Ohio Valley Goodwill was honored to serve as the host location for the 2010 Advocacy and Leadership Summit. The premiere event welcomed more than 120 advocates, Goodwill staff team members, as well as co-presenters, the Hamilton County Developmental Disabilities (HCDDS), Advocacy and Leadership Network. The summit served as the opportunity to provide information to the many individuals in attendance about the advocacy and leadership development options available through Goodwill as well as HCDDS and the larger community. Samantha Woolery, Chairperson of Goodwill’s Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC) and James Harley, Secretary, welcomed the interested group to the 2010 summit and provided an overview of Goodwill’s self-advocacy efforts. Katie Wietmarschen, Community Preparation Program Manager and Leslie McCurley, Asst. Director of DD Services for Goodwill surprised the CAC co-chairs by presenting them with the 2010 HCDDS Superintendent’s Award which Goodwill had officially received at the 2010 HCDDS Annual Awards event on March 1st. The prestigious award was given to Goodwill’s CAC group in recognition of their outstanding community outreach on behalf of the 2009 HCDDS Levy Campaign. “Goodwill is extremely proud of the accomplishments of CAC not only this past year but since they began their self-advocacy work more than 15 years ago,” said Leslie McCurley. The 2010 summit presented basic concepts in leadership and advocacy to the assembled guests and was highlighted by a special presentation about the use of People First language and the Advocacy Leadership Network’s “People Aren’t Jars” training. The “People Aren’t Jars” presentation focuses on not using hurtful “labels” and treating individuals with respect at all times. Ohio Valley Goodwill hosted the 2010 Summit as part of its Community Integration initiatives designed to help people develop the necessary skills to be successful in all aspects of their lives. “I was inspired to see the impact that this initial summit had on the individuals who were participants in this event,” said Katie Wietmarschen, co-facilitator. “Goodwill will continue to be a leader for providing opportunities for people to learn about community resources for integration into the future,” added Wietmarschen.