Tag Archives: Disabilities

Jaine M. Schmidt Gives Visions of Joy as Head of Creative Services for Lighthouse International

Jaine M. SchmidtJaine M. Schmidt began her career as a business-to-business communications graphic designer. With excellent business acumen, she pursued an opportunity in the nonprofit sector with Lighthouse International. The nonprofit organization provides help, hope and resources to children and adults who have experienced, or are at risk for experiencing, vision loss. Their range of prevention, treatment, and empowerment services extends to an international demographic. In an effort to ensure productivity and independence amongst their members, Lighthouse International provides early intervention, youth and social services, assistive technology training, and vision rehabilitation. For members seeking career assistance, the organization extends opportunities in job placement, internships, pre-employment training, and job retention to ensure success. Lighthouse International also offers services, which aid members in performing everyday functions, such as programs, which make it easier for people with vision impairment to read text messages or books. Aiding people who are visually impaired for over 100 years, Lighthouse International continues to serve as a beacon of hope for those struggling daily with vision loss.

As Lighthouse’s director of creative services, Ms. Schmidt utilizes her strengths in marketing and graphic design to grow and strengthen the organization’s brand recognition as the leading resource in low vision. She is responsible for overseeing the entire panoply of printed, electronic and display materials for the external activities of Lighthouse International along with ensuring a consistent and relevant external presence of the organization through the website, social media, public relations and advertising campaigns. As director of creative services, she exercises overall executive responsibility for the design, development and production of all graphic materials, working closely with appropriate members of the management in all departments. A key element of the job is to insure that there is extreme consistency among imaging and messaging protocols, as well as quality control, in all Lighthouse materials.

Lighthouse International provides help, hope and resources to children and adults who have experienced, or are at risk for experiencing, vision loss

Lighthouse International provides help, hope and resources to children and adults who have experienced, or are at risk for experiencing, vision loss

Drawing on her educational background, which includes a Bachelor of Fine Art from The College of New Jersey, Ms. Schmidt has become an expert in nonprofit management. She has become proficient in building awareness and generating funding for Lighthouse International. Recognized as a leader in her field, she is often sought after for advice and collaboration. In the coming years, she plans assist Lighthouse in the expansion of programs and services dedicated to getting the latest technology to people with vision loss.

Ms. Schmidt is charitably involved with Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America, New York Cares, the National Hemophilia Foundation and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. In her free time, she enjoys golfing as a hobby.

Lighthouse International is a leading resource in helping people of all ages overcome the challenges of vision loss through low vision care by expert eye doctors, rehabilitation services, early intervention and preschool and adolescent programs and social services.

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Daniel LeBlanc Gives Youngsters “A Home for Life” at “L’appart à moi”

Daniel LeBlancThough Daniel LeBlanc has a long professional career with the CN Railroad, and is involved in all aspects of rail-based logistic solutions for customers across multiple industries, he feels that one of his proudest achievements was creating a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide appropriate long-term housing for individuals with intellectual disabilities, such as his own adult son. Together with other parents, Mr. LeBlanc established the foundation known as “L’Appart a moi” with the objective of making this dream a reality. The project consists of several bachelor-type condominiums that will be designed to meet the needs of these individuals. As Mr. LeBlanc explained, it is crucial for special needs individuals to have safe and secure housing so that they may fully contribute to society in their own ways. Though financing such projects is always challenging, the most critical aspect of the organization is having committed, well-intentioned people at the helm. Mr. LeBlanc considers himself fortunate to be working with just such a group of dedicated parents and individuals that share this common vision. He is also grateful for the support he receives from his employer.

Mr. LeBlanc believes that everyone is entitled to a long, full, and happy life, and he and his wife plan to give their three sons the best opportunities in life while making unique provisions for their son with special needs so he may maintain his independence. Once the first complex has been constructed, Mr. LeBlanc plans to share his journey with other parents, with the hope that the Foundation’s mission will be adopted by other groups across Canada.

From the website:

This project was conceived by a group of parents wanting to offer a stable, permanent and safe living environment to their adult children with Down Syndrome or another intellectual disability.
Daniel LeBlanc heads L'appart à moi, a project that seeks to help people with Downs Syndrome to fight poverty and vulnerability, and find affordable and sustainable housingThese parents have always encouraged their adult children to develop their intellectual, physical and social skills to the best of their ability. They are an integrated part of their family and their community.
Having reached adulthood, they now wish to prove that they are ready and willing to face the challenges of independent living.
In order to help them reach this lifelong dream, L’appart à moi has chosen the following mission:
  • To fight against poverty and vulnerability of young adults with an intellectual disability
  • To offer a stable and permanent living environment in their own apartment
  • To allow a natural transition while continuing their integration into society

Mr. LeBlanc received a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering in 1979. In his spare time, he is heavily involved with the Special Olympics. In three years, Mr. LeBlanc expects to have completed his first building. He will then lead the charge to build additional ones.

To keep track of the project’s progress, visit http://www.lappartamoi.ca.

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Donna York: An Agent of Positive Change and ALS Awareness as President of HARK Inc.

Donna York Serves as an Agent of Positive Change as the President of HARK Inc.HARK Inc. was founded in 2012 with the focus on making educational and support services an abundant resource for families of people dealing with ALS. At the helm of the company is Donna York, who created the nonprofit after taking care of her father as he battled with ALS for a year and half. Chiefly amongst Ms. York’s many goals for the organization is that of her objective to educate others, raise awareness, and inspire others to hold on to their faith when facing ALS. Notably, Ms. York completed a documentary that was screened at NBC, which she hopes to use to raise more awareness for ALS.

In 2012, Ms. York was honored as the Somerset County Woman of the Year. She has also been the recipient of the Paul & Jean Krauss Award for Service to Youth. Most recently, Ms. York was honored by Worldwide Who’s Who for her contributions to those facing or caring for someone with ALS. Ms. York is pursuing certification in nonprofit management at Rutger’s University to further her knowledge of running a nonprofit. In the years to come, Ms. York intends to promote her film as much as possible, with the hope of gaining national recognition for her organization.

Watch the Hope on the Horizon Peak Dedication Video:

From https://www.hark-als.org:

A portion of the 48 peaks summited by the HOTH Expedition Team were dedicated either by donors to honor a loved one or a friend, or by the team to thank people they love, people that helped them when they needed it and others that supported them in their journey.


Please read more on worldwidewhoswhonews.com to learn where you can view the entire film at a screening near you.

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Marsha Goldford Demonstrates Human Resources Management Expertise while Helping Kids and Adults with Developmental Disabilities

Marsha GoldfordMarsha Goldford serves as the Director of Human Resources for the Developmental Disabilities Association. A certified human resources professional with 15 years of experience working with public sector and nonprofit organizations, Ms. Goldford has spent the past two years working with the nonprofit dedicated to providing community-based programs and services to children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families. It is within this capacity, as well as her work as an independent consultant and community volunteer, that Ms. Goldford is able to employ her areas of expertise in human resources management and labor relations. As the director of human resources, Ms. Goldford provides advice and support for a range of human resources and labor relations activities including HR policy, recruitment, employee learning and development, organizational development, employee engagement, HR metrics, employee health, safety and wellness, benefits planning and records management.

Marsha Goldford helps children and adults with developmental disabilitiesThe success that Ms. Goldford has achieved throughout her professional endeavors is attributed to her ability to maintain strong relationships within her network of varied business contacts as well as her 12-plus years’ experience in line management roles in the social housing field. She is also a strong advocate for the use of technology as a means of offering affordable, accessible and innovative programs and services for organizations on a tight budget.

In order to prepare for her career, Ms. Goldford earned a master’s degree in public administration from Queens University in 1978. She also received certification in human resources and training design and facilitation. In recognition of her accomplishments, Ms. Goldford was recently inducted into Worldwide Branding. Additionally, she functions as a consultant for the BC Non-Profit Housing Association and its member agencies, as well as Shelter Net BC. She is an active volunteer mentor with Dress for Success Vancouver and a past-president and active board member for the Red Door Housing Society. In the coming years, Ms. Goldford plans to retire and expand her consulting work with nonprofit organizations locally and beyond both on a fee-for-service and pro bono basis.

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Robyn Scott-Vincent Helms Attitude Pictures Limited and Produces Documentaries Relating to People Around the Globe Living with Disabilities

Robyn Scott-VincentRobyn Scott-Vincent is the Owner of Attitude Pictures Limited, and a Partner of Attitude Pictures Australia Proprietary Limited, the former being a production company specializing in documentaries, corporate and government video content, and the latter production company focusing on top quality production services. Ms. Scott-Vincent holds a BBC in broadcasting and communication from New Zealand Broadcasting School, having first gained industry experience and savoir faire through her work as a reporter for the Auckland Star, New Zealand Herald, and Television New Zealand as a One Network News reporter. She also acquired experience in such roles as freelance director, producer, director, and writer with various media outlets.

Presently, working in dual capacities, Ms. Scott-Vincent makes the most of more than a quarter-of-a-century’s worth of professional experience at the helm of Attitude Pictures Limited and as a partner of Attitude Pictures Australia Proprietary Limited. Operating from Auckland, New Zealand, and Brisbane, Australia, the companies cater to regional and international client demographics. Attitude Pictures Ltd is an Accredited Media Partner of the IPC (International Paralympic Committee).

Robyn Scott-Vincent Attitude Pictures LogoBoth functioning as production companies, they focus on documentaries, corporate and government video content, and production services. During the course of her impressive career, Ms. Scott-Vincent has independently produced and directed 60 prime time documentaries and 320 episodes of her series Attitude that specializes in content relating to people throughout the world who live with disability. Her content has appeared during the Special Olympics International World Games and, she has contributed production work to the International Paralympic Committee, as well as the New Zealand Government, the Australian Human Rights Commission and a variety of disability throughout the world. Equally proficient in writing, Ms. Scott-Vincent also authored a biography on Susan Devoy entitled “Out on Top” and co-authored “Cindy: Breaking the Cycle”.

With a forte for documentary projects that address issues related to disabilities, Ms. Scott-Vincent was honored with the Workplace Diversity Award by the EEO Trust. A founder and trustee of the Attitude Awards she was also honored as a lifetime member with Worldwide Who’s Who. She feels her success can be most aptly attributed to a strong sense of humanity, integrity, and an ability to deliver high-quality content on budget and on time. In the coming years, Ms. Scott-Vincent intends to expand the international presence of her company into five key markets through networking, branding, and consulting worldwide.

Check out an Attitude Pictures MiniDoc: “The Mutes on The Road,” a documentary about The Mutes From Mars, a West Auckland band consisting of individuals with intellectual disabilities, as they practice for the opportunity of a lifetime.

Please click here for a directory of resources provided through Ms. Scott-Vincent’s company.

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Milena Morrow is a Disabled Individual who Advocates for Others Like Her

Milena Morrow Helps Disabled Individuals to Overcome ObstaclesMilena Morrow, President of Lifebridge East Inc., is a disabled individual who was hired for a position she applied for at the company. She comes from a background where she was taught to believe that she would not be able to participate in the mainstream arena due to her disability; she developed the desire to prove people wrong, and became determined to prove to them that she would not only succeed, but also become successful at leading an organization. She is interested in challenges, a qualified editor, and is in the process of publishing her book “Sipping Champagne Through a Straw: A Migrant Daughter’s Tale with a Difference.”

Milena MorrowIn her role with Lifebridge East Inc., Ms. Morrow is responsible for setting the organization’s value, vision and strategic direction. She is also in charge of monitoring the annual business plan to ensure that the organization is meeting its targets and objectives.  Upon reflecting on a rewarding career, she attributes her success to her passion, determination to not listen to others, ability to follow her dreams, love for challenges and positive attitude.

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Teresa Dawn Baker Creates Positive Change for Children with Disabilities through New Hope Advocacy

Teresa Dawn Baker Helps Disabled Children through New Hope AdvocacyTeresa Dawn Baker is the President and Chief Executive Officer of New Hope Advocacy, a charitable organization that provides advocacy services for families and children with disabilities. Ms. Baker, an expert on the laws that support individuals with special needs, is in charge of answering the requests and phone calls from parents who feel their children with disabilities are not receiving the proper attention that they need. In her executive leadership role, Ms. Baker also makes the most of her strong knowledge of the law while reviewing the paperwork and informing families of the disabled of the actions that need to be taken in order to ensure that their needs are being met properly and fairly.

Ms. Baker was recently named a VIP of Worldwide Branding, and she continuously strives for excellence in her endeavors to champion the initiatives of those with special needs.

Teresa Baker Advocates for the Rights of Disabled ChildrenMs. Baker was prompted to pursue her current career path by a desire to make the most of the knowledge and experience that she had come to acquire after teaching special education for 28 years. She was working with a special education director and found it frustrating when she was not able to provide what the students really needed, so she decided to advocate for parents. She attributes her success to her passion for those with disabilities and commitment to them; this encouragement is the very thing that keeps her going. In looking forward to a bright future, Ms. Baker aims to become a national speaker to advocate for those with disabilities.

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You Better Believe it, No Mountain is too High to Climb — Stephen J. Wampler is Living Proof

Steve WamplerFor anyone who feels beset by personal limitations, let them look no further than Worldwide Who’s Who® member Stephen Wampler for drive and inspiration to accomplish anything imaginable. Steve, who was born with cerebral palsy, has limited use of one arm and does not have use of his legs. In 1992, he received a Bachelor’s Degree in environmental engineering from the University of California, Davis. Moreover, he is a committed husband and a father of two.

But his achievements do not stop there. As with most great people, he has taken on the task of helping others. Steve has devoted his life to bringing positive change to the lives of physically disabled kids.

In 2002, he founded the Stephen J. Wampler Foundation to provide outreach and resources to disabled youth. As CEO of the organization, he is responsible for the formation of programs and activities that immerse them in the outdoors surrounded by nature and conservation, and wilderness living. One of Steve’s main priorities when he founded the Wampler Foundation was to fund Hawley Lake, which is part of a camp he attended as a child and where he first learned how to overcome his disability.

Presently, the Wampler Foundation — in a collaborative effort with the City of Sacramento — funds outdoor enrichment and recreation programs for kids from five western states. The foundation also endows financing to numerous other state programs. Steve is also active as a public speaker, motivating and illuminating others. He is endorsed by numerous organizations, including Time Inc., Waste Management and Media Networks, Inc. Celebrities such as Will Ferrell, various cast from SNL and Ellen DeGeneres also tout his cause.

In 2010, Steve achieved his goal of becoming the first person with cerebral palsy to climb El Capitan — a towering granite rock formation rising more than 3,000 feet from the ground in Yosemite National Park. Prior to this he underwent months of rigorous training. He started with a reasonable workout regimen (one hour per week) and worked that up to the tune of five hours a day, six days a week. On September 17, 2010, after 20,000 pull-ups over the course of six days, he achieved what most would think is impossible — he triumphed over El Capitan.

Steve’s feat is a validation of personal willpower and a substantial victory for disabled populations. Numerous high-profile organizations have taken note of his extraordinary talents and abilities. In 2011, United Cerebral Palsy™ — a large-scale education, advocacy and support services group — bestowed him with the Life Without Limits Award. ESPN also got wind of his climb, and recently nominated him for an ESPY award in the Best Male Athlete with a Disability category.

The ESPY award is a tremendous accolade shared by only the world’s most revered athletes, and Steve is proud to have been nominated for the prestigious honor. Dubbed a local hero, Steve makes every effort to continue to make a difference in the lives of people everywhere, from all walks of life.

Please also take a minute to visit the Stephen J. Wampler Foundation website and make a donation.

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