We had the good fortune of connecting with Sayeed Mehrjerdian and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sayeed, how does your business help the community or world?
iAccess is a lifestyle application that allows users with mobility impairments to share their experience with accessibility at various venues and events. Users can rate, review and search for places like restaurants, hotels, sporting venues and retail stores based on the accessibility of the parking, entrance, seating and bathroom. Features that are on our product roadmap include an inclusive event feed, booking for accessible travel accommodations (hotels, flights, events) and a recommended products engine. Future versions of the application will allow users with other types of disabilities such as hearing impairments, vision impairments and even autism to rate public establishments based on facets and attributes that are personalized to their specific disability. Our goal is to help everyone access life, as stress free as possible by being your guide to accessible events and venues. iAccess is for those ready to embark on a new adventure and an unforgettable experience. Through empowering users with various disabilities, we hope to create an awareness around accessibility issues and how easily they can be addressed. Our app is NOT only for those with disabilities, it’s for everyone. Anyone can be an advocate for accessibility by simply looking at the world through the eyes of someone else who may not have it as easy. We have a passion for creating moments and we want to be the catalyst for yours. Don’t look for change, BE the change!
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am an Atlanta native and the first person in my entire family to be born in the United States. My father emigrated to the US from Iran and my mother from Venezuela. I graduated from Georgia Tech in 2011 with a degree in Industrial & Systems Engineering, with a focus on Economic Decision Analysis. While I originally started my career in Warehousing and Inventory Analysis with Home Depot, I transitioned to E-Commerce with Ace Industries and have progressed in my career as a Business Analyst with a digital marketing company (Qiigo), product owner at an E-commerce company (Purchasing Power) and I am currently a Product Manager at WarnerMedia in addition to being one of the founders of iAccess Life. Being a 2nd generation American has provided me an interesting a path to where I am today. My parents sacrificed a lot, both leaving their entire families behind to come start a new life and I am so happy they met each other early on and were able to navigate this country together. They provided me an amazing home life and stressed the importance of education and without them I wouldn’t be where I am today. They have taken me all over the world and that experience has taught me to appreciate what I have and to keep an open mind in every situation. Seeing how other parts of the world live really puts things into perspective. I want to be known as someone dependable, who puts family and friends first and who uses my intelligence and experience to solve problems that improve the quality of life of others.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
My favorite things to do in Atlanta include catching a meal on Buford Highway, its an ethnic treasure trove of foods from various countries and its not to hard on the wallet either. Pre-covid, one of my favorite things to do was hit an Atlanta United game at the Benz, what an infections atmosphere. On the weekends, I love to head up 75 and take my Kayak down the hooch or hit up Blankets Creek for some mountain biking. Whenever I need to blow off some steam, I will hit some Golfballs at the Northcrest driving range. I love live music and will regularly catch shows at some of my favorite venues including Terminal West and The Tabernacle. If I am looking to catch a fancier meal I love Storico Fresco in Buckhead and Gunshow in Glenwood park. For a night on the town, I typically will head right down the street from my house and grab some dinner and mock-tails in downtown Decatur. Atlanta is a fantastic city with a ton of great food and entertainment. We have a very diverse population and a huge talent pool. I absolutely love this city and have moved away twice only to come back because I missed it too much.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My Co-founder Brandon was injured in 2008 in Motocross accident that left him paralyzed from the waist down. As a result of living and breathing the issue we are trying to solve, Brandon was the originator of this idea and provides much of the thought leadership that guides our mission. Brandon understands the plights of navigating the world as someone who is a wheelchair user and the limitations and lack of trustworthy publicly available information. Brandon’s real world experience with this problem coupled with his adventurous nature and impeccable drive perfectly pairs with my product management experience and technical acumen and together we hope to go FAR.