December 10 Year End Party
Members gathered for an informal year end party to celebrate a year of accomplishments and to say farewell to founding members Duncan Wyeth, Grant Hilts, Len Sawisch, Mary Pollack, Myrtle Gregg-LaFay, and Toni McFarland.


October 28 was a “Very Cool Conference!”
Over 70 employees with disability characteristics and related professionals
gathered at Peckham Headquarters Conference Center for our 5th Annual ASED
Conference “Leverage: Workers with Disabilities in State Service.”

It was a fast-paced day chock full of information, awareness, and reflections.
Check out the photo essay and key quotes. Special thanks to Brittany Niedfeldt
and Myrtle Gregg-LaFay for their photo-journalism.


* ADA Celebration - Scott NorrisJuly 26th, Capital Lawn - ADA 20 Year Anniversary Celebration - See Our Pictures!

* 2010 picnic of ASED at Scott and SonyasJune 26 annual summer picnic for ASED colleagues and their families on from 12:00-3:00.

President Scott Norris and wife Sonya hosted. Join us next year! A great place to meet members in a low-key environment. Families welcome.

March 9 ADA session with LERA (Labor Employment Relations Assoc): more ASED members are now LERA members

Budget & Retirement situation: Things are still swirling. We are finalizing plans for an April Dinner/Special Briefing from a disability perspective.
NCOD comes to MI: National Council on Disability will hold it's April 19 - 20 board meeting in Michigan - we are looking for ASED members who plan to (or may want to) attend and raise awareness about disability issues and opportunities inside state/public service. Also a great learning opportunity.
Affinity Group:  Yes, there has been some backlash. The Executive Group would like a broader base of involvement before going farther down this road. Look for a facilitated discussion over Dinner this May.

March 13: Adaptive Access for Outdoor Recreation 1 to 4 p.m. (remarks at 2:30), Accessibility Village, U.P. State Fair Authority Fairgrounds in Escanaba Details at DNRE, 1607,7-153-10371_10402-232322- -,00.html

March 9:  Unravel the ADA Amendments! Learn side-by-side with people who influence decisions that affect your career! Join this special LERA event for lunchTuesday, March 9, 11:30 am – 1 pm with Prof. Stacy Hickox at the Spartan Hall of Fame Cafe (formerly Damon's) U.S 127 and Lake Lansing Road East Lansing, Michigan.  See the flier for details.

February 19: Backroom Planning at Decker's, over breakfast (7-8 AM) - Anyone able to rise at that time under those weather conditions is welcome to join us!

January 22: For folks who like backroom planning, the Friday breakfast meeting debriefed the 12/12 event, 2009 Conference follow-up ( affinity groups information ), and February planning. See the notes for details . . .

January 12: For folks who might be bumped or re-deployed, The Tuesday evening dinner with experts on disability issues during bumps and reorganizations was an informative and entertaining evening. The presenters where very good and a number of new faces were in attendance. The room was adequate and the food was pretty good.

Two things we learned:

1. Make arrangements for the hearing loop in advance – the number of folks using hearing aids is surprisingly high and growing. Twyla Niedfeldt has offered to train someone else on how to set up & use the equipment. Dave Goodman has volunteered to learn, so he can ‘be in the loop'!

2. Make arrangements to tape/record our events for folks who can't attend or are still concerned about being associated with the disability label at work.




December 18: For folks who like to network (party), the Friday evening casual dinner to celebrate 2009 was a darn good time! Almost two dozen ASED friends and family braved the cold for an excellent evening of social networking and reminiscing. No minutes were kept, thank you very much . . .

December 1: For folks who like backroom planning, the Tuesday lunch was devoted to planning the January 12 evening event.

November 12, 2009

Lunch at Capital Commons – all are welcome to join us for a working lunch from noon to one. BYOL or there is an excellent snack shop in the building. We should be meeting on the first floor in the Scamarcia Room.

October 28, 2009

Conference De-Brief Dinner:

The group agreed to focus on the two major themes from the conference: Sponsorship and Reaching Employees.

On the sponsorship front, we will be researching what it takes to become a formal affinity group within state service. Twyla & Dave G. are researching other state affinity groups. Scott will be research corporate affinity groups in Michigan. Len & Dave W. will research recognition options within the current state system. (Candice is already looking into sponsorship for next year's conference).

For reaching employees , Grant, Myrtle, Teri, and Candice will be planning a year-end celebration (TBA). Len will seek council from Mary P. on a January event to focus on the unique issues behind layoffs & bumps for Employees with Disabilities.

October 8, 2009

October was Disability Employment Awareness Month

Empowerment = Expectation + Opportunity = Full Participation

Click here for the Conference Recap 



2008 Program Year in Review:

December 12 , 2008

Year-end wrap-up.

October 31, 2008

Enhancing Careers While Managing Disability: an Event for Employees and Managers Impacted by Disability (Cadillac Place in Detroit)

September 25, 2008

Health, Wellness, & Disability: can you cover the cost of Prejudice? w/ Candice Lee

August 21, 2008

What's our obligation to the Youth w/Disabilities who will take our place in state service? w/ Bill Milzarski

July 19, 2008

ASED Family Picnic! w/ Sonya & Scott Norris

Regular Meetings: The Officer's also hosted a monthly lunch or breakfast meeting, open to all interested employees, to plan the above special events, and to support and coordinate ASED activities through the year. Get on our emailing list and join us when you can!

Prior Year Events

Annual ASED Year End Celebration!

Join the Party: Free munchies, free non-alcoholic libations, and free far-fetched story-telling about the lighter side of disability in service to the state! Formal business will be kept to an absolute minimum (or less).

Thanks to those who RSVPed. And if plans changed so now you CAN come, Come On Over!

5:30 - 7:00 PM Friday December 14
Leroy's Classic Bar and Grill

Smoke Free Back Room
Full Menu & Bar Service
1526 S Cedar St, Lansing

This is a special event of the Alliance of State Employees with Disabilities.

(Supporting members wishing to make financial contributions can do so at the event)



An Evening with Alice :

5:30 - 7:00 PM Tuesday, November 6

Dr. Dreger wowed the crowd at the 2007 ASED Conference! Now we've arranged for members and friends to have a delightfully informal evening of questions & answers with our favorite Keynote Speaker and National Celebrity, Alice Dreger! ( )

July 18, 2007


The Movie Banned around the World

Wells Hall, Room B106
MSU Campus

View the flier


June 6, 2007

On June 6 national expert Alice Greger did the "Jarring Bodies" lecture at MSU and then hosted an after-lecture party at her place in East Lansing!

View the flier

After Work Disability Dialog: May 21 (Leroys)

Bill Milzarski shared some staggering insights
about the disability experience of American Veterans, and how the return to work landscape actually looks.

Monday, April 23 (Leroys)

April's  Conversation Starter was "When life goes to the dogs . . . service animals in the workplace," with special guest Roberta McCall. 

Roberta McCall

March 26th (Leroys )

ASED Executive Group members Duncan Wyeth and Mike Hosey lead a discussion on Cerebral Palsy, Brain Injury, and state employment.

Also, updates on the case for assessing what makes state government A Great Place for People with Disabilities to Do Great Work (click to view "The ASED Case" document).

Read the flyer about this event!

February 5th (LeRoy's)

The Executive Group and guests reviewed the suggestions from the Plank Two Assessment Workgroup.  They recommended an action strategy of asking the Office of Great Workforce Development to help conduct the outlined assessment, under the auspices of the First Gentleman. The resulting position paper, called " The ASED Case", was based on the Platform Discussion Notes 1/8/07 .

January 8, 2007

Special ASED Executive Group Planning Session

In a lively discussion over olive burgers and fries, the assembled ASED Executive Group members fleshed out a draft action plan for the 2007 ASED Platform (see Platform Discussion Notes 1/8/07) . At President Scott's suggestion, the group focused on the assessment plank. A dynamic and energetic follow-up workgroup was set up to hammer out more details on the assessment plank, with plans to report back to the full group at the February meeting.


December 8, 2006

Thanks for Joining Us In 2006!

Our end-of-the-year casual after-work networking evening Friday December 8th at Leroy's Classic Bar and Grill was an excellent time! Highlights:

  • Leroy picked up a number of Oliveburger converts and twice as many homemade breadsticks fans!
  • Even after hearing some stories, new members Jan Williams and Mary Estes confirmed their interest in active ASED roles.
  • Pat Cannon , the Governor's ADA spokesperson, was able to join us for a few stories as well.
  • If you get a chance, ask Brenda and Harold Strieff about the Skunk and Bull.
  • And special thanks to ASED President Scott Norris for emceeing the event and to ASED Treasurer Grant Hilts for turning us on to Leroy's - what a treasure!

October 26, 2006

The Illusion of Hearing: The Impact on Employment
with special guest Twyla Niedfeldt,

Statewide Specialist for the Hard of Hearing, Division on Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Michigan Commission on Disability Concerns


ASED Brown Bag Information Series - Fall, 2005

September 16, 2005

Loran Graham reviewed some of the unique efforts in place during the late 70's and early 80's, when disability diversity initiatives were alive and well inside state government. Loran was both an architect and an administrator of programs to promote equitable opportunities for people with disabilities, and was honored by SHAPE for his contributions with a Sonya Berlin Outstanding Public Service Award.

September 30, 2005

Barry Reinink described the current state of affairs affecting Rehab and Return to Work for state employees with disabilities. As a rehabilitation expert, Barry offered a unique perspective - he has been serving state employees who acquire disabilities since the mid 1980's. 

October 14, 2005

Toni McFarland overviewed the reasonable accommodations process for state employees. Toni is the State of Michigan Disability Manager and serves as a special advisor and resource to all state agency accommodation coordinators. As a rehabilitation expert, Toni has served in a variety of public service settings.


ASED Dinner with the Executive Group Series - 2006

January 25, 2006

If you need to exercise your rights,

What SHAPE are you in?

with special guest Stacy Hickox

Disability Rights Author and Attorney: Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service Staff Attorney; ACLU Board of Directors


March 8, 2006

If health or disability takes you away from work,

Will 'work' take you back?

with special guest Barry Reinink

Return to Work and 'At Risk' Rehabilitation Expert: Two decades serving state employees with disabilities; Michigan Rehabilitation Services


April 26, 2006

Psychiatric Disabilities: Are they really difficult to accommodate

or is the usual approach just crazy?

with special guest David Ware

Employee Service Program Specialist: Over fifteen years serving state employees in crisis


July 13, 2006

Do we have a leg to stand on?

Ask the state's top Disability Spokespersons

with special guests

Patrick Cannon, Governor's ADA Coordinator, and

Toni McFarland, Executive Branch Accommodations Coordinator

Contact us for more info

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