News & Announcements

CCS Joins New Collaborative

IMG_6987Executive Director Elizabeth Sightler announces CCS recently joined in a new collaboration agreement with five other Vermont nonprofits. The partnership creates areas of formal and informal collaboration among the agencies that promise operational efficiencies while strengthening pursuit of shared missions.

CCS joins ARIS Solutions (the shared business office for the collaboration), Families First of Southern Vermont, Lincoln Street, Green Mountain Support Services (formerly Sterling Area Services), and Upper Valley Services in a collaboration specifically designed “to ensure that people with disabilities are included in the fabric of Vermont society.” Read full press release


CCS a National Model for Supported Employment

The 11535809_10155842680860294_2819759218055434643_n[1]Minneapolis Star Tribune is researching Vermont’s approach to supported employment for an upcoming feature. Minnesota, like many other states, is considering best practices for sheltered workshop conversion. On June 22, reporters visited CCS and met with CC management and staff, consumers, and families, and visited a number of employment sites (as well as the Champlain Voices picnic!).


1509012_10155842680865294_2285484985595633958_n[1]Our Way2Work program has earned “National Best Practices” recognition, and been named the top supported employment program in Vermont the past six years. Vermont as a state is setting the tone for states throughout the U.S. looking to convert sheltered workshops to community-based employment opportunities in the competitive economy, and we’re serving in some ways as a national model.

New raised-bed garden at CCS

11261639_10155849048435294_754616070052220852_n[1] 11230099_10155849048300294_1240752488525066003_n[1]CCS Service Coordinator Kate Martin was the catalyst for a this new project. The garden will offer CCS consumers the joy of gardening and growing one’s own food, while also supporting our in-house cooking programs. Consumers hone independent living and healthy eating skills in our beautiful kitchen. A number of individuals and businesses made donations, ranging from soil to veggie starts, to help the initiative hit the ground running.

Thanks in particular to Green Mountain Compost, Red Wagon Plants, Agway, Paquette Full of Posies, and our own Lucy Rogate!


Trevor Cayia New Service Coordinator

IMG_7513Trevor Cayia was recently promoted to Service Coordinator at CCS to help manage our growing caseload. He has previously served CCS as a Community Inclusion Facilitator for nearly two years. In addition, Trevor brings past experience in both the hospitality/restaurant and retail industries. He studied at Liberty University in Virginia. Trevor is a Vermont native and will soon call South Burlington home.

Budget Testimony – Impacts on CCS, Developmental Services

IMG_5255CCS Executive Director Elizabeth Sightler weighed-in with written testimony to the Senate and House Appropriations Committees on the Governor’s proposed budget. Read the full text here.




Emily Horning Joins Way2Work as Job Developer

Emily HorningCCS introduces Emily Horning as its newest Way2Work job developer. Emily graduated from Columbia College Chicago, and spent the last 8 years working in the apparel industry. She’s also done extensive volunteer work, with New York Cares, Brooklyn Animal Rescue Coalition, Vermont Boy & Girls Club, and Franklin County Animal Rescue, to name a few. “I’m excited to take on the role as Job Developer with CCS and look forward to making a difference,” Emily said.


Ron Turner to Coordinate School2Work

Ron 002Congratulations to Ron Turner who has been promoted to Coordinator of our new School2Work initiative! Ron has been serving as a Job Developer in Way2Work and will now oversee the formal launch of School2Work, our career development program for high school students with disabilities transitioning to jobs in the competitive economy.


Marley Marosy named Job Developer for Way2Work

marleyCCS is excited to announce that Marley Marosy is the new Job Developer in our award winning Way2Work supported employment program. Marley previously served as a Community Inclusion Facilitator at CCS and a Job Coach with Way2Work.



CCS Executive Director Elizabeth Sightler’s Testimony on Budget

IMG_5255Commissioner of Finance & Management, Jim Reardon organized two open public forums to discuss the State budget process, revenues and expenditures. On October 28th, the forum considered Human Services.

CCS Executive Director Elizabeth Sightler has submitted the following Budget Testimony.



CCS named region’s BEST NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION in Champlain Business Journal Readers Poll!

1594_001Champlain Business Journal, boasting a large business and professional readership covering Chittenden, Addison, Washington, and Franklin Counties presented CCS with the Best Nonprofit Organization award, as voted by readers, in the publication’s “Best of the Best for 2014″ promotion.

Read more . . .



Telling Our Stories in Montpelier

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Direct Service Professionals Recognition Week wrapped up in Montpelier with a rally on the State House lawn on Friday, Sept. 12. CCS was well represented. Many of our consumers crafted banners and shared stories of the impact CCS’ wonderful Community Inclusion Facilitators have had in their lives. Paul’s speech, with his story about Marita, was a highlight of the day.

Read it here



Sara Vizvarie Joins CCS Board of Directors

saraCCS is pleased to welcome Sara Vizvarie to its board of directors (Sara joined in August). Sara is a Realtor and Marketing Professional at Century 21 Jack Associates. She brings a diverse skill set that includes over 10 years combined experience in customer service, marketing and sales, advertising and fundraising, as well as a deep passion for being a resource and trusted advisor in her community.

Sara said she is excited to share her honest integrity and enthusiastic outlook in service to the local community. A native Vermonter, Sara currently resides in Burlington with her husband James and their rescue dog, Roland.

Scott Broderick New Way2Work Job Developer

scott crop_2CCS announces that Scott Broderick is the new Job Developer with its Way2Work supported employment program. Scott began working with CCS consumers as a substitute Community Inclusion Facilitator (CIF), then worked with our clinical clients as a CIF for more than a year. He brings more than 20 years of experience in developmental services to his new position.

As a long time resident of the Burlington area and active participant in its artistic and business communities, Scott is eager to help our clients engage opportunities and resources in the community.

“Our clients have so many exciting and purposeful abilities and matching these strengths with needs in our local community makes for a job that I enter with enthusiasm. I so look forward to assisting our consumers and their families in this new capacity.”

Scott lives in East Charlotte, Vermont his wife, Amber, soon to be 3-year-old daughter, Althea, and the family’s Siberian Husky, Willow and little black cat, Jinx.

CCS named Best Nonprofit Organization in readers’ poll!

IMG_1587Readers of Champlain Business Journal voted CCS top nonprofit for 2014 in the publications annual “Best of the Best” promotion. The publication has a large circulation including primarily business people and professionals throughout Chittenden, Franklin, Addison, and Washington Counties.

Pictured (from left) are CCS board president Zoltan Zachs, executive director Elizabeth Sightler, and operations director Karen Cienchanowicz who accepted the award for BEST NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION – 2014 on behalf of all at CCS. They joined other winners in the Champlain Business Journal’s “Best of the Best for 2014″ readers’ poll at the Burlington Community Boathouse for a group photo for the publication’s September issue.

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Jim Caffry joins CCS Board

JimCaffry_2CCS welcomes Jim Caffry of Waitsfield to our Board of Directors. Jim is the parent of a son with autism and is an attorney with a law practice in Waterbury (Caffry Law, PLLC) focused on providing special needs planning to Vermonters with disabilities and their families.

Jim is member of the Special Needs Alliance, a national association of special needs planning attorneys. He is currently on the Board of the Mad River Valley Community Fund, and was previously a member of the Vermont Developmental Disabilities Council from 2009 – 2014. He holds a B.A. from Colgate University, and law degrees from Albany Law School and Vermont Law School.

CCS Executive Director Elizabeth Sightler addresses Medicaid funding

Our executive director, Elizabeth Sightler, addresses the impact of Medicaid funding levels on direct services in developmental and mental health services – on clients, staff recruitment and retention, and more.

Read her letter to Sen. Diane Snelling.

School2Work Earns People’s United Community Foundation Grant

1975207_10153990465615294_1568398205_nMichelle Paya, director of supported employment at CCS, poses with a “big check,” representing a $2,500 grant from People’s United Community Foundation in support of our School2Work program. People’s United was an early supporter of the program, and we appreciate this additional investment. School2Work offers career development and transition to positions in the competitive economy for high school students with intellectual & developmental disabilities.


David Bogdan and Moira Mulligan Join CCS Board of Director

CCS recently named two new members to its Board of Directors.

dave picDavid Bogdan is a former Senior Engineer at IBM with multidisciplinary team leadership expertise. He is Chittenden program coordinator for Special Olympics Vermont, providing year round sports training and competition to over 170 athletes in Chittenden County.

Bogdan recently completed the Certificate in Nonprofit Management at Marlboro College Graduate School.


moira pic2Moira Mulligan is a speech-language pathologist working at Fletcher Allen Healthcare, as a manager in the Rehabilitation Therapy Department. She also taught in the graduate program of UVM’s Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders.

Mulligan holds a M.S. degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and brings extensive personal experience as an advocate for people with disabilities.


Kyla Boyce Joins Team CCS as Service Coordinator

IMG_1832CCS recently named Kyla Boyce a new Service Coordinator. She will be responsible for consumer case management and resource development, as well as supervision of direct services staff.

Kyla brings experience in direct developmental services, including supported employment, from Howard Center. She previously served as a counseling teacher at Centerpoint School, and worked at Northeastern Family Institute. Boyce earned a B.S. in Social Work from Champlain College.

CCS Wins $10,000 in the KeyBank “Build a Stronger VT” contest!

BASVT CCSCCS submitted it’s exciting new School2Work program to this competition, and a panel of community judges selected us as one of six finalists from more than 30 applicants. Facebook voting decided the prize winners, and CCS was announced as the Third Place Winner, earning $10,000 for our program.

The announcement was made Thursday, December 12th at the Annual Holiday Party at KeyBank.Thanks to all who voted for us, and congrats to all our fellow finalists – especially Vermont Works for Women, which took First Place.


Elizabeth Sightler Named Executive Director

IMG_5255(September 12, 2013) Champlain Community Services officially named Elizabeth Sightler as Executive Director, effective immediately. Beth served in the role in an “interim” capacity since May, and has served CCS for more than nine years.

In addition to work as a service coordinator, senior service coordinator, and assistant director at CCS, Beth brings over 20 years experience in developmental services to her post. This includes extensive direct service, crisis management experience, and group home management, as well as staff training, supervision and management.

“I’m looking forward to helping our staff mentor community members about the value of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and the strong contributions they are making – as workers, volunteers, artists, and neighbors – in our community,” Sightler said. “I really feel our work at CCS puts us on the front lines of making our community an even better place.”

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