Joseph worked for the state of California for over 28 years advocating for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families as the executive director of the Sequoia Area VIII Board.
During that time Joseph represented thousands of families through IEP, 504, Suspension and/or Expulsion meetings.
Joseph grew up in the Central Valley and worked there for three decades. Joseph has an acute understanding of the challenges presented to his clientele because he has a younger brother with Down’s Syndrome and grew up in a home where English was not the primary language.
Joseph has spent his entire adult life in the serving the community. Before he was hired by the State, he worked for the Central Valley Regional Center, Heartland Opportunity Center, ARC Fresno, Putney Ranch Camp, and the Special Olympics.
Joseph believes strongly in inclusion. Children do better when they are included in regular education classes with supports and services. Children learn from one another and they benefit from being with one another. Joseph believes that children with special needs belong in their neighborhood schools with their typical peers. The Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) is the very heart of the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).