Venue Access Academy

The Venue Access Academy offers tools to become optimally effective in providing an accessible and inclusive experience to venue guests. It was developed in response to the growing recognition that people with disabilities make up the fastest growing minority population in the world and greater access for them equals greater equity and inclusion for all.

As part of the Venue Access Academy, venue professionals will have access to a number of live online training sessions that include Core Classes, Specialty Electives, as well as Bonus Workshops. These classes will be offered twice a month and will be 1 hour in length though an additional 30 minutes will be set aside after the class for extended Q & A with the instructor, Dr. Nanette Odell.

In between these courses, venue professionals will have time allotted for one-on-one consulting.

Core classes relate to the following disabilities and/or accommodations:

  • Mobility
  • Vision
  • Hearing
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Mental Illness
  • Service Animals
  • Effective Communication
  • Venue Access as a Foundation to the Guest Experience

Specialty Electives include the following:

  • Best Practices in Game Day Staff Training
  • ADA Seating Dispersion Workshop
  • Accessible Seating: The Built Environment
  • Security Response to Guests with Disabilities
  • Starting an Accessible Seating Klub (ASK)
  • ADA Seating Holds, Relocations and Ticketing Promotion Equity

Bonus Workshops include the following and more:

  • GA Seating
  • Interpreter Placement
  • Challenging Guests and Creative Solutions
  • Starting a Disability Advisory Board
  • Working with Aging Event-Day Staff

Each venue professional needs to complete 10 courses to gain their Venue Access Academy Certificate.


Click below to hear Dr. Odell on the Event Safety Alliance podcast


Dr. Odell is featured in the following articles



James Terry

CEO at Evan Terry Associates, COO at Corada

I've been consulting on architectural accessibility requirements in large assembly facilities for over 25 years. Nanette is undoubtedly one of the most creative and effective problem-solvers in the industry. The assembly area access training program that she presented at the ADA National Symposium with Josh Stein was the best I've ever seen, and I've attended every one I could find for decades. I refer clients to her every year, particularly for her operational and training solutions.

Steven Adelman, Adelman Law Group

Vice President, Event Safety Alliance; Deputy Chair, Global Crowd Management Alliance

Nanette Odell is my go-to ADA expert. If I need to know if someone's professed comfort animal is permissible, I ask Nanette. When can an event patron legitimately avoid wearing a face covering? I ask Nanette. She is smart, hilarious, and passionate about her subject. She sweats the details, and she understands the operational implications of the application of ADA regulations. I have toured venues with Nanette looking for accessibility issues, I have spoken on panels with Nanette, and she has always been unfailingly brilliant and cheerful. Nanette rocks!

Russ Amaral

Arizona Diamondbacks

Nanette has supported the Arizona Diamondbacks and Phoenix Suns organizations with the training of full and part-time staff members, assistance, research and recommendations with many facility renovations, support of hundreds (if not more) events staged in our facilities, and handled many guest-facing issues revolving around ADA and the many issues that can revolve around it.

Nanette is passionate about her role in our organizations, and she shows it on a daily basis. She is very knowledgeable, works diligently at staying current with governmental goings on, and does a great job in making sure we are properly briefed on topics being discussed that may have an affect on how we conduct our business in sports and entertainment.

Bryan White

Arizona Diamondbacks

I have known Nanette for over nine years and was her direct Manager when she worked as the Arizona Diamondbacks ADA Manager. During that time, I learned a lot from Nanette and I can truly say that she is an expert in the ADA field. Her knowledge regarding everything ADA is second to none and her training skills are some of the best that I have seen.

Daren Mitch

VP of Ticket Operations, Phoenix Suns

As VP of Ticket Operations, during Nanette’s tenure as Disabilities Manager with the Talking Stick Resort Arena, I’ve had the pleasure of working with her closely on a regular basis.

During her time at the Arena, Nanette was able to handle a multitude of challenging situations simultaneously in an ever-changing, fast paced environment. Nanette treats coworkers and guests with a high-level of compassion and professionalism while holding a talent to make sensitive judgement calls when necessary. Presented with challenges, Nanette accepts them readily and does not shy away from uncomfortable situations.

Nanette is the kind of team member who strives to deliver a nothing less than an ideal product and takes pride in everything she delivers. When called upon for assistance, Nanette is engaging and eager to help with consistency. Nanette is extremely knowledgeable and used her knowledge to help make our venue easily accessible for individuals with disabilities from the moment they purchased their ticket until the end of the event.