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The Baltimore Sun

Disability panel awards celebration held

Howard County Executive Ken Ulman and the Howard County Commission on Disability Issues have announced winners for the 14th annual awards ceremony, "Celebrate the Possibilities," which on Thursday night was scheduled to have honored achievements of citizens with disabilities, their employers, advocates and service providers.

* The River Hill Sports Grille was nominated for its commitment to advancing employment opportunities for people with disabilities in Howard County.

* The Arc of Howard County was nominated for providing support for full community participation, specifically in the area of employment.

* John Wyseman, a teacher at Reservoir High School, was nominated as an educational leader for his creativity and flexibility and developing instructional methods to meet each student's learning style.

* Jay Raksin, who has worked for the Arc of Howard County for 15 years, was nominated for creating solutions to improve daily life for people with disabilities. He recruited volunteer groups and contractors to help renovate three of the Arc's houses for older people, and raised money for the renovations.

* Deanna A. Green was nominated for an Individual Achievement Award. Employed as the consumer program coordinator for the local National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) in Howard County, she has demonstrated leadership as a local and national spokeswoman for those living with chronic mental health diagnoses.

* Mirza Rayyan Baig was nominated for an Individual Youth Achievement Award. On the honor roll during his senior year and a member of the varsity cheerleading squad, the 2008 graduate of Atholton High School recently began classes at Howard Community College.

* Joanne Piersall was nominated for a Commission Achievement Award for her leadership and vision in her position as vice chairwoman of the Commission on Disability Issues. She helped coin the line "Celebrate the Possibilities," now used for the awards program.

Register to vote

The Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration reminds residents that the deadline to apply to register to vote in the 2008 presidential general election is Oct. 14. This is also the deadline for registered voters, who have moved since the last election, to change their addresses.

MVA customers who are U.S. citizens can apply to register to vote or update voter registration information at any MVA branch office, as part of a driver's license or state identification card transaction.

Registration applications are also available at departments of health and social services, offices on aging, the Division of Rehabilitation Services, public institutions of higher education, marriage-license bureaus, post offices and public libraries.

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