President- UD Inclusive Design, South Africa
Colette’s expertise is in the application of Universal Design within areas of the built environment and transport and in accordance with International Standards. Her work areas of proficiency related to Universal Design include research, legislative assistance, guideline and standard development, implementation plans, onsite access auditing, plan reviews, training/training material development and specialist consulting. Since 2015, Colette has been the South African Representative for SC4A (SmartCities4All) which is a leading international organization dedicated to the promotion of inclusivity in both the built and virtual environments. Colette was among the first of international applicants to receive the highest echelon of accreditation, Level 3 Advanced Accessibility Consultant for the Certification of Professionals in Accessible Built Environments (CPABE) Program by the International Association of Accessibility Professionals (IAAP), for which she now serves as an Expert Panel member, along with other international experts in Universal Access. Colette is also currently involved in reviewing local standards in South Africa, she is a welcomed annual guest lecturer on Universal Access at numerous local Universities and she is a founding member and Acting CEO of the AAAP (African Association of Access Professionals).
With a Masters Degree in Universal Design, Colette’s working career started in the NGO sector and she quickly moved into the consulting space. Her working experience in Universal Access and Universal Design Consulting started in 2009 and with her independent company, Inclusive Design, she facilitates the development of environments, services and facilities to be inclusive to all people, with a focus on vulnerable users, including people with disabilities, with the higher objective of changing the world for the better. Her work areas of proficiency related to Universal Design include research, guidelines and standards, implementation plans, onsite access auditing, plan reviews, training and training material development and specialist consulting. Her client list includes tourism, national and local government departments, universities, heritage and historical sites, museums, and cultural places, as well as working with large consulting and engineering companies, as well as in the private and business sectors. As part of the transport sector in South Africa, in which Colette has recently worked most extensively is through assisting local authorities with Integrated Public Transport Networks to achieve Universal Access throughout the travel chain, including operations, marketing and communication, customer care, vehicles, transit orientated development, fare management, skills transfer, passenger information and wayfinding. In this sector she works closely with various groups of engineers to design functional, effective, implementable, and accessible systems, processes and infrastructure. She has also headed research, writing and the development of the National Technical Standard for the South African National Department of Transport.
Colette also currently serves as a SABS (South African Bureau of Standards) Working Group member for TC 0060, who are responsible for the review of Part S: 10400 (2011) Facilities for Persons with Disabilities, as part of the National Building Regulations. She is also a welcomed annual guest lecturer on Universal Access at the University of Cape Town (UCT) for the Disability Studies Programme (MDIS), is a regular guest lecturer at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), and is a founding member and Acting CEO of the AAAP (African Association of Access Professionals), founded in 2019, which is based in South Africa.