Columbia Ability Alliance

Columbia Ability Alliance is not just a nonprofit organization; it’s a lifeline for individuals with unique abilities and life barriers.
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Welcome to Columbia Ability Alliance!

In the heart of the Tri-Cities, a beacon of hope and transformation has been shining bright for over six decades. Columbia Ability Alliance is not just a nonprofit organization; it’s a lifeline for individuals with unique abilities and life barriers.

The Evolution of our Brand

Our story is one of evolution, perseverance, innovation and an unwavering commitment to empower individuals with barriers to achieve personal success and contribute to a more accessible and equitable community.

Our journey began in 1963 as the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Benton and Franklin Counties. Families and advocates united with a shared purpose—to improve the lives of individuals with cerebral palsy and other disabilities. Options for employment and social integration were few and far between, so we set out to change that.

What started as a modest initiative soon grew into a force for change, and over the years, our name evolved to Columbia Industries (CI) to better reflect our expanding mission. For decades, the agency focused on and specialized in providing vocational training and on-site employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. As the supported employment landscape changed, our focus shifted from sheltered employment to opportunities for employment within our local community. No longer is it standard to employ individuals with disabilities at one location in limited roles; the focus is now on developing enriching, engaging community-based employment for all.

With this belief in mind, as the agency celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2023, we paused to reflect on our rich history. During this time, we also finalized a strategic plan to guide us into the next phase of growth, which included the decision to rebrand from Columbia Industries to better align with the heart of our mission. Our journey continues to evolve as we embrace our new identity to take us into the next 60 years and beyond: Columbia Ability Alliance.

Transforming a Community

We are not limited by a singular focus; we embrace diversity and aim to address a myriad of challenges faced by our community. From specialized job training and employment services to vocational food service training, opportunities for social engagement and life skills development, and access to foundational support services, our programs work together to create pathways to more independent living.

Our vision transcends our organization’s walls; we aspire to build a community that is accessible and equitable. By providing exceptional services to an increasing number of individuals with unique abilities, we aim to foster diversity and inclusion and establish a thriving, universally accessible community for all to enjoy.

Columbia Ability Alliance’s reach extends to a diverse group of individuals who face unique barriers in life. We stand by those with developmental or physical disabilities, individuals experiencing housing instability, men and women reentering society after incarceration, veterans, those battling addiction, and women escaping domestic violence situations. 

We are inspired by the individuals who have been forced to watch from the sidelines, those who feel like they don’t have a seat at the table, and those who have to fight relentlessly for a fair opportunity to succeed. We see you, we hear you and we are prepared to empower you on your journey to personal success. 

At Columbia Ability Alliance, our story is one of transformation and innovation, from humble beginnings to becoming a powerful local force for empowerment and inclusivity. We are more than an organization; we are a community of change-makers, dedicated to building a better world for all. Together, we are empowering individuals and enriching our community. Together, we are Columbia Ability Alliance.

Why Rebrand to Columbia Ability Alliance?

As we completed our strategic plan in 2023, we realized that our existing identity and the mission we carry out each day were disconnected. We began the process of exploring a rebrand with open minds: we wanted to explore options for a logo update, brand refresh, and complete identity overhaul.

We gathered community perspective by partnering with Focal Point Marketing and Sonar Insights, who, in partnership with our leadership team, crafted and deployed surveys to gain insight into our existing brand and how it was portrayed and received in the community. Key findings were that it felt cold and corporate and didn’t properly express what we do or evoke any compelling emotions. From this data, we knew that this project was more than a brand refresh; it was time to embrace our evolving mission and rebrand entirely.

After extensive brainstorming sessions with key stakeholders, including board members, employer partners and clients we serve, the creative team at Focal Point went to work building new brand concepts. They put together multiple variations of names, color palettes and brand icons, which were tested by two different focus groups: one existing of key stakeholders intimately familiar with our current brand, and one consisting of community members at large. Using insight from those focus group sessions, the top concepts were further refined until the final logo was crafted.


We pay homage to our roots, both historically and geographically, by maintaining the word COLUMBIA in our new identity. The Tri-Cities region is our home; our roots run as deep as the river itself. We live here, work here and provide services to individuals across the region who call this place home. We care deeply about this community and making it a more diverse and inclusive place for all.


Recognizing and celebrating that we each possess unique ABILITIES is essential for nurturing individual potential and fostering personal growth. It empowers individuals to harness their unique talents, contribute meaningfully to society and achieve their fullest potential.


We understand that the definition of success looks different for each person who walks through our doors and that the journey to independence is not achieved alone. An ALLIANCE represents a cooperative and collaborative relationship aimed at enhancing collective strength and achieving shared aspirations.

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