Amanda Steele was born and raised in Tempe, Arizona and had a child at 17. Her son Jordan was diagnosed with autism and Intellectual and Developmental Disability at the age of three. In 2015, she became a Speech Language Pathology Assistant after graduating from Northern Arizona University with a B.S. in Speech and Hearing Sciences. In May 2021, Amanda led a team of advocates through the grassroots movement #FundAzSPED. Amanda is a Co/Founder and President of EPIC Disability Advocacy. She has spent time in the nonprofit sector, developing over 20 sustainable in-person and virtual programs between 2019-2021. She is a 2019 graduate of AZ Partners in Leadership program, through which she and other participants successfully advocated for the passage of Dignified Changes. In March 2021 Amanda completed the Leading for Change Candidacy training. She sits on the SOAZ Diversity Equity Inclusion Committee and recently supported TUHSD on their Social Emotional Wellness Ad Hoc Committee. Amanda and Jordan have hosted monthly social group events since 2015, with currently 350 families invited. She helped develop the former Mountain Pointe Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC). She and her husband received the 2019/20 Parents of the Year Award from the Council for Exceptional Children and she received the 2018 Volunteer of the Year Award through Girl Scouts of America. Amanda is an advocate for the disability community, igniting changes both locally and statewide.
Amy Pedotto serves as EPIC Disability Advocacy’s Vice President and Treasurer. She is the proud mom of two daughters with ADHD, one of whom is also autistic. Amy has worked in the non-profit sector her entire career with human service and public policy organizations. Her experience includes communications, strategy, business development, project management, and relationship building. Her interests include ensuring that people with disabilities receive the resources and support they need to achieve their full potential. Amy works as a project manager for the Grand Canyon Institute, a think tank that serves as an independent voice to promote a fair economic playing field for all Arizonans. During the course of her career she has worked in Australia and has supported international development programs in Latin America. She has bachelor degrees in Journalism and Spanish from Arizona State University and a master’s degree in International Policy and Management from the University of California, San Diego. She is an almost-native of Arizona, having grown up in Tempe.
Jahnavi Kalidindi MD was born and raised in India. She is a medical graduate from GSL medical college affiliated with NTR university, India in 2012. She pursued her residency at Griffin Hospital affiliated with Yale university, CT (2016-19). She is board certified in Internal Medicine in 2019. She currently works as PCP at Adelante healthcare, Mesa. She has a young son with Autism and ADHD. She is a 2021 graduate of Pilot parenting program and took part in #FundAzSPED movement. She is a Co/Founder and Director of Outreach for EPIC Disability Advocacy, an organization whose vision is to empower the community and create societal change where everyone can reach their full potential. She participated in SELS 2021.
Director of Operations
Jenniffer Jarvis, MEd, CNP has over 20 years of combined experience in business management and administration, project management, and nonprofit leadership. She has a Master of Education in Instructional Design, a Bachelor of Science in Business, and is a Certified Nonprofit Professional (CNP) credentialed through the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance and ASU Lodestar Center for Philanthropy & Nonprofit Innovation. Jenniffer works in a consulting capacity for nonprofits and small businesses and provides website management and development, marketing, material and instructional evaluation, development, and design, project management, and business administration services. She is also the Foundation Manager and serves on the Board of Directors for a private foundation. Jenniffer is one of the Co-Founders for EPIC Disability Advocacy. She is a long-term Arizona native and resides in Phoenix with her husband and four children, two of her sons have autism. She and her family are very active in the disability community. Jenniffer serves on multiple school district councils and provides inclusion consultation and support to local organizations. She is very passionate about providing and creating opportunities to individuals with disabilities that will help them realize their full potential and build skills that can be used for employment and independence.
Director of Marketing
Laura Chapnek has been an Advisory Board member as well as a past Vice President and President of DSNetwork. As chair of the Parents & Schools in Partnership program for Down Syndrome Network Arizona (DSNetwork), Laura helped develop the highly regarded “A Day in the Life” presentation, which allows people of all walks of life and levels of ability to experience some of the challenges that individuals with various disabilities face every day. Laura is a certified “Be Safe” trainer which brings people with disabilities as well as at-risk youth together with law enforcement and first responders to gain a better understanding of how to interact with emergency personnel in a safe manner. Laura co-chaired the Phoenix Children’s Hospital (PCH) Downright Beautiful Fashion Show for four years. All proceeds benefited the PCH Down syndrome clinic. Laura has been married for 20 years and has a son with Down syndrome. She has been a sanitary sales consultant for WAXIE Sanitary Supply for 22 years making many connections and developing valuable relationships within the business community. Currently she serves on the EPIC Disability Advocacy Board as the Vice President of Marketing and Sales.
Lisa McCormick, helped co-found EPIC Disability Advocacy and is serving as the Director of Development and Secretary. Lisa is a native to Arizona. She obtained her Bachelor in Social Work in 2017 from The College of Saint Scholastica, finding her true passion in supporting individuals and families in the community to build on their foundations to better their potential. Lisa is currently providing services to kinship families in Maricopa County as a Service Coordinator with Duet: Partners in Health and Aging. She is trauma trained and certified, proficient in creating individualized services through building rapport and person centered planning methods. Lisa has been an active member of the girl scout community, as a volunteer, co-leader, and service team member for the past 12 years. She also participates in several non-profit committees and coalitions through the work she does supporting families. Prior to finding her career passion, she married her high school sweetheart; together they have been raising three daughters over the past 27 years together.