Governor Laura Kelly Recognizes
Johnson County Disability Advocate 

~~Announces Recipient of Michael Lechner Advocacy Award~~

TOPEKA – Governor Laura Kelly today announced that The Mission Project, an organization in Mission, Kansas, that supports independent living for adults with developmental disabilities, has received the Michael Lechner Advocacy Award. The annual award, presented by the Kansas Commission on Disability Concerns (KCDC), recognizes advocacy for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to live independently in their community.  

“Kansas with disabilities are vital members of our communities, and I appreciate organizations like The Mission Project for providing the support they need to live independently with safety and dignity,” Governor Laura Kelly said. 

“The Mission Project is a prime example of Michael Lechner’s philosophy, that people with disabilities should be self-advocates,” Martha Gabehart, Executive Director of KCDC, said. “His work always included teaching advocacy so Kansans with disabilities could express their need for independence.” 

The Mission Project provides housing and opportunities for residents to participate in group activities, find integrated employment in the community, and live more independently. Residents can access transportation to and from their jobs or other activities. The Mission Project also provides physical activity, socializing, and independent life skills training opportunities.   

Michael Lechner was executive director of KCDC from 1982 through 1990.  

A photo for media use of Mission Project participants with the Michael Lechner Advocacy Award can be found here