Message from the President, May 2013 (Conference Edition)

Dear Friends,

The AAIDD annual meeting is almost upon us, June 3 – 6 in Pittsburgh PA. Register today if you haven’t already.

Dear Friends,

The AAIDD annual meeting is almost upon us, June 3 – 6 in Pittsburgh PA. Register today if you haven’t already.

Division Dinner

The division dinner will be held on Wednesday June 5th at:

Lidia’s Italy, Pittsburgh,
1400 Smallman Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15222 Tel: 412.552.0150
Reservation is 7:00 PM

Here is additional information on the dinner:

  • Bring CASH to pay for dinner.
  • Meal is $40 per person PLUS tax, tip and drinks.
  • Menu: Insalata Cesare; Secondi: Choice of Pasta Tasting Trio or Scallopine of Chicken; Dolci: Biscotti Misti
  • Bar: $9 per cocktail, $5 per beer, $9 wine by the glass

Walkers will leave the hotel lobby by 6:30 PM.

Please RSVP to or call 973-714-4432. Indicate how many people, if you have children, and if you have any special seating needs or food restrictions. Provide cell phone number in case there’s a need to reach you and also let me know if you will be walking, need a ride, or will meet us at the restaurant.

I will have space in my car for a couple of people. There may be others with a car also.

Division Business Meeting

The Division Business Meeting will be held from 8:00 AM to 9:00 AM in the Boardroom, Lobby level. Please come and join in!


  • Finance report
  • Update on Spiritual Support Certification activity
  • Possibilities for networking/connecting during the year, LinkedIn, etc
  • Website update and discussion
  • If you have any additional topics for discussion, send them to me at by June 3rd!


The Annual Forum will be held from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM in the Boardroom, Lobby Level


Remembering Nella Uitvlugt, Executive Director for Friendship Ministries and friend to all who knew her. Nella died unexpectedly March 20th of this year. If you have story about Nella you would like to contribute to this, please send it to me by May 30th.

Nouwen Award presentation to Sister Gabrielle Kowalski

Working discussion: Assessing spirituality and congregational participation support needs and sharing these with service providers and congregations. This topic specifically comes from interest expressed in the survey responses. Your participation will help shape how and if this work continues.

Conference Sessions

There are a number of sessions and posters to check out at this years conference:

Tuesday June 4 3:30 Concurrent C Session

Grief and Loss in Individuals with IDD: Clinical Implications, Practical Approaches
Lara Palay, MSW, LISW-S, Ohio Center for Autsim and Low Incidence

Wed: June 5 10:45 Concurrent D Session
Spirituality, Strengths, and Well-Being of Adolescents and Young Adults with Significant Disabilities and Their Families
Erik Carter, PhD, Vanderbilt University, Thomas Boehm, MDiv, Vanderbilt University

Spirituality and Congregational Participation with Christian and Jewish Narratives of Challenge and Hope
Anne Masters, MA, RCAN, Shelly Thomas Christensen, MA, Inclusion Innovations

Quality of Life Among Adolescents with Significant Disabilities and Their Families:Predictive Factors Poster
Boehm, Thomas, Carter, Erik

The Integration of Spiritual Supports into Individual Service Planning
Morstad, David, McManus, Betty

See you in Pittsburgh!

God’s Peace,
President, AAIDD Religion and Spirituality Division

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