Local disability advocates to be honored at Courageous Community Services gala


Courageous Community Services (CCS), the only organization in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan to provide comprehensive outdoor recreation experiences for people with disabilities, is hosting its annual awards gala and celebration Friday, April 22 from 5:50 to 10:30 p.m. at Parkway Plaza in Maumee.

The evening will feature dinner and dancing, with live entertainment provided by Mobile Dueling Piano Shows!, a high-energy, dueling pianos experience. Meaghan Mick, on-air personality for iHeartMedia, will serve as the evening’s emcee. Guests are encouraged to dress in black and white cocktail attire to coincide with the gala’s piano-inspired theme.

“After hosting the previous awards gala virtually, Courageous Community Services is excited to celebrate our recent achievements and recognize those who have worked earnestly on behalf of people with disabilities in our community in person,” said CCS Executive Director Laura Kuhlenbeck.

Each year, Courageous Community Services selects its annual award winners from a field of individuals and companies nominated by the community. Honorees from 2020 and 2022 will be recognized during the awards ceremony portion of the evening. Those disability advocates include:

– 2020 Outstanding Employer: Walt Churchill’s Market

– 2020 Outstanding Community Service: Kate Schwartz, Autism Society of Northwest Ohio

– 2020 Outstanding Community Service: Mark Allison, Northwestern Ohio Driver Training School

– 2020 Outstanding Self-Advocate: Nathan Turner

– 2022 Outstanding Community Service: Ashley Smith, Metroparks Toledo

– 2022 Outstanding Employer: The Toledo Zoo and Aquarium

– 2022 Outstanding Self-Advocate: Colleen Hammons

Tickets for the event are $60 and can be purchased online at ccsohio.org. Tickets can be donated for People First members. Guests will be able to participate in a 50/50 raffle and bid on assorted gift baskets throughout the evening. All proceeds raised from the event will go towards the continuation and expansion of CCS’s programs for people of all ages with disabilities.

The Courageous Community Services 2022 awards gala and celebration is sponsored in part by Master Fluid Solutions, Mark Feldstein & Associates Inc., SJS Investment Services, The CounterTop Shop, Williams Industrial, the Lucas County Board of Developmental Disabilities and E.S. Wagner Company.