Top Headlines:


The CPRN on Future Plans


Alleghenies UCP Announces Merger with Service Coordination of South Central PA

Young Boy Takes First Steps Thanks to UCP of Arkansas

National Core Indicators 2016 Staff Stability Survey Report

How the ADA Education and Reform Act Could Impact People with Disabilities

Virtual Exhibit Celebrates and Tells the Stories of African Americans with Disabilities

Exploring the Concept of the Label “Able-Bodied” and Its Impact on the Disability Community

UCP of Central California Unveils New Location Focused on Senior Living





Upcoming Publication Dates for Network News:


March 13, 2018

April 10, 2018

May 22, 2018


March 20: Affiliate Topical Call, 3:00 PM EST.

Conquering the Workforce Crisis. See details below. Call in #: 888-402-6958


April 12: Volunteer Engagement Call, 12:00 PM EST. See details below.


April 29-May 1: 2018 UCP Annual Meeting, Embassy Suites, Downtown St. Louis, MO. Hotel and registration information below.


June 7-9: The National Self Advocacy Conference, SABE (Self Advocates Becoming Empowered), Birmingham, AL.

Information and registration info can be found at



CEO Briefing for Affiliates

Dear UCP Affiliate Leaders:

May this note find everyone and your respective organizations well! UCP National has prepared an informative and valuable Annual Meeting in St. Louis (April 29-May 1, 2018). This convening is just around the corner and we look forward to having all of you present. UCP is honored to have the following guest speakers: Keynoter- Barbara Merrill, CEO of ANCOR,  Panelists: Jennifer Lyman, CP Collaborative; Richard Ellenson, CP Foundation, Paul Gross, CP Research Network; and Terry Such-Neibar, DO, AACPDM. In addition, Ms. Valerie Jones will present on “Current and Essential Fundraising Strategies for Non-Profit Organizations.” Along with National’s updates and recent accomplishments, the Annual Business Meeting of the Membership will be of most importance. Your participation is encouraged! More info on the registration process below. Board Members and Staff are welcome!

Also, UCP National has received positive responses from many of the Affiliates regarding the significant increase of the Elsie S. Bellows Fund distribution for 2018.  We are enthusiastic of the benefits individuals with disabilities and families will receive through this financial resource to purchase assistive technology. Thank you all for being a major catalyst in distributing the Bellows Fund and bringing hope to many!


Armando A. Contreras


UCP Welcomes Ginger Schwahn As Executive Director of UCP of Greater Dane County


Ginger Schwahn became the Executive Director at UCP of Greater Dane County upon the retirement of Camilla Rucinski in December. Born and raised in Wisconsin, Ginger started her time with UCP in 1998 with a vocational and supported employment background. Most recently she was the Director of Youth Resources and Respite Programs. In that position she developed her passion for supporting people with disabilities and their families, specifically in areas surrounding inclusion (child care, schools and community). Ginger stated “It has been one of my life’s greatest pleasure to work with UCP, which truly understands and embraces that our world is better because of the individuals we support!”


We welcome Ginger to the UCP Network and the Midwest RAC.

UCP Welcomes Brenda Hanserd As The New CEO of UCP of Central Arizona


UCP welcomes Brenda Hanserd as the newly selected CEO of UCP of Central Arizona. With more than 25 years of experience in government sponsored programs for Managed Care and Behavioral Health Services, Brenda Hanserd brings a wealth of expertise to UCP in her role as CEO. Brenda had been the CFO with the affiliate prior to being selected for the CEO position.

Brenda’s broad experience includes serving in executive positions with Quality Care Network, United Heath Group, Care 1st Health Plan, and more. Well known for her collaborative leadership style that focuses on strengths, development and the empowerment of others, she is respected for her ability to increase employee engagement.


Brenda holds a Business Finance Degree from the University of Arizona and is an Arizona native, with family roots going back three generations in Mesa, Arizona. We welcome Brenda to the UCP network and the West RAC.


Dr. Ron Cohen Announces Retirement From UCPLA


After nearly five decades in the human services field and the last 38 years at UCP of Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties, Dr. Ron Cohen has announced his retirement effective January 7, 2019. UCPLA serves approximately 1000 children and adults with developmental disabilities daily in five Southern California counties. UCPLA is the parent company of UCP WORK, Inc located in Santa Barbara, and UCP Wheels for Humanity. UCP Wheels for Humanity currently has field offices in El Salvador, Ukraine, Indonesia, Nicaragua, and a wheelchair HUB and distribution center in Shanghai. The three operating organizations have a global annual budget of $56 million. Dr Cohen has served as the Chair of the Professional Council, RAC Chair, various committees at UCP and is currently serving on the Charter Review Committee. UCPLA is conducting a national search for the role of CEO.

“Look Into My Eyes” Music Video for Affiliates

As promised, the Look Into My Eyes video has been revamped for affiliates to use. Without the efforts of Annivar Salgado and Mike Ward, the new video would not have been possible so our sincere thanks to both of them for their relentless efforts on this project. Some of the changes that have been made include: a new vocalist, the addition of a female vocalist, a more contemporary ending, new images, and a more diverse group of images. We hope you will find the new video very compelling and of use for your spring events. If you are interested in seeing the video or using it for an event, please contact Anita Porco


Affiliate Services Committee Goals for Fiscal Year 2017-2018


The Affiliate Services Committee and UCP Board of Trustees approved the following goals for the 2017-2018 Fiscal Year


1. Continue outreach to former affiliates and other organizations that fit with the UCP mission to result in 3 new affiliates for UCP.

2. Produce a schedule and conduct quarterly volunteer engagement calls in conjunction with the Steering Group. Build participation.

3. Produce a schedule and conduct quarterly Affiliate Topical Calls to foster affiliate engagement. Build participation.

4. Complete the key affiliate staff lists and begin to connect the key staff within affiliates through email and participation in affiliate topical calls.

5. Monitor accounts receivable for affiliate dues and enforce UCP policies and procedures for payment plans or disciplinary action as necessary. Work with affiliates to resolve issues proactively.

6. Complete the Charter Review Process and timelines suggested to secure signed new affiliation agreements once approved by the members of the corporation

If you have questions or comments please contact Anita Porco at


Charter Review Update


The Charter Review Committee met on January 11, 2018 to consider all of the comments received from affiliates and the Affiliate Services Committee and recommended edits to the document. The UCP Board of Trustees approved the draft affiliation template agreement as revised on January 16, 2018. The revised agreement was sent to all affiliates on January 17, 2018 with comments/feedback due on February 12, 2018. The revised affiliation agreement template will be voted on by the affiliate Members of the Corporation on May 1, 2018.


Affiliate Finders Fee


In the January meetings of the Affiliate Services Committee and the UCP Board of Trustees a vote was taken to reaffirm board action of 2001 and reinstate an affiliate finders fee. Existing UCP affiliates shall be eligible to receive a finders fee equal to 10 percent of the first year’s dues of a new organization that they assist in recruiting to the UCP family and that the new affiliate finders fee shall be divided equally to the extent more than one affiliate is involved with the successful recruitment of a new organization. The Affiliate Services Committee and UCP Board of Trustees recognize that UCP affiliates have the best connections to identify organizations that best fit with the UCP mission and culture and wish to encourage affiliates to bring those organizations to UCP.


Bellows Committee Meeting


The Bellows Committee met to review to current processes for managing the bellows applications received from affiliates. Applications, updated guidelines and frequently asked questions are available on the affiliate pages of Affiliates are strongly encouraged to utilize the money available in their allocation each year. Funds can be rolled over for a two year period and if not used roll back into the bellows fund. A reminder that each application must be for an individual and are evaluated on their individual merits. Applications cannot be batched together. The memo announcing Bellows Affiliate Allocations for 2018 was distributed to Affiliate CEO’s and Executive Directors on February 8, 2018.


Key Staff Lists and Individuals Served Update


Key staff lists and the data received from affiliates on numbers of individuals served is being put into the UCP database as time permits. We hope to be able to provide some additional resources into completing the data entry, but wanted to let you know that it is being worked on and will be available to all affiliates as soon as possible.

UCP Annual Meeting 2018 Registration


Registration is now available for the 2018 Annual Meeting. The registration fee is $200.00 and you can register here. Registration will be open until April 22, 2018.


The annual meeting  will be held on April 29-May 1, 2018 at the Embassy Suites, Downtown St. Louis, MO. Please take the time now to make your reservation. The cut off for the room block and rate is April 7, 2018. Check in time is 3:00 PM CST and check out time is at 12:00 PM CST.



For planning purposes, we will begin the conference on Sunday April 29th with RAC meetings starting at 1:00 PM CST. We plan to end the conference Tuesday May 1, 2018 at approximately 1:00 PM CST, following lunch. The voting at the Members of the Corporation meeting will occur on Tuesday morning. Dress will be business or business casual.

Find the DRAFT Agenda here.

Hotel Information:


Please make your hotel reservations now. For baseball fans, the Cardinals first home game is May 1, 2018, so you may want to make plans to stay over and attend the game.


Hotel Information:

Hotel reservations can be made here.

Please use the follow information when completing your registration:

Group Name:

UCP Annual Conference

Group Code:



April 28, 2018


May 2, 2018

Hotel Name:

Embassy Suites by Hilton, St. Louis Downtown

Hotel Address:

610 North 7th Street

Saint Louis, Missouri


Phone Number: 314-269-5900

Things To Do in St Louis

If you are looking for things to do while you are in St Louis these links may be helpful.

Visit Forest Park:

Take A Stroll Through the Missouri Botanical Gardens:

Grab a Bite to Eat on The Hill:

Some Retail Therapy at one of our new outlet malls:

To find out more about places to go and things to do visit the website at

UCP Finance Transition

Effective January 22, 2018, UCP National has moved its finance functions to the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities. Your dues invoices will look a little different, and for now will continue to be sent by mail. Within 90 days, we will be moving towards providing invoices to affiliates electronically. If this causes issues for you, please let us know. Please note the new address for submitting your dues payments is


648 N. Plankinton Ave, Suite 425 Milwaukee, WI 53203

You are encouraged to submit payment electronically via ACH (Automated Clearing House).  Included with the affiliate invoice for the next few months will be an additional slip of paper with both the physical address, and the information needed to pay via ACH.  If you have any questions, you can contact Andrea Corner directly at (414) 359-6523, or Maris Edgar directly at (414) 359-6520.

Affiliate Topical Call

Thanks to Tom O’Donnell for an excellent presentation on ” Privacy and Security: When the Use of Cameras and Recording Devices are Appropriate and Legal” for affiliates held on January 24, 2018. A recording of the call is available upon request. Please contact Anita Porco


Join us for our next call on March 20th.

Conquering the Workforce Crisis

The Workforce Crisis Does Not Need to Be Your Crisis.

Innovation, Intervention and Advocacy are the keys to filling vacancies, improving retention and increasing staff compensation.

Linda Petrini, Co-Founder of talintel, Inc., will explain a revolutionary industry innovation, describe the interventions you can implement to revise staffing processes, and suggest new arguments for increasing reimbursements. It is time for change: innovation, intervention and renewed advocacy.

Volunteer Engagement Call

The presentation by Rob Sarno for the Volunteer Engagement Group held on January 23, 2018 was very informative and dealt with Disaster Recovery for all types of electronic or natural disasters.

The next call will be on April 12, 2018 at 12:00 EST. The presenter will be Cynthia Koral of 501(c) Agencies Trust. The Topic: Exploring Options To Better Manage Your Unemployment Exposure. The presentation will  demonstrate for affiliates that they have many options when it comes to managing and financing unemployment claims outside of the state program.

We Want to Hear Your Stories For CP Awareness Month!

UCP National wants to hear the stories of individuals with Cerebral Palsy within the affiliate network in honor of Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month this March! Have a client story or impact story you would like us to share on UCP national’s social media channels? Email UCP’s Marketing Specialist, Kaitlyn Meuser, at with your stories, photos, and videos.