AZ DD Network Leadership – New Executive Directors

Network Partner Updates
DDNN Winter 2016/17

The Arizona DD Network welcomes two new executive directors at the Arizona DD Planning Council and Northern Arizona University’s Institute for Human Development. We want to thank Larry Clausen (ADDPC) and Rich Carroll (IHD) for their service and partnership throughout their tenure, and wish them the best of luck in retirement!

Council Names New Executive Director, Dr. Erica McFadden
Arizona Developmental Disabilities Planning Council (ADDPC)

Erica McFadden, ADDPC Executive DirectorDr. Erica McFadden knows a thing or two about how to support people with disabilities. As an individual with cerebral palsy and nearly 20 years of hands-on experience in the disability field, she is stepping into the director’s role at the Arizona Developmental Disabilities Planning Council in its mission to support innovative projects that serve the 100,000 Arizonans with a developmental disability.

“I want to hear what big ideas people have because it’s going to take big ideas to move the needle and make significant change for Arizonans with developmental disabilities,” said Dr. McFadden. “I’m excited to use my passion and energies toward tackling barriers and highlighting solutions.

“Disability access to education, employment, and overall community life remains one of the most significant unrecognized social justice issues of our time,” she added.

Dr. McFadden comes to the Council after years of partnership in her work as a senior policy analyst for the Morrison Institute on Public Policy at Arizona State University (ASU). Prior to her move to Arizona, Dr. McFadden served as executive director of LINC Inc., a community-based service and advocacy organization for people with disabilities in Illinois.

“It’s an honor to have her at the Council,” said Council Chairman, Ray Morris. “Erica brings a lifetime of experience and I’m looking forward to working together in enhancing the quality of life for Arizona’s residents.”

Dr. McFadden holds a doctorate in Public Administration and Policy from ASU, a master’s in social work from Virginia Commonwealth University, and dual bachelor's degrees in Business Administration and Spanish from the University of Texas at Austin. In addition to her duties as researcher and director, Dr. McFadden has worked as a counselor, consultant, educator, professor, grant writer, lobbyist and marketer in the aging and disability fields.

Outgoing director Larry Clausen is retiring after nearly seven years with the Council. “I’m pleased to pass the torch to a top-notch leader like Erica,” Clausen said. “Council members will have a solid partner with lots of passion and expertise.”

IHD Welcomes Dr. Kelly Roberts as New Executive Director
Institute for Human Development (IHD)
Northern Arizona University

Kelly Roberts, IHD Executive DirectorDr. Kelly Roberts has worked in the disability, education, and health and human service fields for more than 29 years. During this time, she worked as a teacher in grades 6 through 12, researcher, assistive technology specialist, postsecondary education instructor, and administrator. She has extensive experience working with individuals from multicultural and linguistically diverse backgrounds, as well as with individuals with a broad range of disabilities.

Dr. Roberts comes to IHD after working at the Hawaii's UCEDD for more than 17 years, and serving as the director of the Pacific Basin UCEDD for about 10 years.  While her experiences are varied, her primary areas of interest include assistive technology, learning disabilities, and research related to disabilities across the lifespan, including community integration and transition from high school to postsecondary education and/or the workforce. Her passion lies in improving the quality of life of all individuals, but particularly those who are economically disadvantaged and who have limited access to services.

Dr. Roberts expressed excitement about working with the amazing staff of IHD, NAU personnel, and state and community organizations: “The opportunities available at IHD are extensive and, where opportunities do not exist, we will work to create them in order to improve the quality of life for individuals with disabilities and other marginalized groups."