Barbara Goldman

MA, CEO
Barbara's commitment to children with disabilities began when she earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Childhood Education and Education of the Visually Impaired from Syracuse University. Barbara earned a Master of Arts in Education of the Visually Impaired from Teachers College, Columbia University. While teaching the visually impaired at a local school district, Barbara initiated a unique approach to teaching children with severe, multiple disabilities. Utilizing evidence-based practices, she launched a transdisciplinary program designed to improve outcomes for the district’s most challenged and complex children. The success of this program, was the impetus for her founding TEAMability in 2003. Barbara and her husband love traveling, both abroad and to visit their three children and two grandchildren.

Barbara Goldman Biography

Barbara Goldman, founder and CEO of the nonprofit TEAMability, began her journey of serving children with disabilities when she met Ronita, a blind student in upstate New York, during eighth grade. Witnessing Ronita’s struggles and her family’s determination to support her education impacted Goldman profoundly. Despite the lack of legal mandates for accommodating disabilities at the time, Ronita’s parents advocated tirelessly for her inclusion in the school system, providing the necessary resources themselves. Inspired by Ronita’s story, Goldman pursued a major in special education, specializing in blindness and visual impairment, at Syracuse University and furthered her studies with a Master of Arts in Education of the Visually Impaired from Teachers College at Columbia University.

In her early career, Goldman served as a teacher for the visually impaired in Syracuse City Schools. Later, she embraced a role in a small private school in Baltimore, where she taught children with various intellectual disabilities, including autism. These experiences solidified Goldman’s commitment to supporting children with disabilities and shaped her approach to inclusive education and advocacy, laying the foundation for her leadership at TEAMability. 

After raising her family, Goldman returned to the classroom after a 20-year hiatus and encountered a significant shift in the student population, with medical advances altering the landscape of disabilities. Goldman embraced this new chapter with determination, advocating for the success and capabilities of her students. Her passion for empowering children with disabilities by creating teams of experts led her to co-found TEAMability. This nonprofit organization provides transdisciplinary support tailored to each child’s unique needs. Through this innovative approach and unwavering commitment, Goldman has transformed countless lives and reshaped community perceptions of disability over the past 20 years. 

A pivotal partnership with philanthropist Gordon Hartman in 2006 marked a turning point for TEAMability, as his support and mentorship enabled the organization to establish a dedicated center for its services. Through Goldman’s visionary leadership, TEAMability thrived, expanding its reach and impact within the community. The organization’s budget experienced remarkable growth, from $800,000 to more than $3 million, reflecting its increased capacity to serve about 150 families in need. The pivotal role of TEAMability as the therapy anchor of Morgan’s Multi-Assistance Center (The MAC) further solidified its position as a beacon of hope, with Goldman’s unwavering commitment guiding its continued growth and success. 

Goldman’s philosophy at TEAMability revolves around recognizing the inherent human potential in every individual, especially those with disabilities. In a society that often overlooks or dismisses their abilities, Goldman and her team foster a culture of empowerment and discovery. Looking ahead, Goldman envisions extending TEAMability’s services to include additional adult clients, recognizing their unique challenges as they transition into adulthood.

At TEAMability, every client is viewed not as a passive recipient of care, but as a capable individual with unique strengths waiting to be fully discovered. Through personalized support and encouragement, Goldman and her team help TEAMability clients realize their abilities and embrace the joy of accomplishment, whether a simple vocalization or a significant developmental milestone. 

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