Keri has been active in the disability world since she suspected her son had autism, in 2007. She has managed his enrollment in the EDCD Waiver since then. She personally experienced the road blocks to getting these services in place, but also the invaluable benefit they brought her family. Keri began educating other families regarding VA Medicaid Waiver application processes and the benefits of enrolling. She enjoyed assisting other families and therefore created Moms in Motion to allow her to devote herself fulltime to this effort. Since the beginning of Moms in Motion in 2009 with herself and one client, she has watched it blossom into an organization with very competent advocates who have touched many families’ lives.
Keri’s training in disabilities includes VCU’s program for Parent Navigators, VA Access’s SSI / SSDI workshop, and various other workshops. She also completed the Virginia Board for People with Disabilities specialized training to become a Partner in Policymaking in 2011. She is also very excited to complete her training in VCU’s Va-LEND (Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities) in the summer of 2013. Keri is active in many local support groups, her local SEAC, etc.
Keri is proud that Moms in Motion is able to support our local communities by sponsoring events such as the VA Arc’s annual convention, the Harrisonburg and ASACV 5Ks for Autism, the DSAGR’s Step Up for Down Syndrome, etc.
Joy is the mother of two beautiful children, one of which has autism. Since getting her son’s diagnosis, she has been active in the world of disabilities for many years. She has a Bachelor’s of Science in Mathematics and a Master’s in Business Administration with an emphasis in Technology Management. Her training in disabilities includes VCU’s program for Parent Navigators (where she served both in the pilot phase and two years as a Parent Navigator), Person-Centered Thinking, and the Virginia Board for People with Disabilities specialized training to be a Partner In Policymaking (class of 2011). Joy is also a Talk About Curing Autism (TACA) Mentor helping families explore biomedical options for treatment of autism. In her spare time, once per month Joy leads the Peninsula Committee meetings for the Autism Society of America – Tidewater Chapter. She has been doing Service Facilitation with Moms In Motion since 2011 and is a proud mentor and advocate for families trying to get waiver services. Her passion is in helping people with disabilities and their families get the services they need to have the best possible quality of life, a life like yours and mine.
Harmony began working with Moms in Motion in August 2011 as an Administrative Assistant. She quickly became an invaluable asset to the Moms In Motion team. Her desire to connect with the families she was assisting behind the scenes drove her to ask if she could begin working in the field and meet these families. Because Harmony is a highly motivated, intelligent, and compassionate young woman, we couldn’t say no. She started providing service facilitation in early 2012.
Since October of 2013, Harmony has been our Developmental Disabilities Waiver Vice President. Through her work in our office and as an attendant for an individual with a disability, Harmony has learned a considerable amount about Case Management, consumer directed waivers, and the wonderful benefits Medicaid services bring to our families. She is very excited to continue to work directly with families and is eager to assist individuals on the DD Waiver and DD Waiver Wait-list.
Grace Tirado has been blissfully married to her husband, Tito, for over 19 years. During their marriage, Grace and Tito became the proud parents of two precious children, Samantha and Christian. Grace's son, Christian, was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 7. Grace has researched and studied many different aspects of her son’s diagnosis and education in the public school system, such as IEP’s, BIP’s, special accommodations, etc. One constant in Grace's life has been her genuine love for children. It is the love and concern for all children that inspired her to become a foster parent and, later on, a foster parent liaison.
Grace possesses extensive experience in the corporate world at the executive and administrative levels. Additionally, Grace is knowledgeable of the healthcare industry's HIPAA Compliance laws and regulations. She has found her knowledge, skill-set, and abilities to have been beneficial in all aspects of her life. Her ultimate desire, however, is to be a great resource for families searching for services and programs that are available for their loved one(s) with special needs.
In her spare time, Grace enjoys spending precious moments with her family, taking walks on the beach, and discovering the next best health food recipe.
Family Resource Specialists
Heather joined Moms In Motion in February 2013 as our first Family Resource Specialist. Heather brings years of experience advocating for her son and navigating all the different systems.
She has also begun advocating for the aging. While working as an Assistant Manager of an apartment complex for the aging and disabled, she serves as a personal care attendant. This was followed by a Receptionist position at a nursing home. Heather used this position as a platform to share information about the waiver programs and other available resources that she had found while advocating for her son.
Presently, Heather is a Teacher’s Assistant for Reading, Rhyming, and Readiness: a preschool sponsored by Literacy Volunteers and United Way. The preschool program helps children to prepare for Kindergarten and receive early intervention services if needed. Heather enjoys empowering families with information and resources, assisting them to be the very best they can be at any stage of life.
Denise is the proud mother of three amazing children and has been married to a sailor for the past twelve years. One of her daughters, Kaitlynn, was diagnosed with Autism and ADHD at the age of two. Even though Denise and her family knew all along that something was not right, the day they received the diagnosis was life changing. Denise soon became involved in and started to attend every meeting and training she possibly could, in order to help not only her daughter, but other parents in her same situation.
Recently, Denise became a part of the Autism Society Board. Thanks to the ongoing support from the Autism Society members, Denise and her family have been able to handle the ups and downs that come with having a child on the spectrum.
Denise hopes to help other families in the same manner she was helped. She is fluent in Spanish and can therefore assist with translation. Denise was also recently accepted into a Master's Program to pursue her nursing career, so that one day she may reach her ultimate goal of becoming a Nurse Practitioner. Denise looks forward to working with Moms In Motion and helping her community.
Polly lives in Newport News with her husband and two sons. Her youngest son was born with Cytomegalovirus (CMV), which has led to multiple special needs. Upon learning more about her son’s needs, she signed up to be the area representative for Stop CMV. This has allowed Polly to better help other parents in the area cope with the challenges and questions they had when their children were born with CMV.
Polly is so happy to work with Moms In Motion in this capacity, and hopes to help those in need through her own experiences to get further faster.