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Since 1967 the Licking County Board of Developmental Disabilities (LCBDD) has served the Licking County community as the entity to plan for, provide and pay for services for people with developmental disabilities.

In 2017, our agency celebrated its 50th anniversary and marked the occasion with a variety of special projects. Check out the links below to learn more:

In a 2017 interview, retired LCBDD Superintendent Nancy Neely reflected on our agency’s history and future. We believe her words are a fitting introduction to this timeline, which not only highlights the accomplishments of the past but shows how far LCBDD has come — and where we have to go.

“It’s different today than it was 50 years ago, but throughout that time, our community has listened to us…We have just recently begun to realize the huge responsibility we have to help teach the public about what people with developmental disabilities can do.

In the next decade, we will very much be changing more of those earlier sets of expectations. The power of expectations is so important.

We’ve had a tremendous amount of progress, as we’ve learned, we’ve helped the community to learn. That’s the responsibility we have had to bear as a Board…to bring people along.

Thinking about 50 years ago, we know so much more about what works and what doesn’t work…and in 10 years, we’ll know even more.”

— Nancy Neely, LCBDD superintendent from 2001-2015, in January, 2017.

 

Our Timeline

01/01/1951

A Parent’s Struggle

A Parent’s Struggle

Children with developmental disabilities were unable to attend public schools. The only opportunities for local children were the state institutions in Columbus and Mount Vernon. Parents were told, “There is nothing for you.” A group of local parents decided to change that.

06/01/1952

Parent’s Unite

Parent’s Unite

Under the leadership of Licking County resident Katie Carter, parents came together to find a way for their children to receive an education in their own community. The fruit of their labor was the Licking County Council for Retarded Children. The Council incorporated in 1952.

08/01/1952

Starlight School

Starlight School

Starlight School opened, giving parents of children with developmental disabilities an educational choice. Mrs. Katie Carter suggested the school be named Starlight because it signified “the light that shines in darkness.” Classes were held for 12 students in a room at Mound School. Although the state only provided $200 per eligible..Read More

01/01/1954

Country Day School opens for one year

The Starlight Country Day School opened in 1954 to provide educational opportunities for children not eligible for state funding. Eight young men attended the school, which was held in Katie Carter’s home. There was no government funding for the program which relied on donations from the community. By 1955 some..Read More

05/01/1957

Job Training

Community job training was met with great success. It was predicted that within five years, many children with developmental disabilities would “find sheltered (working) conditions to be useful in an adult working world.”

11/01/1958

New parent group forms

A new parent group was formed. Parents and Friends of Retarded Children was “interested in promoting legislation favorable to all retarded children and in providing services to state institutions for the retarded with special attention for those residents from Licking County.”

05/30/1960

Starlight School’s first graduate

Starlight School’s first graduate

The first graduate of Starlight School was David Banks, class of 1960. Mrs. Eleanor S. Weiant, President of the Licking County Council for Retarded Children, presented David’s diploma. At the beginning of the 1960 school year, Starlight was holding five classes for 60 children. Mrs. Edward Wilson was the supervisor..Read More

09/01/1960

Coucil for Retarded Children takes on advisory role

Because of new legislation prohibiting private corporations from receiving state funds, the Licking County Council for Retarded Children was dissolved in 1960. They retained their name and became an advisory board. In 1963, Mrs. Jane Marsh became the Executive Director of the Licking County Council for Retarded Children.

11/01/1960

Passage of Starlight’s first levy

In November 1960, the taxpayers of Licking County passed Starlight’s first operating levy of 0.3 mills.

01/01/1964

Early leaders

In 1964, Baird Krueger was selected as the first “administrator” of the Starlight School. Krueger served until 1968. Eulah Littrell served from 1968 to 1971. Robert Barclay served from 1971 to 1973. Charles Morris served from 1973 to 1976.

03/01/1964

First Home Training Consultant hired

The first home training consultant was hired in 1964. Mrs. Alma Schuh worked with students unable (for varying reasons) to attend the Eleanor S. Weiant Starlight School. During her seven years with the school, Mrs. Schuh provided services to 145 youngsters.

04/01/1965

Starlight’s sheltered workshop

The landmark Ohio House Bill 169 legislation was passed on October 25, 1967. This law created the County Boards of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities and granted them authority to acquire funds and provide programs for county citizens with developmental disabilities.

08/14/1966

Ground breaking for new E.S. Weiant Starlight School building

On Aug. 14, 1966, construction began on the new E.S. Weiant Starlight School at the end of N. 22nd Street. The school had 13 classrooms, a multipurpose room, named after Katie Carter, an apartment for prevocational education, a sheltered workshop for adults, a clinic, a speech and hearing room and..Read More

10/25/1967

Ohio House Bill 169

The landmark Ohio House Bill 169 legislation was passed on October 25, 1967. This law created the County Boards of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities and granted them authority to acquire funds and provide programs for county citizens with developmental disabilities.

05/01/1973

First community residential facility

The first community residential facility was opened in 1973 by the Licking County Council for Retarded Citizens. Mrs. Jane Marsh was the program director for the homes, as well as the Council’s executive director. Eight men lived in the home at 400 Hudson Avenue, Newark. The designs for the needed..Read More

07/01/1973

LICCO Inc. established

In 1973 the non-profit corporation LICCO Incorporated was established to perform the employer functions for Board eligible adults. LICCO Inc., in partnership with the Board, provided services using the sheltered workshop model with support from area manufacturing companies. In naming new non-profit workshops, counties throughout Ohio — with some exceptions..Read More

08/03/1976

Anderson chosen as superintendent

Larry W. Anderson was chosen as superintendent of the Starlight School and the Licking County Board of DD. One of his priorities was expanding the Board’s adult program and facilities.

01/01/1977

Early Intervention program begins

An infant development program was started in 1977. The program, serving children from birth to age 2, assisted those with developmental delays to learn the skills necessary to attend public schools when they became old enough.

05/09/1977

First group home for women

The first group home for women was opened in 1977 by the Licking County Council for Retarded Children. As with the men’s home, Jane Marsh was the program director and Glenn Abel designed the plans for the renovations. Eight women were now offered an opportunity to live in the community...Read More

03/01/1978

LICCO Inc. grows

Because of an increase in job opportunities and enrollment, LICCO Inc. moved from the school to its own home at 675 W. Church St., in 1978. At that time, LICCO had several contracts, including those with the former Newark Air Force Base, Holophane and Callander Cleaners. By 1981, LICCO had..Read More

01/01/1980

FSS funding available for families

In the early 1980s, the Board began offering families access to Family Support Service Funding. That program continues today, allowing families the opportunity to acquire goods, services, and supports that address the special needs of their family member with a disability. These resources are available to all eligible families, regardless..Read More

09/01/1983

Community employment begins in Licking County

In September 1983, the Licking County Board received a grant from the Rehabilitation Services Commission to begin the Community Employment Program. This program provided assistance to individuals in finding and maintaining jobs in the community. The program was later renamed Community Employment Services (CES). In 1989, CES placed 49 individuals..Read More

09/07/1984

Phipps chosen as superintendent

Cheryl Phipps, who was at the time serving as the assistant superintendent of the Franklin County Board of DD, was selected to replace Larry Anderson, who left the Board to develop residential housing around Ohio.

03/01/1990

Families decide to educate children in their “home district”

By the early 1990s, the numbers of school age children being educated at the E.S. Weiant Starlight School were declining as families took advantage of special education programs in their home school districts. Working collaboratively with the Licking County Educational Services Center, the Board started to phase out of its..Read More

11/08/1997

Wurthmann chosen as superintendent

When Cheryl Phipps announced her decision to retire and go to law school, Hal Wurthmann was chosen to be her successor. He was the former superintendent of the Washington County Board of DD.

01/03/2001

Neely chosen as superintendent

Nancy Neely, LCBDD’s director of adult services, was chosen to lead LCBDD.

04/01/2005

LCBDD offers PLAY Project

Under the leadership of Early Childhood Director Molly Kurtz, LCBDD staff members began training to provide PLAY Project as an option for local families. PLAY is an evidenced-based autism early intervention program. LCBDD was one of the early adopters of this program.

04/01/2005

LCBDD offers PLAY Project

Under the leadership of Early Childhood Director Molly Kurtz, LCBDD staff members began training to provide PLAY Project as an option for local families. PLAY is an evidenced-based autism early intervention program. LCBDD was one of the early adopters of this program.

06/01/2009

Preschool merges with public schools

The Board’s preschool program merged with similar programs operated by the public school systems. Newark City Schools expanded their own preschool program to accommodate children living in the school district who attended E.S. Weiant. Flying Colors, the public preschool program operated by the Licking County Educational Services Center, accommodated additional students..Read More

07/29/2009

LCBDD administration moves

LCBDD’s administrative office moved from 65 W. Church to the E.S. Weiant Center, site of the Starlight School, located at 116 N. 22nd St.

07/29/2009

LCBDD administration moves

LCBDD’s administrative office moved from 65 W. Church to the E.S. Weiant Center, site of the Starlight School, located at 116 N. 22nd St.

08/24/2009

Agency changes name

On August 24, 2009, the agency’s name changed to The Licking County Board of Developmental Disabilities, or LCBDD. In retelling our history, we have included the “MR” portion of our name, when appropriate, because it was the agency’s name for more than 40 years.

08/01/2010

Transportation changes

The Board began contracting transportation through the Licking County Transit Board.

09/01/2010

Licking County Chapter of People First begins

As self advocacy became more prominent, the creation of the first People First group ultimately led to the creation of self advocacy advisory councils. Now local providers have taken the lead, supporting new self advocacy opportunities.

09/02/2010

Licking County Chapter of People First begins

As self advocacy became more prominent, the creation of the first People First group ultimately led to the creation of self advocacy advisory councils. Now local providers have taken the lead, supporting new self advocacy opportunities.

09/03/2010

LCBDD announces Endowment Fund

Thanks to a generous bequest from Martha Welsh — the grandmother of two women receiving services from LCBDD— the agency established the LCBDD Endowment Fund through the Licking County Foundation. This fund is dedicated to providing additional support for adults and children with developmental disabilities.

03/13/2013

Transition toward more choices

Superintendent Nancy Neely sent a letter to families of people attending LICCO, informing them that their loved ones would have more choices for direct service providers. Instead of relying on LICCO to be “everything to everyone,” individuals would have more opportunities to visit and select other agency providers. “LICCO Inc...Read More

03/13/2013

Focus on Ages and Stages and Person Centered Planning

Superintendent Nancy Neely reached out to families, caregivers and providers in a letter, informing them of the board’s future plans. Some of those inititatives included a committment to person centered practices and reorganizing service coordination to correspond with the different ages and stages of life. Neely emphasized that the next..Read More

04/01/2013

ADEP becomes an option for families

LCBDD staff completed ADEP (Autism Diagnosis Education Project) training. ADEP offers parents access to a local evaluation process for children under the age of three suspected of having autism. In partnership with Dr. William Knobeloch, who continues to be our medical partner, the first child was evaluated by our team..Read More

08/01/2013

Transition Services department created

With renewed focus on employment, particulary for students graduating from high school, the Board began focusing efforts on working with students, at age 14, to help them reach their vocational goals.

11/01/2013

Employment First policy approved

The Licking County Board of DD approved its Employment First policy. Employment First is a statewide initiative, dedicated to shifting expectations and making sure working-age adults with developmental disabilities have the opportunity to explore their career options and seek jobs they are interested in.

04/01/2014

Early Childhood Services expand

In April of 2014, LCBDD began expanding its Early Childhood services, which initially were only offered from birth to 3, to include preschool-aged children. Roll out of services began in phases until eventually all children 3 to 6 who were determined eligible for Board services had the option of Early..Read More

06/02/2014

Partnership announced between LICCO and Hopewell Industries

In a letter to LICCO employees and families, Superintendent Nancy Neely announced a formal partnership between LICCO and Hopewell Industries in Coshocton County. Hopewell’s CEO Mary Thompson transitioned into administering LICCO while the LCBDD staff members in the building began the process of moving to the E.S. Weiant Center.

11/01/2014

LICCO Inc. transitions

LICCO Inc. officially transitions into a certified, stand-alone provider agency.

02/01/2015

Employment Supports department created

LCBDD’s Community Employment Services departments and Transition Services departments merged into Employment Supports, which focuses on connecting people with the resources they need to meet their employment outcomes.

01/01/2016

Umstot takes over as LCBDD superintendent

After more than 30 years at the Licking County Board of DD, Nancy Neely announced her retirement. Jason L. Umstot was chosen as the Board’s superintendent. Umstot has worked in the DD field for more than 18 years, in several states. Most recently, before coming to the Board, he was..Read More

04/01/2016

Provider Relations department created

LCBDD’s Provider Relations Department was created to support agency and independent providers, provide training opportunities and technical assistance and collaborate on The Excellence Network (TEN), which provides a support network for providers.

01/01/2017

LCBDD celebrates 50th anniversary

LCBDD spent 2017 celebrating its 50th anniversary, which coincided with the 50th anniversary of the creation of County Boards of DD in the state of Ohio. The celebration culminated with a groundbreaking celebration to kick off the renovation of the E.S. Weiant Center.

02/01/2018

LCBDD launches DSP Employment Connections

In an effort to redefine its role and work to eleviate the statewide shortage of direct support professionals, LCBDD began DSP Employment Connections, the first program of its kind in the state of Ohio. The program offers screenings and follow along to those applying to be DSPs as well as..Read More

07/01/2018

Renovation of E.S. Weiant Center began

Construction officially began on the E. S. Weiant Center. The project was completed in 2019, and the renovated building now houses the entire agency.

06/20/2019

E.S. Weiant Center ribbon cutting

LCBDD celebrates the ribbon cutting of the renovated E.S. Weiant Center.