Jill Gravink, Class of 1986

From album:
Jill Gravink, Class of 1986

Jill Gravink grew up in a small town in western New York, close to many cousins, two of whom had muscular dystrophy.  Jill came to the University of New Hampshire primarily to be a ski racer as well as to pursue a career that would allow her to work with individuals who have disabilities. At UNH Gravink found her perfect career path in Therapeutic Recreation. She graduated magna cum laude with a BS in 1986 and was named the Robert Perry Student Athlete of the year. She received an MS from UNH in 2007.

In 1990 Jill founded a small non- profit organization called Northeast Passage, designed to use recreation as the tool to enable individuals with disabilities to achieve independence, inclusion, health and quality of life.  In 2000 after years of successful collaboration, Jill and Northeast Passage were officially invited to merge with the University to become a service and research branch with in the College of Health and Human Services.  Northeast Passage has developed into a nationally recognized award-winning program.  Jill has presented at a White House Roundtable on equal access to sport, received recognition from the American Therapeutic Recreation Association for meritorious service to the profession, received the Profile of Service Award from the UNH Alumni Association and has been inducted into the New England Wheelchair Athletic Association Hall of Fame.