FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 20, 2009

 

 

Union County Man to Lead Statewide Agency Helping the Disabled

 

Roselle Park resident Bill Smith, an employee of the Union County Department of Human Services, Office for the Disabled, has been reelected President of the Board of Directors of Advancing Opportunities (formerly Cerebral Palsy of New Jersey). This non-profit agency, based in Ewing, NJ, offers state-of-the art rehabilitation services, family support, inclusive recreation programs, community education and advocacy for children and adults with all types of disabilities.

“As a person who has a disability, I am honored to represent Advancing Opportunities,” said Smith, who has served on the board for 12 years.  “The wide variety of services offered by this agency helps further the goal of independence for people with various disabilities,” he stated.

“As a 25-year veteran of the Union County Department of Human Services, Office for the Disabled, Bill Smith is a knowledgeable resource of information about local and regional programs and services for people with disabilities,” commented Alexander Mirabella, Chairman of the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. “He also assists individuals and families with information about mental health services.”

In addition to his life’s work, Smith has been interested in sports all of his life.  He has coached, managed, umpired and refereed numerous teams and events.  He has incorporated his love of sports into his fundraising efforts for Advancing Opportunities.  Smith has conducted a softball fundraiser with the Union County Prosecutor’s Office that pits assistant prosecutors against the detectives.  He has also helped plan many of the agency’s fundraising golf events.

Smith is past president of the Greater Union County Amateur Softball Umpires Association and has been officiating at the State and Regional Tournament level for 13 years. He umpired the 2001 Woman’s Class B Fast Pitch National Championship, and that same year received the New Jersey Distinguished Umpire of the Year award.

An avid golfer, Smith has worked as a golf coach for Special Olympics of New Jersey and as an instructor for Union County’s Parks and Recreation’s golf program for people who are developmentally disabled. He was a member of the Association of Disabled American Golfers and was National Champion in 1994 and 1996. 

The Governor’s Committee on Recreation for Persons with Disabilities honored Bill with the Alvin Slootsky Lifestyle Award in 1998. Smith also has volunteered for 34 years with the Boy Scouts and currently serves as a merit badge counselor for golf, handicapped awareness, personal fitness, and sports.

For more information about Advancing Opportunities, formerly Cerebral Palsy of New Jersey, and the services it provides, call 888-322-1918 or visit its website at www.advopps.org.

For information about the Union County’s services for people with disabilities call (908) 527-4840, or visit Union County online at www.ucnj.org and click on the Department of Human Services.