Minnesota State Council on Disability
The Minnesota State Council on Disability honored several groups and individuals at its 2008 Awards Luncheon Nov. 6 in St. Paul. The luncheon, held in conjunction with National Disability Employment Awareness Month, honors those who have served the community. This year’s keynote speaker was Andrew Imparato, president and chief executive officer of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD). AAPD is the nation’s largest cross-disability membership group.
The 2008 winners are:
• Above and Beyond Veterans Employment: Les Goodwin
• Access Award: Kingsley Commons
• Chair’s Award: Jean Martin
• Community Living Award: Audra Quant & Heather Marx
• Distinguished Volunteer Award: Melissa Arnold
• Small Employer of the Year: Handy Tech North America
• Leading by Example: Shelly Hoyt
• Legislative Appreciation Award: Senator Mary Olson
• Media Award: Mark Rosen
• Minnesota Award: Joyce Scanlon
• Outstanding Entrepreneur: Aaron Peterson
• Sports Innovation Award: Riddell National Refuge
• Technology Award: Herbed Sing Communication Device Program
• Transition to Work: North Branch High School
• Youth Award: Danielle Libel
• Outstate Access Award: Thief River Falls Government Joint Use Facility
• Community Access Award: St. James Super 8 Motel
The luncheon and awards ceremony was hosted by the Minnesota State Council on Disability in collaboration with Pathways to Employment and the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development and the Department of Human Services. The event occurred as the November issue of Access Press went to press. More details will be available in our December issue.
Popular Minnesota Viking football player Karl Kassulke, 67, died of a heart attack Oct. 27 at his Eagan home. Kassulke played for the Vikings from 1963 until 1972. The hard-hitting safety played in the Super Bowl and Pro Bowl and won many accolades for his play. His career was ended in 1973 when he was paralyzed in a motorcycle accident. After his accident Kassulke was known for visiting hospitals and schools and inspiring others. He was a sought-after public speaker. He is survived by his wife Sue, three sons and three grandchildren.
Brain Injury Association
The Brain Injury Association of Minnesota was one of the finalists for the 2008 MAP for Nonprofits-Minnesota Council on Nonprofits 2008 Minnesota Nonprofits Awards. The association was a finalist for the advocacy award, which was won by Transit Partners. Transit Partners worked to get the gas tax passed by the 2008 Minnesota Legislature.
Constance Gabler, Ms. Minneapolis, was crowned Ms. Senior Minnesota last month at Grand Casino Mille Laces. She was crowned during the annual Seniors Expo, organized by Mid-America Events and Expos. Windex High-Definition Hearing is pageant sponsor.
Jim Lovold, known to his friends as Wheels, nominated his PCA Kara Whalen for the MCIL Outstanding PCA of the Year Award. Whalen says she loves working with Wheels, because he is positive and likes doing different things. For example, Wheels serves on the Minnesota Spina Bifida Association Board of Directors. Whalen has been his PCA for 10 months. She says the best part is how well they get along. She works for Wheels seven days each week for six hours each day. Whalen won the Outstanding PCA Award on Oct. 22 at the MCIL Annual Dinner.
“People and Places” is an Access Press column that spotlights organizations and individuals in the community. Items will be published on a space-available basis. Send news items to [email protected]