Here is Shirley’s announcement of the Ligas Family Advocate Program.


We are excited to share information with you about an exciting new initiative the Department of
Developmental Disabilities has launched with the Family Support Network and The Arc of Illinois,
effective January 1, 2014! This initiative is the Ligas Family Advocate Program. The Ligas Family
Advocate Program has one purpose – to connect recipients of Ligas award letters seeking Home
Based or CILA services and their families with family advocates who are knowledgeable about
creative ways to utilize their Ligas funding to build successful lives in the community.  To read more
about the program please click on the following Ligas Family Advocate Program

Per the consent decree:  “the State will ensure that class individuals with developmental disabilities
and their families/guardians are provided information about all options for services. In order to
ensure that information about all available options for services reaches class member and their
families through this new program, FSN has hired two family advocates and is in the process of
hiring a third advocate. We are pleased to introduce you to:

Toni Howard, Family Advocate pictured with family

“Our son Kevin currently resides in an ICF-DD. His father and I would like for him to live in a smaller
setting, preferably a CILA. Kevin was diagnosed as having Autism when he was approximately two
years old. This was over twenty-five years ago when Autism was relatively unheard of. I was familiar
with Autism because I had studied it briefly during my Graduate studies in Special Education. My
son’s diagnosis and lack of support changed me from being a quiet and rather passive mother into
someone who had to become aggressive about securing my son’s future. My goal then is the same
as it is now to make sure that Kevin lives a life that encourages him and others to reach their full

I am currently serving on the LIGAS Class Member/Family Advisory Council. I hope that in this new
position of Family Advocate that I can share information about options with other class members and
families that will ultimately lead to a better quality of life for our love ones!”


Missy Kichline, Family Advocate

“My family lives in Godfrey along the Mississippi River.  My husband, Brian, and I have raised three
delightful, young women; Leigh-Ellen who is 25 and living in China, Samantha (Sam) who is 23 and
living at home with an active life and Grace who is 21 and attending school in Carbondale.

What drives my passion for being a Ligas Family Advocate is my daughter Sam.  Sam is a Red Cross
Blood donor and proud of it!  She volunteers at two local agencies, attends a program at a local
community college, enjoys going to movies, plays, swimming, restaurants and being with her boyfriend
and friends.  She uses public transportation and para-transit services.
Sam has Down Syndrome.  Down Syndrome is different for everyone who has it.  For Sam, it means
she needs daily living assistance in many aspects of life; from finding employment opportunities to
personal grooming activities such as cutting finger nails.

We completed the paperwork for the Home-Based Support Services the first year the program
became a Medicaid Waiver Program for adults with developmental disabilities.  We then waited for
roughly eight years along with 20,000 some odd other individuals for services.  My excitement is
driven by the opportunities this landmark settlement provides.  I look forward to sharing and working
with other individuals and families on this same journey.”

Please join us at the Family Support Network/Arc as we welcome Toni and Missy to the Ligas Family Advocate Program and wish them all the best in their new roles!

Tony Paulauski
Executive Director
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423
815-464-1832 (OFFICE)
815-464-1832 (CELL)