WYNN NEWHOUSE 1954 - 2010
As a young man, Wynn Newhouse lost functional use of one hand in an industrial accident. He was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in midlife. As he became increasingly constrained by MS he learned about the negative perceptions that many persons have about people with disabilities. He set out to correct these false public impressions, and began several programs to nurture outstanding talents.
Wynn knew that talented people having disabilities are exceptional contributors in many fields. He partnered with para-Olympic athletes to build elegant and competitive hi-tech sports equipment for top disabled athletes. He joined the Board of the Disability Law Center in Boston to help his constituents obtain the equal opportunities they deserve.
Wynn learned that many disabled youths are often excluded from after school programs for legal or social reasons, or because providers are poorly trained in inclusion skills. He initiated a project that enabled young people with disabilities to participate in over 50 arts, recreational, learning and sports programs. Hundreds of promising disabled kids in Boston were the beneficiaries.
Wynn built guitars and loved '60s-'70s rock music, He also was an avid art collector. In 2005, he conceived of the Wynn Newhouse Awards, a program to give grants to talented fine artists having disabilities. Wynn was joined by top artists, curators, and critics who shared his belief that many "disabled" people have unique insights and skills that can enhance their ability to create exciting art. This program will continue through 2016 in his memory.