Eleven Michiganders appointed to the Statewide Independent Living Council

Michigan News

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer provides an update on coronavirus in Michigan during a May 26, 2020, press briefing as Dr. Joneigh Khaldu, the state’s chief medical executive, looks on. (Courtesy Michigan Executive Office of the Governor)

LANSING, Mich. (WJMN) – Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced Tuesday 11 new members of the Michigan Statewide Independent Living Council.

The council was reestablished by Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-130.

To be eligible to receive federal assistance under Title VII of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Public Law 93-112, as amended, 29 § U.S. Code 796 et seq., a state must establish and maintain a statewide independent living council, consistent with the requirements set forth in 29 § U.S. Code 796d.

The Michigan Statewide Independent Living Council has been periodically reestablished over the years, most recently under Executive Order 2016-11.

Reestablishment of the Council at this time is necessary to ensure compliance with current requirements under federal law and to further strengthen working relationships among the Council and entities providing services to individuals with disabilities, centers for independent living, and other programs. 

The Council will consist of the director of Michigan Rehabilitation Services, the director of the Bureau of Services for Blind Persons, a representative from the Michigan Department of Civil Rights Division on Deaf, DeafBlind and Hard of Hearing, a representative from the Michigan Department of Education Office of Special Education, a representative from the Department of Health and Human Services with knowledge of all programs within the department impacting individuals with disabilities, and the following eleven members appointed by the Governor: 

Frank E. Animikwam, M.D., of Okemos, is a family medicine resident physician at Sparrow Hospital and a citizen of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians. He earned his Doctor of Medicine from Michigan State University. Dr. Animikwam is appointed to represent residents of this state, including residents who represent the underserved or tribal communities. He will serve a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2022. 

Allen Beauchamp, of Negaunee, is an employee of Argonics, Inc. and a member of the SAIL Disability Network of the Upper Peninsula. He holds an Associate of Science in Engineering Design from Northern Michigan University. Mr. Beauchamp is appointed to represent residents of this state, including residents who represent the underserved or tribal communities. He will serve a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2021. 

Jamia M. Davis, of Southfield, is a document reviewer with Kelly Services and a court-appointed guardianship review volunteer for the Oakland County Probate Court. She holds a Juris Doctor degree from Western Michigan University Cooley Law School. Miss Davis is appointed to represent residents of this state, including residents who represent the underserved or tribal communities. She will serve a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2023. 

Stephanie L. Deible, of Grant, is the executive director of Ms. Wheelchair America, Inc. She holds a Master of Education in Student Affairs and Leadership from Grand Valley State University. Ms. Deible is appointed to represent residents of this state, including residents who represent the underserved or tribal communities. She will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2021. 

Theodore R. Dorsette, III, of Detroit, is the communications manager for Detroit Disability Power, and a member of the Michigan Deaf Association and National Black Deaf Advocates. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Screen Arts and Cultures from the University of Michigan. Mr. Dorsette is appointed to represent residents of this state, including residents who represent the underserved or tribal communities. He will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2021. 

Yvonne Fleener, of Grand Ledge, is the executive director of Helping Hands Respite Care, and a member of the Michigan Adult Day Services Association Executive Committee and the Impart Alliance Council. She holds a Master of Public Administration from Michigan State University. Ms. Fleener is appointed to represent organizations that provide services for individuals with disabilities, including, but not limited to, private businesses. She will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2023. 

Charles William Harrison, Jr., of Redford, is a volunteer peer facilitator with the Michigan Disability Rights Coalition, a member of Michigan Family Voices Advisory Committee, and a board member with Many Faces of Moebius Syndrome. He holds a Master of Social Work from The Catholic University of America. Mr. Harrison is appointed to represent parents or guardians of individuals with disabilities. He will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2022. 

Melinda Kulasa, of Richland, is a substitute teacher and paraprofessional for Kalamazoo County Schools through EDUStaff and PESG, and the treasurer for the Disability Network of Southwest Michigan Board of Directors. She holds a Master of Business Administration from Western Michigan University. Ms. Kulasa is appointed to represent residents of this state, including residents who represent the underserved or tribal communities. He will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2023. 

Janice K. Lampman, of Midland, is recently retired from The Arc of Midland where she served as the executive director for 20 years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Saginaw Valley State University. Ms. Lampman is appointed to represent advocates of, and for, individuals with disabilities. She will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2022. 

Theresa Metzmaker, of Lansing, is the executive director of the Michigan Disability Rights Coalition and a board member for the Firecracker Foundation. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice from Michigan State University. Ms. Metzmaker is appointed to represent residents of this state, including residents who represent the underserved or tribal communities. She will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2022.

Mark A. Pierce, Sr., of Dimondale, is the executive director of Disability Network Capital Area. He holds a Master of Arts in Urban Ministry Leadership from Cornerstone University. Mr. Pierce is appointed to represent a director of a center for independent living chosen by the directors of centers for independent living within this state. He will serve for a term commencing July 21, 2020 and expiring December 31, 2023. 

The Michigan Statewide Independent Living Council is charged with developing the state plan as provided in Section 704(a)(2) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 USC 796c(a)(2).

The Council may work with centers for independent living to coordinate services with public and private entities to improve services provided to individuals with disabilities and conduct resource development activities to support the Council and the provision of independent living services by centers for independent living. 

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