Michelle D. Parrish is a native Washingtonian and mom of two currently residing in Ward 5 in the District of Columbia. She joined the realm of disability advocacy when her son was three years old and began showing signs of Autism. Michelle is a parent member of the DC Thrive by Five Coordinating Council and a Parent Ambassador with Advocates for Justice and Education. She is also a fellow with the Parent Advocacy Action Team, a part of the Brightbeam network. Michelle is a career Civil Servant and also works as a Chef focused on community focused dietary issues. When she is not working, Michelle enjoys outdoor adventures with her family and exploring the countryside. She is the founder of Food.Mama.Baby., a community centered educational program focused on food justice, nutrition, and child and maternal health.
LaJoy Johnson-Law is a Ward 8 resident with a beautiful special needs daughter named Abria who attends Rocketship Legacy Academy Public Charter School. LaJoy is heavily involved in the education landscape in D.C., previously serving as a Board Member at AppleTree Early Learning Public Charter School and currently sits on the Parents Amplifying Voices in Education (PAVE) board and Thrive by Five Coordinating Council as a parent member. In addition, she also serves as President of the University of Phoenix DMV Alumni Chapter Association. She is a parent leader at Rocketship Public Charter School, where Abria is enrolled in the 3rd Grade. She is constantly inspired by her daughter, who was born at 23 weeks and 1 pound 6 ounces.
Motivated by her advocacy for Abria and other children like her, she has also volunteered as a classroom paraprofessional at St. Coletta Special Education Public Charter School. LaJoy currently works at Advocates for Justice and Education (AJE) to continue her advocacy efforts for families who have children with disabilities. LaJoy holds an Associate’s Degree in Elementary Education, a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Phoenix.
Yolanda Corbett is a native Washingtonian and mother of three children, one having been diagnosed at age 4 with Autism. She has been an advocate of families that have children with disabilities for over three years and works with several organizations constantly seeking more parents to join the battle to ensure that our children have access to an equitable and sustainable education. She is currently a parent organizer with Parents Amplifying Voices in Education (PAVE) and has participated in several training’s for organizing through organizations such as Innovate and UPLAN.
Chioma’s mission is to promote family-centered care pervasively. Through advocacy efforts, the goal is to promote and support campaigns that include family leaders as key decision makers on the language, strategy and community action steps. Utilizing this family-centered framework, she is particularly interested in helping direct service-based entities discover sustainable and lucrative solutions to meet the needs of a diverse client and customer base, promoting diversity, equity and inclusion to discover systems solutions to adhering to federal and local policies that promote the rights of person with disabilities. Chioma is the principal consultant and parent coach of Chi Bornfree and has a passion for family-centered practices, primarily because of her own lived experiences as an black African immigrant mother raising two young sons with autism. In addition to extensive advocacy work through ChiBornfree, she is the Lead Activist Coordinator of the Parent Advocacy Action Team, a part of the Brightbeam network.