Join members of The Arc and fellow self-advocates, family members, professionals, volunteer leaders, and partners from other nonprofits and government agencies at The Arc Maryland’s 2023 Convention & Awards Banquet on May 23rd at Turf Valley Resort!
Our 2023 Convention theme is BElong! What is the value of inclusion if it is not meaningful? It is not enough for a person to be in an environment that is physically inclusive but emotionally exclusive. True belonging is the ultimate outcome of meaningful inclusion. When people belong, they can “BE” themselves! They are welcomed by others, they are valued, they are a part of something bigger than themselves, and when they are absent, they are missed!
The 2023 Statewide Convention and Awards Banquet will feature breakout presentations in exciting areas, the chance to network with other advocates around the state, and a celebration of our community leaders in improving the lives of adults and children with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Breakout Sessions and Tracks
Each of the day’s 11 breakout sessions features subject matter experts ready to share their experience and knowledge with you. Sessions at the 2023 Convention are part of four Breakout Tracks:
- Be Empowered
- Be Innovative
- Be Dynamic
- Be Enlightened
See details on each breakout session and speakers through the button below to plan out your day!
Meet Our Plenary Speaker: Russell Lehmann
Russell Lehmann is an award-winning and internationally recognized thought leader, public speaker, poet, and advocate who has autism. His words have been featured in the USA Today, LA Times, NPR, Yahoo! News, Autism Speaks, Success Magazine, and archived in the Library of Congress.
Russell showed signs of autism as a newborn, however, he was not formally diagnosed until the age of 12 after suffering through 5 weeks in a lockdown psychiatric facility. In 2011 Russell wrote a book titled “Inside Out: Stories and Poems from an Autistic Mind” which was featured in the LA Times, earned an Honorable Mention at the 2012 NY Book Festival, and won the award for Literary Excellency at the 2013 International Autistic People’s Awards in Vancouver, Canada.
Named the 2022 Advocate of the Year by the Autism Society of America, Russell currently travels the world spreading hope, awareness, and compassion in a raw and dynamic fashion, while also setting his sights on erasing the stigma and stereotypes that come with having a disability. Russell’s passion is to be a voice for the unheard, for he knows how difficult and frustrating it is to go unnoticed.
You can read more about Russell here on his website.
8:00 to 9:00 AM Chapter Volunteer of the Year Awards Breakfast (Ticketed Event)
8:00 AM Registration Open
9:15 to 10:15 AM Plenary Session: Charting the Path to What Is Possible™ with Russell Lehmann
10:15 to 10:50 AM The Arc Maryland Annual Meeting
10:20 to 10:50 AM Book Sales and Signing, Russell Lehmann – Exhibitor Alley
10:50 to 11:05 AM Break for Networking and Exploring the Convention
11:05 to 11:50 AM Breakout Session 1
11:50 to 12:00 PM Break to make your way to the Awards Luncheon
12:00 to 1:30 PM Awards Luncheon
1:30 to 2:00 PM Networking and Visit the Exhibit Hall
2:00 to 2:45 PM Breakout Session 2
2:45 to 3:00 PM Break for Networking and Exploring the Convention
3:00 to 3:45 PM Breakout Session 3
3:00 PM Silent Auction Closes
Completed vendor passports must be submitted by this time for drawing.
3:45 to 4:30 PM Check Out For Silent Auction Winners.
Passport drawing winners can claim prizes at Registration Desk.
4:00 to 6:00 PM Direct Support Professional of the Year Awards Happy Hour (Ticketed Event)
Thank You to Our Valued Supporters!
This project is supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $1,206,492 with 100% funding by ACL/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.