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Living up to their credo of "Elks Care and Elks Share"Published: July 20, 2019

Living up to their credo: "Elks Care and Elks Share"
For an astounding 20 plus years the Empire Elks Lodge #1493 and Elks Galaxy Temple Lodge #1131 have been putting into action the Elks credo, “Elks Care and Elks Share,” to benefit the individuals who DDRC serves. We have been grateful and happy for that caring and sharing as the two lodges teamed up year after year to host a summer BBQ and winter holiday lunch at the DDRC Walters Center. In fact, Lodge 1493 and 1131 began their good-will endeavors for those with IDD years earlier, when they were involved with the Wheat Ridge Regional Facility more than 25 years ago.

On Saturday, July 20, fifteen Elks members from the two lodges came together with their leaders, James Efferson and Laura Smith to bring a generous BBQ lunch spread, prepared with a tasty home-cooked flavor. About 45 individuals receiving services with DDRC came to enjoy the TLC/Recreation event made possible by the Elks, with help from DDRC staff.  When asked what they thought of the Elks and the lunch, the response from individuals was wide smiles, thumbs up and  comments of “so nice, thank you!”

The Empire Elks Lodge #1493 and Elks Galaxy Temple Lodge #1131 are currently centered in Aurora, which makes their trek to DDRC in Arvada, with food, drink, tableware and more, all that more notable and appreciated. Thank you, James Efferson, Laura Smith and the team of wonderful Elks members who gave their time and effort to make this happen for DDRC!! And  thank you for your other efforts in the community to help youth and elderly though your similarly generous activities. For more about the Elks see

Luau on the LinksPublished: July 15, 2019

Join DDRC for the 27th Annual Charity Golf Tournament, Luau on the Links! Enjoy a beautiful day playing golf at the gorgeous Hiwan Golf Club in Evergreen, CO. The tournament will benefit DDRC and the individuals we support. Be sure to wear a Hawaiian shirt and join us for our signature summertime Par-Tee!

Visit the Tournament Page

Tournament Sponsors

Fairfield Inn

Birdie Sponsors

ANB BankCenterpoint Insurance GroupDelta Dental
Par Sponsors
SCU Community Foundation
Wood Technology, Inc

Hole Sponsors

A Better Life Experience
Arvada-Jefferson Kiwanis Foundation
Colorado Christian University
The Arc – Jefferson, Clear Creek, & Gilpin Counties
Merrill Lynch

IDD Awareness Month in MarchPublished: March 21, 2019

IDD Awareness Day Celebration

Every year DDRC participates in IDD Awareness Day as a way to join forces with others in the IDD community to bring our voice to the Colorado Legislature, to meet our local legislators, to highlight the work of outstanding Direct Service Professionals and to hear inspirational speakers.
It’s a great way to kick off IDD Awareness month in March.

This year we nominated Megan McCourt and Rita Higley, both DDRC Direct Service Professionals, to receive recognition alongside other outstanding DSPs nominated by their organizations across Colorado. Joining us for lunch and the presentations were Senator Rachael Zenzinger, Senator Jessie Danielson, Senator Dennis Hisey and aides from Representative Monica Duran’s office.

Pictured standing
 left to right: Ruth Aponte, Aponte and Busam, Senator Rachel Zenzinger, and Beverly Winters, DDRC Executive Director. Seated left to right: Aides/associates of Representative Monica Duran, and Megan McCourt and Rita Highly from DDRC.

FirstBank Makes Contribution in Honor of IDD Awareness Month and 25th Hour Fund

FirstBank, one of the nation’s largest privately held banks with a focus on “banking for good,” has stepped forward with a $5,000 donation in honor of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD) Awareness Month. As the concepts of diversity and inclusion grow broader, people are asked to consider how they can further welcome and include people with IDD in all aspects of community life. With that in mind, FirstBank made the donation specifically to support the work of the Developmental Disabilities Resource Center (DDRC) through the Developmental Disabilities Foundation (DDF).

"We are pleased to support our Lakewood neighbor DDRC and help demonstrate the importance of valuing and improving the lives of people of all abilities,” said FirstBank CEO Jim Reuter.  

Pictured above, left to right: Susan Hartley, DDRC Board of Directors Treasurer, Beverly Winters, DDRC Executive Director, Jim Reuter, FirstBank CEO and Barb Moritzky, DDF Treasurer. 

The $5,000 gift from FirstBank will enable DDRC, in conjunction with the DDF, to help individuals and families address crisis needs through the “25th Hour Fund.” Barbara Moritzky, DD Foundation Board Treasurer said, “This generous donation will enable DDRC and the Foundation to help many individuals and families who often have nowhere else to turn in an emergency. Thank you, FirstBank, for making a difference in their lives.”

Beverly Winters, Executive Director of DDRC, said, “We have long held the values of quality, dignity and choice for every individual of any ability. This year, DDRC marks 55 years as a leader in serving the IDD community. We have deep gratitude to FirstBank for helping us mark IDD Awareness Month as we continue along our journey, and for showing that ‘Banking for Good’ includes all people.” 

Film Fest Celebrates IDD Awareness Month

The Achieve With Us Colorado Film Fest, organized by The Arc of Colorado with 13 local Arc chapters, and made freely available through the sponsorship of many entities, including DDRC, was a moving, eye-opening and not-to-be missed event! The film fest is organized as part of IDD Awareness Month in March.

DDRC and friends were there to enjoy connecting with a great crowd and shared the experience of seeing Far From the Tree, one of many films featured during the festival. Based on the New York Times bestseller of the same name by Andrew Solomon, the film was a powerful and beautiful exploration of all the ways it means to be a “normal family.”  
Be sure to mark your calendars to come next year! 

DDRC Self Determination Grants Open DoorsPublished: March 21, 2019

Sometimes, a small object can be like a special door that opens to a wider world. For Cynthia Reynolds, that door is an iPad, which opened a portal to many things that enrich her life. 

Cynthia, a woman with IDD in her middle years, is receiving services from DDRC. With the help of DDRC’s Self Determination funding, Cynthia recently acquired an iPad and received coaching in setting up and becoming familiar with its capabilities. That coaching was provided by Erlen Marsh, DDRC’s Instructional Technology Specialist.

Cynthia uses her iPad to help make choices in her practical living, like finding the RTD bus schedule to get to King Soopers or go on other errands. The iPad gives her access to an app to get grocery coupons, keep track of a shopping list, and watch for items on sale that she likes. 

A self-described mystery book lover, Cynthia also uses the iPad to get connected to the Talking Book Library to have large-print books and tapes mailed to her. She also connects to the Jefferson County Library system and uses the iPad for games like “WonderWord.” Cynthia is challenged with spelling, but she fearlessly uses her iPad to access help in dictation and spellcheck, and is active in communicating by email and Facebook to reach friends and family. "I would miss people without this iPad," she says.

DDRC’s Self Determination Funds are awarded to help individuals with IDD get unique supports to pursue their dreams and lead fuller lives. Funding is available to those residing in Jefferson County. Grants may cover things such as therapy, employment supports, social connections and life coaching. A committee of community and DDRC representatives review the requests for funds to determine if the circumstances warrant approval. 

For more information, please contact Kelly King, DDRC's Self Determination Coordinator at or 303-233-3363, or see DDRC's Self Determination information on our web page at

State Audit on Case ManagementPublished: December 18, 2018

DDRC and the Community Centered Boards (CCBs) in Colorado serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) have many financial, health and safety, programmatic and other surveys and audits. Recently, the Colorado Office of the State Auditor conducted an audit of all 20 CCBs as required by state law.

The audit, which was a retrospective look from July 2016 through June 2017, was specific to Medicaid case management and State Supported Living Services (SLS) case management. The audit findings were approximately 1% of the case management budget statewide. Those findings showed a lack of adequate supporting documentation, such as lacking a signature, specified dates, choosing the correct activity on the state automated system, or log notes to verify that each case management activity that was billed took place. Adequate documentation is required for all case management activities to support billing and verify that the service occurred. DDRC did quite well with the audit results regarding in-person case management visits, which is the one area of this audit that captured actual service delivery.

DDRC, other CCBs and IDD stakeholders agree with the Colorado Legislative Audit Committee recommendations that the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing (HCPF) and the CCBs work together to find a more effective funding methodology for targeted case management other than 15-minute billing unit increments. Other concerns to be addressed include an end to the 240-unit cap on reimbursement per individual, ensuring state requirements and funding for State Supported Living Services are adequate, and improving the state required technology systems for documenting claims to HCPF.

DDRC and the CCBs statewide believe in the importance of the need to correct all processes that will lead closer to a 100% compliance rate. Since the state auditor’s retrospective look, HCPF, DDRC and other CCBs have implemented measures to strengthen documentation, billing processes and in-person case management monitoring. Further measures are also in progress. 

All of these collective efforts in Colorado will further demonstrate to the Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services (CMS) that Colorado’s Medicaid funding is being administered as intended.

DDRC has a long history of transparency, accountability and a commitment to best practices in meeting our mission.  Our individuals, families, funders and community can be confident that DDRC will work with IDD stakeholders to find solutions to support great lives for people with IDD and their families.

FirstBank Brings "Banking for Good" to LifePublished: June 13, 2018

Ron Lindsey (L), Harold Dickerson (C), and Cody Widiger (R), employees of  FirstBank,
volunteer with the Developmental Disabilities Resource Center

With an uplifting and bold tagline emblazoned on their tee shirts, three guys from FirstBank flexed their muscles and fired their brain cells to show that “Banking for Good” is more than a company slogan, it is a company culture that encouraged them to volunteer with the Developmental Disabilities Resource Center, and help those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

Undaunted by the summer heat, Harold Dickerson, Cody Widiger, and Ron Lindsey, who are part of FirstBank’s Fraud Analytics Operations, tackled multiple clean-up projects on two Lakewood, Colorado properties that are group homes for those who are differently-abled, those with IDD.

The men removed stubborn overgrown bushes, hauled dead and fallen tree limbs, raked up debris, cleaned out window wells, and made multiple trips to dumpsters – all of which resulted in tired yards taking on an inviting feeling. It was a wonderful improvement to the properties, where the residents didn’t have the tools, pickup truck, or physical ability to accomplish the heavy lift of that effort.

Taking the better part of an afternoon, the volunteers also tackled construction of many raised garden planter kits, providing the residents an opportunity to grow flowers, herbs and vegetables.

The nonprofit Developmental Disabilities Resource Center manages the group homes, where about six to eight individuals live in each house. DDRC manages about eleven such homes, and also coordinates with apartment managers and individual homeowners to provide additional housing. A mere 50 years ago, people with IDD were shuttered away in large, impersonal institutions, so the approaches taken today allow people with IDD to live more authentic lives that are connected to the community.

When asked by DDRC why they volunteered, Harold, Manager of Fraud Analytics said, “FirstBank encourages employees to give back to the community; it’s an important part of our culture. We're here to help people in need.” Ron shared that he has a friend who works with children with autism, so he knew about intellectual disabilities, and was eager to make a difference in his own way. Cody expressed appreciation of FirstBank’s support of time off from work for employee volunteerism.

FirstBank, a privately held bank and financial services company with headquarters in Lakewood, has bank locations in Colorado, Arizona, and California. They take pride in their role of transforming communities, whether empowering business growth or helping to address community needs through partnership with nonprofits. The three-man team from FirstBank didn’t just spruce up the yards of the Lakewood group homes, they also transformed the residents' summer outdoor living experience, all made possible by a philosophy of “Banking for Good.”

See more about FirstBank in their community report and video.

If your company would like to see how they can make a difference by supporting the services of DDRC, contact DDRC’s Volunteer Coordinator at 303.462.6585 or email, or contact our Community Relations Office at 303.462.6623.

Karen Allison, DDRC Quality Living Options Program Manager, stands with FirstBank volunteers  Ron Lindsey (L), Harold Dickerson (C), and Cody Widiger (R). 

Dogs Donations and DisabilitiesPublished: May 1, 2018

They say that dogs are man’s best friend (and women’s too). That’s in part because a pooch is loyal and giving, albeit through wags and wet kisses. But what does this have to do with DDRC?

 Just ask one of our steadfast donors, Heidi Markley, who has contributed proceeds from her dog and house-sitting service, Angels and Unicorns, to support the work of DDRC year-after-year, and often several times a year.  Heidi had a child in service with DDRC and she saw the crucial importance of respite care and its benefits for both the family and the individual in service. She donates to help support respite care through DDRC’s Shannon and Bill Markley Respite Fund.

DDRC is fortunate that the commitment to the work we do is shared by more than 500 donors, whose combined contributions this year have totaled approximately $180,000.

Beverly Winters, DDRC Executive Director
speaking to donors.
This April, DDRC donors attended a reception in their honor, where DDRC Executive Director Beverly Winters thanked them and spoke about the impact of their contributions in supporting our wide range of services and special initiatives. These initiatives include our 25th Hour Fund for emergency assistance and a one-time boost, the refurbished Technology Learning Lab which provides classes and coaching to help people in service gain greater independence through their tech devices, and the new Café Soul, an employment training ground for people with IDD who are exploring the food service industry. Attendees toured the Tech Lab and Café Soul, enjoyed a spread of delicious hors d'oeuvres, and connected with other donors and DDRC staff.

Beverly Winters and Heidi Markley 

DDRC is proud to say that we build on abilities, helping people with disabilities fulfill possibilities. We wouldn’t have the ability to do all that we do were it not for our wonderful donors.  And that’s something to bark about!

Pictures from the April reception:

Joanne Elliott, DDRC Board of Directors member with Deb Gordon, DDRC Director of Quality Living Options -ISS

Lesley Dahlkemper, former Jeffco School Board member and candidate for Jefferson County Commissioner with Corinne Gray, DDRC Board of Directors member, and Susan Johnson, DDRC Director of Children and Family Services.

Diane Hitchingham, DDRC Development Director, with Ron Marquez, former DDRC Community Relations Director, and Jill Polito.

Rob DeHerrera, DDRC Deputy Director and CFO, with Art Hogling, former DDRC Executive Director, and Mary Prall.

Ron Marquez, with Joseph and Jill Polito, and Erik Krickbaum.

Welcome to the New SitePublished: September 15, 2017

We are proud to announce the release of our newly redesigned website. After months of hard work and dedication, we are delighted that you are here with us!The DDRC website has been crafted to support the people we serve, their families and their communities. Our goal is to provide easy, accessible access to information for individuals and families on services, resources and funding available.
Exciting new features!
Homepage – A great place to see what is new and exciting at DDRC! Visit the FAQs section, learn about upcoming events and find out all about the services DDRC offers.
Search – Our updated search tool allows you to find the information you are looking for even faster and easier than before.
Events Calendar – Find out the latest events and training offered by visiting the Event section.
Easy Navigation – Streamlined menus and quick Navigation to the information you need.
Responsive Design – Our website now works seamlessly on mobile devices and tablets.
Share – Now you can share any page on our website with our integrated social media buttons that allow you to share content on Facebook and Twitter.
We hope you find the new website easy to access.

Four Corners to a HomePublished: September 7, 2017

PJ Snyder currently receives services through DDRC. PJ has Angelman Syndrome, a neuro-genetic disorder that causes daily issues from being non-verbal, seizures, and severe scoliosis and balance issues requiring a wheelchair for mobility. Yet, PJ has a contagious happy disposition, loves music and water, and lives an active life out in the community. Since 2012, PJ has participated in almost 60 events with Athletes in Tandem (AiT) including the Boulder Ironman in 2014. AiT was created for athletes to partner in swimming, cycling, running, and triathlon events with individuals of all abilities. AiT promotes an active lifestyle for individuals to increase the quality of their lives and become part of the community of outdoor recreational enthusiasts. They use their athletic skills and knowledge of endurance training and racing, combined with adaptive equipment, to compete together in mainstream swimming, cycling, running and triathlon events.
Their goal is to provide a path for anyone, regardless of physical ability, to participate in outdoor events; from 5Ks to marathons and Sprint distance to Ironman distance triathlons. On July 17, PJ Snyder and AiT founder Dennis Vanderheiden, embarked on an epic adventure, bicycling 600 miles in 13 days from Four Corners, CO through some of the Colorado’s most scenic and mountainous areas ending in Golden, CO.

Four Corners to a Home

PJ Snyder and Dennis Vanderheiden's map route.
The ride, named "Four Corners to a Home," was done to raise money for an eventual home for Snyder, who turned 31 during the ride, where he can live out his life, as well as raising awareness and research funding for Angelman Syndrome.
"He loves to be outdoors, and he loves the attention," said Cindy Snyder, PJ’s adoptive mother. PJ sat next to her in his wheelchair. Although rendered nonverbal by the disease, he smiled and held the celebratory balloons that helped greet him at the end of the ride. The two of them live in an apartment in the Edgewater/Wheat Ridge area. They decided to end the ride in Golden, because the Golden or Wheat Ridge area would be where she would love to see the two of them find a permanent home.
"Everything went well," said Vanderheiden, munching on pizza between interview answers.
A multi-sport athlete from Ft. Collins, Vanderheiden has participated in more than 70 bike and running events with PJ over the years, including a full Ironman triathlon.
Even with pulling an additional 100 pounds of weight behind his bike for 13 days, over uphill climbs the likes of Monarch Pass and Trail Ridge Road, Vandenheider said his toughest challenges were largely mental.
"We made our destination on the first day, found some shade and I just collapsed there and thought, I don’t know if I can do this,’ " Vanderheiden recalled.
But partnered with the Snyders for support, and with a documentary film crew along for the ride, Vanderheiden said he knew he had to find a way.
The documentary, which Vanderheiden said will include interviews with doctors and Angelman Syndrome patients across the country, is not expected to be finished for a year. In the meantime, Snyder and Vanderheiden still have quite a few events on their calendar for the rest of the year.
When asked about what he tells people who ask him for advice about finding ways to help those less fortunate, he says he tries to encourage them to find their own way of helping. Vanderheiden said,
We inherently want to help people, go do it, because the rewards are great.
PJ Snyder and Dennis Vanderheiden embark on a bicycling adventure.
Visit for more updates on PJ’s story.

Software Grant AwardedPublished: May 16, 2017

Developmental Disabilities Resource Center (DDRC) announced that Microsoft Philanthropies has donated over $400,000 worth of Microsoft software and services to support technology upgrades that will enhance staff efficiency to build organizational capacity.
Microsoft Philanthropies provides grants that contribute in new and impactful ways to create a societal ecosystem connecting the benefits of technology to those who need it most. For more than 30 years, Microsoft has invested in programs supporting nonprofits like DDRC to help further their mission through grants, employee volunteers and software donations.
With almost 600 employees, DDRC creates opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families to participate fully in the community. Almost 4,000 people with developmental disabilities look to DDRC for services and resource coordination throughout Jefferson, Gilpin, Clear Creek and Summit counties.
Keith Frambro, DDRC’s director of information technology, applied for the grant to help increase employees’ capacity to access data stored in databases quickly and accurately thereby enhancing service delivery models while ensuring confidentiality and security.
"DDRC is honored to be the recipient of this generous grant from Microsoft Philanthropies," said Keith Frambro, director of IT. "Microsoft’s donation will update our technology infrastructure allowing for quick and easy remote data access for our staff who provide services for individuals with developmental disabilities in both their homes and the community. We are very excited to get started."
The proposed upgrades will provide improved access across the DDRC network and databases to support the organization’s mobile workforce who currently work with paper documents or with limited access electronic documents housed on a network. Upgrades to DDRC’s servers, SQL system and core software will make significant resources available that can be invested in direct care and other valuable activities such as staff development and cultivating relationships with community partners. Implementation of the new software update and server upgrades will begin immediately.
Beverly Winters, DDRC’s executive director, stated, "In this critical time of lean resources, Microsoft has come through in a big way to help DDRC maintain quality programs and resources for the people we care so much about, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities."
About Microsoft Philanthropies
In December 2015 Microsoft formed Microsoft Philanthropies (@MSPhilanthropic), a new organization within the company focused on driving digital inclusion and empowerment around the world.
About Microsoft
Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT" @microsoft) is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.