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 November 2022 News

Jefferson County Ballot Issue 1A 

A “Yes” Vote is Endorsed by DDRC Board of Directors

Jeffco residents: We have an immediate issue impacting our Jefferson County community and potentially DDRC. Jefferson County is facing significant budget constraints as a result of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, also referred to as TABOR, that could impact services in the county and could have an impact on the services DDRC provides. More here.


Ballot Issue 1A would allow Jefferson County to retain grant and non-property tax revenues, and those could be used in the county budget to do so much good in our community! In recognition of these things, at their Oct. 26th board meeting, the DDRC Board of Directors voted to support and endorse a “Vote YES for Ballot Issue 1A” to maintain the continuity of services in Jefferson County. 

We urge all Jefferson County voters to become familiar with and to please consider voting “yes” on Ballot Issue 1A. 

Coloradans can register to vote, update their registration, vote in person, or drop off their ballots until 7 pm on election day, Tuesday, November 8.

Beau Jo's Arvada Fundraiser Nov. 17 for DDRC - Delicious!

Join us on Thursday, November 17th as we come together for DDRC, and 20% of all the delicious orders at Beau Jo's in Arvada are donated back to DDRC! 


In order for DDRC to receive the donation you need to PRINT AND BRING the FLYER with you to show Beau Jo’s staff you are attending in support of DDRC. So, gather up friends and family for a pizza-lovin' evening! Stop by anytime between 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. at Beau Jo’s Arvada 7525 W. 53rd Ave., Arvada. We hope to see you there - and everyone you can bring too! 


Annual Appeal Goes Farther With Mai Family Trust Match 

At DDRC, we promote person-centered activities in all we do, including through our Therapeutic Learning Connections (TLC) program to empower participants to select activities that will help them reach their personal goals. All year long, TLC coordinates over 300 activities that reflect the interests of participants. TLC activities offer increased individual choices, while also creating feelings of connection, building confidence and friendships, and having many other life skills, health and fitness benefits too! 

This winter, you can help support the thousands of individuals who access this program every year with a donation of $25 or more! 

BUT WAIT, thanks to the generosity of the Mai Family Trust your donation will be matched dollar-for-dollar, up to $25,000. Watch for a letter coming your way with all the details. So, what are you waiting for? Give the gift of recreational experiences today! 

Donate Today 

DDRC Board of Directors Elections and Appointments

Members of the Corporation (individuals who we serve and their representative), were afforded the opportunity to vote for candidates for the DDRC Board of Directors during the Annual Meeting in October. Joanne Elliott and Heidi Markley, both family members,  were re-elected to 3-year terms. Mrs. Elliott has served on the Board since 1998 and is the current Vice President of the Board. Mrs. Markley has been a longtime ambassador and supporter of DDRC, and joined the board in Board in 2021.

In addition to the elected positions, the Board includes appointments and agency representatives. Tim Schimberg, who joined the Board in 2021, was re-appointed to a three-year term. Also, the Board ratified the annual appointments from partner agencies, which included Amy Miller from Jefferson Center and Mary Margaret Fouse-Bishop from Jefferson County Public Health.

We thank them, and all of our dedicated DDRC Board of Directors, for their service! See who they are and read more about them here.

Case Management Redesign

At the October Annual Meeting, Rob DeHerrera, DDRC Executive Director gave a brief overview of Case Management Redesign (CMRD). He asked individuals and families to stay connected to DDRC via emails to receive further updates as plans unfold.

Case Management Redesign, mandated by the State of Colorado, will impact all Community Centered Boards, like DDRC, and all Single-Entry Points, like Jefferson County Human Services. It will be the most significant change to DDRC as an organization, the individuals and families we serve, our employees, and community, since the inception of the CCB system nearly 60 years ago. These changes will take effect July 1, 2024.   


The changes will impact all long-term supports and services within the State of Colorado, including supports for those with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. The changes include new service areas, the rates paid for these services, how these services may be provided, and rule changes, but hopefully most of that will not be noticeable to people receiving services. One change that will be evident is that there will ultimately be one entity providing these services in our community in the future.


During this transition, DDRC’s goal is to minimize the impact this will have on all individuals and families currently served by DDRC, those who might access our services, and our dedicated employees. 

In reflecting on Case Management Redesign, Rob DeHerrera said, 

The future holds challenges, but it also comes with opportunity, and with these changes, we not only will survive, we will thrive. DDRC will continue to create opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families to participate fully in the community. This community makes the difference, and I thank each of you for being a part of it.”  

Honoring Her Hero Spirit 

Barb Morrison approached the podium, face beaming, and arms raised in a triumphant wave. She was receiving DDRC’s Hero Award at the October Annual Meeting. The award recognizes individuals who are mastering the day-to-day challenges of living with a disability, who maintain a positive attitude, contribute to their communities, exhibit perseverance, and strive for personal achievements.

Barb has been living independently and doesn’t let much stand in her way. She diligently rode the bus every day for many years to come to work at DDRC as a day porter, keeping our main building spic and span. She took pride in her job, working hard so her coworkers had a clean work environment. When COVID hit, she kept a positive attitude, and stepped up her duties to include regular sanitizing of all the areas she was responsible for.

Barb was always a friendly face in the halls, greeting everybody by name, except her supervisor, who she greeted with an enthusiastic “Hi Boss!”

Barb recently retired. She’s making the most of her free time, enjoying Rockies and Nuggets games, shopping, and regularly visiting the library to research her passion for FBI profiling and Criminal Minds. Maybe she’ll have a second career as a detective!


In reflecting back on her time at DDRC Barb said, “I’m really proud that I worked 22 years- and all that I’ve done!”  For her work ethic, friendly manner, success in living independently, and following her passions- Barb demonstrates a true DDRC Hero spirit and is so deserving of the award she received.

Reflections and Accolades at the Annual Meeting 

There were more smiles and heartfelt stories as we celebrated other awardees at our October Annual Meeting. 

A Parent's Perspective

Reflections from Chuck English, DDRC Board member and parent, left everyone deeply moved as he shared the journey of his family and son, whose challenges at birth with a very rare syndrome, brought the family into difficult, unknown territory.

Mr. English recounted their perseverance and determination to give their son the best life they could, and the support they found from DDRC’s Early Intervention services. Thank you, Mr. English! 

Partner of the Year Award

Mary Berg, Lynnae Flora and Wanda Cowart from Jefferson County Human Service were joined by Jefferson County Commissioners Lesley Dahlkemper and Andy Kerr to help us honor Jefferson County Human Services.  All that DDRC does to fulfill our mission would not be possible without the nearly 60 years of collaboration with Jefferson County Human Services.

Examples of this collaboration include our work together, and with others, on Jeffco Connections, Jeffco Bright Futures and Launch Together, to name only a few. These initiatives benefit families and children, making our community better for those who need our services. 

Over the past 2 years, Leadership from both organizations have been meeting to work through solutions of state-mandated Case Management Redesign, a significant change which involves combining case management services into a single entity.

These conversations are laser-focused on minimizing the impact of these changes on the individuals and families we collectively serve, as well as our staff, and are a positive example of navigating change. DDRC is grateful to be alongside such a fine partner as Jefferson County Human Services throughout this process. 

Friend Award

DDRC has had the pleasure of working with the Hiwan Golf Club in Evergreen over many years to host our annual fundraising golf tournaments. Hiwan’s Director of Golf, Kyle Heyen and his team have been instrumental to the smooth running of our tournaments to ensure each one is enjoyable for all.


The draw of their beautiful course and their overall supportive services during the tournament planning process, have helped us raise hundreds of thousands of dollars. These funds enhance DDRC’s ability to serve our community through our Adult Vocational Services, Jeffco Children and Family Services Unmet Needs Fund, BABIES Training, and this year, raising $70,000 for our 25th Hour fund. That fund helps people and families get back on their financial feet by supporting emergency, unmet or immediate needs.


None of this would have been possible without the support of The Hiwan Golf Club, so we were grateful and pleased to present them with the well-deserved 2022 Friend Award. 

Special Recognition Award

The Jefferson County Public Library has created a welcoming environment for people with disabilities and helped the general community to see people with disabilities as worthy, visible, and included.

Their “Library for All,” provides opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in programs tailored to participants’ interests, and many people affiliated with DDRC have participated. The Library invited DDRC’s Early Intervention staff to present information as part of the library’s family programs, so families could learn how to help their children’s development.


When DDRC approached the Lakewood Library with ideas to promote IDD Awareness Month, they worked alongside DDRC to curate and post online a collection of materials by and about people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. They provided display space for DDRC to share our mission and stories of people served by DDRC, thereby opening library visitors’ eyes to IDD Awareness.


This year, the Columbine Library branch collaborated with DDRC for a program offered to people of all abilities called “Art and Self-Advocacy.” They opened their makerspace for the art experience, and promoted it on their website, displays and flyers. Through that promotion, and an exhibit of the finished artwork, library customers learned about the mission of DDRC and the important value of self-advocacy for people with disabilities.


For these meaningful efforts, and their ongoing collaboration with DDRC, the Jefferson County Public Library was presented with DDRC’s 2022 Special Recognition Award.

The Charlie Allinson Award

It would be difficult to find another person who works as hard as Stacey Barnes, and whose efforts make such a difference for families and a better system! For this, she was given DDRC’s prestigious 2022 Charlie Allinson Award at our Annual Meeting.


Stacey, DDRC’s Early Intervention Assistant Director, also carries a small caseload supporting the “itty bitties” we work with. She has in-depth knowledge in her field of speech therapy and is a team player, collaborating with other providers on a child’s service plan, communicating with their medical team, and sharing her knowledge through DDRC’s feeding focus group, team meetings, and mentoring.


Stacey also provides support in every facet of DDRC’s EI program. She took on a huge role in supporting the EI Evaluation process though its recent complex transition from the Colorado Department of Education to the Colorado Department of Early Childhood. She attended countless meetings, provided input along the way, and supported DDRC’s role in becoming an EI Evaluation Entity. She works tirelessly on the backend to coordinate the training of providers to complete evaluations under the state’s new, often finicky data entry system. She communicates with the State about glitches and provides instructions for workarounds, all efficiently and with a positive attitude.

Stacey is an innovative thinker, willing to challenge the status quo and positively influence family experiences in Early Intervention. She is someone we can hope to emulate.

The Peg Johnstone Above and Beyond Award

Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) make such an impact in the lives of the people they serve. Three DDRC DSPs, Steve Chase, Avon DiCarlo, and Marc Lagae were each recognized for their exemplary work and honored at our Annual Meeting with our Peg Johnstone Above and Beyond Award. Board members of the Developmental Disabilities Foundation presented the awards.

Steve Chase 

Steve has worked at the Weiland Center since 2010, providing social, educational and habilitative supports. He consistently rises to the challenge of each day, remaining steadfast in his commitment to the people he supports. Throughout years of evolution and change, and even during the stress and uncertainty of the pandemic, Steve has created an atmosphere that promotes unity, skill building, discovery, creativity, and empowerment. 


Steve helps people make lasting connections in the community, and uses his creativity to schedule activities that promote independence and meaningful experiences. People are excited to share what they learn and do when they are with Steve, and this motivates others to get engaged.


Steve provides great customer service to family, guardians, and other caregivers and is a role model who helps address challenging situations. He supports his colleagues when they feel overwhelmed, and shares his knowledge and encouragement to train new employees, understanding that when employees feel good about what they are doing, it has positive impact on everyone. Steve has adjusted to varied responsibilities, a global pandemic, and staffing shortages that require him to adjust on the fly. His willingness and ability to operate outside of his comfort zone helps DDRC fulfill our mission.

Avon DiCarlo

Avon, a DSP, has been with DDRC’s day program services at the Weiland center since 2016. His recognition of each individuals’ preferences, skills and interests ensures each person he works with receives the support they need and desire. 


It is important to Avon that he meets people where they are at, and as a result he takes a personalized approach to each activity or project. 

Avon excels at “thinking outside the box,” and will problem solve to work around whatever obstacle stands in the way. For example, a person we serve uses a wheelchair and has limited mobility of their arms. For a painting project, Avon had them paint by rolling over the paint with the wheelchair that they use, with beautiful results! With Avon, the answer is not, “no,” but “how.” Avon knows the people he works and interacts with so he can promote independence, success, and creativity. 


Avon is always willing to jump in and help wherever needed, showing flexibility with his daily schedule and keeping the wellbeing of the people we work with in mind. The people that Avon works with are happy and fulfilled in part because of the wonderful, individualized care and support he provides.

Marc Lagae

Marc has held several positions since he began his career with DDRC in 2011. With each position, he demonstrated a commitment to the people he supports and a work ethic that is unequalled. 

Marc has a gentle spirit that makes you feel calm. He built a mutually respectful relationship with one person he supports who is particularly talented at provoking others, and can be challenging to work with. Marc has discovered ways to support this individual with patience and grace, accepting this person for who he is, and starting there each day. 


Marc supervised a group work crew when DDRC moved to end group employment and embrace competitive integrated employment. He respectfully supported each person to decide for themselves what was most important as they chose their new path.


Marc currently plans and schedules activities that help people use our communities as learning environments. The men and women he works with are routine-oriented and each of them wants a consistent schedule. He schedules things with them that they want to do weekly, but once a month he offers ideas to do something new to broaden their opportunities. Some ideas are welcomed, while others are not, and Marc listens. He works tirelessly to help people live the lives that they desire, and is a great example to all.


The 2022 Peg Johnstone Above and Beyond Award given to each of these three DSPs is so deserved! 

Community First Choice Care Information Sessions

The Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing (HCPF) is looking to begin offering the Community First Choice Option (CFC) by 2025.


CFC would allow Colorado to offer attendant care services on a state-wide basis to eligible members, allowing members to direct their attendant care services or to receive those services through an agency. This option aims to improve access to home and community-based services.


HCPF has a CFC Stakeholder Council who meet to advise HCPF on the implementation of a CFC option. You can listen-in on Council sessions which are held the first Wednesday of each month, from 10:00 am- noon. For information about CFC and the Council, click here.

Community First Choice Virtual Family Information Session

A special Zoom informational session is being offered about CFC on the evening of November 15, and parents, families and caregivers are encouraged to attend. Information is presented by HCPF, and the session is hosted by Peak Parent Center, Family Voice Colorado, and Parent to Parent Colorado. Download their flyer.

The CFC Virtual Family Information Session:

Tues. Nov 15, 5:30-6:60 pm.

Register  Here

Colorado Gives Day - Give Early!

Colorado’s largest day of giving, Colorado Gives Day, is on December 6th! For 24 hours, Colorado comes together to raise funds for local nonprofits, and we’re excited to be part of the day! 


Thanks to the $1.6 million Colorado Gives Day Incentive Fund your donation will be boosted - making an even bigger impact! All participating Colorado Gives Day nonprofits earn a percentage of the fund, so the more we raise, the more we get! 

Give Early! All support now through Dec. 6 counts towards Colorado Gives Day and the Incentive Fund. So, join in on the excitement by making your #ColoradoGivesDay donation today.

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People served by DDRC and their families:

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DDRC sends important information via this “Constant Contact" email platform, including information about DDRC services and supports, announcements of emergencies, etc. Please do not unsubscribe from Constant Contact emails since our communications will be restricted to U.S. mail and will take longer to get to you. If you prefer not to receive e-newsletters, invitations or donor opportunities please use our “Online Form” to indicate that you do not want to receive such emails.  Official notifications about services and supports may then still be sent via Constant Contact, unless you contact us to indicate otherwise. Thank You.