BIANYS ANNOUNCES RETURN OF ANNUAL JOURNEY OF HOPE GALA TO MANHATTAN PENTHOUSE IN OCTOBER

BIANYS names Kenneth B. Goldblatt, Esq. and Lori Goldblatt as this year’s honorary chairs

NEW YORK, N.Y.: August 10, 2017 – The Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS), a statewide non-profit membership organization that advocates on behalf of individuals with brain injuries and their families, announced today it will host its annual Journey of Hope Gala at the Manhattan Penthouse on Wednesday, October 4 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.  The organization invites attendees to enjoy an evening in celebration of the courageous individuals and families impacted by brain injury across the state.

BIANYS provides resources, support groups, training, prevention programs, and other services to help individuals with brain injury and their families in New York.  Since its inception, more than $900,000 has been raised through their annual gala with proceeds supporting programs and services provided by the organization.

“The Journey of Hope Gala will be a fun, festive night to support a wonderful cause, and it will certainly make a difference for the thousands of New Yorkers who sustain brain injuries every year,” said Kenneth B. Goldblatt, 2017 Journal of Hope Gala Honorary Co-Chair.

“The Brain Injury Association of New York State continuously helps so many brain injury survivors and their family members who don’t know what to do following a life changing injury,” said Lori Goldblatt, 2017 Journal of Hope Gala Honorary Co-Chair. “We are honored to help organize this annual celebration, which will further assist BIANYS in continuing and expanding their much-needed services across the state.”

Guests will enjoy fine foods, music, a silent auction featuring high-end prizes and an open bar. The organization will also recognize several honorees all who have made a significant impact on the brain injury community.

The Journey of Hope Gala is presented by the Brain Injury Association of New York State with longstanding support from:  Goldblatt & Associates, P.C. and RUSK Rehabilitation.  Additional support for the event is provided by: Siegel & Coonerty Attorneys at Law, AHRC, O’Connell and Aronowitz, Wells Fargo and Northwell Health Rehabilitative Services.  Sponsorship and underwriting opportunities are still available by contacting Erica Rossin at erossin@bianys.org.

Tickets are $250 per person or $400 for an individual Honorary Committee Member Ticket which includes a pre-event VIP reception and recognition on the Journey Of Hope Gala invitation and program. Ticket reservations are required and can be made by phone at 518-459-7911 or online at bianys.org/event/journey-of-hope-gala-2017. The Manhattan Penthouse is located at 80 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY.

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BIANYS ANNOUNCES LOCAL HONOREES FOR UPCOMING MARCH ON FOR BRAIN INJURY WALK AT NYIT-OLD WESTBURY IN AUGUST

Four individuals connected to the local brain injury community to be named this year’s honorees

OLD WESTBURY, N.Y.: July 26 2017 – The Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS), a statewide non-profit membership organization that advocates on behalf of individuals with brain injuries and their families, announced today that four local individuals have been named the 2017 Honorees for their inaugural satellite walk on Long Island.  The event, which will be held in partnership with Mind Over Matter, is scheduled for Saturday, August 26 at New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) – Old Westbury campus in Old Westbury, N.Y.

“The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to announce this year’s honorees,” said Eileen Reardon, BIANYS Executive Director “We have four outstanding individuals who are personally connected with or are working in the field of brain injury and are thrilled that they will serve as this year’s honorees.  Each individual’s connection with brain injury is unique and through their personal stories and outreach we hope to unite hundreds of individuals on Long Island who have been impacted by this invisible injury.”

The March On for Brain Injury campaign serves as a statewide celebration.  The addition of the Long Island Satellite walk to the March On for Brain Injury events, will support the organization’s growth in building awareness, visibility and understanding of brain injury across New York State. Proceeds from the event will benefit the organization’s programs and services supporting individuals statewide.

The following individuals have been named this year’s honorees:

-Partner Honoree
Jenna Mosenson
The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to honor Jenna Mosenson, a 20-year-old former roller hockey player who suffered numerous concussions.  She founded Mind Over Matter (mindovermatter-tbi.org) an organization dedicated to bringing awareness of and educating the public about concussion.

-Medical Honoree 
Dr. Deborah M. Benson
Dr. Benson is a New York State Licensed Psychologist with over 25 years of experience working with brain injury survivors and their families on Long Island. She is a Senior Director of Clinical Services at Paradigm Outcomes, maintains privileges at Northwell Health, and founded Common Ground Alliance, a Long Island volunteer organization that provides social/recreational activities for brain injury survivors and families.  Dr. Benson, a former BIANYS board member, remains an active participant in BIANYS’ Long Island Chapter and is committed to serving and advocating for brain injury survivors and families.

-Youth Honoree
Donovan Maldonado
The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to honor Donovan Maldonado as this year’s youth honoree. On Tuesday, January 12, 2016, Donovan “Donny” Maldonado was struck by a car while walking home from school. He suffered severe head trauma (TBI) and a shattered spleen among other ailments.  After about seven months in inpatient rehab, Donny finally came home on August 22, 2016 and was able to walk and talk again.  This special young man as made a miraculous journey and he is not finished yet!

-Corporate Honoree
Dr. Hallie Zwibel, New York Institute of Technology  – Center for Sports Medicine
The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to honor Dr. Hallie Zwibel of New York Institute of Technology- Center for Sports Medicine as this year’s Corporate Honoree.  At the NYIT Center for Sports Medicine, the multidisciplinary team includes over 40 providers specializing in neurology, sports medicine, pediatrics, and psychology, in addition to occupational and physical therapies.  Currently, the Center provides injury and illness management, concussion care, and education, to the over 800 NYIT and LIO Post collegiate athletes, the NYIT community of students, faculty, and staff, as well as patients in the local community.

The March On for Brain Injury Long Island Satellite event will feature a fun walk and activities for the whole family to enjoy.  Attendees will gather at the Riland Health Care Center on the NYIT-Old Westbury campus.  Registration will begin at 9 a.m., followed by a 10 a.m. start time for the walk. Attendees are encouraged to walk at their own pace.

Since its inception, nearly $185,000 has been raised through March On for Brain Injury events across New York State to support programs and services provided by the organization. As part of their statewide campaign, BIANYS will be also be hosting March on for Brain Injury event in Rochester and Hudson Valley.

March on for Brain Injury – Long Island is presented by the Brain Injury Association of New York State in partnership with Mind Over Matter.  Additional support for the event is provided by: J & G Associates, NYIT Center for Sports Medicine and Northwell Health Rehabilitation Network. Vendor and sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Erica Rossin by phone at 518-459-7911 or via email at erossin@bianys.org.

For more information or to register, visit https://hudsonvalleymarchon.bianys.org/LongIsland.

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BIANYS ANNOUNCES INAUGURAL MARCH ON FOR BRAIN INJURY EVENT ON LONG ISLAND AT NYIT IN OLD WESTBURY

OLD WESTBURY, N.Y.: July 18, 2017 – The Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS), a statewide non-profit membership organization that advocates on behalf of individuals with brain injuries and their families, announced today their plans to expand their popular March On for Brain Injury campaign to include an inaugural satellite walk on Long Island.  The event, which will be held in partnership with Mind Over Matter, will take place on Saturday, August 26 at the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) in Old Westbury, N.Y.

The addition of the Long Island Satellite walk to the March On for Brain Injury events will support the organization’s growth in developing a one-day statewide celebration to build awareness, visibility and understanding of brain injury across New York State. Proceeds from the event will benefit the organization’s programs and services supporting individuals statewide.

“The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to partner with Mind Over Matter for this exciting expansion of one of our signature events to Long Island,” said Eileen Reardon, BIANYS Executive Director “We have a strong chapter and great partners on Long Island and we are thrilled to be able to let the Long Island community know that there is support for individuals impacted by brain injury and their family members. We are also thankful to NYIT for collaborating with us and inviting us to host our upcoming event at their facility.”

The March On for Brain Injury Long Island Satellite event will feature a family fun walk and activities for the whole family to enjoy. Attendees will gather at the Riland Health Care Center on the NYIT-Old Westbury campus.  Registration will begin at 9 a.m., followed by a 10 a.m. start time for the walk. Attendees are encouraged to walk at their own pace.

Since its inception, nearly $185,000 has been raised through March On for Brain Injury events across New York State to support programs and services provided by the organization. As part of their statewide campaign, BIANYS will be also be hosting March on for Brain Injury events in Rochester, Hudson Valley, with an additional satellite walk in New York City.

March On for Brain Injury Long Island Satellite Walk is presented by the Brain Injury Association of New York State in partnership with Mind Over Matter. Additional support for the event is provided by: J & G Associates and NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine Center for Sports Medicine. Vendor and sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Erica Rossin by phone at 518-459-7911 or via email at erossin@bianys.org.

For more information or to register, visit https://hudsonvalleymarchon.bianys.org/LongIsland.

 

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BIANYS ANNOUNCES LOCAL HONOREES FOR UPCOMING MARCH ON FOR BRAIN INJURY 5K AND FAMILY FUN WALK AT SENECA PARK IN AUGUST

BIANYS ANNOUNCES LOCAL HONOREES FOR UPCOMING MARCH ON FOR BRAIN INJURY 5K AND FAMILY FUN WALK AT SENECA PARK IN AUGUST

Three individuals connected to the local brain injury community to be named this year’s honorees

ROCHESTER, N.Y.: July 18, 2017 – The Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS), a statewide non-profit membership organization that advocates on behalf of individuals with brain injuries and their families, announced today that three local individuals have been named the 2017 Honorees for the March On for Brain Injury Event.  The event is scheduled to return to Seneca Park on Saturday, August 26 in Rochester, N.Y.

Now in its fourth year, March On for Brain Injury will feature an inaugural 5K course aimed to attract more participants to the already popular family-friendly event.

“The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to announce this year’s honorees,” said Eileen Reardon, BIANYS Executive Director “We have three outstanding individuals who are personally connected with or are working in the field of brain injury, we are proud that they will serve as this year’s honorees.  Each individual’s connection with brain injury is unique and through their personal stories and outreach we hope to unite hundreds of individuals in Rochester and surrounding areas who have been impacted by this invisible injury.”

The following individuals have been named this year’s honorees:
-Adult Honoree
Evan Pirrello
The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to honor Evan Pirrello.  Evan is an active 27 year old who suffered a brain injury at a very young age.  With the help of his family and many people along the way, Evan graduated high school and college. Today, Evan works at Wegmans, lives in his own apartment and is able to live a happy and meaningful life.

-Medical Honoree 
Dr. Ryan Uribe
The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to honor Dr. Ryan Uribe as this year’s Medical Honoree.  Dr. Uribe is a Doctor of Chiropractic.  He is nationally board certified and has held state licensure in both Kansas and New York.  He has a special interest in problems related to the upper neck.  Dr. Uribe has been studying the craniocervical junction extensively and how it impacts brain function.  He is passionate about increasing awareness of education about how upper cervical specific chiropractic can help patients who have suffered traumatic brain injuries.

-Youth Honoree
Peter Forte
The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to honor Peter Forte ‘Petie’ as this year’s youth honoree. Petie was 14 years old when he sustained a traumatic brain injury spending nearly three weeks in a coma. He underwent months of rehabilitation in order to recover strength and learn to eat and walk again.  Through his journey, Petie got connected with the Brain Injury Association of New York State and to date is continuing his recovery as an active FACTS participant with the support of his family.

The March On for Brain Injury 5K and Family Fun Walk serves as a statewide celebration in building awareness, visibility and understanding of brain injury across New York State. All proceeds from the event will benefit the organization’s programs and services supporting individuals statewide.

In addition to the 5K course, the event will feature a one-mile family fun walk and activities for the whole family to enjoy.  Attendees will gather at Seneca Park.  Registration will begin at 8 a.m. followed by a 9 a.m. kick-off for the 5K run and a 10 a.m. start time for the walk.

Since its inception, nearly $185,000 has been raised through the March On for Brain Injury events to support programs and services provided by the organization.  As part of their statewide campaign, BIANYS will also be hosting March On for Brain Injury in Hudson Valley with satellite walks in both New York City and on Long Island.

March on for Brain Injury presented by iHeartMedia and Mix 100.5 with additional support from Companion Care of Rochester. Vendor and sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Erica Rossin by phone at 518-459-7911 or via email at erossin@bianys.org.

For more information or to register, visit https://rochestermarchon.bianys.org/

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BIANYS ANNOUNCES SCHENECTADY COUNTY TEEN ISABELLA SEMENTILLI AS YOUTH HONOREE FOR MARCH ON FOR BRAIN INJURY EVENT

 

ALBANY, N.Y.: July 6, 2017 –  The Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS), announced today that Isabella Sementilli of Schenectady County has been named Youth Honoree for their upcoming Hudson Valley March On for Brain Injury.  The popular event is slated to return to the Walkway over the Hudson on August 26.

“The Brain Injury Association of New York State is pleased to announce Isabella as our 2017 Youth Honoree for the Hudson Valley March On for Brain Injury,” said Eileen Reardon, BIANYS Executive Director “Isabella is a leader as a youth advocate, raising awareness of both brain injury and bullying. She truly is an inspiration for so many teens who face similar situations.”

In October of 2013, Sementilli an extremely active fifth grader, suffered a serious concussion, fractured tailbone, back and neck injuries after a classmate yanked out her chair as she went to sit down.  Just a few months later, Sementilli suffered a second concussion leaving her with a lasting debilitating headache disorder. She had to stop reading, watching TV and using electronic devices. Tap and tennis were also put on hold indefinitely and replaced by doctor and physical therapy appointments.

“Despite the pain that Isabella faced after her injury, sitting around wasn’t an option for her,” said Isabella’s mother Pola Sementilli.  “Isabella learned to knit and bake and even tweaked a family cookie recipe now selling at our family restaurant, Scotti’s.  Isabella donates to charities and organizations close to her heart.”

Today, Sementilli is an active member of BIANYS most recently participating as a youth leader at the 2017 Advocacy Day and currently serving as a member of the BIANYS Youth Concussion Council. She also actively supports many local and national anti-bullying charities.

Now in its fourth year, the Hudson Valley March On for Brain Injury will feature an inaugural 5K course, a one-mile family fun walk and activities for the whole family to enjoy.  Attendees will gather on the Poughkeepsie side of the Walkway over the Hudson.  Registration will begin at 8 a.m. followed by a 9 a.m. kick-off for the 5K run a 10 a.m. start time for the walk.

Since its inception, nearly $185,000 has been raised through March On for Brain Injury events to support programs and services provided by the organization. As part of their statewide campaign, BIANYS will be also be hosting March on for Brain Injury in Rochester with satellite locations in New York City and on Long Island.

March on for Brain Injury is presented by iHeartMedia and is made possible with the support of longstanding partners Goldblatt & Associates, P.C., and O’Connell & Aronowitz, P.C.  Additional support for the event is provided by: J & G Associates, St. Charles Hospital and NYIT Center for Sports Medicine. Vendor and sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Erica Rossin by phone at 518-459-7911 or via email at erossin@bianys.org.

For more information or to register, visit hudsonvalleymarchon.bianys.org.

Contact Your Representatives – BIANYS Advocacy Update

Your Congressional Representatives need to hear your voice during this Independence Day break.

Call your Senators and House Member and tell them to protect health care services for all Americans.

Millions of individuals with brain injury rely on Medicaid for routine healthcare, rehabilitation, and long-term services and supports as provided through a Medicaid State Plan, a home and community-based (HCBS) waiver program, or both. The House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA), in combination with the Trump Administration’s Proposed Budget, present devastating cuts to this lifeline program, thereby shifting the burden of care to states and families that are already strained.

ACTION ALERT: Call Your Representatives Today!

Talking Points
VOTE NO on the Senate health care bill and VOTE NO to Medicaid per capita caps.

To protect access to care and long-term services and supports, lawmakers must:
•    Reject proposals to transform Medicaid to a per capita cap model
•    Protect incentives to provide home and community-based services over institutional care
•    Preserve essential health benefits, including rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices, in Medicaid expansion plans
•    Maintain eligibility for schools as Medicaid providers
•    Fully fund the Medicaid Program

It is imperative that you call now, and then do it again tomorrow, and every day after that while this legislation is still active! The entire Disability Community is depending on you to make these calls and stop this legislation from moving forward.

CYCLIST TO RIDE 3,600 MILES TO RAISE AWARENESS OF BRAIN INJURY

ALBANY, NY: June 29, 2017 – Athletic trainer and passionate brain injury advocate Douglas Sawyer announced today that he will bike 3,600 miles to raise awareness and funds to support the Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS). Sawyer’s ride will commence in Portland, Ore. on July 9 and will conclude nearly four weeks later in Battery Park in New York, N.Y.

“I’ve been wanting to do something like this for years, but finally got the courage to go through with it,” said Sawyer.  “I have such a strong connection with the cause as I know several people that have suffered a traumatic brain injury and have not fully recovered.  It is hard seeing people go through the experience alone. My hope is that this ride will help raise awareness of brain injury and provide much needed financial support for BIANYS.”

Sawyer has been an athletic trainer for more than 20 years and has worked with countless athletes that have sustained concussions. He also serves as the newsletter chair and editor for the New York State Athletic Trainers’ Association, a partner organization to the Brain Injury Association of New York State.

“We are extremely grateful for Douglas’s commitment and dedication to raise awareness of brain injury,” said BIANYS Executive Director Eileen Reardon. “In addition to his athletic ability and his service to the brain injury community, Douglas’s passion and devotion to ride across the country to raise funds for our organization means so much to us.  We wish Douglas and his cycling partner Douglas Forsyth a successful trip and look forward to celebrating with him when he returns to New York.”

An estimated 5.2 million Americans currently live with disabilities resulting from brain injury. Every year, falls, assaults, strokes and other incidents result in brain injury for tens of thousands of New Yorkers.

For more information or to donate to BIANYS, visit www.bianys.org.  For live updates of Douglas Sawyer’s cross-country ride, like BIANYS on Facebook and follow BIANYS on Twitter and Instagram @BIAofNYS.

BIANYS ADVOCACY UPDATE 6/14

The Senate is planning to vote to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act before leaving for the 4th of July, which gives us just a couple of weeks to stop them. All efforts right now are critical! If a bill passes the Senate, Republicans’ dangerous idea of health care reform and their efforts to decimate Medicaid will become a reality. 

The US Senate needs to hear from the Disability Community about the dangers of cutting $800 billion from Medicaid.

ACTION ALERT
We need YOU to call the Senate HELP Committee and Senate Finance Committee.

Call 202-224-5375 for the HELP
Call 202-224-4515 for the Finance Committee

Message
“My name is (your full name). I am disabled and I rely on Medicaid to live independently in my community. Legislation being considered by the Senate that would potentially cut $800 billion from Medicaid must be fully considered prior to being brought to the Senate floor.  I am calling to urge your committee to hold a hearing on this bill rather than allow it to move to the floor without a full review by the committee.

It is imperative that you call now, and then do it again tomorrow, and every day after that while this legislation is still active! The entire Disability Community is depending on you to make these calls and stop this legislation from moving forward.

BRAIN INJURY ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK STATE ANNOUNCES CONCUSSION INITIATIVE FOLLOWING THE RELEASE OF THE BERLIN CONSENSUS STATEMENT ON CONCUSSION IN SPORT

 

Concussion Initiative Committee committed to bringing the best of their knowledge across multiple disciplines to create a model that can be replicated nationwide

ALBANY, NY: June 13, 2017 – The Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS) announced today a Concussion Initiative comprised of leading medical professionals in the various fields of concussion across New York State.  The announcement comes following the statement release of new guidelines, written by an international panel of concussion experts and recently published by the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

The Concussion Initiative Advisory Committee was developed by the organization with an interdisciplinary approach to achieve the following goals: evaluate existing pertinent legislation, identify gaps, and advocate for stronger regulations to ensure successful outcomes; identify and implement protocols to ensure a successful Return to Life strategy for concussion survivors; and lastly to  implement a statewide educational standard for education and health professionals that can be used to serve all New Yorkers.

The committee, which is led by co-chairs Commissioner of Department of Mental Health for Westchester County Dr. Mark Herceg and Pediatric Psychologist Dr. Andrew Hess consists of 22 members.  The committee is comprised of professionals and specialists in the fields of concussion research, brain injury rehabilitation, community resources, education, athletics as well as state agencies. The committee also includes Dr. John Leddy, a professor of orthopedics at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo, and co-author of the new consensus document.

“We are excited to announce this initiative,” said Dr. Andrew Hess, BIANYS Board Member and Co-Chair for the Concussion Initiative. “This group of professionals has been working behind the scenes for nearly a year and our announcement of this is timely with the recent statement release following the 5th International Conference on Concussion in Berlin.  The committee is committed to getting the word out about these guidelines and to put New York State on the forefront of what we hope will become a results-driven model focused on concussion prevention and management across all ages and stages of life.”

The efforts of the Concussion Initiative are supported by the recently released Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport. The Statement provides insight into changes in best practices of concussion management, with highlights of the statement including:

  • A focus on the use of symptom-limited activity versus full rest for those who sustain concussion
  • Clear guidelines on establishing a return-to-school protocol and ensure that it is completed before return-to-play is considered with a focus on mental exertion as well as physical symptoms of concussion
  • Rehabilitation, specifically the need for referrals to specialized programs if there is a slow or complicated recovery
  • A strong statement on the importance of helmet use in skiing and snowboarding, as well as other sports

A complete list of committee members and their respective institutions can be found on the here.

For more information on BIANYS, please visit www.bianys.org.

 

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BRAIN INJURY ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK STATE INVITES PUBLIC TO ANNUAL MEETING TO BE HELD AT THE 35TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE IN JUNE

 

SARATOGA, N.Y.: May 23, 2017 –  The Brain Injury Association of New York State (BIANYS) announced today they will be holding their annual meeting at the upcoming “One Voice for Brain Injury” Annual Conference on June 16 at 8 a.m. at the Holiday Inn in Saratoga, N.Y.

The organization will elect its officers and introduce the incoming Board Members for the 2017-18 BIANYS Board of Directors.  Installation will begin promptly at 8 a.m.

2017-2018 BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Barry Dain
President

Cindy Dott **
1st Vice President

Robert C. Gundersen
Treasurer

Elizabeth Curtiss**
Judy DeIasi
Kenneth Goldblatt, Esq.
Andrew Hess, PhD
Mary Hibbard, PhD
Joyce Norman**
Kelly J. Mikullitz, Esq.
Kaiti Pierce
John Quinan
Laurie Rippon**
Andrew Siegel, Esq.
Mercedes C.D. Tartanian**
Angela Leigh Tucker

**Indicates District Board Members.  Each of these members is elected by BIANYS members to represent one of the six districts in New York State.

The organization will also recognize retiring Board Member Dr. Steven Flanagan, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine and Chair at Rusk Rehabilitation for his years of service on BIANYS Board of Directors.

The meeting is open to the public.  Individuals interested in attending the annual meeting must RSVP by Friday, June 9, 2017 to 518-459-7911.

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The 35th Annual “One Voice for Brain Injury” Conference June 15-16, 2017
This two-day conference, which is open to professionals, brain injury service providers and survivors will contain a variety of workshops including: professional presentations; panel discussions; spiritual demonstrations and delivery of personal testimonials from brain injury survivors and their family members. The conference will feature a keynote presentation from Dr. Joel Goodman, founder of The Humor Project in Saratoga Springs.