Emily’s CapABLE Story

We're proud to have Emily on our Special Olympics VA team! 

Reposted from the next move program website. For more great capABLE stories, including features on athletes Ray Scannell and Lauren Stokes, visit

Emily is an employee, an athlete, and a Global Messenger for Special Olympics of Virginia. She has many job tasks. “I do a lot of filing, shredding and data entry.”

Emily feels capable because of her ability to draw attention to important causes in our community. “I feel like I am capable because I use social media to fundraise for events like the Special Olympics Polar Plunge and I spread the word about other causes that I care about.” She also has an online blog on which she shares poetry, advice, recipes and her life experiences.

Through her public speaking engagements, her blog and personal interactions, it is obvious that Emily is very open about who she is. “I think my most favorite thing about myself is I like how I conquer my fears. I definitely feel determined to overcome them. It can be hard sometimes, but it really pays off when you can put yourself out there.” She wants people to understand that despite her learning disabilities, she is “ and capable of doing anything that I put my mind to. I also want to be respected because I have many unique abilities that others may not have.”

Her perfect day would include a trip to Atlantis to “, sleep, and play with the dolphins.” Her favorite restaurant is Peking. Emily noted that the best aspect of living in Richmond is having friends and family nearby.

Emily has many goals for the future. “I want to learn how to drive, become a great Special Olympic athlete and live as independently as I can.” She also wants to got back to J. Sargeant Reynolds and continue to take classes, especially in History.

Photo credit: Kourtney Smithson Photography