About Skills Development Center
In 2011, a group of parents came together to create the Skills Development Center as they discovered the challenges facing their own disabled adults. With a variety of backgrounds, passion and hard work we opened our doors in September 2011. Since then, we have become involved in our local community as well as worked with many adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. We offer a family environment and a place where our clients can work on their independence, building friendships, and working on their skills and behaviors.
We believe that individuals with disabilities deserve the same dignity and opportunity as anyone else and that learning is a lifelong endeavor. Our center grows with our clients and places them as our top priority. We are different because our clients do not age out of our programs and our learning environments are rich with a wide range of age, disability backgrounds and function level. Through this policy, and a relaxed yet structured setting, clients develop mentoring relationships, close friendships and family-like bonds that often continue into life outside the center.
Our Mission, Vision, & Core Values
Mission: To have our clients practice a variety of marketable skills and appropriate social behaviors to prepare them for employment through internships and guided group activities. We facilitate peer interactions, cultivate positive coping skills, and provide these individuals with the tools to succeed. We offer clients the opportunity to continue working on positive behaviors as well as independent life skills in a supportive, friendly environment.
Vision: To enhance the lives of adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities
Family: We create an environment that enables everyone in the center to value each other’s contributions and diversity.
Empowerment: We enable each individual to work towards their potential and learn to become a part of their community.
Advocacy: We participate in communication and civic efforts that aim towards a healthy society utilizing the diverse strengths of its members.
Meet the Team
President, Program Director
A parent of a son with autism, her dual degrees in Biology and Health Sciences with a certification as a Physician’s Assistant were a strong foundation for her additional training in the Lovaas Method of ABA, Modified ABA, Greenspan Method, TEACCH and PECS. She has over 15 years of experience working with persons with autism including the Henrico County school system, past president of the Autism Society of America, Central VA Chapter, and four years as the Director of Tuckahoe Little League Challenger Division. Her passion is to learn the skills and talents of our adults and help them connect with their peers at the SDC.
Bill Weaver has a long history of managing business and finances as a retired owner of an Engineering firm and current financial director of his local church. He is graciously volunteering his time and expertise as we expand the Skills Development Center and we are fortunate to have him join the SDC family.
Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant
Brandy, the mother of a beautiful teenage daughter is our newest team member and she is a recent graduate from South University. She performed her field-work for South University here at The Center and fell in love with the atmosphere and clients and decided to join us as a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant. She has over 10 years of experience caring for individuals with various disabilities and points in their lifespan. She also brings with her a degree in culinary arts and is a huge help with our cooking class program on Wednesdays. She assists with all of our programs and develops activities for the clients that focus on increasing their skills and abilities. She is passionate about nurturing the growth and abilities of the clientele at the Skills Development Center and brings an abundance of happy and positive energy to each day.
Andrew’s web development education began at Hermitage Technical Center. He graduated from ECPI with a B.S. in Web Development. As a person with autism, Andrew originally encountered SDC as a client, but became a staff member in 2012.