On April 7, 1952, a brave group of parents from our community gathered together and decided they wanted something more — something different — for their children with disabilities.

At that time, it was the norm to place people with intellectual and developmental disabilities away in institutions. But ADEC’s founding parents decided to forge their own path. Not only did they keep their children at home and start a school for them, but they dreamed of their children becoming a part of the community.

The very first employees at ADEC were the parents themselves as they worked to give their children opportunities no one has thought possible. Now, 65 years later, many of these children are now senior citizens who still receive ADEC services. As they have grown, so has ADEC.

Although the employees at ADEC are always looking ahead to find ways to empower people with disabilities and ensure their lives are full of choice and possibility, we would also like to pause briefly to celebrate the past 65 years of service.

On Monday, March 27, a delegation of ADEC staff and clients traveled to the Indiana State House where they were presented with an official Resolution congratulating the nonprofit on the milestone anniversary. Rep. Doug Miller authored House Concurrent Resolution 61, which was co-authored by Rep. Curt Nisly, Rep. Timothy Wesco and Rep. Gregory Porter. The Resolution was sponsored by Sen. Blake Doriot and Sen. Joseph Zakas.

Read House Concurrent Resolution 61

Several local lawmakers told their colleagues in the House and the Senate about the importance of ADEC services.

Curt Nisly

“ADEC has made a positive impact on our community as well as the individuals and families they serve, and I’m excited to see what the future holds for them.”

Doug Miller

“ADEC has a lot to celebrate and our community is grateful for those servants who dedicate more than just their time to helping those in need. This organization is going beyond just teaching clients new skills but helping to connect them to new opportunities. Over the years we have seen those who are associated with ADEC make positive contributions to Elkhart while pursuing their passions.”

Birthday celebrations will continue on April 7, ADEC’s official anniversary, and the community is encouraged to join.

From 8-10 a.m. on Friday, April 7, members of the public can stop in to ADEC’s Gaining Grounds Coffee Houses in Goshen or Middlebury for a free cup of coffee. It’s a chance for the public to learn how ADEC brews opportunity.

ADEC is celebrating 65 years of choice and possibility in many other ways throughout the rest of 2017.

We will highlight 65 of our incredible clients, staff and community members through videos. More than 20 videos have already been published, and a new one will be posted to ADEC’s Facebook page each week.

Also coming up is ADEC’s 45th Annual (Walk, Run or) Ride-A-Bike. In recognition of the ride’s 45th anniversary and ADEC’s 65th anniversary, Ride-A-Bike will feature special 45-mile and 65-mile routes in addition to the popular 5-mile and 18-mile rides.


If you would like to make a birthday donation to ADEC, visit adecinc.com/donate.