The Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania presented
awards to 11 individuals, one family and one organization at its annual
conference in June.
The awards ceremony began with the announcement of a new
award, the Dennis Minori Family Tribute Award.
Established to recognize a family that represents the spirit of hope and
overcoming the challenges that brain injury presents to a family, the award is
named for former BIAPA President Dennis Minori, who died in 2015. The recipients of the 2016 Dennis Minori Family
Tribute Award is the Minori family, who have been an inspiration of others
touches by brain injury.
The Pioneer in Brain Injury Award was presented to Joanne Finegan, President of
ReMed in recognition of her initiative, expertise and creativity leading to the
development of services and support in the field of brain injury
Leadership Awards were presented to Alexis Campbell and Katie MacKenzie in
recognition of their advocacy efforts and their impact on the field of brain
injury rehabilitation. Campbell is the
founder of Camp Cranium, a summer camp for children with brain injuries.
MacKenzie founded ReDiscoverU, a program designed to meet the diverse
educational needs and interests of individuals with brain injuries.
The Public Policy Award was presented Pennsylvania State
Representative Thomas Murt. The award recognizes outstanding individuals in our
state who have put forward efforts to establish public policies of benefit to
persons with brain injury.
The Organization Award was presented to MossRehab’s Drucker Brain Injury
Center, which has for 40 years been committed to research and learning, helping
and supporting persons with brain injury and their families.
The Service to the Association Award was presented to Michael Hrabowski and
Morgan Ferrante in recognition of their work as a volunteer to support the
mission and vision of the Association. Hrabowski,
husband of brain injury survivor Karen McGoldrick Hrabowski, has led the Heads
on Straight Support Group, volunteered for the Run, Walk, Roll for Brain
Injury, and represented the brain injury community at numerous educational
events. Ferrante is a recreational
therapist at Bryn Mawr Rehab and the chair of the very successful Race to Recovery
events in West Chester that have benefitted BIAPA.
The Service to the Brain Injury Community Award was
presented to Lauren Bilski and Marie Beattie in recognition of their exemplary
service in the areas of advocacy, education and raising social awareness
relating to the needs of individuals with brain injury and their families. Bilski is a third year Physical Therapy student
at Jefferson who works tirelessly to change the lives of individuals who have experienced
brain injury. Mother of a brain injury survivor,
Beattie, with her daughter Corey, regularly speak with students, healthcare
professionals and family members about the many facets of brain injury.
The Direct Care Service Award, which honors staff members who provide exemplary
services to individuals with brain injury, was presented to Barbara Rann, Certified
Brain Injury Specialist, who has been providing cognitive rehabilitation
therapy to individuals with brain injury for over 20 years.
The Barb Dively Advocacy Award was established to recognize
individuals who are advocates and champions for those who have experienced
brain injury. It is named for Barb Dively, who has worked tirelessly on
behalf of those who have experienced brain injury and their families and to
whom the first award was presented.
The John Sears Inspiration Award is named for brain injury
survivor John Sears and recognizes an individual who has striven to overcome
significant challenges and who has utilized their talents and strengths to
accomplish significant personal achievements.
It was presented to brain injury survivor Bob Ruddy, who returned to
bicycling after a devastating crash and who shares his inspiring story and
outlook with other brain injury survivors.