Newsletter Archive

Newsletter Issue 19: 05/17/10


SpecialQuest Birth–Five Newsletter




An incredible group of 265 advocates for inclusion of young children with disabilities met in Denver, April 25-28, for the 2010 National Leadership SpecialQuest.


The air was buzzing with energy and ideas from the moment Joan Lombardi gave opening remarks through learning from one another and exploring the Switch framework for change to our final parting commitments.


National Leadership SpecialQuest



You can find out what members of the ten SpecialQuest State Leadership Teams, SpecialQuest Ambassadors, Coaches, Consultants, and staff experienced by exploring the postings (comments, videos, and photos) made to the National Leadership SpecialQuest blog by iReporters*. You can also view PowerPoint slides and handouts from each of the sessions, notes from the participant-driven and participant-led sessions, and additional resources from the event.


A number of specific ideas surfaced that folks are planning to pursue. As these activities get underway, there may be opportunities for you to join in.


Take a moment to scan the newsletter for information from the event that you would like to know more about and then follow the links. You may also want to bookmark the National Leadership SpecialQuest blog to follow along in the coming months.

susan's signature



Ripples of Change


Our Accomplishments The first day we focused on where we've been. SpecialQuest by the Numbers, our accomplishments, successes and challenges, and insights and learnings were shared.


Charge Lou Landry, who on the last day reflected back to us the work we had done, gave us the following challenge:


"Now that you are students of change, where will you take your plans for inclusion? How will you continue to amaze us? How will you continue to amaze yourself? Sustain the Quest!" view videoclips



Next Steps Ambassadors and State Leadership Teams made plans for how they will incorporate what they learned throughout the National Leadership SpecialQuest into their work for inclusion.


Commitments Individuals and groups made commitments to continue the Quest for inclusion. In the words of the SpecialQuest Ambassadors:


"We are committed and energized to Continue the Quest, weaving children and families' success stories to impact communities and leaders. We are committed to empower and encourage family leadership. We will embed the SpecialQuest approach and materials to enhance training, increase awareness towards inclusive opportunities from Birth to Earth!" more commitments


Can We Make a Difference? When asked this question, the answer was a resounding YES!

We watched how the energy of one person was infectious and spread to so many others...we want to emulate this ripple effect for inclusion!




Inspiring Words from Joan Lombardi

Deputy Assistant Secretary and Inter-Departmental Liaison for Early Childhood Development at the Administration for Children and Families


Some of the words and phrases from Joan's opening remarks that resonated with the National Leadership SpecialQuest participants:


Word Cloud

videoclips of responses to Joan's opening comments



Lou LandryiReporters


We assembled a volunteer team of 23 iReporters for the National Leadership SpecialQuest (NLSQ). The iReporters were responsible for sharing their own personal aha moments and reflections while also reporting on happenings and outcomes within sessions and small group work using various social media tools.


We chose to include this activity as part of the NLSQ as a way to provide a more well-rounded and enriched experience. While on-site the iReporters worked diligently to report frequently and regularly, and as a result, we have collected many insights and learnings.


Visit the National Leadership SpecialQuest blog to see what happened at the event through the eyes of participants.


For information on how the iReporter process worked visit Rebecka's blog.






Let's Make a SWITCH for Inclusion!

We explored the 3-part framework for change:


Motivate the Elephant

Direct the Rider

Shape the Path


Learn More




Hot Topics*


*20 discussion topics were identified and led by participants. Above is a partial list of the topics.

If you took notes for one of these groups and have not turned them in, please email them to Kathy Whitener.



We're All In This Together!




This image is a mosaic made up of pictures of the SpecialQuest community.





Colored PencilsGot Talent?

We're looking for someone who participated in the 2010 National Leadership SpecialQuest who can capture the vibe and the key messages in a graphic representation. Contact Susan Stewart




We're On Facebook




We're On Twitter!


Twitter SpecialQuest


Follow Us!



Share This Page