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BIAA Honors Outstanding Affiliates

16-Jan-2012 The Brain Injury Association of America proudly recognized six chartered state affiliates and two state leaders amid ovations and cheers from their peers during the 16th Annual State Affiliate Leadership Conference in December 2011.

Ginny Lazzara, chairperson of the board of directors of the Brain Injury Association of Illinois, received the award for chief volunteer officer. Ms. Lazzara sets a model for board member involvement in association activities at both the state and national level. Her work ethic, expertise and positive outlook ensure the BIA of Illinois is able to serve individuals impacted by brain injury.

Anne McDonnell, executive director of the Brain Injury Association of Virginia, received the award for chief staff professional. Ms. McDonnell was nominated by members of her staff and governing board for her extraordinary accomplishments in programs and services, advocacy and organizational management and her unwavering passion and dedication to serving person with brain injury.

The Brain Injury Association of Delaware received an award for its bi-yearly newsletter, which is compiled by BIAD volunteer Tracey Landmann, who displays a strong, positive, creative attitude despite the challenges that result from sustaining a brain injury.

The Brain Injury Association of Illinois was recognized for its military outreach program, which included producing the film series Journey Forward to explain brain injury and PTSD and provide newcomers with strategies to address changes in family roles. The film is available in DVD from BIA-IL and can be viewed on YouTube.
The Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts was honored for its multi-faceted campaign on the landmark settlement of Hutchison v. Patrick, a lawsuit that forced the Commonwealth to remove individuals with brain injury from inappropriate nursing home placements. The campaign included the development of a website, use of social media, front-page newspaper stories, press releases, quarterly newsletter articles and a video documentary demonstrating the freedom, independence and better life available as a result of the suit. The video can be viewed from BIA-MA’s website at

The Brain Injury Association of Missouri received an award for strategic management of very limited resources. BIA-MO staff and volunteers modeled its new website based on BIA of America’s design and content, which allowed BIA-MO to meet or exceed nationwide branding requirements at a substantially reduced cost.

The Brain Injury Association of New York State earned an Award of Excellence for its new DVD, Keep Moving Forward, a 25-minute film that highlights the stories of three families with children who have sustained traumatic brain injuries. BIA of NYS shared its DVD with educators, service providers, healthcare staff and the general public. It has become an important component in community outreach activities.

The Brain Injury Association of Virginia was recognized for the significant inroads it made in establishing collaborative relationships with key stakeholders in its state through support group leader training, concussion clinics and the creation of a brain injury workgroup to address the educational needs of children with brain injury.

The Brain Injury Association of America congratulates the chartered state affiliates for their outstanding achievement and Ms. Lazzara and Ms. McDonnell for their leadership.

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