The 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act ushered in an era of unprecedented access for people with disabilities. This prompted Braun to revolutionize transportation again by introducing the Entervan, a minivan with a lowered floor and gentle sloping ramp. The Entervan quickly became the flagship product line at Braun, and for over 20 years, it has given independence to thousands. Today Braun offers accessible conversions on Dodge, Chrysler, Toyota and Honda minivans, as well as lifts for any transportation need.
Braun created the Ralph Braun Foundation in 2010 to give valuable financial assistance to people with disabilities who don’t have the ability to purchase a wheelchair accessible van. The Braun Corporation celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2012.
Braun may have had very humble beginnings, but his company now employs 850 people and is a respected leader in the adaptive transportation industry, having received many honors, including being named a Champion of Change by President Barack Obama in 2012. He also was inducted into the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association Hall of Fame in 2012. A week before he died, Braun was given the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserves Patriot Award for the support of his employees who serve in the military.
"While Ralph made a significant impact in the world of accessibility, he left an even greater imprint on mankind,” said Nick Gutwein, president of The Braun Corporation, “proof that, yes, you may be different from most people, but those differences are not limiting. In fact, those differences, combined with the drive to succeed, can lead to greatness."
Braun is survived by his wife, Melody; his children, Cherie Braun-Diaz, Todd Braun, Brent Braun, Drew Braun and Melissa Dennis; eight grandchildren; and one sister, Joan Heath.