One of our favorite things here at the Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs is getting to know the individuals and their families in the special needs community. Each has their own story, but we are in a unique place to empathize with each other and offer support. We want to laugh with you, cry with you, and walk beside you.
Visit our other webpages to learn more about the specific services we offer, but if you have additional questions, we would love to hear from you. If we don’t know the answer to your question, we will help you find it. In addition to our financial assistance, lending closet, and community event programs, we want to make you aware of other community resources available to you and your family.
CPACS was founded in 1947 by a group of friends and family members of people with CP. Their mission was very similar to ours today—to ensure that their loved ones received the best medical treatment and educational opportunities available.
For a time, the organization functioned as a local chapter of the national United Cerebral Palsy Association, but in 1985, the Colorado Springs chapter decided to disaffiliate and became the Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs—the organization that we know and love today.
CPACS was a community fund partner of Pikes Peak United Way, as well as an affiliated member of the Pikes Peak Partnership. Currently, however, the CPACS functions as an independent agency serving individuals with CP and is funded by private donations, grants, and fundraisers.
CPACS is run by an amazing group of volunteer board members and our executive director, Nora Lee Apland. Board members commit to serving a three-year term. The board meets monthly to vote on financial assistance requests, share ideas for the future of CPACS, and offer valuable business insights. Board members also help organize our fundraisers and community events.
CPACS’s executive director is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the organization. Though she is technically a paid staff member, Nora Lee also donates a large percentage of her time, so that more of the organization’s resources can go toward helping families in need. The executive director is also present during monthly board meetings to offer insight, but is not a voting member.
Nora Lee has been Executive Director of the Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs since September 2019. She accepted the position with enthusiasm and drive to develop good relationships with our families, other associations, our donors, board members and our community! She has a very special interest in CP, as her 15-year-old granddaughter, Avalee is living with it. She has experienced firsthand the celebrations of many milestones, achievements, and the growing independence in Avalee’s journey, as well as many other children and adults living with CP and neuromotor disorders. She has also witnessed the many struggles that come along with disabilities: whether it is financial, physical, mental, the “not knowing,” and where to turn for assistance and resources as well. Fortunately, Nora Lee has also seen so many good, kind, and generous people, organizations, and foundations willing to help adults and families with children that are living with special needs, CPACS being one of them! She is honored to be part of this outstanding organization! Nora Lee believes in giving back to the community and helping where there is a need. It is with this passion that Nora Lee wants to continue the success of the Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs. Giving where there is need, helping wherever and whenever she can in order to ensure the independence, inclusion and advocacy for those living with any special need—always believing that CP stands for Celebrating Potential!!
Nora Lee is a mother of two amazing and accomplished children: Brad and Ashley. She loves spending time with them as well as her six grandchildren! When not volunteering at CPACS or Cool C.A.T.S. (Children of All Types Succeeding) events, you will find Nora Lee in her garden, dabbling in photography, or enjoying a hiking trail.
Christi has been a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Colorado Springs for over 20 years and operates her own private practice. She is honored to have been invited into people’s lives providing psychotherapy for all these years. Her goal is to help people learn how to help themselves, to achieve a quality life, and to help people/families obtain their unique individual goals. She specializes in working with people that are ‘differently abled’ and their families or caregivers. She started working with people with disabilities in 1989 and has had the privilege of working with people in residential, vocational, mental health, and educational settings.
Christi is married and has four wonderful grown children, 3 sons and a daughter. As an official empty nester, she and her husband love to travel. They have been fortunate to travel all over the world, visiting Europe with all its rich history or traveling to other places in the world to visit other cultures and (of course) try new foods. They both also like to go for extensive motorcycle trips in the United States. Besides being a therapist, being on the back of a motorcycle is one of Christi’s favorite things to do. It is her philosophy to work hard in order to play hard!
This is actually the second time that she has been on the Board of Directors for CPACS. There are many agencies and resources in Colorado Springs, but CPACS is an agency that has so much heart! One of the many things that this agency provides is a sense of community which is often lacking in the busy hustle and bustle of the world we live in today. It also is an agency that truly helps people and their families with their unique needs. When people feel that they are falling through the cracks of life, CPACS gives people and their families a helping hand.
April O’Neil joined The Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs board four years ago in March 2018. April has extensive experience in working with the non-profit space and currently serves as Treasurer. April has twenty five years in the financial services industry and twenty seven years leadership experience. She currently works for First Interstate Bank as a Commercial Relationship Manager III when she is not volunteering. April recently completed eight years serving on the board and the Education and Finance committees for Junior Achievement of Southern Colorado. April currently serves on School District 11-Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC). She is a current board member for the ARC of The Pikes Peak Region. She serves on the board for the SMALLS, which serves as a networking platform supporting Small Government contractors, subcontractors and service providers. April is a four year member of the Colorado Springs Chamber where she maintains a position with the Small Business Advisory Council (SBAC) and co-chair of the Marketing sub-committee. April is committed to the Colorado Springs community and has been a resident for twenty four years.
She is the daughter of a military father, who served over 20 years in the US Army. She attended high school at Fountain Ft. Carson and college at Pikes Peak community college. She is married to her husband Ken who also served in the US Navy and they have their son Jadyn. April has a passion for being an advocate and providing support for those who are impacted by developmental and intellectual disabilities. Her son Jadyn is diagnosed with cerebral palsy, which is her number one reason for giving back and sharing how The Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs can assist with those in need within our community. The Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs has been instrumental to providing support, resources and events for individuals and families to get involved. In her free time, she enjoys decorating, cooking and baking, gardening, running, hiking, traveling and spending time with her two dogs Maxx and Lucy.
Justin has served on the Board of Directors for the Cerebral Palsy Association of Colorado Springs since December 2018. During this time, he has greatly enjoyed seeing the impact that the Association has had on the greater Colorado Springs area. Along with his work with CPACS, Justin is currently an Assistant Principal at a local Middle School where he gets to attend school with his daughter everyday who lives with CP. Justin also has an older daughter and son who are twins that recently graduated from high school. He and his wife have enjoyed working with the CP community of Colorado Springs and hope to support in any way they can in the future.
Evelyn is a social butterfly who loves to be in community. Originally from San Francisco, she found herself in Colorado Springs in 2007. She is also a single mother of two, ages 14 and 8, juggling both home life, therapy, and running a business that allows her to engage in the community which she loves so much. This gave Evelyn the flexibility needed to care for her daughter’s unique needs. She loves seeing her daughter progress and also appreciates her son’s helping to care for her daughter. Evelyn enjoys staying active, being outdoors, and traveling with (or without her kids). She will also tell you that she is a big “foodie!”
Living in Colorado has been a blessing for her, with all the resources available to her such as CPACS. After seeking an equipment loan from CPACS, Evelyn was very happy that they had what she needed. She also learned all about the wonderful things CPACS does for the community as well.
For the past four years, Evelyn has been an independent Health and Life insurance agent, gaining knowledge about healthcare and state assistance for families just like her own, along with the senior community. Like most parents, she question why her child had to be born with CP but now believes that this is her purpose. Evelyn also tries to host monthly parent lunches in order to foster support for one another as parents and caregivers. She is excited to have found an opening as a board member for CPACS and hopes to bring more awareness and expansion to this great organization.
Kyle is originally from Southern California and moved to Colorado back in 2017. He graduated from Westmont College in Santa Barbara with a kinesiology degree but was quickly pulled into the IDD field after discovering the heartfelt joys of advocating and supporting the special needs population. Combining Kyle’s love for the IDD community, along with his passion for sports, he found his calling with Special Olympics Colorado as the Southeast Regional Manager. He is proud to have the opportunity to continue to support and grow the community as a part of the CPACS board.