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N.D. State Council on Developmental Disabilities elects officers

August 2, 2004

BISMARCK, N.D. – The North Dakota Council on Developmental Disabilities, which supports projects and activities that maximize opportunities for people with disabilities, has elected Diana Zietz of Dickinson as chairman and Mary Simonson of the Open Door Center in Valley City as vice chairman of the 20-member council.

Members also have elected the following individuals to serve on the council’s executive committee: Gene Hysjulien, director of the Disability Services Division of the N.D. Department of Human Services in Bismarck; Bob Rutten, director of special education for the N.D. Department of Public Instruction in Bismarck; Jeremy McIntyre of Fargo; and Mike Schwab of Bismarck.

Council Executive Director Tom Wallner said, “The consumers, providers, and agency representatives serving on the council have elected an outstanding leadership team. The incoming chairman, Diana Zietz, also serves on the board of directors of the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities and is extremely knowledgeable.”

Appointed by the governor, the council serves in a planning and advisory capacity to state policy makers and agencies such as the Department of Human Services and advocates for policy changes that promote choice, independence, productivity, and inclusion for all North Dakotans with disabilities.

The council also administers the federal Developmental Disabilities Basic State Grant Program, which totals about $460,000 per year and funds council operations and projects dealing with quality assurance, community supports, employment, and education and early intervention services.

The new officers and executive committee members will begin serving their two-year terms on October 1, 2004.

Council information is available on the Web at http://ndcpd.misu.nodak.edu/uapdis/home.html.


Tom Wallner, Executive Director, N.D. State Council on Developmental Disabilities, (701) 328-8945, or Heather Steffl, DHS Public Information Officer, (701) 328-493


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