Ms. Wheelchair America 2015: Alette Coble-Temple

by Amy Saffell

Alette Coble-Temple may have been apprehensive to participate in the Ms. Wheelchair California and Ms. Wheelchair America Pageants, but, as it turns out, life events had been pointing her in the direction of becoming a strong advocate for people with disabilities before she even knew what that really meant. Growing up with cerebral palsy in the 1970s, doctors and “professionals” gave her little chance of having any semblance of a productive life. Thankfully, Alette and her parents knew better. Required to attend a special education school at first, Alette and her family fought the school system so that she could attend the same school as all of the other kids in her neighborhood in fourth grade and was fully mainstreamed from then on, where she was only getting started in showing others how capable she truly is.
Alette Coble-Temple 

Alette gave the student commencement speech at her high school graduation and then attended Santa Clara University. She became the first student with a physical disability to live on campus and to join the Zeta Epsilon Chapter of the Delta Gamma Sorority. While at Santa Clara University, she founded the first campus support group for students with disabilities. She earned her Bachelors in Psychology and then attended John F. Kennedy University to obtain her master’s degree. She earned her master’s degree in 18 months and was named her graduating class’ Most Outstanding Student. She wasn’t done with her degrees quite yet! She went on to earn her doctoral degree in psychology at JFK University and was again named Most Outstanding Student. She is now a licensed psychologist and has worked in the areas of disability research and has provided clinical practice to a variety of populations. Last year, she returned to her alma mater and became a psychology professor at JFK University. She also serves as an independent evaluator for the Board of Parole Hearings for the State of California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and is part of numerous professional organizations and conventions as a keynote speaker. Yet, with all of her education, experience, and accolades, she still wasn’t sure that she was cut out to be a titleholder.

Amberley Snyder: A Woman Riding her Way through Adversity and Triumph

By Kara Aiello
Amberley Snyder

 I have had the pleasure of interviewing some amazing women since becoming a writer for, but 24 year old Amberley Snyder is a story I won’t soon forget.  Falling in love with horses as a small child, she now does rodeo professionally and has lived with a spinal cord injury since 2010. 

Her life’s passion with horses began at the age of three when she took weekly riding lessons in her home state of CA. But due to frustrations with her legs being too short to pass the saddle pad so she could kick the horse to go faster, she decided to leave horse- back riding and join two of her siblings (she’s one of six kids) in their sports and hobbies which included gymnastics, dance and karate.  Once she grew a bit, she went back to riding, and although CA did not have competitions for rodeos, she would take her pony Gabby out and set up cones to do her own barrel pattern.  At the age of seven, the family decided to move to Utah and Amberley would only move if her dad, who was a professional base-ball player, got her a barrel horse when there.  He followed through and she got her first horse Lacey.  Rodeo became a huge passion from the first time she competed and has stuck with her ever since. But this passion was challenged when on January 10th 2010, Amberley was in a car accident.  

MobileWOMEN Life Hacks

By Amy Saffell
MobileWOMEN columnists have banded together to bring you a list of our favorite life hacks…those random things in life we do to make living life in a chair a little easier. We hope that you read something worth trying in your own life. We’d love for you to share your own life hacks on our mobileWOMEN Facebook page so that other readers can learn from you, too!

     -    I’m a quad and use a battery operated letter opener. The letter slides through automatically and opens.
Electric Letter Opener
-          I wipe my wet hands after I wash them or come in from the rain on the back of my pants. No one will ever see it!
-          I always buy the drawstring trash bags so that I can put the tied drawstring over my handle bars on the back of my chair to pull it outside so that I can keep my hands free to push my chair and my lap free.
-          I clip my shopping bags at the mall into my chair’s seatbelt so that I don’t have to hold them and know that they’re safe. 

Functional Fashion: The Time IZ Now

by Amy Saffell
Every wheelchair user knows the perils of shopping for clothes. Clothes right off the rack at the local mall often either don’t fit well, don’t look right sitting down, or are hard to get on and off, leading either to expensive alterations or to just giving up and resorting to wearing clothes that the person really doesn’t want to wear. It often seems like designers don’t give a second thought to the different needs of people with disabilities. Thankfully, we see a glimmer of hope that fashionable clothing is becoming more functional for people with disabilities thanks to renowned Canadian fashion designer, Izzy Camilleri.