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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Washington, DC (May 15, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) guided its affiliates, partners and allies to transitioning to a new approach to serving people with disabilities, during the 2012 UCP Annual Conference, themed Transitioning to Tomorrow, April 25-28 in Washington, DC. The conference explored new ways of thinking in research, education, employment and services in order to create a better future for people with disabilities.
More than 150 participants–UCP affiliates, partners and allies–gathered in Washington, DC to tackle a new approach to successfully serve people with disabilities.
UCP presented Awards for Excellence to nine recipients, including affiliates, individuals and companies, whose exceptional activities, achievements and dedication exemplify the UCP mission, along with the help of three actors:
Emmy-nominated actress Cheryl Hines, a UCP Celebrity Ambassador and member of the UCP Board of Trustees;
Actress Meredith Eaton, known for her breakout role in the ABC hit series Boston Legal, and granddaughter of one of UCP's founders, Nina Eaton; &
Actor RJ Mitte, a UCP Celebrity Ambassador, known for his role as Walter White Jr. in the Emmy-nominated AMC drama Breaking Bad.
Five new members were appointed to UCP’s national Board of Trustees.
Press releases that follow:
UCP Presents Awards for Excellence at 2012 Annual Conference
UCP ELECTS FIVE NEW MEMBERS TO NATIONAL BOARD
VGO AND UCP DEMO ADVANCED ASSISTIVE CONTROL SOLUTIONS FOR ROBOTIC TELEPRESENCE
About United Cerebral Palsy
United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) educates, advocates and provides support services through an affiliate network to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities. Together with nearly 100 affiliates, UCP has a mission to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people disabilities by supporting more than 176,000 children and adults every day—one person at a time, one family at a time. UCP works to enact real change—to revolutionize care, raise standards of living and create opportunities—impacting the lives of millions living with disabilities. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. Together, with parents and caregivers, UCP will continue to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams, for the next 60 years, and beyond. For more information, please visit www.ucp.org.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Washington, DC (May 15, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) presented the Awards for Excellence at UCP’s 2012 Annual Conference, last week in Washington, DC. The Awards for Excellence are presented annually to UCP affiliates, individuals and companies whose exceptional activities, achievements and dedication exemplify the UCP mission to educate, advocate and provides support services to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities.
“UCP is proud to honor leaders in advancing the civil rights movement by promoting full inclusion for people with disabilities,” said Stephen Bennett, UCP President & Chief Executive Officer. “The Awards for Excellence are a tradition that UCP take seriously; the winners truly help make UCP’s mission a reality by advancing independence, productivity and full citizenship of people with a spectrum of disabilities.”
The eight 2012 UCP Awards for Excellence were presented to the following nine recipients at the Opening Reception and the Awards for Excellence dinner and presentation, during the Annual Conference, themed Transitioning to Tomorrow.
Individuals who volunteered significant time with UCP affiliates were also recognized as Victory 100 winners. In 2011, Victory 100 winners included 182 volunteers from 13 UCP affiliates, who volunteered a total of 28,120 hours. Each volunteer dedicated at least 100 hours of service by participating on a board, assisting in fundraising activities, and performing other needed volunteer work.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Washington, DC (May 15, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) elected five new members to its Board of Trustees during its 2012 Annual Conference in Washington, DC, including the following:
Michael A. Burke, Jr. is a co-founder and principal of Thrive Office, a newly formed innovative, shared workplace community based in New York City, focusing on emerging trends in the workplace based on the evolving preferences of a new generation of workers. His background is in commercial real estate and direct sales. Previously, Burke worked in the commercial office brokerage business in the Washington, DC metro region for Cassidy Turley and Avison Young. Burke has a personal relationship with the disability community as his youngest brother has CP. Throughout his professional career, he has been actively involved in multiple philanthropic organizations centered on disability issues and advocacy, and was a key component in founding ABLE, UCP’s young professionals outreach program.
Ruth Gullerud is retiring this month as Executive Director of UCP of West Central Wisconsin, where she has worked since 1977. Previously, Gullerud was an advocate and guidance counselor with the Women’s Community Center in Eau Claire, Wisconsin; a member of the Wisconsin State Board for People with Disabilities, a member of the Wisconsin Exceptional Education Council for Department of Public Instruction, and a member of the Board of the Accreditation Council on Services for People with Disabilities. Gullerud currently serves on the Eau Claire County Advisory Committee on Specialized Transportation and the Wisconsin Alliance for Self-Determination. A recipient of several outstanding leadership and management awards, Ruth had the pleasure of hosting the Ruth Gullerud Show, focused on the world through challenges of disability.
Melvin “Chip” Hurley has over 30 years of healthcare and management experience in accounting, auditing and consulting with two "Big 4" professional services firms (18 years at E&Y and four years at PwC); two national consulting firms (nine years at Navigant Consulting and currently at Berkeley Research Group, LLC); and three years corporate management experience with Helix Health, a five-hospital integrated healthcare delivery system. He has extensive experience in leading hospital improvement projects, supporting mergers and acquisitions of hospitals, providing litigation support, and conducting audits of hospitals. Hurley previously served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of UCP of Central Maryland, and as a licensed CPA, FHFMA, Hurley currently serves as Chair of UCP’s Audit Committee.
Linda Cox Maguire has been a consultant at Maguire Associates since 1985 where she leads initiatives in global markets and heads up projects across company service lines. She began her career in the corporate world, before she returned to higher education where she served in leadership positions in admissions for nine years. Maguire chaired the Board of Trustees at Sea Education Association in Woods Hole, Mass., is corporator at a local hospital, and is currently vice president of the Board of Directors for UCP of Metro Boston, of which she has also been past president. Maguire received her bachelor’s degree from Douglass College of Rutgers University and her master’s degree in educational administration from Boston College.
Rob White is Chief Executive Officer of Cerebral Palsy Alliance, a UCP affiliate based in Sydney, Australia. With 26 years of service with the organization, and 12 as CEO, White has a deep appreciation of the key issues that face service providers, government, clients and families. Cerebral Palsy Alliance was the first international affiliate of UCP. Since 2005, the affiliate’s Research Foundation to raise funds to promote international research into prevention of and cure for CP, raising over $23 million (AUD) and approved $4.9 million (AUD) in research grants to international researchers in the field of cerebral palsy, to date. White has been an active member of the National Disability Services New South Wales State Committee for 11 years, previously held the position of President of Cerebral Palsy Australia, and has sat on a number of state and national committees serving the interests of service providers in the disability field. White has a Masters in Psychology and an MBA.
Coming off the national board at the end of the fiscal year on September 30 are Bruce Merlin Fried, Board Chair; Michael Burke Sr., Vice Treasurer; and Cheryl Hines, who will remain in her capacity as UCP Celebrity Ambassador. All plan to remain very engaged with UCP support, advocacy and events.
To view UCP’s Board of Trustees, please visit ucp.org/about/board.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nashua, NH & Washington, DC, (April 26, 2012) – VGo Communications, the leader in robotic telepresence, and United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) today announced a partnership to collaborate and work together to define and deliver accessibility enhancements to VGo’s robotic telepresence solution. A demonstration of prototype voice activated remote robotic telepresence driving controls will be seen by attendees of the 2012 UCP Annual Conference, Transitioning to Tomorrow, in Washington, DC.
“We saw what VGo was doing for homebound students and realized that with some usability enhancements, VGo could be a dramatic life altering tool for many people with disabilities,” said Stephen Bennett, UCP President and CEO. “Imagine the opportunities and quality of life improvements for people who currently cannot go places because their disability prevents access or makes it too expensive. UCP is excited to be working with VGo to make this technology available to people with disabilities so they can live life without limits.”
"We’re very excited about jointly developing specific usability enhancements for people served by United Cerebral Palsy," said Peter N. Vicars, CEO of VGo. "Our users today find controlling a VGo with their computer mouse or keyboard keys very easy, but indeed not everyone can use a computer in a traditional way. We know how impactful VGo has been for students that are homebound and can’t go to school. Soon VGo can be available to other disabled people so they can move around in a distant place without first having to get themselves there."
For more information about VGo, visit www.vgocom.com.
VGo Communications, Inc. develops and markets visual communications solutions for the workplace. The company was founded in 2007 by experienced successful veterans of the visual communications and robotics industries. VGo has leveraged the recent trends of widespread wireless high speed networks, lower specialized component costs and the universal acceptance of video as a communications medium to become the Robotic Telepresence market leader.
With the VGo solution, an individual’s presence is replicated in a distant location such that they can interact and perform their job in ways not previously possible. Now they can see, be seen, hear, be heard and move around in any remote facility –just as if they were there. VGo enables: healthcare providers to deliver lower cost services and improved quality of care, businesses to increase productivity of remote and travelling employees, and homebound students to attend school – all with a great user experience and at an affordable price.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
UCP Celebrates Life & Accomplishments of Founder and Board Member, Nina Eaton
Entire disability community mourns loss of dedicated, accomplished colleague
Washington, DC (April 2, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) -- an international advocate, educating and providing support services for children and adults with a spectrum of disabilities -- mourns the loss of Nina Eaton, one UCP’s founders, an Emeritus member of the Board of Trustees, and a longtime supporter and advocate for people with disabilities, who passed away on Friday, March 30.
“UCP is saddened to lose such a tremendous advocate whose life’s work has been integral to advancing the civil rights movement for people with disabilities,” said Stephen Bennett, UCP President & CEO. “Nina was an amazing woman and will be greatly missed among the UCP family and disability advocates. Our deepest sympathies go to the entire Eaton family.”
A funeral service was held at Boulevard-Riverside-Hewlett Chapel, 1450 Broadway, Hewlett, New York 11557, this morning, and the family will be sitting Shiva on Monday and Tuesday at 8 Hazel Place, Woodmere, New York 11598. Cards and notes of condolence can be sent to the Eaton family, 543 Derby Avenue, Woodmere, New York 11598.
Eaton’s son, Leonard Eaton, was born with cerebral palsy in 1941 and led his young, uncertain mother towards a lifetime of advocacy for people with disabilities. Eaton and other parents, including UCP founders Leonard and Isabelle Goldenson along with Jack and Ethel Hausman, laid the foundation for a far-reaching organization that has enhanced the lives of millions of Americans with disabilities. More than a half century later, UCP is an international network of nearly 100 affiliates serving more than 176,000 people with disabilities and their families on a daily basis.
Eaton was a founding member of the New York State Cerebral Palsy Association in 1946. As the organization evolved into UCP in 1949, Eaton helped educate communities about cerebral palsy, which, like most developmental disabilities at the time, carried significant social stigma. She is well known for her persistent lobbying, leading to regional and national expansion of community-based services for people with disabilities.
Eaton remained an active leader in the disability community, and served on the Board of Directors of UCP of Suffolk for the past 20 years. She also served on the UCP national Board of Trustees and most recently as an Emeritus board member.
UCP honors an affiliate with the Nina Eaton Program of the Year Award, as part of the UCP Awards for Excellence, on an annual basis. The UCP affiliate award winners are honored for making an extraordinary contribution to the quality of life to people with disabilities through the delivery of state-of-the art direct services in the affiliate's community. Award recipients are chosen based on affiliates’ ability to enable the individuals served to become more independent, productive or integrated into the family or community, and the programs stand out as a model worthy of replication by other UCP affiliates. Eaton loved the Awards for Excellence presentations and served as the Emcee for many years. She added her charm and wit to the evening of celebrating the accomplishments of UCP affiliates and individuals, in multiple categories.
“Nina was so much a part of our history and our lives,” said Stephen H. Friedman, President and CEO, UCP of Suffolk. “The lives of individuals with disabilities will be forever enriched because of her legacy. I know you all join me in extending sincere sympathy to the Eaton family.”
About United Cerebral Palsy
United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) educates, advocates and provides support services to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities. Together with nearly 100 affiliates, UCP has a mission to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people with disabilities by supporting more than 176,000 children and adults every day—one person at a time, one family at a time. UCP works to enact real change—to revolutionize care, raise standards of living and create opportunities—impacting the lives of millions living with disabilities. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. Together, with parents and caregivers, UCP will continue to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams, for the next 60 years, and beyond. For more information, please visit www.ucp.org.