National Siblings Day: Siblings Matter

Celebrating the Relationship Between Regional Center Clients and their Brothers and Sisters
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National Siblings Day: Siblings Matter

Join us for a live webinar.

The Office of Clients’ Rights Advocacy is celebrating National Siblings Day! The relationship between brothers and sisters is special. We are excited to talk about how disability affects the relationship between siblings. 

Join us on National Siblings Day for this FREE webinar. This event is for people who get regional center services, their families, and their circle of support. Anyone who wants to learn about sibling relationships in the intellectual and developmental disabilities community is also welcome to join.

ASL Interpreters, Closed Captioning and Spanish Interpretation will be offered upon request.

Click here for the Spanish version of this page.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Pacific Time

Register Today

About the webinar:

Your connection with your brother or sister is different from your relationship with your parent and/or caregiver. The webinar will include a panel discussion with regional center clients and their brothers and/or sisters. They will talk about their relationships and how disability affects their lives.

What you will Learn:

Panelists and attendees will answer questions about:

  • How to deal with hard life events
  • How well they know each other
  • How to support each other in making decisions 
  • How to build strong sibling relationships

About the Speaker:

Andy Imparato

Andrew J. Imparato became the Executive Director of DRC on February 3, 2020. Andy joins DRC after a high impact 26-year career in Washington, D.C. working inside and outside government in significant leadership positions, including 17 years as the chief executive of two national disability organizations, the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) and the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD). He graduated with distinction from Stanford Law School in 1990 and was a summa cum laude graduate of Yale College. Andy’s perspective is informed by his lived experience with bipolar disorder.


Miguel Lugo

Miguel Lugo is a 42-year-old man living with cerebral palsy (CP) since the age of four. As a “typical disabled child”, Miguel was in special education and he did not know what his life would be like after graduating from Montebello High School. After graduating from high school, Miguel went to community college and became a disability rights activist. For 4 years, he also helped individuals with disabilities find jobs and encouraged parents to not “disable” their children. Miguel decided to take on a new challenge-comedy. Miguel has performed his “sit-down comedy” routine across California and Mexico.

Miguel is a motivational speaker and filmmaker. “My Reality” is based on his own poem. He also finished “Mi Vida Chueca”, a short documentary about his life. Miguel works for Disability Voices United as their Outreach Specialist. He is also a Program Manager for the Integrated Community Collaborative.

Venus Aguilar

Venus Aguilar received her bachelor's degree in criminal justice in 2009. After graduation, she worked in the social services field for approximately 11 years. During that time, Venus worked with group homes and foster teens to help them find hope and inspiration. Venus has struggled with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression, anxiety, and postpartum depression. Venus’ strong faith has helped her get through difficult times in her life.

Venus’ younger brother had a massive heart attack in 2013. She allows him to make his own choices, including the bad ones. Venus joined Disability Rights California in 2019 as a Compliance Investigator with the Office of Payee Review and Beneficiary Assistance (OPRABA). As an investigator, Venus works with people who receive social security benefits and their circle of support. Venus makes sure that that the beneficiary’s needs are met and that the benefits are used appropriately. Venus was recently promoted to Supervising Compliance Investigator. 

Venus was also given the 2023 Charity King Staff Spirit Award for creating a shared culture of valuing, respecting, and celebrating each other. Venus is the mother of a 2-year-old daughter and an 8-month-old son.


Alexander Gray

Hello! My name is Alexander Gray and I generally go by Alex. I work as a carpenter. I specialize in vertical structure and heavy highway concrete framing. My understanding of disabilities comes from 32 years of experience helping my brother, Jason, navigate his life with a disability. My experiences with my brother have shaped my outlook on life. I am more understanding, compassionate, and patient with people I meet. When I am not working or spending time with my brother, I enjoy spending time with my new wife, listening to music and training in Martial Arts.

Jason Gray

My name is Jason Thomas Gray. I am going to school to become a teacher. in adaptive physical education. I also have a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Child and Adolescent Studies. My family and I are involved with Special Olympics softball. We also work with a nonprofit organization called Collaborative Action and Unity in Special Education (CAUSE). They help support families that have students with special needs. When I am not working or studying, I like to watch sports and read comic books.

Jeffrey Graner

Jeffrey Graner is a 40-year-old Peer Mentor and Recruitment Lead for KnowBarriers at Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center in Downey, California. In this role, he uses examples of his own life living with Cerebral Palsy to help people adjust to life after an injury and/or a disability. As a Recruitment Lead, Jeffrey also oversees outreach and processes applications for the department. In December 2023, Jeffrey received the KnowBarriers Employee of the Year award. Mr. Graner was born, raised, and still lives in Whittier, California.  He is a big music, sports and comedy fan and goes to many events each year. He has what some would consider an unusual obsession with logos and sports apparel design.

Tiffany Carlson

Tiffany Carlson is a Training Coordinator for Joybird furniture in Los Angeles, California. A 28- year-old mother of 2 (3 if you count the furry one), Tiffany spends most of her free time dedicated to her sons Kyber (5) and Maverick (2 months) and canine daughter Mina (2 years). Like her older brother Jeffrey, she was born, raised, and still lives in Whittier, California.Tiffany can talk about her experiences growing up with an older brother with a disability. She has also worked as a community advocate for individuals with developmental disabilities. In her free time, she likes arts and crafts, including creating graphic items on her Cricut machine.

Lisa Cooley

Lisa Cooley is a two-time governor-appointed member of the California State Council on Developmental Disabilities for six years. Lisa is a long-time member of Alta California Regional Center’s Client Advisory Committee. Lisa is the current Chair of Alta California Regional Center’s Self-Determination Advisory Committee. Lisa also works as an independent contractor on many hiring teams for Disability Rights California.

Brian Cooley

Brian Cooley has worked as a private land development consultant for almost 20 years. Brian has experience working with landowners and local, state, and federal agencies on complex development projects throughout Northern California.

Brian has been the Director of Governmental and Public Affairs for the North State Building Industry Association and has worked in the California State Legislature. He also was a policy adviser for former California Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante and Sacramento County Supervisor Don Nottoli.

Brian holds a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Political Science from California State University Sacramento. He was also a part of the Sacramento County Board of Education for twelve years. He lives in Sacramento with his daughter, Alyssa.

Serena Boykin

A native of Los Angeles, CA, Serena Boykin is the principle designer at Dream Design Group, a Graphic Design company that serves clientele around the country. Her business motto,  "under promise, over deliver" rings true in other areas of her life. Participating in church activities and other community organizations, Serena is also on the board of the Uterine Leiomyosarcoma foundation. Her interest in this stemmed from the death of her mother, Mary Boykin, who passed of this cancer.  Serena's sister, Desiree has been an advocate at SCLARC and Serena is excited to participate in the panel discussion to talk about relationships with siblings that have disabilities.

Desiree Boykin

Desiree Boykin is a graduate of Dorsey High School in Los Angeles, California. She went to El Camino College in Torrance and transferred to California State University, Dominguez Hills. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Human Services in 2008. While in college, Desiree spent many hours working with the elderly. This work gave her the chance to give back to others in the community.

Desiree works at South Central Los Angeles Regional Center (SCLARC) as an Advocate. She helps individuals with developmental disabilities served by SCLARC. As an Advocate, Desiree helps educate, empower, and express the needs of SCLARC clients and their families to regional center staff and board members. She also works closely with community groups to make sure that they understand their rights, so they receive the highest quality of services from the regional center.

Reasonable Accommodations:

Please send all reasonable accommodation requests to Peer Advocate Scott Barron at or (213) 213-8178 by March 27, 2024


Register for the webinar

After your register you will receive an email with the link to log into the webinar.
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