Last year we decided we wanted to do something to honor one of our founders, Olivia S. Stoner. Along with Marian Headrick, Ms. Stoner started what became the Occupational Development Center in 1948. For nearly four decades, Ms. Stoner was an integral part of what we did, and a driving force behind the mission we still hold to today.

The honor comes in the form of the Olivia S. Stoner Award, a unique award created for us by the glass blowers at the Stiegel Glassworks in Manheim.

This award will be given out each year to the individuals and businesses that

“embody the spirit and mission of the ODC and co-founder Olivia S. Stoner, and her commitment to creating a better life for individuals with developmental disabilities.”

This past week, we had the honor of presenting the First Annual Olivia S. Stoner Award to Benjamin and Mignon Bowman, a couple that has been supporting the work of the ODC, and its participants, for more than fifty years.

ODC Board President William Young, Executive Director Gregg Richards, Ben & Mignon Bowman, Board member Tonia Witman

Mr. Bowman first became involved with the ODC in the early 1960’s as a member of AMBUCS (American Business Clubs), an organization which raised money for us. Ben took a more hands on role when his company, Wickersham Construction, built the first addition onto our building in 1965, and then the warehouse addition in 1984. In the 1980’s, he also served on our board and was board president for a time.

Mrs. Bowman became involved early on, as well, as a very active member of the ODC Auxiliary, of which she continues to be a member.

Over the years, the Bowmans have given very generously to the ODC of their time and finances, and despite being in their 90’s, continue to be among our most fervent supporters.

We are pleased to give this award to the Bowmans as a small token of our appreciation for all they have done for us over the years. Thank you!