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Center for Disabilities Studies : About Us

Located at the University of Delaware in the College of Education and Human Development, the Center for Disabilities Studies is one of over sixty University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities in the country.

Community Advisory Council

The Center for Disabilities Studies is supported with its work through the contribution of their Community Advisory Council (CAC). The CAC is composed of individuals with developmental disabilities and related disabilities; family members of individuals with developmental disabilities; representatives from disability-related training, service, and advocacy organizations; representatives from state agencies; and other disabilities advocates. Meetings of the CAC are held a four times a year.

Executive Committee
Chairperson: Bob Valihura, Advocate
First Vice Chairperson: Cory Ellen Nourie, Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children
Second Vice Chairperson: Linda Heller, Self-advocate
Secretary: Deborah Dunlap, Parent

At-large Member: David Lynch, Self-advocate


Karl Booksh, Self-advocate
Deborah Bradl, Parent, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation
Tim Brooks, Parent
Lisa Carnley, Parent
Anthony Carter, JEVS Human Services

Bobbi Dehaven, Self-advocate
Robert Doyle, Division for the Visually Impaired
Micki Edelsohn, Parent

Lilian Evans, Freedom Center for Independent Living

Bill Fitzpatrick, Self-advocate

Carmella Giddins-Jones, Division of Prevention and Behavioral Health Services
Brian Hartman, Delaware Disabilities Law Program
Debra Heffernan, Parent, State Legislator

Larry Henderson, Self-advocate, Independent Resources

Kathie Herel, Parent Information Center of Delaware

David Hill, Self-advocate, Special Olympics Delaware

Kyle Hodges, State Council for Persons with Disabilities
Kathy Hughes, Advocate

Patricia Kelleher, The Arc of Delaware
Jane Luke, Parent

Daniel Madrid, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation
Pat Maichle, Developmental Disabilities Council
Karen Mancini, Parent

Susan Mateja, Division of Medicaid and Medical Assistance

Mary Ann Mieczkowski, Exceptional Children Resources, Department of Education

Laurie Nicoli, Parent

Corrine Pearson, Parent, Special Olympics Delaware

Dara Schumaier, Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Monika Shafi, Parent

Wendy Strauss, Governor's Advisory Council for Exceptional Citizens
Della Thomas, Statewide Programs for the Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Deaf-Blind
Martha Toomey, Parent
Janet Villarreal, Division of Services for Aging and Adults with Physical Disabilities

Carl Wexler, Division of Developmental Disabilities Services

If you would like more information about the CAC, contact Beth Mineo at 302-831-1589.

Our partners

Association of University Centers on Disabilities

CDS is a member of the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD). AUCD is a national network of interdisciplinary centers advancing policy and practice through research, education, leadership and services for and with individuals with developmental and other disabilities, their families and communities.

Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

The Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD) is the U.S. Government organization responsible for implementation of the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000, known as the DD Act. ADD, its staff and programs, are part of the Administration for Children and Families, of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Notice of Privacy Practices

Center for Disabilities Studies Notice of Privacy Practices