Press

Press

These press excerpts in the beginning stages of ADPG, LLC allow us to go back and see the difficult times when we struggled to become a viable company.  But we've come a long way!  Looking at those outdated computers makes one wonder at how we got to where we are!


Red rule decorative bar.

Member of The Associated Press. Tri-Parish Times and Business News (USPS 018-368) is published weekly by The Guidry Group, Inc. 4924 Highway 311, Houma, LA  70360, (985) 876-3008.

TRI-PARISH TIMES
            
& Business News

Red rule decorative bar.

Excerpts from the May 29th, 2002 article "Able Disabled Programming Group uses Internet to help charities", by Laura McKnight of the "Tri-Parish Times", a monthly publication serving Terrebonne, Lafourche & St. Mary Parishes.

 Red, decorative vertical bar.

 

"Able Disabled Programming Group uses Internet to help charities"

     For $14.50 a month, consumers can receive quality Internet access, donated money to a charity and give work to disabled people who often have no other job opportunities.
     Able Disabled Programming Group (ADPG), the Berwick-based brainchild of Rand Nini, launched an Internet Access Fundraiser Program (IAFP) earlier this month.
     The company uses contract workers, including disabled people and their caregivers, to complete Internet and computer projects contracted to them by various organizations and businesses.
     Nini and IAFP Director Eric Geibel introduced the IAFP May 9 when Governor Mike Foster's wife, Alice Foster, and Shirley Porter, executive director of Louisiana's The Sunshine Foundation, made an announcement during an after-hours activity at the governor's Franklin home.
     The Sunshine Foundation, a pet project of Alice Foster's, teaches children about self-esteem.  The Baton Rouge-based charity also receives funds from the ADPG's Internet fundraiser program.
     Although Nini and Geibel continue looking for additional charities to help support through the IAFP, they currently deal with three, including The Sunshine Foundation.
     ADPG also works with the Auditory Verbal Center of Atlanta (AVCA) and Baltimore, Maryland-based Kids on the Hill (KOH).  AVCA's motto is "Teaching Deaf Children to Hear and Speak."  KOH works with inner0city youth by giving them alternative creative outlets to graffiti.
     Nini, a physics graduate of Nicholls State University, thought of creating an IAFP about a year and a half ago.
     "From what we can determine, we're the only company in the nation doing what ADPG does," he said.
     Nini said charities enroll in the IAFP at no cost, and receive a percentage of the $14.50 per month fee paid by customers who choose to contribute to that charity of the customer's choice, and the remainder goes to ADPG.
     The IAFP is a North American Internet Service, reaching all 50 United States and every Canadian province.  Nini and Geibel said they hope to work with thousands of charities across the continent to provide them with continual monthly funding.
     To provide Internet access, ADPG has a partnership in technology with Houston-based "acooler Internet Technology."
     Many of ADPG's contract workers cannot leave their homes due to severe disabilities such as those caused by cerebral palsy and polio, or because they serve as a care0giver for someone with severe disabilities.  Lea Guzzetta, who carries a bulk of the weight of web development, is a care-giver who has been with the company almost since its inception.
     "The Internet's the perfect medium," said Nini.
     The Internet allows ADPG's workers, who include local and out-of-state residents, to accomplish their tasks from home.  As contract workers, ADPG pays them by task.  They perform data-entry tasks and elements of web development as ADPG continues to research other possible jobs for them.
     Nini founded ADPG in 1997 as a web development company with the purpose of working with disabled people.  The business is a private enterprise, which does not receive or seek government funding, according to Nini.
     Nini said he grew up in a "wheelchair environment" after his sister, Nila, became confined to a wheelchair in the third grade due to polio.
     "I saw how she didn't let anything stop her," Nini said.
     Although Nila faced numerous obstacles, she graduated as her high school salutatorian and went on to practice 27 years as a registered and certified cytotechnologist, working in cellular cancer detection.
     Through watching his sister, Nini said he realized there were probably a lot of people with Nila's drive and ability, but severe disabilities prevented them from leaving their homes.
     "Able minds, disabled bodies," added Geibel.
     Nini said the work boosts disabled persons' self-esteem.
     "Just talking on the phone with people, you can hear they're excited about starting up," Geibel said.
     Geibel said disabled people are often thrilled at the opportunity to work.
     "So when they do the project, they're 100 percent focused on it.  It's very focused work," he said.
     Geibel also emphasized Nini's dedication to helping those "who have been left out in the past."
     "He (Nini) has dedicated his time, integrity and all of his thoughts to helping these people," he said.  "I think that's a very rare trait in a person today."  
     ADPG serves clients nationwide and internationally, and is "growing very quickly right now," according to Geibel.  
     ADPG has picked up
several "major significant" projects during the past six months, according to Nini, including a data-entry project with an information consulting firm in Silicon Valley, Calif.  Geibel and Nini plan to train a few Houma residents to work on that project, which began last week.
     The additional projects will enable the business to provide work for more disabled people, Nini said.
     Other new projects include a project involving a minority-owned business starting up in Houston and a web development contract for the Louisiana Manufacturers' Mall.
     "We can do everything in the Internet field," said Nini.
     ADPG would like suggestions for additional charities to assist with its Internet Access Fundraiser Program.
     To sign up for ADPG's Internet access, visit www.adpg.net or call toll free at 1-866-248-3592.  Charities interested in working with ADPG may contact the business at (985) 399-2374.
 

     

 

 

Red rule decorative bar.

Judged Number One for Best Advertising Idea and Promotion in the Louisiana Press Association 1997 Better Newspaper Contest.  The only business publication in the state to be so honored.

Bayou Business Review logo

Red rule decorative bar.

Excerpts from the September 18th, 2000 article "Wheelchair work force: St. Mary firm helps disabled find tech jobs", by Jaime Lugibihl of the "Bayou Business Review", a biweekly publication serving Lafourche & Terrebonne Parishes. This article was reprinted in "The Courier", "houmatoday.com", and "The Disability Grapevine".

 Red, decorative vertical bar.

"Wheelchair work force:"

Rand Nini, Managing Member of ADPGBerwick - A small company in St. Mary Parish is giving some wheelchair-bound citizens of the region a unique opportunity.

     Able Disabled Programming Group offers the disabled a chance to work on Internet Websites using their personal computers.  Rand Nini, who founded the business in 1997, said he was inspired to start the business after watching his wheelchair-bound sister succeed.
     "My sister got polio before they had a vaccine," Nini explained.  "Although she has to use a wheelchair for the rest of her life, she doesn't let the wheel-chair stop her.  She graduated high school and earned a college degree."
     "When I watched her drive and ambition, I wondered if there were other handicapped people with her ability that were more severely handicapped and weren't able to get around quite as well," he said.
     When personal and commercial Internet use became widespread in the 1990s, Nini felt that he had found a perfect job solution for disabled individuals who have a difficult time leaving their house.
     ADPG (www.adpg.com) initially specialized in Web design.   However, as demand for its services has increased, ADPG also became a Web presence provider, e-commerce solutions provider - business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C), and an Internet hosting provider.
     "Really, we do anything dealing with the Internet except the actual connection," Nini said.
     Although most of Nini's employees are handicapped or caregivers of handicapped people, he has opted not to seek government assistance.
    "We want to show that an organization like this can exist without government assistance," he said. 
     Nini said as ADPG may be the only business in the United States of its kind that has a work force majority of people with disabilities and passes up government aid.
     "We want to prove that a company with the majority of the people handicapped can succeed like any other business," he said.
     ADPG has earned recognition with three awards in 1999, including two outstanding Website awards and one humanitarian award.
     "I am looking for talent all over the country." he said.  "One of the great things about this business is that we are not restricted geographically.  Anyone with a knowledge of the Internet can work for us."
     Nini is willing to assist in training people in the South Louisiana area, but people outside of the region must be capable of doing the work without being trained.
     "Really, there are more handicapped people out there than we can provide work for.  The more clients we get, the more handicapped people we can hire," he said

IMAGE BOOST
     Kay Thibodeaux, a Houma-Terrebonne Chamber of Commerce employee, has a son, Ryan Burnett, with cerebral palsy.  Ryan has worked for Able Disabled sporadically for the past few years.
     "ADPG has been wonderful," Thibodeaux said.   "Although Ryan's handicap is fairly severe, this give him something that he enjoys doing."
     Although Ryan tried for more than 10 years to get jobs elsewhere in the community, he experienced difficulties because of his handicap and his inability to do most physical labor.
     "Being able to do work at home, on his own time and not being pushed for a deadline really helps a whole lot."  Thibodeaux said.
     "It has definitely meant a lot to him to have something to do everyday," she said.  "He misses it when he doesn't have it."
     Thibodeaux said ADPG has helped improve Ryan's image of himself and change the way other people view him.
     "Personally, I think it is a very worthwhile program," she said.  "It gives my son something to do.  Some people look at someone in a wheelchair and think they are retarded or something.  People who get to know Ryan realize he is bright and can do the same mental work as anyone else."

PERSONAL ATTENTION
Nila Nini, ADPG Representative and Lea Guzzetta, Web Developer
     Marty Ayo had ADPG create a Website for her porcelain-painting business.
     "A young lady named Lea Guzzetta worked on my Website," Ayo said.  "She gave me 100 percent of her attention. Everything I said to do, she did."
     Ayo said she felt Guzzetta showed her attention as though she were her only client.
     "The Website Lea designed for me is very beautiful, and I have been very pleased to work with ADPG," she said.  "The attention I got was so personal as opposed to a large business.  These people became my friends over time.  I feel that I made long-lasting friendships that will last a lifetime."

 



Red rule decorative bar.

The Greater Baton Rouge Business Report logo

It's your business to know....

Red rule decorative bar.

Excerpts from the June 8-21, 1999 article "Technology helps disabled work", by Brian Davis of the Business Report staff, a biweekly publication serving Greater Baton Rouge, features ADPG's own Ryan Burnett.

 Red, decorative vertical bar.

"Technology helps disabled work"

Ryan Burnett is an Internet success story.Ryan Burnett is an Internet success story.

     Born with cerebral palsy, Burnett, 28, of Houma, has a job he could never have held just a few years ago, mainly because the job didn't exist.
     Burnett works for the Able Disabled Programming Group, LLC (ADPG), a one-stop, full-service Internet and Web development company.  The difference with ADPG is the effort company founder Rand Nini has made to hire people who cannot work outside their homes because of disabilities.
     Nini believes technology has allowed individuals with disabilities to compete in the job market.
    
Ryan's keyboard is part of his adaptive equipment he uses at home. "We have people with disabilities working out of their homes in five parishes with their own adaptive computer equipment.  These are people who are too disabled to actually get out into the work place, and that's what makes them so unique," Nini said.
     "I felt I needed to do something, because these are very intelligent people regardless of any handicap they may have."
     ADPG's main office is based near Morgan City in Berwick, LA.  Two others work with Nini in that office; the rest, like Burnett, work out of their homes.  These independent subcontractors have received free training in Web site development from ADPG.
     "We went out and found these very intelligent and gifted people, trained them and found work for them.  Now we have been in business for 1-1/4 years," said Nini.
     Nini credits his idea for the company to his sister, who had polio as a child.  "I grew up being around a handicapped person.   My sister is furiously independent.  She went out and got her BS CT(ASCP) and she has been my inspiration for this."
     Most of the subcontractors had previous computer experience, but their experience was mainly self-taught, according to Nini.  After training, they are not bound to work for ADPG but most do because ADPG helps them find work.
     Mary Cavalier, 35, of Assumption Parish, is another ADPG subcontractor.
     Because of a back and neck injury, working at home for Rand Nini has been a huge convenience and a pleasure," she said.  "Also, working for ADPG has helped us in the area of finances.  I look forward to working from my home computer again."
     Once a company hires ADPG to create a Web page or perform some other Internet service, the central office distributes the different elements of the project to different people depending upon their abilities.  Information, documents and graphics are transmitted to them via the Internet.  When they have finished their assignment they e-mail the completed project back to the main office where it is reviewed for quality.  Each subcontractor then receives pay from the base price of the service.
     Unlike many organizations that employ people with disabilities, ADPG is a for-profit company.
     "We are not nonprofit.  We are not a government agency, nor do we receive any government grants.  This is something else that is unique about our philosophy, in that we want to prove that the handicapped can work successfully with a for-profit company and be an important part of that company's success," said Nini.
      "We have a full range of services.  Anything any other Internet service can do, we can do.  This includes hosting Web sites, ISP (Internet Service Provider) connections in major markets, creating new Web sites and enhancing preexisting sites," Nini said.  "One advantage that we have, however, is that because we have low overhead we can offer competitive pricing and, in addition, one single bill for multiple services.
     ADPG often advises individuals with disabilities, who are interested in this kind of work, on what type of equipment to obtain and always will conduct an interview with the person.
     For Burnett, who has been with the company since the summer of 1997, the job is a perfect match.
     "They expect the job you do to be correct and I give 100 percent on every job I do," he said.  "I really enjoy working for ADPG.   I plan on working for them for a long time."
 
     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

(The telephone interviews for this article were conducted in late 1998.  The article was not published until the issue shown above.) 

 


 

Red rule decorative bar.

Judged Number One for Best Advertising Idea and Promotion in the Louisiana Press Association 1997 Better Newspaper Contest.  The only business publication in the state to be so honored.

Bayou Business Review logo

Red rule decorative bar.

Excerpts from the November 2, 1998 article "Woman helps disabled people find ways to earn", by Tommy Booras of the "Bayou Business Review", a biweekly publication serving Lafourche & Terrebonne Parishes, features ADPG's own Stacey Labat.

 vred-bar2.jpg (873 bytes)

"Our people are very creative....."

Stacey Labat works out of her home on her computer equipment.Getting a job in the business world is tough.  Just ask Stacey Labat.

     A lifelong Thibodaux resident, Stacey earned two business degrees including an M.B.A., from Nicholls State University.  Academically armed, Stacey hoped for the best.

Photo by Karey Boudreaux/BAYOU
BUSINESS REVIEW

     She got the worst.
     Letters and resumes were sent out but rarely acknowledged.   The few interviews she went on were dead ends.  Either the job offer wasn't extended or a lower-level job was offered.
     "I looked good on paper," Stacey said, "but when I showed up for the interview, I could see the looks on their faces.  I could tell they weren't interested."
     Stacey Labat is a paraplegic.  A spinal cord injury left her paralyzed from the waist down.  She gets around in a wheelchair.  And there lies the problem.
     The wheelchair turns employers off," Stacey said.  "My legs don't work, but that's the only thing physically wrong with me.
     My brain works, and my arms work.  But getting past that wheelchair is tough."
     Stacey is with the Able Disabled Programming Group, LLC.   ADPG's focus is finding work for their family of people with disabilities.   ADPG is a one-stop, full-service Internet and Web development company; their personnel can do any type of computer-based and computer-related work.
     "But we'll consider any type of work we can get," Stacey added. "We'll take on any thing a business wants to throw at us and if we can't do it, we'll tell them.  All we ask is a chance to try."
     "Our individuals with disabilities work out of their own homes, on their own adaptive equipment."  Stacey said, "Our people are very creative. If you're in a wheelchair, you learn to be creative.  But I'm amazed at how well our people are able to take an idea and expand it and do things with it that I didn't expect them to do."
     "Our goal as a company is to benefit employers by providing computer services they need and help disabled persons get work."
     With personnel in five area parishes (including Terrebonne and Lafourche), ADPG is soliciting local businesses for possible work opportunities.   Stacey often makes speeches and meets with business leaders in her job as sales and marketing coordinator.  
"Everybody has something to overcome," Stacey said.  "We are able to do different things, just like everyone else."
     "We need the able-bodied community to give us work.  Just give us a chance."

 



Interested In Learning More?

Contact Us for a FREE Consultation Today.
Get Started

What's New

New Websites We have new web sites listed in our Portfolio.
Read More ...
 
MobileApps
 Need an App for your Business? Give us a call at 985-399-2374.