John P.S. Salmen


President of Universal Designers & Consultants, Inc. (UD&C)

John P. S. Salmen, AIA is a licensed architect who has specialized in barrier free, accessible and Universal Design for more than 35 years. He is president of Universal Designers & Consultants Inc., an accessibility consulting firm he founded in 1991 that specializes in the field of designing environments to be usable by people of all ages and abilities, to the greatest extent possible.

Salmen is one of the leading experts in the technical aspects of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and an international leader in the field of Universal Design. Salmen has authored several books including: Accessible Architecture, The Do-Able Renewable Home,Accommodating All Guests and Everyone’s Welcome, has co-authored Universal Design Tips-Lessons Learned from Two UD Homes and published the internationally acclaimed newsletterUniversal Design Newsletter from 1992 to 2013. He has presented hundreds of Universal Design and accessibility seminars, as well as keynote addresses throughout North America and the Pacific Rim.

Salmen has been a voting member of the International Code Council/American National Standards Institute (ICC/ANSI) A117 Committee for more than 20 years and he serves on the Editorial and Scoping sub-committees for the A117.1 Standards for Accessible and Usable Buildings and Facilities. The firm represented the American Institute of Architects on the ADAAG Review Federal Advisory Committee and Salmen was a voting delegate to the 2005 White House Conference on Aging. He has served for many years as an appointed member of the Montgomery County Commission on People with Disabilities (MD).

Having earned his Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Minnesota, he is a member of the American Institute of Architects and is certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB). In addition, he is licensed to practice architecture in the State of Maryland. In his capacities as Technical Director of the National Center for a Barrier Free Environment in Washington, DC and his tenure as Director of Technology & Information for the American Hotel & Motel Association, Salmen has been involved in all aspects of design for people with disabilities and older adults. Today, Salmen devotes his time to code development, facility evaluation, design, construction, accessibility litigation, writing, research and teaching. See more at Universal Designers & Consultants’s Website

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Universal Design (UD) is an approach to design that increases the potential for developing a better quality of life for a wide range of individuals. It is a design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation (Steinfeld and Maisel, 2012). It creates products, systems, and environments to be as usable as possible by as many people as possible regardless of age, ability or situation.