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Diversity and Cultural Competency

Facilitated by:

Dawn Cooper and Peggy Terhune

Thank you for your interest in joining a Special Interest Group (SIG).

SIG Description

In this ever-changing, multi-cultural world, it has become more important than ever to explore how the changing demographics in our communities impacts the way we work and influences our success. This group will pull together chapter staff dedicated to: furthering our knowledge and understanding of the impact of diversity in our chapters; discussing challenges and reaching solutions to becoming more culturally competent; and creating strategies for bringing this discussion to a wider audience.

SIG Facilitators

  1. Dawn Cooper

    Manager, Diversity and Cultural Competency, The Arc, Washington, DC

    Dawn Cooper is responsible for developing and implementing The Arc’s strategic plan for creating greater diversity within our chapters and ensuring we are effectively meeting the needs of a diverse I/DD community. As a professional diversity consultant with 20 years’ experience, Dawn has consulted with organizations on ways to leverage diversity and build inclusion as an organizational imperative and specializes in providing strategic and tactical direction to organizations looking to implement change and improve effectiveness. Previously, she has served in positions at the World Bank, AFSC, InterAction, Freddie Mac, and American Express, and has been faculty in Georgetown University’s Center for Continuing and Professional Education, Strategic Diversity and Inclusion Management Certificate Program.

  2. Peggy Terhune

    CEO of Monarch and The Arc of Stanly County, Inc., Albemarle, NC

    Dr. Peggy Terhune has been CEO of Monarch and The Arc of Stanly County, Inc. since June 1995. Monarch provides residential, vocational, employment, community and behavioral health services to thousands of adults and children statewide with intellectual and developmental disabilities, mental illness, and substance use disorders.

    Under her leadership, Monarch has moved towards evidence-based and best practice in all areas, successfully added services, enhanced community integration, improved customer satisfaction, reduced turnover and successfully developed programs to serve consumers with multiple disabilities.

    Peggy received a Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Therapy from Indiana University, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Rochester Institute of Technology, and a Ph.D. from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She has worked with and advocated for people with disabilities for more than 40 years. Her competencies include a wide range of clinical and administrative skills and she is culturally competent. She serves on multiple state and national boards, and is recognized for her cutting edge, clinically sound progressive practices. She and husband Bob have seven adult children (several with disabilities) and serve as therapeutic foster parents to teenagers with mental illness.