Mitchell Levitz

Westchester Institute for Human Development
University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities
in affiliation with New York Medical College
Cedarwood Hall
Valhalla, NY 10595
 
Phone: 914-493-5207
Secondary Phone: 914-736-6885
Email: mlevitz@wihd.org
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Last Updated: May 14, 2014

Mitchell Levitz
 

Specialty Resource Contacts: Self Advocacy Coordinator
LEND contributor
COCA/CAC Liaison
 
Discipline(s): Self-Advocacy
 
AUCD Council Membership: Council on Community Advocacy
Multicultural Council
 
Research: Areas of Interest and Expertise: Self-Advocacy, Self-Determination, Health and Wellness Promotion, Peer-to-Peer Support, Transition, Conference Planning and Presentations, Down Syndrome, Public Policy
Education: United Way Volunteer Leadership Development Program 1996
Partners in Policy Making, Ohio 1999
National Leadership Academy (Presidents Committee) 1999
Covey Leadership Today- 7 Habits of Highly Effective People 2000
Peer Training Grant Review-OSEP 2000
Self-Determination Advocacy National Leadership Retreat (ADD) 2002
Living Well with a Disability Train-the-Trainer- U. of Montana 2004
Individualized Supports Learning Institute- NYSACRA 2009
Service: Responsible for coordinating self-advocacy activities and groups, peer-to-peer support and training for adult health and wellness projects; participates in national and statewide self-determination/ individualized supports and leadership initiatives; serves as a staff liaison to the CAC and the Self-Advocacy Association of NYS including the Hudson Valley Regional Office; trains LEND fellows and other professionals; and participates in collaborative activities with local, state and national organizations including serving on the steering committee of the program committee for the Council of Community Advocacy (COCA) of AUCD.

Vita/Bio

Summary of Professional Activities: Mitchell Levitz has been a spokesperson on behalf of individuals with developmental disabilities and has served extensively on councils, boards, taskforces and conference planning groups both in New York State, Ohio and nationally. He has been actively engaged in addressing school and university groups as well keynote and workshop presentations for national, statewide and regional conferences all across the country. He was recently appointed to serve on the Self-Advocacy Advisory Board of the National Down Syndrome Society, the NIH/NICHHD National Research Consortium on Down Syndrome, the Review Committee for the National Center for Prenatal and Postnatal Down Syndrome Resources, and the AUCD Project Advisory Committee for the ADD TA Contract.  He was a New York State representative at the Northeast region's ADD Self-Advocacy Summit and the Alliance for Full Participation.  He has been an active member of the AUCD Council on Community Advocacy (COCA) as chairperson of the Planning Committee and serving on the steering committee. He served for seven years on the Board of Directors of the National Down Syndrome Society and received numerous awards for advocacy efforts including a special leadership award from AAIDD. He is the co-author of Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, (updated edition March 2007), an award winning book he co-authored with Jason Kingsley in 1994. He has been featured in magazine and newspaper articles as well as on radio and television including Dateline NBC with Jane Pauley. He contributed material to nine books including authoring two chapters "Voices of Self-Advocates" in Human Rights of Persons with Intellectual Disabilities: Different but Equal published by Oxford University Press in 2003 and "Self-Advocacy for a Good Life in Our Older Years" in Aging Rights, and Quality of Life: Prospects for Older People with Developmental Disabilities published by Paul H. Brookes in 1999.  He co-authored with Marilyn Vitale and Daniel Crimmins the WIHD publication My Health, My Choice, My Responsibility: A training program on health self-advocacy (2007).   He also wrote the Foreword to the Third Edition (2008) of the Book, Babies with Down Syndrome: A New Parents' Guide published by Woodbine House, and most recently co-authored the UCEDD Self-Determination Self-Assessment Checklist. 

Selected Recent Publications and Presentations: 

Schwartz, A. A., Levitz, B., Bacon, A., Levitz, M., & Goode, T.  (2012, November). UCEDD Self-Determination Self-Assessment Checklist.  Silver Spring, MD: Association of University Centers on Disabilities.

 Levitz, M. and Schwartz, A. (2012, October). Review of Self-Advocacy Research and Resources of the National Training Initiative Gateway Project to Self- Determination. Concurrent session, 2012 Annual Conference of the Self-Advocacy Association of New York State (SANYS), Albany, NY

Levitz, M. (2012, May). Self- Direction is the Cornerstone of My Life. Keynote address, New Jersey Self-Directed Supports Conference, Somerset, NJ

Levitz, M. (2012, May). Beyond Self-Advocacy: Fighting for the Rights of Others as a Leader in the Disability Community. Workshop panel, New Jersey Self-Directed Supports Conference, Somerset, NJ.

Levitz, M. (2012, March). First Person's Point of View about Inclusion. MATAN's Institute for Synagogue Education Directors, New York, NY.

Bacon, A., Levitz, B., Schwartz, A., Rudolph, D., Jesien, G., Levitz, M., Calkins, C. Corbett, K. (2011, November) Incorporating a New Self-assessment  Process on Self-determination in Plan Development for UCEDDs.  Pre-conference workshop, AUCD 2011Annual Meeting & Conference, Washington, DC.

Malty, J. & Levitz, M. (2011, October) Self-Directed Services and Supports. A webinar for the New York State Community Action Association. Valhalla, NY.

Levitz, M. (2011, July). Self-advocacy and Self-determination. Presentation and technical assistance for Community Advisory Committee/UCEDD Cincinnati Children Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH.

Levitz, M., Nelis, T. & Peterson, M. (2011, June & 2010, September). Self-advocacy and Self-determination. Guidance on publication accessibility and video interviews for web-based and print products. National Training Initiative Gateway to Self-Determination Project, University of Missouri/UCEDD, Kansas City, MO.

 Bacon, A., Levitz, B., Schwartz, A., Rudolph, D., Jesien, G., Levitz, M., Calkins, C. Corbett, K. (2011, November) Incorporating a new self-assessment process on self-determination in plan development for UCEDDs.  Pre-conference workshop, AUCD 2011Annual Meeting & Conference, Washington, DC.

Levitz, M. (2011, July). Self-advocacy and Self-determination. Presentation and technical assistance for Community Advisory Committee/UCEDD Cincinnati Children Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH.

Levitz, M., Nelis, T. & Peterson, M. (2011, June & 2010, September). Self-advocacy and Self-determination. Guidance on publication accessibility and video interviews for web-based and print products. National Training Initiative Gateway to Self-Determination Project, University of Missouri/UCEDD, Kansas City, MO.

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2010, 2009, 2008 & 2007, December). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, Authors Guest Lecture, Stern College of Yeshiva University, New York, NY. 

Levitz, M. (2010, October). Self- advocacy and Leadership.  Kick-off address for Buddy Walk and leadership workshop for self-advocates and families. Down Syndrome Network of Montgomery County, Bethesda, MD.

Levitz, M. & Vitale, M. (2010, September). My Health, My Choice, My Responsibility. Workshop presentation at 2010 Self-Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) Conference, Kansas City, MO

Levitz, M. & Greble, D. (2010, May). Transition, Self-Determination and Self-Advocacy, presentation for Special Education Parent Teachers Association (New Rochelle SEPTA), New Rochelle, NY.

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2010, April). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, keynote address and workshop on transition to adulthood at Beyond Our Wildest Dreams Annual Conference, Down Syndrome Aim High Resource Center, Albany, NY.

Levitz, M. (2010, February). Including, Supporting and Welcoming Individuals with Disabilities, guest lecture, Fordham University-Westchester, West Harrison, NY

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2010, January). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, presentation and book signing, Maimonides Hospital, Family Advisory Council, Brooklyn, NY

Levitz, M. (2009, 2008, 2007, December). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, Guest Lecture, Stern College Yeshiva University, New York City. 

Levitz, M. Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2009, November). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, co-keynote presentation, workshop and book signing, Connecticut Down Syndrome State Conference, Cromwell, CT  

Levitz, M. (2009, November).  A Personal Journey through Life Transitions, panel presentation for Training Seminar at AUCD 2009 Annual Conference and Meeting, Washington, D.C.

Levitz, M. (2009, October). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, presentation for Techniques for Success-Inclusion and Universal Design for Learning (UDL) for All Students, a Seminar for Educators and Administrators, Frederick, MD

Levitz, M. (2009, August). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, keynote presentation and interview, and workshop on Health and Wellness Self-Advocacy, Florida State Down Syndrome Conference, Orlando, FL

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2009, April). Introduction to Self-Advocacy, Fordham University Graduate School of Social Services, Harrison, NY

Levitz, M., Kingsley, J, & Brawarsky, S. (2009, March). Toward Inclusion: A New Dialogue on Disabilities, moderated discussion and book signing The Jewish Week and Jewish Federation Disability Taskforce, JCC Staten Island, NY

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2009, March). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, Presentation and book signing, Down Syndrome Advocacy Foundation (SAF) and Long Island University/CW Post College, Brookville, NY 

Levitz, M. (2008, September). In Babies with Down Syndrome: A New Parents' Guide, Third Edition, Foreword. Woodbine House: Bethesda, MD

Levitz, M., Kingsley, J. & Robison, R. (2008, July). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, Moderated Keynote Interview, National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC) Annual Convention, Boston, MA

Levitz, M. & Levitz, B. (2008, July).  My Health, My Choice, My Responsibility, workshops for Self-Advocacy Conference at the National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC) Annual Convention, Boston, MA

Levitz, M. (2008, November). Count Us In, Keynote Address, Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta Regional Conference on Down Syndrome and Developmental Disabilities, Atlanta, GA

O'Hara, D., Seagriff, P.C., Davies, D., Stock, S. & Levitz, M. (2008, March) In Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare: Using Personal Digital Assistants to improve self-care in oral health.  

Levitz, M., Levitz, B. & Weiss, N. (2007, November). Families as Organizational Leaders, a breakout session, AUCD Annual Conference, Washington, D.C. 

Levitz, M. & Vitale, M. (2007, November and May). My Health, My Choice, My Responsibility. Selected virtual poster, AUCD Annual Conference, Washington, D.C.; and breakout session at AAIDD Annual Conference, Atlanta.

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2007, October). Count Us In, Opening Plenary Address, The Arc National Conference, Dallas.

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2007, September). Count Us In Keynote address, Self-Advocacy Association of NYS Annual Conference, Albany.

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2007, March- August). Count Us In: Growing Up with Down Syndrome, book signings and interviews at Barnes & Noble Bookstores in Manhattan, Binghamton, Denver; and interview on WBAI Radio Health Show with Dr. Ali in New York City.

Levitz, M. & Kingsley, J. (2007, April, August). Toward Inclusion: A New Dialogue on Disabilities, presentation, interview and book signing sponsored by Jewish Week and Jewish Federation, New Rochelle and Plainview, NY.   

Levitz, B., Levitz, M. (2006, April).  A Family Journey: Life with Down Syndrome, National Society of Genetic Counselors Northeast Region Conference, Sarah Lawrence College, New Rochelle.

Levitz, M. (2006, April).  Count Us In, Keynote address, Central Ohio Down Syndrome Regional Conference, Columbus.

Levitz, M. (2006, April). Turning Dreams Into Outcomes: Young Adults Speak on Education, Engagement, and Empowerment.  Panel presentation, Council for Exceptional Children National Convention, Salt Lake City.