The late Steven James Tingus reached new heights as a David among Goliaths, with his clarion cry advocating for inclusivity for all people

From the White House to Hollywood, Disabled ‘Superhero’ Steven J. Tingus, Valiantly Fought for Equal Access to Employment, Health Care, Education & Housing.

As a student volunteer at Shasta High I observed brutes & bullies ostracizing ‘Special Ed kids”, making them the punch line of toxic jokes, bigotry & hate speech. S. J. Tingus was a force for change.”

— Cristiane Roget,

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, USA, December 8, 2022 / — By Cristiane Roget, Sr. Correspondent AdAvenueGroup, Mariam Ghaly, Editor

Los Angeles/CA Steven James Tingus‘ passing last week was poignant and heartening in more ways than the words allowed in this standard media alert. At age 3 Steven was diagnosed with an extremely rare form of muscular dystrophy. With an estimated 250,000 persons diagnosed yearly in the USA there is no known cure for dystrophin-associated muscular dystrophies.

In the latter mid-century children such as Steven were relegated to “Special Ed” classes. All orthopedically and educationally challenged, hearing and seeing impaired or those with real or perceived disabilities were lumped together as ‘misfits’ making them easy targets for derision and bullying.

Steven’s indomitable spirit and his late parents, Joanne and Jim Tingus tenacity distinguished him as one of the first students with disabilities mainstreamed into the California public school system. He was later inducted into his high school Hall of Fame, Davis Senior High School. Earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences from the University of California, Davis, he went on to achieve a Master of Science degree in 1990 and Ph.D. ABD in Physiology in 1994. Steven accomplished all of this despite arduous physical challenges such as holding a paper cup.

Steven ‘The Titan’ Tingus received the “Best New Freedom Individual Award” from the Jim Mullen Foundation. Other recipients included Christopher Reeve, a fellow superhero in cinema for his portrayal of ‘Superman’ and in real life. Appointed by Governor Pete Wilson, Steven advanced Health Care Policy Analysis for the State of California Department of Health Services. Under President George W. Bush he served 8 years as Director of the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research.

Appointed by Secretary Paige to lead the U.S. Department of Education New Freedom Initiative (NFI) he went on to become Director of Resource Development for the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers, Inc. and the associated non-profit, Assistive Technology Network.

Steven was recognized for his clarion call globally as a disability advocate. He testified on State Legislation affecting disability policy issues, ranging from special education, Medicaid eligibility guidelines, home modification, universal design, assistive technology and long-term care under the American Disabilities Act.

As the adage goes, ‘All work and no play would make Steven a dull boy’; in 2013, he took his advocacy for disability inclusion to Hollywood earning kudos as a champion on the movie screen. He partnered with Diverse City Entertainment to focus on developing new storylines that accurately portray individuals with disabilities and others with health-related challenges.

Along with a role in the Twin Peaks revival, Steven’s appearance in the Lenny Kravitz “Here to Love” music video in 2002 still resonates today for its heartening message. Steven hosted Ideagen TV, an OTT podcast for the Tingus Entertainment Network (TEN) with programming that embraced diversity inclusion in the entertainment industry. Steven interviewed Casting Director/Producer, Leah Daniels-Butler, among many others who are elevating talent with disabilities while advancing scripts that resonate with us all. The Ideagen TV Podcast link:

Tingus earned a producer’s credit for the multi award-winning documentary ‘Fireburn’ directed by Joel Fendelman. The historically significant retelling of the 1876 ‘Fireburn’ uprising in St. Croix portrays courageous black women willing to risk their lives to advance justice and stem labor inequality.

In 2022, Steven James Tingus co-produced and co-starred in Urban Renaissance Entertainment’s, Triggered, a Cinematic Superhero Fan Film, with a feature film length version in development.

Triggered premiered at the acclaimed Indie Night Film Festival, Saturday, December 3rd, 2022 at the iconic Hollywood, CA – TCL Chinese Theatre. Steven was lauded for his portrayal of the ominous ‘James’ aka ‘The Director’. Met with resounding applause for his gripping acting ability and as a voice for social equality he graced the stage thanking his co-producer and co-star Marcus Nel-Jamal Hamm for “walking the walk and talking the talk.”

Upon the ride home from the singular celebration he nodded with a sweet smile and proclaimed, “My work here is done”.

Triggered Screening TCL Chinese Theatre – Saturday, December 10th, Admission Tickets:
Steven is survived by brother and sister-in-law Michael and Jaime Tingus, sister and brother-in-law Tina and Mark Harris and nephews and nieces Garrett,
Kaitlyn, Blake, Timmy, Madeline.

Cristiane Roget
Vector International Pictures/AdAvenueGroup
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Steven James Tingus in his ominous portrayal of ‘James’ aka ‘Director’ in the soon to be released ‘Triggered’ co-starring Marcus Nel-Jamal HammMarcus