Charlotte, NC, July 22, 2020
Kristen Dineen has been inspiring others for years. She was born with Cerebral Palsy, but nothing has stopped her from becoming an overachiever.
She graduated high school and college earning a BA degree in Early Childhood Education. However after teaching for two years she realized it wasn’t her calling. Her life took her through a series of jobs until she landed at Easterseals UCP. She’s been the administrative assistant in the Charlotte office for 11 years.
She began her relationship with Easterseals UCP as a volunteer in 1994 by helping out at fundraising events. Early on someone told her, “Once you walk through the doors here, it’s hard to walk out.” Kristen said she is a perfect example of that.
Despite living with Cerebral Palsy, Kristen, who is 55-years-old, gets around quite well and only occasionally uses a walker. Kristen said, “Working for Easterseals UCP is a big challenge and I enjoy greeting the children and their parents, working with the autism team, and billing.”
Her role at Easterseals UCP has expanded with increased responsibilities and challenges that Kristen enjoys. She embraces each one and loves her job. What makes her smile is when a child who is non-verbal comes to the Autism Center and then a few weeks later is talking. Kristen said “That brightens my day!”
With the 30th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Kristen and many individuals like her are able to work to their fullest potential. Still, while the ADA has helped men and women living with disabilities get jobs without the issue of discrimination, there is still more work to do. Kristen said, “I know the ADA has done a lot. I have just powered through the doors that won’t open and sidewalks with no curb cuts. If I don’t power through the things that are tough I would not get anywhere. I have too many places to go and things to see!”
Easterseals UCP is looking back and moving forward during the ADA 30th Anniversary Campaign using #ThanksToTheADA.ABOUT EASTERSEALS UCPEasterseals UCP provides meaningful and exceptional services so that children and adults living with disabilities and mental health challenges can live, learn, work and play in their communities. Kathy.Edgerton@eastersealsucp.com(O) 919-865-8660 | (C) 919-208-0621