214 – Toby Brown & Jesse Hohn of Colorado Are Two Dads Who Each Have Children With Shwachman-Diamond Syndrome

Our guests this week are Toby Brown of Colorado Springs and Jesse Hohn of Littleton, CO. Toby and his wife, Angela Bird, have been married for 15 years and are the proud parents of two children; Kavan (19) and Anabelle (17). Jesse and his wife, Felima, have been married for 23 years and are the proud parents of three children: Ethan (21), Arianna (18) and Sadie (14). Four of their five children have Shwachman-Diamond Syndrome (or SDS), a rare genetic disorder that affects many parts of the body, particularly the bone marrow, pancreas and skeletal system. We learn about how Toby

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213 – Dr. Eric Endlich of Sonoma, CA Father of Two, Including a Son Who Is Autistic, Discovered Late In Life, He Is Also Autistic

Our guest this week is Dr. Eric Endlich, of Sonoma, CA who is an Autistic man, the father of two, a Psychologist, author and founder of Top College Consultants, an organization that serves students with Autism, ADHD and other learning differences, navigate the college admissions process. Eric and his wife, Kristina, have been married for 35 years and are the proud parents of two children; Elyse (21) and Alex (24) who is Autistic. Eric discovered late in life he is Autistic, which has helped him relate to his son and has shaped his career. His book, “Older Autistic Adults In Their

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212 – Joe Lang of Sacramento, CA, Whose Daughter Jordan is the Namesake for Jordan Syndrome & Jordan’s Guardian Angels

Our guest this week is Joe Lang of Sacramento, CA who is managing partner at Lang, Hansen, Giroux & Kidane, a lobbying/government relations firm, as well as the co-founder of Jordan’s Guardian Angels, a non-profit whose mission is helping to improve and bring joy to the lives of children and families in the Coachella Valley and beyond. Joe and his wife, Cynthia, have been married for 18 years and are the proud parents of two children; Blythe (30) and Jordan (16), who was diagnosed with PPP2R5D, now known as Jordan’s Syndrome. We’ll learn about the Lang family journey, how PPP2R5D was

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211 – University Of Illinois Has Been a Leader In Adaptive Athletics. Meet Alums: Adam Bleakney, Amanda McGrory & Brian Siemann

This week David Hirsch talks with fellow Illini Adam Bleakney, head coach of the wheelchair track program, which is part of the Division Of Disability Resources & Educational Services in the College of Applied Health Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. We also meet: Amanda McGrory and Brian Siemann, two University of Illinois graduates who were part of the wheelchair track team and who have both competed in numerous international Paralympic events. You’ll learn about their backstories, what brought them to the world of adaptive athletics at UofI, as well as how their university experience has allowed them to

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210 – Kalman Samuels of Jerusalem, Co-Founder of Shalva, Father Of 7 Including Yossi, Who Became Deaf & Blind By a Bad Vaccine Special Fathers Network Dad to Dad Podcast

Our guest this week is Rabbi Kalman Samuels of Jerusalem, Israel. Rabbi Samuels and his wife, Malki, have seven children, one of whom, Yossi, became deaf and blind after being administered a faulty vaccine at two. We’ll hear the remarkable story of how Yossi learned to communicate, to read, and how Kalman and Malki started Shalva, a seven story state-of-the art center on five acres in downtown Jerusalem, which serves as a beacon of hope, helping thousands of disabled children weekly, gain an ability to have a higher quality life. We’ll also hear about Kalman’s book, “Dreams Never Dreamed: A Mother’s

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209 – Shayne Gaffney of Windham, NH Father of Two, Including A Daughter with CytoMegaloVirus

Our guest this week is Shayne Gaffney of Windham, NH, a cycling & running coach, a licensed physical therapy assistant, and father of two including a daughter with CytoMegaloVirus, or CMV. Shayne and his wife, Megan, have been married for 8 years and are the proud parents of two children: Finn (5) and Grace (3), who was diagnosed with CytoMegaloVirus or CMV, a common virus, but when a baby is born with congenital CMV infection, it can result in several long-term health problems. We learn about the Gaffney family journey, their advocacy for those impacted by CMV and the role Easter

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208 – Doug Robb of Long Valley NJ, Father of Five Including Two With Autism & Co-Founder of A Seat At The Table Foundation

Our guest this week is Doug Robb of Long Valley, NJ the father of five including two with Autism, a financial advisor and co-founder of Seat At The Table Foundation, a non-profit organization. Doug and his wife, Dara, have been married for 28 years and are the proud parents of five children; Taylor (27), Dougie (25), Jackson (22), Peyton (21), and Mia (19). Dougie and Jackson are both on the Autism spectrum. We’ll learn about Doug’s background, growing up in NJ, his interest in football with a brief brush with the NFL, his career in financial services, as well as the

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207 – Sarah Putt of Seattle, WA An Occupational Therapist, Leader & Host Of The OT4Lyfe Podcast

Our guest this week is Sarah Putt of Seattle, WA, the mother of young child, the founder and clinical director of Sarah Bryan Therapy, and Creator/Host of the OT 4 Lyfe Podcast, dedicated to promoting and bringing awareness to the field of occupational therapy. We’ll learn about Sarah’s background with degrees in psychology from Pepperdine University and masters in occupational therapy from University of Southern California, which prepared her for a career as an occupational therapist. We also learn about her role as a leader in the OT field, which includes mentoring younger OTs and hosting the OT4Lyfe Podcast, now with

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206 – Chris Velona of North Los Angeles, Father of Two, Including a Son With Batten Disease & Founder of Project Sebastian

Our guest this week is Chris Velona of North Los Angeles, CA. Chris and his x-wife, Teresa, are the proud parents of two boys; Gage (16) and Sebastian (18), who was diagnosed with Batten Disease CLN8, a rare neurodegenerative disorder. We’ll learn about Chris’ journey, which includes his own battle with alcoholism, shouldering the Batten Disease diagnosis, and creating Project Sebastian, a non-profit to support families touched by Batten Disease and rare disease. We also learn about a number of organizations that have played an influential role in their lives, including: Charlotte & Gwyneth Gray Foundation, the Batten Disease Support &

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205 – Justin DeVault of Algonquin, IL, The Father of Three Including a Daughter with Autism & Son Who Suffered a Brain Stroke

Our guest this week is Justin DeVault of Algonquin, IL. Justin and his wife, Margaret, have been married for 17 years and are the proud parents of three; Hazel (3), Alice (5) and Henry (13). Hazel was diagnosed with Autism and Henry had a brain stroke shortly after birth, that lead to the loss of his sight and has impaired his neurological development. We’ll learn about Justin’s journey, which included a sister with special needs and who is legally blind, teaching in a Montessori School, the full range of challenges their children have encountered and a number of organizations that have

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204 – Mike Graglia of Palo Alto, CA Father of Two & Co-Founder Of The SynGAP Research Foundation

Our guest this week is Mike Graglia of Palo Alto, CA. Mike and his wife, Ashley, are parents to two boys John (3) and Tony (8) who was diagnosed with SynGap 1, a rare genetic disorder. We’ll learn about Mike’s eclectic career including being a Peace Corps volunteer in Namibia, as well as working at: the World Bank, Boston Consulting Group, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, New America, and Emerson Collective before jumping in full-time at the SynGAP Research Foundation in a quest to find treatments and a cure for those who diagnosed with SynGap1. It’s a

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203 – Riana Milne of Del Ray Beach, FL a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, a Global Life & Love Coach and Best Selling Author

Our guest this week is Riana Milne of Del Rey Beach, FL, who is a mother of two, grandmother of six, a licensed mental health counselor with decades of experience, a global life & love coach, childhood and love trauma recovery specialist, bestselling author and fellow podcast host. Riana has a BA in Broadcasting & Speech Communications from Penn State University, and a MA in Applied Clinical & Counseling Psychology from Rowan University, NJ, plus a dozen certificates and licenses, including; Certified Clinical Trauma Professional, Certified Addictions Professional and Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor. She is also a best selling author

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202 – Catherine Whitcher of Milwaukee, WI, Mother of Two Daughters & Nationally Recognized Expert on IEPs

Our guest this week is Catherine Whitchter of Milwaukee, WI a mother two daughters, one of whom has Epilepsy. Catherine is also one the country’s most well-respected experts on IEPs or Individual Education Plans. She is also a podcast host and has created the Master IEP Coach program. We’ll learn about her career as a Special Education teacher, growing up with a younger brother with Down syndrome and hear some sage advice on how to create win-win strategies to help your child succeed. That’s all on this Special Fathers Network Dad to Dad Podcast. Show Links:Website – https://catherinewhitcher.mykajabi.comEmail – catherine@catherinewhitcher.comLinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/catherinewhitcher/Special Education Inner

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201 – Duncan Keya of Nairobi, Kenya Father of Four Including a Daughter With Albinism & Son With Autism.

Our guest this week is Duncan Keya of Nairobi, Kenya, the father of four children and a Designated Migration Officer at the Canadian High Commission in Nairobi. Duncan and his wife, wife, Faith, have been married for six years and are the proud parents of four children: Luka (5), who has Autism, Khalayi (2) who has Albinism and two other children: Keith (13) and Kaylee (6) from his first marriage. Duncan has become an outspoken advocate for families raising children with all types of special healthcare needs and has helped start the SFN Nairobi Dads Meetup Group. It’s a very compelling

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200 – Bill Strickland of Pittsburg, PA MacArthur Genius Fellow, Founder of Bidwell Training Center & Manchester Craftsmans Guild

Our guest this week is William “Bill” Strickland, Jr. of Pittsburg, PA, a John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Genius Fellow, founder of Bidwell Training Center and Manchester Craftsman’s Guild, an author, and a former pilot. Bill is the quintessential social entrepreneur. Through his love of the arts and specifically pottery, Bill has been offering welfare moms, out of work steel workers and at-risk youth vocational training in the arts and culinary worlds. Bill Strickland and his work offers new hope to displaced and underemployed workers around the country and we’re proud to have him be our guest for this 200th

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199 – Damion Navarro of Frankfort, IL Father of Three Including A Son With Down Syndrome & Co-Founder Of Navarro Farm

Our guest this week is Damion Navarro of Frankfort, IL, owner of NES Environmental, a father of three, including son Carter, who has Down Syndrome, and now a farmer! Damion and his wife, Sherri, are co-founders of Navarro Farm, a place to grow and employ people with all types of ability. We’ll hear Damion’s and the Navarro Farm story in this Special Fathers Network Dad to Dad Podcast. Navarro Farm – https://www.navarrofarm.orgEmail – damion@navarrofarm.orgLinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/damion-navarro-31314160/CBS Story – https://chicago.cbslocal.com/2021/08/13/navarro-farm-frankfort-illinois-special-needs/ Transcript: Coming Soon

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198 – Jeremiah Kuria of Maaimahiu, Kenya, Father of Three and Co-Founder of Ubuntu Life a NGO & Global Lifestyle Brand

Our guest this week is Jeremiah Kuria of Maaimahiu, Kenya, the father of three adult children and co-founder of Ubuntu Life, a Non-Governmental Organization and global lifestyle brand that provides economic security to hundreds of families raising children with special needs. Jeremiah reflects on his growing up in Escarpment, Kenya as the oldest of six children, the cultural differences, his paternal grandfather who was an assistant chief in their village, working in a children’s home in Kenya, and going to school, working and living in Grand Rapids, MI for eight years. Jeremiah also reflects on the chance encounter in he had

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197 – Josh LaBelle, ED at Seattle Theatre Group & Father of Two Including a Son With Extreme ADHD & Other Challenges

Our guest this week is Josh LaBelle, Executive Director of the Seattle Theatre Group, a former drummer for musicians Sam Phillips and T Bone Burnett and a father of two including son Levi (8) who has extreme ADHD and speech issues. We’ll hear Josh’s story including his own challenges with Epilepsy and how the Seattle Theatre Group runs a program to provide theatre that caters to families raising children with special needs. That’s all on this Special Fathers Network Dad to Dad Podcast. Show Links: Seattle Theater Group https://www.STGPresents.orgEmail Josh: JoshL@stgpresents.org Transcript: Coming Soon

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196 – Spela Mirosevic of Ljubljana, Slovenia, Co-Founder Of The CTNNB1 Foundation, Mother of Two, Including A Son With CTNBB1

Our guest this week is Spela Mirosovic. who is a psychotherapist and biopsychologist, working as a researcher at the Medical University Ljubljana. Her work is focused on exploring unmet needs of cancer survivors and teaching mindfulness programs. Spela is also a mother to 2-year-old Urban who was diagnosed with CTNNB1, a rare autosomal genetic disorder that affects an estimated 1 out of 50,000 children worldwide. Spela is also co-founded and president of the CTNNB1 Foundation created to help find a cure for this debilitating syndrome. We’ll hear Spela’s story and much more on this Special Fathers Network Dad to Dad Podcast.

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195 – Susanna Peace-Lovell of Marina del Rey, CA Is An Outspoken Advocate for Families Raising Children With Special Needs

Our guest this week is Susanna Peace-Lovell, a single mother, certified life coach and advocate for the health and wellness of all special needs families. Susanna’s daughter, Arizona, has ADHD, Eczema, severe food allergies, sensory and auditory processing disorders as well as Autism. We’ll hear Susanna’s story, her work as a life coach and her dedication to serve families raising children with special healthcare needs. That’s all on this Special Fathers Network Dad to Dad Podcast. Show Links: Email – susanna@susannapeacelovell.comLinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/susannapeace/Website – https://www.susannapeacelovell.comCheerful Helpers Child & Family Study Center – https://www.cheerfulhelpers.orgThe Children’s Ranch – http://www.thechildrensranch.orgSocial Foundations LA – https://www.socialfoundationsla.comWe Are Brave Together – https://www.wearebravetogether.com Transcript: Coming

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194 – Dr. Al Freedman of West Chester, PA, A Psychologist Specializing In Rare Disease & Disability Lost A Son To SMA Recently.

Our guest this week is Al Freedman of West Chester, PA a Psychologist who specializes in counseling families touched by rare disease and disability. Al is a divorced father of two adult children; Cara (21) and Jack (26), who had Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), a rare neuromuscular disorder, leaving him wheel chair and ventilator dependent. David Hirsch recorded this interview with Al in August, 2021, but ivery sadly, Jack passed away in October at age 26. So, David spoke again with Al this week to have Al reflect on the impact Jack had on him, those he met and beyond. We’ll

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193 – Miguel Sancho of Larchmont, NY, An Emmy Award Winning TV Producer, Author & Father Of Two, Including a Son With CGD

Our guest this week is Miguel Sancho, of Larchmont, NY a journalist and an Emmy award winning TV producer. Miguel and his wife, Felicia Morton, have been married for 16 years and are the proud parents of two; Lydia (13) and Sebastian (9), who was diagnosed with CGD, Chronic Granulomatous Disease, a rare genetic disorder in which white blood cells called phagocytes are unable to kill certain types of bacteria and fungi. People with CGD are constantly at risk of developing bacterial and fungal diseases that can be life-threatening. Miguel is also the author of: More Thank You Can Handle: A

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192 – Eliya Stromberg of Jerusalem, Author, Fatherhood Advocate & Father of Three, Including A Son With Down syndrome

Our guest this week is Eliya Stromberg, the founder of Fathers Connect and author of Chosen Fathers. Eliya and his wife Esther have several grandchildren and parent of three grown children, including Ariel (32) who has Down Syndrome. We’ll hear Eliya’s story about growing up in Los Angeles, taking degrees from UC Berkeley, Yeshiva University (NYC) and University of Kansas and how his career took him all across North America, before landing in Jerusalem. We also learn about his transformation from being an educator of to the parent of a child with special needs and his calling to assist fathers, which

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191 – Special Report Ukraine – With SFN Mentor Father Ruslan Vasyutin

Listen to “Dad To Dad 191 – Special Report Ukraine – With SFN Mentor Father Ruslan Vasyutin” on Spreaker. Our guest on this SFN Dad To Dad Podcast ‘Special Report’ is SFN Mentor Father Ruslan Vasyutin of Kiev Ukraine, the father of a nine year old daughter with Cerebral Palsy, who is unable walk or talk. Today March 9, 2022 marks day 14 since Russia sent its army into Ukraine. This unprovoked and hostile action has upended the lives of all Ukrainians and put Ukraine at the Geopolitcal center of the world. Ruslan previously did an interview for the SFN

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190 – Shandra Cubin Co-Founder of Special Hearts, A Dating App For Parents Of Kids With Special Needs & Who Has A Son Hyperlexia

Our guest this week is Shandra Cubin, co-founder of Special Hearts, a dating app for parents of kids with special needs. Shandra and her husband, Rich, have two children, including a son, Koen, who has been diagnosed with Seizure Disorder and Hyperlexia, which includes the ability to read at a surprisingly early age and often accompanied by an obsessive interest in letters and numbers. We’ll hear Shandra’s story and more on this Special Fathers Network Dad to Dad Podcast. Show Links: Find the Special Hearts app in the Google Play store, or Go to https://www.special-hearts.com Email – shandraeastman@yahoo.com Transcript: Coming Soon

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