June 20, 2024

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President Biden Announces Key Appointments to the President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities

President Biden Announces Key Appointments to the President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities

WASHINGTON – Today, President Biden announces his intent to appoint the pursuing folks to provide as users on the President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities:

  • Shawn Aleong
  • Paul Aronsohn
  • Paul Boskind
  • Eva Bunnell
  • James T. Brett
  • Hillary Dunn Stanisz
  • Kara Jones
  • Nicole Jorwic
  • Cathy Kanefsky
  • M. Brent Leonhard
  • Joseph M. Macbeth
  • Gabriel Martinez
  • Lucy Meyer
  • Tia Nelis
  • Santa Perez
  • Nick Perry
  • James Trout
  • Wendy Strauss
  • Liz Weintraub
  • Jordyn Zimmerman

The President’s Committee on Persons with Mental Disabilities serves as a federal advisor to the President and the Secretary of Overall health and Human Solutions on issues relating to folks with intellectual disabilities. The Committee has 21 citizens users who provide two-12 months conditions. Men and women appointed to this Committee reflect the diversity of The us and incorporate people with intellectual disabilities and their spouse and children members, scientists, services providers and other professionals, community and small business reps, and programs advocates.

Shawn Aleong, Member, President’s Committee for Persons with Mental Disabilities

Shawn Aleong is a youthful African American man with cerebral palsy and an intellectual disability, as properly as a incapacity and civil rights activist. He is a sophomore at Temple College, where by he research Lawful Scientific tests, Actual Estate, and Finance. Aleong serves as Senior Advisor to Temple Pupil Government and sits on the Board of Advisers for Temple’s Institute on Disabilities. He is also an intern at Disability Rights Pennsylvania and a member of the NAACP. Previously, he was a member of Philadelphia’s Police Advisory Fee and the Board of Administrators for The Arc of Philadelphia, an firm that advocates for the legal rights of individuals with disabilities.

Paul Aronsohn, Member, President’s Committee for Individuals with Mental Disabilities

Paul Aronsohn at present serves as New Jersey’s statewide Ombudsman for Individuals with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities and Their People – a posture to which he was appointed by Governor Phil Murphy in April 2018. As these kinds of, he serves as the administration’s guide advocate and ally for New Jersey inhabitants in will need of critical services and supports ranging from early childhood as a result of adulthood. Aronsohn has held positions in equally the community and non-public sectors, serving as Mayor of Ridgewood, NJ as effectively as at the U.S. Office of State throughout the Clinton Administration. Aronsohn’s knowing and passion for incapacity problems is rooted in his family working experience. He uncovered so considerably from his siblings, like his sister Patti, who lived her lifestyle with disabilities as well as with massive power, braveness, grace, and magnificence. He also discovered from their mom, Margot, who was his sister’s major caregiver.

Paul Boskind, Member, President’s Committee for People with Mental Disabilities

Paul Boskind, PhD is a accredited psychologist and Founder and Main Govt Officer of Deer Oaks, a Behavioral Wellbeing Business. Boskind is a Particular person with Incapacity, as he is legally blind. His doctoral software focused on scientific and school psychology, and his doctoral dissertation was on adjustment to bodily disabilities with a emphasis on adjustment to blindness. He has worked with the disabled population at Helen Keller Products and services for the Blind, the Epilepsy Basis, and the Lighthouse for the Blind. Boskind is skilled in performing with persons with intellectual disabilities across the age span and in several options, including working day procedure courses, group residences, sheltered workshops, and college options. He serves on the Management Council of the Basis Combating Blindness, the Advisory Council of the San Antonio Lighthouse for the Blind, and the Incapacity Rights Performing Team at the Berkeley Middle on Comparative Equality and Anti-Discrimination Legislation at UC Berkeley School of Law.

Eva Bunnell, Member, President’s Committee for Folks with Intellectual Disabilities

Eva Bunnell is a very pleased, previous federal staffer. She served in the congressional office of Agent John B. Larson (CT-01), soaring to District Director, and most lately as a Senior Partnership Professional and Congressional & Tribal Regional Direct, New York Census Location, for the 2020 Census. In the course of her time as a federal worker, she won the John Joseph Moakley Award for Exemplary Community Company and the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2020 Bronze Award-Congressional Group. She has also served as Director of Government Relations for the Connecticut Children’s Healthcare Centre and as a loved ones advocate for families who have small children with special needs. Bunnell now serves as President of the Board of Administrators for The Michael Bolton Charities. Bunnell is most proud of remaining spouse to her husband, Charles, and mom to 4 little ones. Her initially youngster, who handed absent at the age of 26, was born with a severe brain disease that remaining her profoundly disabled and medically fragile. Her stunning daughter, Jacinta, was then-Senator Christopher J. Dodd’s inspiration for the federal Family members and Clinical Go away Act. 

James T. Brett, Member, President’s Committee for Folks with Mental Disabilities

James T. Brett has served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of The New England Council, the nation’s oldest non-partisan regional organization affiliation, since 1996. Brett is a disability rights advocate, serving as Chairman of both of those the Massachusetts Governor’s Commission on Intellectual Disability and the Disabled Individuals Defense Fee. He also serves as Vice Chairman on the Countrywide Council on Incapacity. Earlier, Brett was President of the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Affiliation for Mental Wellbeing. He was inducted to the Massachusetts Particular Olympics Hall of Fame and bestowed The Edward M. Kennedy Leadership Award by Incapacity Law Middle. University of Massachusetts Boston founded the James T. Brett Chair, the nation’s only endowed chair in incapacity and workforce advancement. 

Hillary Dunn Stanisz, Member, President’s Committee for Men and women with Mental Disabilities

Hillary Dunn Stanisz has an older brother with Angelman Syndrome, and, as a final result of this practical experience, she has devoted her job and volunteer things to do to assisting people today with disabilities and their households. Dunn Stanisz is a Senior Attorney at the Disability Law Centre, the Defense and Advocacy company for Massachusetts, in which she focuses on advocating for acceptable community supports and products and services for people today with intellectual and developmental disabilities and conducting abuse and neglect investigations. For quite a few decades, Dunn Stanisz served on the Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council. Currently, she serves on the Steering Committee for The Arc of Massachusetts and as Co-President of the Board of Directors for the Massachusetts Sibling Support Community. Dunn Stanisz is a graduate of Northeastern College School of Regulation and Tufts University.

Kara Jones, Member, President’s Committee for Folks with Mental Disabilities

Kara Jones is a member of quite a few self-advocacy groups. These include Task Motion!, a regional coalition of self-advocates and self-advocacy teams from the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia, and People today on the Go of Maryland, a statewide advocacy group built up of people with intellectual and/or advancement disabilities. Jones is also associated in Anticipations Make any difference: My Life, My System, My Decision, which is a Particular person-Centered Setting up Training plan for persons with disabilities and family members users.

Nicole Jorwic, Member, President’s Committee for Men and women with Mental Disabilities

Nicole Jorwic is the Main of Advocacy and Strategies at Caring Throughout Generations. Ahead of signing up for Caring Throughout, Jorwic was Senior Director of Community Policy and Senior Govt Officer of Condition Advocacy at The Arc of the United States. Ahead of coming to DC to get the job done on Federal Advocacy, she served as Senior Coverage Advisor and Manager of the Work Initial Initiative in Illinois. Prior to that appointment, Jorwic was the CEO/President of the Institute on Public Policy for People today with Disabilities. She is also an achieved unique training legal professional and an advocate for college students with disabilities and their family members. Jorwic is most importantly a sibling– her brother Chris is 32 and has autism.

Cathy Kanefsky, Member, President’s Committee for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

Cathy Kanefsky’s personalized encounters gasoline her passion for serving mission-driven corporations. Kanefsky and her partner, Carl, have three sons. 30-12 months-outdated twins Sam and Adam were born four months early and stay with important actual physical and mental disabilities, which include autism. Their 28-12 months-previous son, Stephen, and his wife, Alexandra, are both equally particular education and learning instructors. Following 14 many years in leadership roles at the March of Dimes, Kanefsky constructed and led countrywide area operations for Autism Speaks. Pursuing 5 a long time as Chief Progress Officer at A.I. duPont Clinic for Little ones, she now serves as the President and CEO of the Food stuff Financial institution of Delaware. Her perseverance to enable individuals seeking a better long run is the foundation for enhancing work schooling and work opportunities at the Food stuff Financial institution – for all folks – including people with mental disabilities.

M. Brent Leonhard, Member, President’s Committee for Persons with Mental Disabilities

M. Brent Leonhard is an Legal professional in the Business office of Legal Counsel for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. He has invested his job advocating for the progression and enlargement of the rights of tribal nations and citizens. In 2011, Leonhard was appointed to Legal professional Basic Eric Holder’s Federal/Tribal Domestic Violence Taskforce. In 2015, he was appointed to the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s Tribal Difficulties Advisory Team. As a mum or dad of an Autistic child, he is intimately familiar with the structural and systemic complications and frustrations those people with intellectual or developmental disabilities experience. Leonhard is intent on advocating for considerable improvements to federal law and plan in this spot.

Joseph M. Macbeth, Member, President’s Committee for People with Mental Disabilities

Joseph M. Macbeth is the President and Chief Government Officer of the Nationwide Alliance for Direct Assist Experts and the initial personnel hired by the corporation in 2011. When operating in New York, Macbeth partnered with the Point out University of New York to guide more than 500 direct support gurus in advancing their college or university education by way of the “Disability Reports Certificate”. He is a visitor faculty at the Countrywide Leadership Consortium on Developmental Disabilities and presently sits on the Faculty of Immediate Support’s Nationwide Advisory Board. In 2016, Macbeth was appointed by as a Member of the Advisory Council for the New York State Justice Heart for the Protection of People today with Unique Demands. In 2019, he was appointed by the Administration for Group Dwelling as a member of the Countrywide Quality Forum’s Committee on Human being-Centered Preparing and has been recognized by the National Historic Recognition Project for significant countrywide contributions in the area of intellectual and developmental disabilities. 

Gabriel Martinez, Member, President’s Committee for Folks with Intellectual Disabilities

Gabriel “Gabe” Martinez is presently Task Co-Coordinator at the College of Arizona Sonoran Middle for Excellence in Disabilities, where by he has worked as a peer navigator and workplace assistant for two yrs. He is a 2016 graduate of the Sonoran Center’s Venture Search, an work preparing method. Martinez is a normal speaker and trainer for webinars, class guest lectures, high college classroom displays, health-related college student instruction at the UArizona Faculty of Medication-Tucson, as well as a co-coordinator of a Indigenous youth concentrated changeover and work program known as the Finds Their Way: Communities for Youth Transition. He works as a peer navigator on several projects, which includes the Changeover Ahead Roundtable, a complete youth-to-grownup transition software. Martinez serves on the management team for Self-Advocacy Remedies and signifies the Sonoran Heart on the Affiliation of College Centers on Disabilities’ Council on Management in Advocacy.

Lucy Meyer, Member, President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities

Lucy Meyer is an global advocate for youthful people with disabilities. She has worked intently with Distinctive Olympic, Best Buddies, and UNICEF. She was born with cerebral palsy as a final result of oxygen deprivation for five minutes at start. Medical practitioners at first indicated that Lucy might never ever be equipped to sit up or swallow, but she proudly states that the health professionals were being improper. Due to the fact 2013, she has labored tirelessly to make guaranteed that youthful folks with disabilities, wherever they are close to the globe, get high-quality health and training and experience the joy of sport and participation in society. Her advocacy for the acceptance and inclusion of young people with disabilities has taken her to the United Nations, U.S. Congress, as well as conferences with ministers and officials all over the globe.

Tia Nelis, Member, President’s Committee for Men and women with Mental Disabilities

Tia Nelis at the moment serves as Coordinator of Self-Advocate Engagement at TASH, an worldwide advocacy affiliation of people with disabilities, their family members users, other advocates, and people who get the job done in the disability discipline. In this position, she supports the Self Advocacy Source and Specialized Aid Centre. Nelis earlier served as Director of Coverage and Advocacy. Nelis has drawn on her working experience as a individual with a disability to market and show the rewards of empowering people today with disabilities to efficiently advocate for them selves. 

Santa Perez, Member, President’s Committee for Persons with Intellectual Disabilities

Santa Perez is a printed author, mom, and self-advocate living with cerebral palsy in Las Vegas, Nevada. She at this time serves as Chair of the Nevada Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities and sits on several councils and committees, which includes the Govt Board of Countrywide Affiliation of Council on Developmental Disabilities. Perez is also the Founding Member and President Emeritus of Folks Very first Nevada. She recently published her to start with reserve, Sitting at Eye Stage: My Daily life as an Advocate, a Experienced, a Lady, a Mom and a Human being with a Considerable Disability. She acquired her B.A. in Psychology from Cal State Northridge. She is a happy mom to her son, Noah.

Nick Perry, Member, President’s Committee for People with Mental Disabilities

Nick Perry is a sibling of a youthful male with mental and developmental disabilities (I/DD), and he’s also been a foster father to kids with disabilities. Perry has about 25 years of cumulative expertise in the incapacity industry, ranging from incapacity coverage and implementation to company disability inclusion technique. At this time, he is the Disability Inclusion subject matter issue skilled for the Boeing business. Moreover, he is the Chairman of the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities as appointed by Gov. Kemp and prospects the Ga Sibling Connection, a assist and social group for siblings of men and women with disabilities. 

James Trout, Member, President’s Committee for People with Mental Disabilities

James Trout was identified with Asperger’s Syndrome when he was 15 many years previous and subsequently diagnosed with Dysthymic Dysfunction at the age of 25. He been given his B.A. from American University in Political Science and his M.S. from George Mason University in Transportation Policy, Operation, and Logistics. For the final three a long time, Trout has worked as an analyst for SourceAmerica, a nonprofit devoted to increasing work chances for individuals with disabilities. Earlier, he was a policy fellow for the nonprofit RespectAbility. In this job, he traveled to Iowa and New Hampshire to talk with Presidential candidates about their ideas to strengthen job prospective buyers for individuals with disabilities.

Wendy Strauss, Member, President’s Committee for Folks with Mental Disabilities

Wendy Strauss has about 40 many years of knowledge functioning in the human provider discipline. She not long ago retired after serving 23 yrs as the Executive Director of the Governor’s Advisory Council for Extraordinary Citizens, which seeks to make improvements to the lives of Delawareans of all ages by way of guidance and advocacy. During her profession, Strauss has worked for and with people today with disabilities and their families to positively effect their lives through legislation, policies, and strategies. She was born and lifted in Delaware and obtained her A.A. from Delaware Specialized and Local community School and her B.S. from the College of Wilmington.

Liz Weintraub, Member, President’s Committee for Folks with Intellectual Disabilities

Liz Weintraub is a incapacity coverage advocate and a entire-time member of the Association of College Facilities on Disabilities’ coverage staff. She also hosts “Tuesdays With Liz: Disability Coverage for All,” a online video sequence highlighting present problems in incapacity plan. Earlier, Weintraub served as a fellow for Senator Casey of Pennsylvania, doing the job on disability coverage. She has also labored for the Council on High-quality & Leadership and is an alumnus of the LEND teaching method at the Centre for Management in Incapacity at Ga Point out University. In 2018, she testified prior to the Senate Judiciary Committee about her particular expertise as a girl with disabilities.

Jordyn Zimmerman, Member, President’s Committee for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

Jordyn Zimmerman is a the latest graduate from Boston University, exactly where she gained her Masters of Education and learning. Just before graduate school, she interned at the Nationwide Disability Legal rights Network and accomplished her bachelor’s degree in Schooling Coverage at Ohio College. As a nonspeaking autistic pupil who was denied entry to efficient augmentative conversation until finally she was 18, Zimmerman has private expertise complicated the educational standing quo, which is showcased in the 2021 documentary, This Is Not About Me. Zimmerman also serves on the board of CommunicationFIRST and is passionate about ensuring every pupil is in a position to access effective communication and exercise their proper to a certainly inclusive education and learning.