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Nicole Kelly

It is Nicole's mission to educate as many people as possible about those living with disability.

Nicole Kelly has a degree in directing and theatre management from the University of Nebraska- Lincoln and a Masters degree in journalism from Northwestern University. She has worked in various backstage positions at Manhattan Theater Club, The Goodman Theatre, and Steppenwolf Theater Company. She stepped into the roll of public figure after winning the 2013 title of Miss Iowa and going on to compete at the 2014 Miss America Pageant. She gained attention for being one of only a few competitors to have ever competed with a physical disability. After working for a year as Miss Iowa and traveling across the country to advocate for those living with a disability, Nicole transitioned into speaking professionally. Nicole is represented by Keppler Speaking Agency. Nicole proudly co-hosts a podcast about disability culture called Disarming Disability!  Nicole is proud to be an advisory company member of National Disability Theatre, served as the emcee at the Kennedy Center's celebration for the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and has a Siamese cat named Gracie Lou Freebush.

a person speaking in front of an audience
Disability and Management

Disability and Management

30 May 2019

Nicole Kelly and Jenn Poret, two arts managers with disabilities, reflect on the most and least accessible aspects of the jobs, accommodations they need, and the future of accessible theatre management.