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Welcome Chris Stewart, New NCE Chair

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Chris Stewart

We’re excited to give a warm welcome to our new NCE Chairperson, Chris Stewart! Chris takes his place as NCE Chair with a rich history at The Arc that goes back decades. He shared a bit of that history with us, as well as what he hopes to accomplish during his term.

How did you come to be involved with NCE?

In 2013 or 2014, Peter Berns came to Birmingham for a meeting with community business leaders. At the end of the meeting, we exchanged pleasantries and he told me I had been nominated to the NCE Steering Committee and asked if I was interested in serving. After I realized he wasn’t kidding, I said yes and never really gave it a second thought.

Fast forward to Disability Policy Seminar and I am besieged by Tony Anderson and Tim Hornbecker, then Chair and 1st Vice Chair of NCE. Although neither knew me, we laughed for three days, they were so welcoming and showed such passion for the people we serve, making a difference and NCE that I knew this was a group I wanted to be associated with.   

What do you hope to achieve by the end of your term as NCE Chair?

Honestly, I feel the weight of the four incredible past chairpersons I served under. If I could make other people, especially new execs, feel as welcome and part of The Arc and NCE family as those four did for me, I would be happy. With that, I believe our membership would continue to grow and even more people would take advantage of the wide array of incredible professional development and networking opportunities NCE has to offer.  

What’s your favorite part of being involved with The Arc?

I have family members with IDD that never received services. I see their faces in the people we serve, and I feel like I am making a difference. I love The Arc for giving me that opportunity. 

What’s another passion of yours outside of the disability sector?

Although I’m a transplant, in my soul I am a southerner. There is a stillness here I have not found anywhere else. I love spending time with my family most of all. Watching Alabama football with my daughter who is a freshman at the University. Roll Tide! Fishing with my son, visiting our incredible beaches and traveling all over God’s creation. I hope we laugh our way around the world a few times before my time is up.