Local, Community Members to be Honored for Their Work on Behalf of Those with Special Needs and Disabilities at Potomac Nationals Game

Beth Frank, Christina Desmarais and Eleanor Voldish will be recognized at 4:35PM during a special ceremony at home plate just before the start of the June 6, 2009 Potomac Nationals game as part of Disability Awareness Night.

Woodbridge, VA, June 03, 2009 --(PR.com)-- Members of your community will be honored for their lives, work, and advocacy on behalf of the 54.6 million people living with disabilities in the United States during Disability Awareness Night™ (DAN™), a special event taking place at home plate on June 6, 2009, at 4:35 PM, before the Potomac Nationals game at Pfitzner Stadium.

The event is hosted by EP Global Communications, Inc., publisher of Exceptional Parent (EP) magazine, a company dedicated to offering information and resources to people with disabilities and special needs and the family members and professionals who care for and about them. The EP Maxwell J. Schleifer Distinguished Service Award will be presented to Beth Frank, Christina Desmarais and Eleanor Voldish.

Frank is the regional director for Special Olympics in Northern Virginia. She has driven the program to integrate all disabilities, and because of her hard work, her region’s Special Olympics now partner with many other special needs organizations in the area, collaborating on different events and sharing resources.

Desmarais has run the options program at Paul VI High School in Fairfax, VA since its inception. Options provides a quality modified inclusive education in a Catholic Christian environment for high school age students with intellectual disabilities. PVI Options nurtures the maturation of inquisitive, creative, confident and motivated students.

Voldish is the former executive director of the Loudon County, VA ARC. She has recently created her own company, and is considered one of the top advocates in the Northern Virginia area, specializing in helping families through the IEP process. Viewed as the expert in her field, Eleanor has trained other professionals in the area of IEPs.

Disability Awareness Night began in 2002 when Exceptional Parent magazine combined forces with the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox to create this event, the first of its kind. The program now encompasses both Major and Minor League Baseball venues, the NBA, and NASCAR, with events across the nation.

“Our goal is to help all Americans understand that we will become a stronger nation and better human beings when we learn to regard people with disabilities and special needs as people to be respected, not as problems to be confronted,” said Joseph M. Valenzano, president and CEO of EP Global Communications, Inc.

EP Global Communications is a 38-year-old, award-winning, multimedia company that provides information for families and professionals involved in the care and development of people with disabilities and special healthcare needs via Exceptional Parent magazine, EParent.com, EP Bookstore, EPLiveOnline, and community outreach programs such as Disability Awareness Night.

MassMutual Financial Group and its SpecialCaresm program has been the exclusive national financial services sponsor of Disability Awareness Night since 2003. The SpecialCareSM program takes a team approach to help ensure proper life care planning for the future of a person with a disability or other special need. SpecialCareSM provides access to information – from what people need to know in order to provide the best care to their loved one, to how to manage their needs as well as the needs of other family members.

“Our sponsorship of this Disability Awareness Night deepens MassMutual’s commitment to supporting people with disabilities and other special needs, and their families,” said Joanne Gruszkos, director of the MassMutual SpecialCare program. “Through our work with EP, Easter Seals, and our specially trained and certified SpecialCare planners, we are trying to raise the general awareness of the unique needs of this population and provide the means for them to develop a life plan that will enable a special needs family to obtain the best quality of life possible.”

If you would like more information, please contact Randy Newsome, Director of Special Projects, EP Global Communications, Inc., at 856-628-3500 or rnewsome@eparent.com.

EP Global Communications
Randy Newsome