Letter from the CEO & President

At UCPLA, it takes many dedicated Direct Care Professionals, nurses, Community Living Support counselors, therapists, Client Rights Advocates, Administrators, Directors, and operations staff members working as a united force to ensure that individuals with developmental disabilities have access to the programs, services and resources that enable them to maximize their independence.


This July, UCPLA’s staff members are joining together to celebrate this dedicated teamwork with “We Are United”, a campaign of recognition and gratitude designed to help us recognize the meaningful impact our unity has on the lives of the individuals with varied abilities who access our programs and services.


This impact is truly global.  On any given day, 1,000 staff members throughout the UCPLA family of organizations may be: providing round-the-clock care for the medically involved residents at our Chatsworth campus and our other group homes; enabling artists with developmental disabilities to display their work in art galleries in Culver City and Santa Barbara; providing respite weekends at hotels for parents of children with special needs; fitting wheelchairs for children in countries as far flung as Thailand, Indonesia, El Salvador and Ukraine – and more.  Work on this scale truly takes a united force, and I am grateful for the hundreds of staff members who come to work each day ready to make it possible. 


We can’t do it alone – we appreciate the supporters who donate, fundraise, advocate and volunteer their time to help ensure that our staff members can do the invaluable work of helping individuals with developmental disabilities around the world live their lives without limitations.  You, too, are valued members of our team, and for that reason I am pleased to invite you to join in our “We Are United” campaign.


I hope you will take this chance to thank a special staff member who always brings a smile to your loved one’s face, to recognize the person who helps make independence possible for someone you care about, or to express your gratitude for the team of people who come to work each day with the singular goal of helping the people we serve advance their productivity and engagement within our community.

Even if you are not personally familiar with our staff, you can still play a significant role in our “We Are United” campaign, this July and beyond – from supporting accessible outings in our community to offering someone the comfort and safety of a medically appropriate bed.


However you choose to unite with us to support the individuals UCPLA serves, please know that your thoughtful gift will make a meaningful impact.  Ninety percent of each dollar UCPLA receives goes directly to our programs and services, and all good wishes, tributes and words of encouragement you send will be passed directly to any staff and clients you designate.


On an even larger scale, your support – whether through volunteering, advocating or donating – helps show the individuals we serve that “We Are United” in seeing them as vital members of our community.  By assuring them that we are united behind these efforts, we are assuring our artists, authors, gardeners, athletes and other lifelong learners that their actions, their perspectives, their needs and desires matter.  I am grateful to you for helping us send this powerful, life-changing message.




Ronald S. Cohen, Ph.D.
President and Chief Executive Officer