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Disability Advocacy Conference

The next Disability Advocacy Conference will be held on
Thursday, April 19, 2018 at The Friday Center in Chapel Hill.

More than 200 people attended the 2017 Disability Advocacy Conference at the Friday Center in Chapel Hill.

Dr. Kevin Ann Huckshorn speaking at the Disability Advocacy ConferenceOur keynote speaker was Dr. Kevin Ann Huckshorn, a national expert on the trauma-informed approach in behavioral healthcare settings. Her presentation opened the eyes of self-advocates and professionals alike who had not recognized the prevalence of traumatic experiences among people with disabilities. Dr. Huckshorn called on behavioral health professions to "presume the people we serve have a history of traumatic stress and exercise universal precautions."

Topics for the breakout sessions at the 2017 conference included:

  • Disability and Higher Education
  • Problems with NC's Child Welfare System
  • Youth with Disabilities in the Justice System
  • ADA & Law Enforcement
  • Guardianship
  • Transitioning People with I/DD out of Adult Care Homes
  • Children and Adolescents with Complex Needs
  • Changes to NC's Waivers for Home- and Community-Based Services
  • Restraint in Facilities
  • State Legislative Update
  • Vocational Rehabilitation
  • Preparing for Young Adulthood
  • Trends in Disability Law
  • Special Education and IEP Meetings
  • Medicaid Appeals

Conference Reviews

“I have attended all of the Disability conferences and I learn something useful every time! Thank you for putting this conference together every year.”

“It was great. This was my first conference and I plan to return.”

“I have learned so much today that I can use in my elderly and disabled program.”

"Each session provided me with information I did not know before. After each session it allowed me to network and ask questions about how it would relate to my situation."


2017 Conference Sponsors

Lunch Sponsor: Henson & Fuerst

Director Sponsor: Cadgewith Farms Ltd.

ASL Interpreters Sponsor: NC DHHS, Division of Services for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Breakfast Sponsor: Monarch

Afternoon Break Sponsor: National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys - NC Chapter

Exhibit Hall Sponsor: Bayada Home Health Care

Networking Session Sponsor: Avison Young

Breakout Session Sponsor: Community Bridges Consulting Group


  • Alberta Professional Services, Inc.
  • Alliance Behavioral Health
  • Copeley Johnson & Groninger PLLC
  • Beth Garriss Hardy
  • Ireland Family Foundation
  • Neuro Community Care
  • Self-Help Credit Union
  • Janna Shisler
  • Walker Lambe Rhudy Costley & Gill, PLLC
  • Law Offices of Timothy D. Welborn


  • Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University
  • William Donohue
  • Farah & Cammarano Law Firm (representing injured workers)
  • D. Jones
  • Nancy Mayer Attorney at Law, PLLC
  • Cary Nailling
  • National Association of Social Workers - NC Chapter
  • Schell Bray PLLC
  • Schnitz Law, PC
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