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Faculty and Staff

Wyoming Institute for Disabilities

Sandy Root-Elledge, M.A.


Phone: (307) 766-2764

Sandy Root-Elledge, M.A. is the Executive Director of the Wyoming Institute for Disabilities.  Originally hired in 2004 as the coordinator of community education, Sandy has also served as the associate and interim director of WIND.  Her most recent work includes the translation of the Project ECHO model for building professional capacity in health care for use in education, which earned the Wyoming Institute for Disabilities’ designation as an ECHO Institute™ superhub. 

Sandy also directs Wyoming Assistive Technology Resources, the state’s Assistive Technology Act program, UW ECHO, the Wyoming Family to Family Health Information Center, and the Wyoming Accessibility Center – which provides services designed to increase access to information and community for individuals with disabilities. 

As the parent of two adult-age children with disabilities, she provides that perspective to her work and partnerships with state agencies and organizations, including the Wyoming Departments of Health, Workforce Services, Education and the Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities.

Sandy holds an M.A. and B.A. in sociology from the University of Wyoming. Prior to her work at WIND, she was a research associate at the Wyoming Survey and Analysis Center, a program coordinator at Ivinson Memorial Hospital, and a radio and television producer at advertising agencies in Detroit and New York.


Publications (Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles)

Root-Elledge, S. (2014). Growing our own: building capacity in Wyoming for assistive technology. Council for Exceptional Children, Technology and Media Connector. June.

Parent-Johnson, W., Parent-Johnson, R., Sheen, J., Bier, D., MacLean, W., Root-Elledge, S., Olsen, K., and Moras, R. (2014). Statewide strategic planning: promoting postsecondary options for individuals with intellectual disabilities. Think College Insight Brief, Issue No. 23. Boston, MA: University of Massachusetts Boston, Institute for Community Inclusion.

Barrett, S., Morton, S., & Root-Elledge, S., (2012). Service learning: assistive technology undergraduate design projects. Journal of Engineering Education. June.

Barrett, S., Morton, S., & Root-Elledge, S. (2007). Undergraduate design projects to aid Persons with disabilities: reflections. ISA Biomedical Sciences Instrumentation, vol. 43. , pp. 296- 301. April.


Publications (Non-Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles)

Root-Elledge, S., Hardesty, C., Wagner, S. (2015, 2016). Invited submission. Demonstrating the Possibilities: University of Wyoming ECHO in assistive technology is building capacity and demonstrating positive outcomes in Wyoming and beyond. Closing the Gap Solutions. December/January.

Root-Elledge, S., & Hardesty, C. (2015). Wyoming’s novel approach to building capacity in assistive technology: University of Wyoming ECHO in Assistive Technology. Closing the Gap Solutions. October/November.

Root-Elledge, S. and Bowser, G. (2014). Wyoming’s professional learning community approach to building capacity in assistive technology. Closing the Gap Solutions. October.


Publications (Technical Reports)

2003-2004 Student researcher and student author in publications that contributed to state policy decision making related to special education funding, Big Horn Valley development and campus violence.


Presentations (Refereed National and International Abstracts)

Root-Elledge, S. (November 2015). Invited Panelist. Driving Change: UCEDD Visibility and Reach. 2015 Association of University Centers on Disability Conference. Washington, D.C.

Root-Elledge, S. (November 2015). Poster Symposium Presentation. A novel approach to growing leaders for improving student outcomes: translating the Project ECHO® model to build capacity in 6 education. 2015 Association of University Centers on Disability Conference. Washington, D.C.

DiRienzo, S., Hixson, M., Root-Elledge, S. (November 2015) Poster Symposium Presentation. Think College Wyoming pilot: From strategic planning to a successful college outcomes. 2015 Association of University Centers on Disability Conference. Washington, D.C.

Root-Elledge, S. and Hardesty, C. (October 2015). Equal Rights, Equal Access to Assistive Technology: Translating the ECHO model for use in education, a novel approach to professional development in Wyoming and expanding to five additional states. 2015 Southwest Conference on Disability. Albuquerque, NM.

Root-Elledge, S. (2015, August). University of Wyoming ECHO in Assistive Technology Translation, Pilot Study and Preliminary Outcomes. ECHO Institute Superhub Training. Albuquerque, NM.

Root-Elledge, S., Hardesty, C. (2015, July). Invited presentation. University of Wyoming ECHO in Assistive Technology. Health Resources and Human Services, Administration on Community Living, Promising Practices. Washington, D.C.

Regan, D., Cooley Hidecker, M.J., Young, H., Hardesty, C., Root-Elledge, S. (July 2015) Poster Presentation. UW ECHO in Assistive Technology: Capacity building through videoconferencing and mentoring. 2015 ASHA Schools Conference. Phoenix, AZ.

Root-Elledge, S. Victor, C., Bowser, G. (2015, January). UW-ECHO in Assistive Technology – Capacity building through videoconferencing and mentoring. Presentation. Assistive Technology Industry Association Conference. Orlando, FL.

Root-Elledge, S., Hardesty, C., Hubert, S., Westlake, L. (2014, November). Engagement of Wyoming’s Communities of Practice Members to Improve Student Transitions. Poster Symposia. Association of University Centers on Disabilities Conference. Washington, D.C.

Root-Elledge, S., Hardesty, C. (2015, November). Growing Our Own: Building capacity with Wyoming’s professional learning community in assistive technology. Poster Presentation. Association of University Centers on Disabilities Conference. Washington, D.C.

Root-Elledge, S. (2014, September). Invited presenter. Translating ECHO for use in education for assistive technology. A New Norm for Health Care: The First Convening of the Global ECHO Community Conference. Albuquerque, NM.

Root-Elledge, S., McMillan, E. (2014, March). Invited facilitator. Importance of marketing and branding your UCEDD. UCEDD Technical Assistance Institute. Crystal City, VA.

Root-Elledge, S. and Bowser, G. (2014, February). Invited presenter. UW ECHO in Assistive Technology. University of New Mexico’s ECHO Immersion training. Albuquerque.

Zabala, J. with Carson, J., Harris, J.P., Rail, M., Root-Elledge, S., (2013, June). What’s new with accessible Instructional materials. Assistive Technology Act Program Directors National Meeting and Conference. Bethesda, MD.

Exline, M., Gunther, W., Pleasant, J., Root-Elledge, S. (2013, May). Invited Presenter. Supporting AT use in schools. Assistive Technology Act Program Directors National Meeting. Bethesda, MD.

Root-Elledge, S., Goldman, A., Hammond, M., Pavithran, S., Newcomb, A. (2012, November). Invited Presenter. Assistive Technology Reutilization: UCEDD AT Act Programs Leading the Way. Poster Presentation. Association of University Centers on Disabilities Conference. Washington, D.C.

MacLean, W.E., Jr., Root-Elledge, S. (2012, November). WY Think College. 2012 Association of University Centers on Disabilities Conference. Crystal City, VA.

Root-Elledge, S., Hammond, M., Pavithran, S., Newcomb, A. (2011, November). AT Act Programs. Poster Presentation. Association of University Centers on Disabilities Conference. Crystal City, VA.

Root-Elledge, S. (2010, March). Collaborations to Leverage Additional Funding from AT Act Programs. National Conference of Assistive Technology Act Programs. Washington, D.C.

Root-Elledge, S. (2009, June). Partnerships for Mental Health Transformation in Rural and Frontier Communities. National Association of Rural Mental Health Conference. Albuquerque, NM.

Nikkel, P., Root-Elledge, S., Markus, S. (2007, January). Community Readiness: Creatively and Strategically Building and Sustaining Systems of Care through Collaboration, Connection, and Cultural Competency. Sustaining Systems of Care Conference. Atlanta, GA.

Barrett, S., Morton, S. & Root-Elledge, S. (2007, April). Undergraduate design projects to aid persons with disabilities: reflections, in 44th Rocky Mountain Bioengineering Symposium. Denver, CO.

Root-Elledge, S., Wood, C., Heath, D. (2006, October). Navigating the Seamless System of Information in a Frontier State: Wyoming’s Aging and Disability Resource Center. Washington, D.C.

Root-Elledge, S. (2004, November). Wyoming Institute for Disability Branding and 10th Anniversary Campaigns. Association of University Centers on Disabilities Conference. Arlington, VA.


Presentations (Refereed Local and Regional Abstracts)

Root-Elledge, S. (June 2015). Invited Panelist. Complexities of Pediatric Care Coordination and Family Experience. Children’s Hospital Colorado Community and School Health Pediatric Conference. Aurora.

Hardesty, C., Root-Elledge, S., Hubert, S. (2015, March). Members of Wyoming’s Communities of Practice are Improving Wyoming Student Transitions. Poster presentation. UW College of Education Research Symposium, Laramie, WY.

Root-Elledge, S., Chatfield, S., Kappler, S., Locke, B. (2014, July). Invited lead presenter. Contributions of assistive technology for independence and productivity. Disability 2014 Crossroads Conference. Gillette, WY.

Root-Elledge, S. (2014, March). Invited speaker. UW ECHO in Assistive Technology. Wyoming association of special education administrators’ annual meeting. Thermopolis, WY.

Root-Elledge, S., Hubert, S., and Westlake, L. (2013, July). Promising Practices in Pre-School, Residential, and Post-Secondary Transitions: A look at how Communities of Practice will positively impact this effort. Wyoming Leadership Conference. Lander, WY.



Sandy Root-Elledge

Sandy Root-Elledge headshot

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