About LDA of PA

Our Mission: 

The mission of the Learning Disabilities Association of Pennsylvania shall be to promote and support the education and general welfare of individuals with learning and attention issues and their families.

Our Vision: 

We envision a world where learning and thinking differently is considered a blessing, not a curse.

Meet The Board

 
Dr. Collin Diedrich

Dr. Collin Diedrich

President and Founder

Dr. Collin Diedrich has a Ph.D. in Molecular Virology and Microbiology from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, a Certificate in Disability Legal Studies from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, and is a postdoctoral associate researching how HIV changes immunological responses to tuberculosis. Dr. Diedrich’s research has allowed him to work in Cape Town, South Africa for 3 approximately years. Dr. Diedrich has multiple learning disabilities and is an advocate and professional speaker and author (www.ldphd.org) for students and adults who learn and think differently. He’s spoken across the country about his experiences and teaches people how to embrace neurodiversity

Dr. Diedrich has volunteered for other wonderful learning disability focused organizations such as Pennsylvania Branch of the International Dyslexia Association, Provident Charter School in Pittsburgh, and Learning Disabilities Association of America. Dr. Diedrich is dedicated to providing helpful services to both children and adults with learning and attention issues.

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Carrie Gardner

Vice President

Carrie Gardner has a business management degree and has been an advocate for people with dyslexia for more than a decade. She has a child and husband with dyslexia so she has a unique understanding of how learning differences affect all aspects of life. She has been a board member of the Pennsylvania Branch of International Dyslexia Association for a decade and provided funding for their first state-wide conference. Carrie was on the working board of the first free dyslexia charter school (Provident Charter) in Pittsburgh. Carrie is a tireless advocate for those that think differently.

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Vicki Mayoski

Treasurer

Vicki Mayowski is a CPA with over 10 years of comprehensive tax experience, including individual income tax, trusts, partnerships, gift tax, and private foundations.  Currently, she works for a family investment office where she helps the family members with their day-to-day investment and tax needs.

Vicki is passionate about assisting exempt organizations to grow, thrive, and perform their missions within their communities.  She began volunteering at Arcade Comedy Theater, Pittsburgh’s only non-profit theater dedicated to comedy, as the Treasurer of their Board of Directors upon its founding in 2013.  As Arcade’s Treasurer, she quickly came to appreciate just how important it is to provide sound advice and guidance to exempt organizations, so they can focus on their charitable mission. 

Vicki is also the Treasurer of the Pittsburgh chapter of Ellevate, a women’s networking group whose mission is to help women advance in the workplace, and she is involved in her local community, serving as the Judge of Elections in Ward 8, District 7 of the City of Pittsburgh.

Vicki brings her experience and enthusiasm to LDA of PA as its Treasurer, where she ensures the organization maintains its 501c(3) exemption so that it can carry out its mission of helping individuals by giving them the education and support they need to be successful.

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Josh Camson

Director

Josh Camson joins the board as an attorney versed in advocating for children with learning disabilities. As a guardian ad litem in juvenile courts across Pennsylvania, Josh fights for the best interests of children in the dependency system, and regularly works to ensure that students have the supports they need to succeed. Josh brings oversight experience to the board as a former member of the American Bar Association House of Delegates and the former Vice President of the Board of Directors of Southwest PA Legal Aid, Inc. 

Josh currently chairs the ABA Standing Committee on Professionalism. He runs his own law firm, Camson Law, LLC in Montgomery County, PA. He and his family live in Montgomery County where they are raising one son, one dog, and three cats.

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Dawn Talley

Secretary

Dawn Talley serves as the Secretary for the LDA of PA Board of Directors.  Her involvement with LDA started in 2007 when both of my sons were diagnosed with dyslexia.  She reached out to the organization for assistance in navigating the IEP process at the public school district.  As the years went on, Dawn observed how LDA was extremely helpful to people like her, she began helping the previous LDA PA state affiliate and provided information and resources to individuals and families that also were experiencing life with learning disabilities. Her involvement with LDA allowed her to gain an understanding that she needed to further her education. 

Dawn returned to school in 2013 and received a B.A. in Religious Studies with a specialization in special education and early childhood education.  Currently, Dawn is enrolled in an M.A. in Ministerial Leadership with an education specialization at United Lutheran Theological Seminary. She recently completed a clinical pastoral education at The Johns Hopkins University Hospital. 

From 2011 – 2013, she was the President of the Northeast Pennsylvania Synod of the ELCA Women of the ELCA.  Currently, Dawn is secretary of the Net Credit Union Supervisory Committee.  She also is involved in the Junior League of Scranton in which I serve as a member of the History Committee and Vice Chair of the Placement Committee.  LDA of PA is a vital organization to allow individuals with learning disabilities to achieve their personal best and tremendously assists those care for these individuals.

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Jan Gillespie

Director

Jan has a Master’s degree in Speech and Language Pathology from Northern IL University and a Diploma in Specific Learning Difficulties from University College London.  Early in her career she worked in the Chicago area for the Proviso Area for Exceptional Children as a language therapist and a Theraplay therapist, and on the Neurological floor at Loyola Medical Center in Maywood IL.  Her family moved to London, England and she taught at Hampstead International School before being one of the original teams to start the Learning Disabilities Support program at the American School of London.  While at ASL, she served as the Interim Co-Principal of the Lower School and the Asst. principal of the Middle School.  During this time, she also ran a private practice primarily for dyslexic students and young children on the autism spectrum.  After 15 years in England, her family moved back to the Chicago area where she worked for the Cooperative Association for Exceptional Children as a language therapist and a teacher for students with severe/profound learning disabilities.  Then the Janus connection began and she is now in her 8thyear at Janus. 

The Janus School in Mount Joy, PA is a K-12 non-profit school for students with learning disabilities.  Students from seven different counties travel to Janus because it is the only school of this type in south-central PA.  It now also offers the Transitions Program for young adults aged 18-22. 

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A MESSAGE FROM

DR. COLLIN DIEDRICH

As a scientist with multiple learning disabilities I understand the personal struggle associated with thinking differently. However, I also know that having learning disabilities can be a gift. Our goal with LDA of PA is to provide services that can directly help students and adults that think differently achieve the life they deserve. Our services are in development but are focused on making science fun and accessible for everyone,  demonstrating how comedy can be used to teach confidence and techniques to overcome negatives associated with thinking differently, and utilizing proven multi-sensory tutoring techniques to improve reading levels. One of our goals is to provide services on a sliding scale so no-one and no school is left behind because they are in financial need. We hope LDA of PA can help you, your loved ones, and community be happy.

Remember, everyone has a talent. Everyone has a gift. Let’s find them together! 

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