Partnering for Employment First

The Colorado Office of Employment First is part of a large collaborative working together to achieve meaningful and inclusive employment for all people with disabilities.
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JFK Partners

JFK Partners has been a program of the Department of Pediatrics of the University of Colorado School of Medicine since 1965. As a program of the Section of Developmental Pediatrics, JFK Partners is designated as Colorado’s University Center of Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) and Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND) Program.

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Employment First Advisory Partnership

Multi-agency and stakeholder-led collaborative formed by the Colorado Legislature to plan and monitor Employment First legislative initiatives.

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Colorado APSE

CO Association of Persons Supporting Employment First represents a network of constituents, members, and lawmakers who believe that anyone who wants to work CAN work!

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State Rehabilitation Council

Partners with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation for the purpose of advancing the common goal of increasing employment of eligible Coloradans with disabilities.

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Arc of Colorado

Promotes and protects the human rights of people with intellectual disabilities and actively supports full inclusion and lifetime participation in the community.

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Alliance Colorado

Nonprofit, statewide association of Community Centered Boards and Program Approved Service Agencies working to strengthen services and supports for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.


Colorado Developmental Disabilities Council

A 24-member body appointed by the Governor to advise the Governor and General Assembly on matters impacting persons with developmental disabilities. The Colorado DD Council advocates for the development and implementation of public policy to further the independence, self-determination, and community inclusion of Coloradoans with living with developmental disabilities.


Center for Inclusive Design and Engineering (CIDE)

CIDE is an applied interdisciplinary and human-focused innovation center for engineers, students, clinicians, consumers and entrepreneurs, with our academic home in the Department of Bioengineering. The center creates opportunities for stakeholders to address the myriad challenges experienced by those living with disabilities through technology.

State Agency Partners


Health Care Policy and Financing

Administers Colorado’s Medicaid program and serves as key partner on employment services within several Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waivers.

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Division of Vocational Rehabilitation

Assists individuals with disabilities to prepare for, obtain, advance and maintain employment and administers the Centers for Independent Living.

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Department of Education

Provides leadership, resources, support and accountability to the state’s schools and school districts to meet the needs of public school students, including students with disabilities through the School to Adult Life division.

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Office of Behavioral Health

As part of the Colorado Department of Human Services, administers mental health and substance use disorder services and serves as key partner on Individual Placement and Support programs within Colorado’s mental health centers.

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Department of Higher Education

Supports students, advocates and develops policies to maximize higher education opportunities for all, including people with disabilities.

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MINDSOURCE – Brain Injury Network

Lead state agency on brain injury at the Colorado Department of Human Services.

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The Colorado Office of Employment First sits under JFK Partners, the state’s University Center of Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, a program of the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Its creation was envisioned by Colorado Employment First Advisory Partnership (EFAP), a multi-state agency and stakeholder-led collaborative, and was made possible, in part, by funding from the Colorado Legislature and generously matched through the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) at the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE).

© 2023 Colorado Office of Employment First. All Rights Reserved.

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