Princeton Design Guild Founder Receives Award for Blazing Trails for People with Disabilities
(Friday, June 4, 2010, Princeton, NJ)- In 1991, The New York Times named Eddie C. Moore the “Embattled advocate for the disabled.” Moore’s mantra was that what people with disabilities need should always outweigh bureaucratic constraints. Eddie Moore headed the Human Services Division of Developmental Disabilities. During his tenure (1981-1988) he phased the institutional population of persons with disabilities from 8,100 to 4,700 people.
His untimely death at 41 coupled with his public resignation resulted in him remaining a hero in which he left a legacy in the human service field as it relates specifically about people with disabilities. Moore dramatically increased public awareness of the aptitudes and potential of people with disabilities.
In Moore’s honor, Robert Stack, Founder, President and CEO of Community Options, a national nonprofit that develops housing and employment for people with disabilities and long-time friend of Moore in tandem with his board created the Eddie C. Moore award in 1997 to recognize a public servant that has done exemplary service to improve the lives of people with disabilities.
On Saturday, May 22, 2010, the second recipient of the Eddie C. Moore Award was given to Kevin Wilkes, AIA, Founder and Managing Director of Princeton Design Guild. Kevin has worked with Community Options for many years as a contractor on a majority of the properties that are owned by the organization. Kevin and his team work tirelessly to ensure that from design to installation, every single aspect of each building is not only ADA compliant but flawless in design and sustainability.
The most recent project Wilkes has completed is Just Add Water, a café style teashop and corporate training facility in Hillsborough that will be run by Community Options as their sixth social enterprise in the state of New Jersey. Wilkes made exceptional allowances in the space ensuring that every person with a disability working in the space would have complete accessibility to anything they would need and move freely around to be successful in their new jobs. Wilkes consistently demonstrates and advocates for the needs of people with disabilities to ensure their success.
Wilkes is a long-time resident of Princeton and also serves as a Borough Councilman and Princeton Police Commissioner. He is an advocate with local municipalities to develop affordable housing for people with disabilities. For more information about Community Options, please visit www.comop.org.