OKLAHOMA CITY -- Candace Chandler was honored at the annual Governor's Conference on Developmental Disabilities held April 25 and 26 in Norman. Chandler is a Habilitation Training Specialist at Big Five Community Services, Inc.
The Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) Developmental Disabilities Services Division (DDSD) sponsors the awards to honor outstanding direct care professionals around the state.
Division Director Jim Nicholson says the purpose of the awards is to honor those who support people with developmental disabilities as they strive to become as independent as possible.
"Oklahoma is committed to assisting people with developmental disabilities find competitive jobs and become working taxpayers," said Nicholson. "In fact, we are one of the top two states in integrated employment in the country." Nicholson explained that success for people with developmental disabilities is directly related to care, skills and attention provided by these professionals.
Wanda Felty, mother of a daughter with developmental disabilities, nominated Candace for the award. "Candace has taken the time to learn what my daughter Kayla likes and dislikes," said Felty. "Her patient, respectful approach and her devotion has given Kayla her first opportunity to slowly become active in a day program and form friendships with others at the center."