Haben Girma Is Harvard’s first deafblind graduate

Haben Girma, an advocate for the civil rights of persons with disabilities, is the first deaf-blind graduate to graduate from Harvard Law School.

Girma, who joined Disability Rights Advocates in 2013, went on to become a Staff Attorney earlier this year and her story is one which is truly uplifting.

The 27-year-old Eritrean-American (Eritrea is a small country in North East Africa) has managed to achieve one of the highest academic honours, proving that determination and perseverance can yield truly amazing results.


Girma provided the introductory remarks celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) at the White House a few months ago. At the event she spoke of her Grandmother, who still lives in Eritrea, and how she struggled to find support for her Grandson (Haben’s brother was also born with the same condition).  As a result of this, the Girma family moved to the US where Haben was born and subsequently able to receive care under the ADA.

A TED Talk by Girma goes into detail about her work, which is wholly inspiring is available to watch below.



Colin J McCracken

Colin J McCracken is a content designer, editor and writer from Ireland. Giving form and function to the My Good Planet vision, it has been his role to design and develop the online platform, content and presence of the project.

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