Currently alive, at 34 years of age.
Jerrica Mah was born on November 27, 1985 in Lancaster, California. Her parents, Randy and Sandy McDowell, are small business owners. She has an older sister, Cherish McDowell, who is a TV producer in Los Angeles, California. Jerrica married SFC Joseph Mah of the US Army in 2009 and they have a son and daughter.
In high school, Jerrica was very active in volunteer work with her church and her school. She regularly worked on Special Olympic events in her community. She graduated high school in 2003 as salutatorian with a 4.15 GPA. She attended the University of California, Davis, where she graduated early in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Anthropology and a minor in Japanese.
After receiving her degree, Jerrica realized she couldn’t ignore her family roots in small business. She wanted to control her job and her future, so she became the fourth generation involved in the family business as estimator and project manager. She continued in management positions with her family business until 2015 when she had her daughter. With two young kids, she decided to become a housewife and focus her time on her children.
But Jerrica was never able to turn off her entrepreneurial spirit. As a housewife, she developed a business in her spare time to benefit the disabled community that was inspired by her long-time best friend. Jerrica met her best friend, Varonica Priest, in Junior High shortly before Varonica underwent major back surgery. Varonica was born with an undiagnosed disability that affects her muscle strength, among other things. They quickly became inseparable and have been so ever since.
Realizing her friend faced obstacles in the modern dating world, Jerrica has made it her mission to break down barriers and eliminate stigmas when it comes to romantic relationships, friendships, and disability. She was dissatisfied and even angered by the few disability-niche dating sites that existed. Some focused too much on a person’s disability and others went as far as matching primarily based on disability. As Jerrica says, her friend is more than her disability and matching her based on her disability is like matching brunettes with brunettes—it just doesn’t make sense. Worst of all, most of the sites segregated the disabled community from the able-bodied community, not allowing able-bodied people to join.
Once Jerrica saw how people with disabilities were being underrepresented in the internet dating world, she took it upon herself to make it better. Through trial and error and constant strategizing, Jerrica launched a disabled dating site LoveAbility.org in February 2019. LoveAbility is an inclusive dating site and friend-finding service for people of all abilities, but the online company has another mission as well. LoveAbility donates 50% of their profits back to the disabled community. As Jerrica puts it, “Like our lives, money should serve a greater purpose. While my share of the profits will make life easier for my family, it is the 50% we donate that will make us happier. It is that 50% I am most excited about.”
Jerrica Mah has recently partnered with SEO marketing expert, Mark Goodman, to skyrocket the success of LoveAbility. As a team, they are going to make LoveAbility a dominant online dating platform that will break down barriers for people with disabilities. It is also their goal to donate millions of dollars in the years to come to disabled individuals, families, organizations, and charities.