About Us

Mission

Our mission is to inspire, educate and empower parents through information, training and support to become informed, effective partners and advocates in planning appropriate educational, transitional and medical healthcare outcomes for their children and youth.

As a result of our assistance to parents, families and professionals, children and youth with disabilities will lead rich, active lives and participate as full members of their schools, communities, post­secondary career choices and independent living.

Vision

Our vision is children and youth with disabilities and special healthcare needs will be prepared to lead productive adult lives to the maximum extent possible.

"There is a plan and a purpose, a value to every life, no matter what its location, age, gender or disability." - Sharron Angle

Sample

Values

  • Quality leadership
  • Collaborative partnerships
  • Advocacy
  • Enhanced education and knowledge
  • Caring - emotional support

Impact

  • All children and youth can learn and have the right to participate in their schools and communities.
  • Parents/Families have the most significant influence on the development, learning, healthcare plans and educational achievement of their children.
  • Parents/Families can successfully participate collaboratively with professionals on behalf of their children if they have information and training about their child's disabilities or special healthcare needs.
  • Parents/Families have the capacity to make good decisions and assist their children in achieving outcomes when they have information and training.
  • Community acceptance and understanding of individuals with disabilities and special healthcare needs are expanded.
  • Parents/Families are engaged to participate and advocate for their children and youth with transition to adulthood and independent living.

Staff

Our trained staff at WVPTI are selected for their skills, expertise, knowledge and support. Regional Parent Trainers participate in training that includes, but are not limited to early intervention, special education, Section 504, ESSA, disability issues, procedural safeguards, parent leadership and other relevant topics. Our Regional Parent Trainers understand the challenges of parenting a special needs child or children because they have faced many of the same challenges in learning to navigate the special education maze.

Brenda Lamkin

Brenda Lamkin - Executive Director

Brenda has extensive experience in parent training and leadership by serving on state, local and national advisory councils. She holds a Master's degree in Education and has 15 years of experience working with parents/families of children with disabilities.

Her belief is the best teaching experience is being the parent of a special-needs child and going through the process yourself. There is no book or course of study that prepares parents for real situations that you encounter at IEP meetings or just getting through the school day without waiting for the phone to ring.

Brenda has a young adult son with autism. Brenda believes the special education process should not be so difficult. She holds an unwavering belief that all children can learn and have the right to fully participate in their schools and communities. Parents with information and training have a better opportunity to make well-informed decisions which can assist their children in achieving outcomes from birth to post-secondary skills. Brenda states, "I want parents and families to know that WV PTI is here for them."

Pat Elliot- Family Engagement Specialist

Pat Elliot- Family Engagement Specialist - Region 1 Trainer

Pat Elliott is the Regional Trainer for Region 1. Pat has twelve years of experience advocating for her son Kouper. She was a Parent Partner for WV Birth to Three Region 1 and a graduate of WV Partners in Policy Making. She was governor appointed to two state councils to represent individuals with disabilities and volunteer director of Ohio County Special Olympics.

Pat has two amazing boys; Waylon,15 and Kouper, 12. Waylon attends John Marshall High School and plays football for the JMHS Monarchs! Kouper enjoys playing on his IPad and cuddling with family members. Kouper is nonverbal and has autism.

Pat has a passion for advocating for those people with disabilities. Previously, she's spent time visiting legislators regarding the cuts to the I/DD Waiver program, pushed to get Project Life Saver in Ohio County, and been the voice for many people with disabilities.

Pat loves watching her oldest son play football and spending time with both her boys, Pat enjoys sewing, walking, and traveling when she has an opportunity.

Kelly Miller-  Family Engagement Specialist

Kelly Miller- Family Engagement Specialist - Region 2 Trainer

Kelly Miller is from Lincoln County and is the mother of two girls, Emily and Allison. Emily, her oldest child, is attending Grad School at Marshall University. Her youngest daughter, Allison, is a Sophomore at Lincoln County High School and has Down Syndrome.

Kelly has been advocating for people with disabilities for 18 years. She has worked in this field in many capacities. She serves on many State boards and Councils as a parent representative, being a voice for her daughter and others.

Kelly previously worked with the WV CED as a Senior Specialist for the Parent Network Project and the Family to Family Program. She has attended many trainings, conferences and seminars to educate herself, in order to give back to the families, she serves. Presently she is enrolled in college, working towards a Bachelor degree in Early Childhood Development. She is excited being a Regional Parent Trainer.

 Julie Dial - Family Engagement Specialist

Julie Dial - Family Engagement Specialist - Region 3 Trainer

Julie Dial is the Regional Parent Trainer for Region 3. Julie lives in Huntington with her husband, Johnny, two sons, Brandon and Dylan plus the dog, Max. She is a graduate of Marshall University with a Bachelor's Degree in Organizational Communications and a minor in Sociology. She currently serves on the West Virginia Developmental Disabilities Council, Autism Society of West Virginia's Advisory Board, and Marshall Univerity of Autism Training Center's Advisory Board. Her career in advocacy began when her son, Brandon, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and ADHD at five years old. Since this time, she has participated in the Partners in Policy Making Course through the West Virginia Developmental Disabilities Council and graduated in 2014.

Julie loves to travel to new places and spends time with her family in the outdoors: hiking, camping, fishing, and kayaking. She enjoys listening to Brandon while he plays the tenor saxophone and piano. The best activity is watching Brandon and Dylan play soccer. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Region 4 Trainer

Region 4 Trainer - Region 4 Trainer

A position is available for a Trainer in Region 4 of the WV PTI's areas. This person would need to be qualified to provide training and information about educational services, IEPs, and handling the parents' questions about the educational plans for their special needs child. If you are interested in applying, please contact our state office at 1-304-472-5697.

Mary Scott

Mary Scott - Administrative Assistant

Mary Scott is the WVPTI Administrative Assistant. Mary has experience working with children with disabilities and has a family member who has struggled in life with disabilities. Education should not be a struggle for a child with needs. Mary’s personal family experience has inspired her to advocate and assist others who may need help.

Mary has Bachelor’s Degree and Master’s Degree in Education. She has assisted parents and families who have children with disabilities to gain assistance in the educational system for over thirty years. Now, she is helping children and youth who have disabilities find resources and advocates for their needs by working at WVPTI, Inc. Mary has always believed that it is not the disability that defines you; it is how you deal with the challenges the disability presents to you.

 Donna Haught- WVPTI Trainer and Family Engagement Specialist

Donna Haught- WVPTI Trainer and Family Engagement Specialist - Trainer

Donna Haught has joined the WVPTI, Inc.'s team as the statewide consulting trainer. She has a Psychology Degree with educational experience being a mentor and a family education specialist. Donna is the mother of three children. Her oldest daughter has graduated from Basic Training in the Air Force. Faithlyn, her youngest child, wants to be just like her older sister. Her middle child, Hayley, is on the autism spectrum and succeeding in school. Donna is working on her master's degree in Social Work.

WVPTI Trainer and Family Engagement Specialist

WVPTI Trainer and Family Engagement Specialist - Trainer

WVPTI Trainer and Family Engagement Specialist

WVPTI Trainer and Family Engagement Specialist - Trainer