Are You Coming to Denver for The Arc’s National Convention?

Dr. Temple Grandin

Dr. Temple Grandin

Registration is now open for The Arc’s 2011 National Convention in Denver, CO, September 16-19. You should join us this year. It’s simply the biggest and best opportunity to connect with others in the intellectual and developmental disability community such as members of The Arc, chapter staff and volunteers, professionals and experts in the field plus individuals with I/DD and their families.

This year, we’ll be Achieving New Heights with special appearances from Dr. David Braddock, the force behind the “State of the States in Developmental Disabilities” assessment of state performance on issues important to the I/DD community and Dr. Temple Grandin, the noted scientist and subject of the award-winning biopic Temple Grandin, a film about her accomplishments and living with autism.

We have a special treat for those of you who attended last year’s Convention. Actress Lauren Potter from Glee, who stole the show along with her co-star Robin Trocki in Orlando, returns this year. Lauren, who has Down syndrome, was a delight at last year’s event, meeting and greeting fans for hours.

In addition to the roundup of informative and enlightening sessions covering topics such as advocacy, leadership, innovation, and public policy, we’re bringing back the popular Exchange – a roundtable discussion group. And, we’re turning the Exhibit Hall into a dynamic Marketplace where you can find out more about programs, services and products designed especially for you. Look for Entrepreneur Alley, where budding businesspeople with I/DD can showcase their entrepreneurial spirit.

Register now before August 5 for discounted registration and room rates at the Sheraton Denver Downtown. Check out the full Convention Schedule and find out more about our beautiful host city at

Miss Convention? Here’s a Wrap-up

Gift imageThere’s plenty of recent posts about Convention 2010 in Orlando on the blog, but just in case you missed any of the action, check out our Convention 2010 Wrap-up page. It has recaps of all of the major happenings at convention, plus a link to our Flickr gallery that includes tons of photos.

Thanks to everyone who made it to Orlando, and we hope to see you next year in Denver.

Image by Canna W.

Convention Day Two: Honors, New Projects and Reflecting on the Past and Future

The second, and final day of The Arc’s 2010 Convention wrapped up yesterday, and the highlights flowed all day.

In fact, there were so many highlights, I’m putting them into a list! Here’s the top four moments from day two at The Arc’s 2010 Convention:

Margaret-Lee Thompson Award Winner image

Margaret-Lee Thompson, of The Arc of King County, won the 2010 Advocacy Matters! Award.

2. Margaret-Lee Thompson received the Advocacy Matters! award, which was established in honor of the late Lorraine Sheehan. Margaret was chosen to receive the Advocacy Matters! Award because she exemplifies the spirit of Lorraine, who spent her life advocating for the rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

3. Ann Cameron Caldwell provided an overview on the exciting new Autism Now project, stemming from a $1.87 million grant awarded to The Arc by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities in September.

Sharon Lewis Plenary image

Sharon Lewis, Commissioner of the ADD, spoke at one of the plenary events.

4. Sharon Lewis, Commissioner of the ADD and Kathy Greenlee, Assistant Secretary for the Administration on Aging, spoke at plenary sessions. Plus, Melody Musgrove, Director of the Office of Special Education, also took the podium at a plenary session.

For more photos of yesterday’s activities, see our Facebook page and our Flickr profile. And remember, you can get breaking updates from our Twitter profile, and follow the conversation via our hash tag: #thearc10.

A Glee-ful Start to Convention 2010

Image and Inclusion Award 2010

Actresses Robin Trocki and Lauren Potter from the hit show Glee received The Arc's Inclusion & Image Award at the 2010 Convention in recognition of their achievements in television for breaking down barriers, increasing awareness and challenging stereotypes.

Yesterday turned into one of the most memorable days in The Arc’s history. The Arc’s celebrated its 60th year with an opening day at its annual convention that included a sneak peek of our new brand and logo, to be revealed to the public in March, and a visit by Actresses Lauren Potter and Robin Trocki from the hit show Glee.

The stars received The Arc’s Inclusion & Image Award in recognition of their achievements in television for breaking down barriers, increasing awareness and challenging stereotypes. They answered questions from the audience, signed autographs for people and posed for pictures with fans. Both ladies said they love acting and being on the show Glee. They even answered the tough questions, like “Do you have boyfriends?” The answer from both? A resounding yes.

But all fun aside, both ladies, and their family members, emphasized the importance of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities embracing a life full of determination, advocating for themselves all along the way. Their example is an inspiration to many.

For more photos of yesterday’s activities, see our Facebook page and our Flickr profile. And remember, you can get breaking updates from our Twitter profile, and follow the conversation via our hash tag: #thearc10.

Four Ways to Follow the 2010 Convention

The Arc's 2010 Convention imageWhether you’re attending this year’s convention or not, there’s plenty going on that you’ll want to keep up with. Following all the happenings is easier than ever, thanks to the web and social media.

  1. Follow this blog. Seems like a no-brainer, but we just launched, so help us spread the word. We’ll fill this spot with all the news and information coming out of convention. You can find the latest headlines from the blog right on our home page, in the bottom left-hand corner.
  2. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. Each day, we’ll be posting real-time updates on our social media profiles as well, in addition to meatier updates here. On Twitter, you can use the hash tag, #thearc10 to follow the conversation centered around the convention. If you’re at convention, and tweeting, feel free to jump into discussion.
  3. Visit our Flickr page. Flickr, a place to share photos, we’ll be the first place we post photos each day from convention events. Also, if you’re taking and posting photos there, we invite you to post them to our group page.
  4. Use the Convention website. Our convention website is still the best place to go for all the convention particulars, like the schedule, list of sponsors and exhibitors and more.

Top Ten Reasons to Attend The Arc’s National Convention in Florida November 3-6

Convention Speaker image10. Get an overview of the newly established Autism NOW! Center funded by a $1.87 million grant from the Administration on Developmental Disabilities.

9. Hear from Sharon Lewis, Commissioner of the ADD, and Melody Musgrove, Director of the Office of Special Education, U.S. Department of Education, who are speaking at this year’s plenary session.

8. Celebrate Paul Marchand’s 38-year career and contributions to The Arc at the Closing Dinner.

7. Take advantage of networking at the single biggest gathering of the year for self-advocates and families, members of The Arc, employees, board members, experts and professionals.

6. Celebrate the 60th anniversary of The Arc and get ready for the next 60 years.

5. Witness the unveiling of The Arc’s new brand identity.

4. Enjoy sunny Florida and dance the night away at a party hosted by The Arc of Florida and spend some time at Disney World®.

3. Tell your story and be part of The Archive as we record the oral histories of people involved in the intellectual and developmental disability movement.

2. Let Hammer Travel handle the headache of getting there with special travel arrangements personalized for people with disabilities.

1. Have your voice heard and participate in the future of The Arc through elections, forums, roundtable sessions and more.

To register, go to our Convention website.