog Porsche A graduate of Guide Dogs for the Blind