Family Advisory Council to Discuss Statewide Engagement Plan

The DODD Family Advisory Council (FAC) digs in to a full agenda on February 10 at Columbus Developmental Center, 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., including a review of the Strategic Planning Leadership Group (SPLG) Final Report prepared in late December, and an interactive afternoon session to explore ways to build a broader Family Network across the state.

“Strengthening family engagement within the developmental disabilities community will be a priority for the Council this year,” noted DODD Project Manager Tom Hess. Hess is taking an interim leadership role with FAC, prior to a fulltime Family Liaison joining the Department, following the retirement of Peggy Martin late last year.  He added,

The Family Advisory Council is a critical participant in steering our system of services and supports. My goal is to make it an even more integral part of the agency’s operations, and energize an improved statewide conversation on concerns and issues. We are looking forward to this meeting as being a springboard to some great discussions.”

Tom Hess, Family Liaison

Tom Hess, Family Liaison

The morning of February 10 includes a panel discussion with members of the SPLG, and comments and updates from Director John Martin and Deputy Director Lori Horvath. The afternoon will focus on the SPLG recommendations specific to the experiences of family members, and provide an opportunity for attendees to offer input on how to better support families and build family networks throughout Ohio.

Family Advisory Council meetings are open to anyone with an interest in Ohio’s developmental disabilities community.  The meetings are 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., at Columbus Developmental Center, 1601 W. Broad Street, Columbus. If you plan to attend this meeting please RSVP to Michele Kanode at

Read more online at, and at DODD Family Advisory Council

Contact Family Liaison Tom Hess at, or 614-466-7480.