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Success Stories

  • Shawn's Story
  • Changing Courses - David Hale
  • After the Storm - Clint Vanderford
  • Whole New Level - Pauline Orr - Perseverance is the essence of Pauline Orr---an award-winning web designer greatly respected by her colleagues as one who excels in the profession. This talented MDRS client is changing the way employers view Mississippians with disabilities as she takes web design to a whole new level.
  • Back in the Game - Antonio Wright - Antonio Wright is the embodiment of the saying "You can't keep a good man down".  With a smile that lights up every room, Antonio lives life at a level most of us only dream about and he does it confined to a wheelchair. His infectious attitude has inspired hundreds of wheelchair-bound clients to get back in the game of life through sports. 
  • On the Hunt - Serving as a Personal Care Attendant is a calling that requires great heart, skill and complete selflessness.  Those words describe Kerry Nelson who serves as a PCA for one of MDRS’ most dynamic clients, Richard Stafford. These two have become as close as brothers, facing life’s highs and lows together. Now, they are on the hunt to help others in similar situations.
  • Driven By Determination - Lon Smith
  • Helping Dylan Drive - Life turned on a dime for Dylan Stubbs when he was diagnosed with a degenerative condition in the prime of his life. He wasn’t sure how he would even be able to drive himself to work. Fortunately, MDRS --working with the T.K. Martin Center in Starkville-- provided the hi-tech assistive technology and training needed to help Dylan drive.
  • Standing Tall - Bryce Alexander - Thanks to his own grit and determination, and with a little help from MDRS, Bryce Alexander not only received the equipment he needed to land his dream job –he also received the gift of being able to stand tall again. 
  • Walking in High Cotton - Robert Cotten was in his 40s when a freak accident left him blind.  He initially had little hope that he would ever work again, until he took advantage of the services offered by the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services.  Today with the help of the MDRS Business Enterprise Program, Mr. Cotten is “walking in high cotton” –successfully operating the food services program at Camp Shelby.
  • King of the Galley, Ed Turner - Ed Turner is legally blind, but he doesn’t let that fact slow him down.  He’s successfully running his own food service business, catering to hundreds of our nation’s servicemen at Meridian Naval Air Station, thanks to the MDRS Business Enterprise Program.  
  • Ray's Route - A Business Enterprise Program Success Story - One of our Business Enterprise Programs' biggest success stories can be found in Ray Rendermen. The burly businessman is a large presence on his own, but the success he has become as a blind vendor is even larger. He's living his dream, and is appreciative of MDRS for helping provide him with the opportunity.
  • No Excuses - Here at MDRS, we experience amazing individuals every day…some inside our own ranks.  One such person is District 10 (Gulfport) Counselor Malinda Wimbs.  She uses her own life experiences to show others there are “no excuses” to keep you from living an amazing life of your own.  
  • Still Standing - A video about Dwight Owens - An intoxicated driver left Dwight Owens on the brink of death, fighting for his life.  He awoke from a coma to a life forever changed.  He is now in a wheelchair--but make no mistake about it -- Dwight Owens is still standing…
  • Determined! - A video about Lance Clark - A firearm accident changed Lance Clark’s life forever.  His independence was snatched from him in an instant…until he discovered MDRS.  Now he is determined to move forward, and he’s doing so with our support, a positive attitude and a great sense of humor.
  • Skimming The Surface - Life changes after a disability…you have to learn a new way to do the things you used to.  MDRS is here to help by supporting groups with innovative ideas that help individuals with disabilities adapt to their new normal.  With funding awarded  through MDRS’  Office of Special Disabilities Traumatic Brain Injury/Spinal Cord Injury Trust Fund, the North Mississippi Medical Center’s Adaptive Ski Clinic helps individuals with disabilities to experience and enjoy the thrill of water sports by using the latest in adaptive equipment…. and that’s just skimming the surface….
  • Life Without Limitations: Andria Jones - When a life altering tragedy hits our lives we all have a choice to make, and that choice affects everyone around us.  Andria Jones is the picture of happiness, peace, and perseverance, because when she faced tragedy she chose to not give up, but to go on and make a difference in the lives of her loved ones.
  • MDRS VR Summer Internship Program 2016
  • MDRS VRB Summer Internship Program 2016
  • MDRS Deaf Program Summer Internship 2016
  • Life Without Limitations: Marcetia Parr -Every day we work with people with disabilities—it’s what we do at MDRS as we offer opportunities for independence and hope for a brighter tomorrow.  So, when we meet a client who stands out in the crowd and reaches for the stars from her wheelchair, we want to share her story with you. 
  • MDRS: Passion - Our passion forges the path that makes the difference in people's lives.
  • MDRS: Purpose - Our purpose gives people hope.
  • Opportunities for Independence: Pennie Smith
  • Life Without Limitations: Cortez Sims (Full Version) - Cortez Sims, paralyzed at age 19, is living life without limitations.
    The Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services has helped him to realize “time waits for no one.”
  • Dancing in the Reign - Lauren Compere - Lauren Compere is among MDRS’ most high-profile clients, primarily because she is ending a year of reign as “Miss Wheelchair Mississippi 2015”.   We visited with Lauren recently—reflecting on the past year, and her vision for the future. 
  • The Heart of Doxey - ​If there is any story that reflects the "heart and soul" of the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services, it's the story of Ralph and Megan Doxey.  (It is with great sadness that we note that Ralph passed away on August 3, 2016. We appreciate his and Megan’s willingness to share their story in order to help others.) 
  • Innovative Business Partners: DPM Fragrance partners with MDRS - DPM Fragrance partners with MDRS to provide opportunities for independence for Mississippians with disabilities.
  • Life Without Limitations: AbilityWorks - AbilityWorks Challenged this young man to see his disability in a new light.
  • Life Without Limitations: MDRS - Through the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services, this mother of three learned to embrace her Opportunities for Independence.
  • Life Without Limitations: Addie McBryde Center for the Blind - Helping Dreams become reality for students with visual disabilities.
  • Innovative Business Partners: AbilityWorks-Gulfport, MS - AbilityWorks provides people with disabilities hands-on job training and work experience. This is a crucial step to gaining independence and a better quality of life through employment.
    Employers report that AbilityWorks training has provided them with some of the best workers who are not only qualified, but also enthusiastic and dedicated.
  • Become an Innovative Business Parter with MDRS - Become an Innovative Business Partner: Diversity and Inclusion are key to creating a strong workforce.
  • Innovative Business Partners: YMCA - Change Lives, Give Hope, and Provide Opportunities for Independence: Partner with MDRS
  • Opportunities for Independence: MS Department of Rehabilitation Services - MDRS: Investing in People, Changing Lives, and Giving Hope.
  • How much would you pay to change a life? - How much would you pay to provide people Opportunities for Independence?
  • Opportunities for Independence: AbilityWorks, Inc. - Mississippians with disabilities are learning job skills at AbilityWorks because of businesses like Tackl Technologies.
  • Innovative Business Partners: Tackl Technologies - AbilityWorks, a division of MDRS, is a network of community rehabilitation programs that provide vocational assessment, job training, and actual work experience to individuals with disabilities.
    These job opportunities are made possible through an array of contract and subcontract services provided to local businesses, like Tackl Technologies.
  • Opportunities for Independence: MDRS - In Mississippi, more than 270,000 adults have a disability, and like Cortez, more than 80% of these individuals have jobs. The opportunities provided by the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services enable over 4,500 Mississippians with disabilities to become actively employed every year. The agency is a lifeline to those with disabilities, providing new careers and "Opportunities for Independence.”
  • Life Without Limitations: Cortez Sims - Cortez Sims, paralyzed at age 19, is living life without limitations.
    The Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services has helped him to realize “time waits for no one.”
  • Opportunities for Independence: The Addie McBryde Rehabilitation Center for the Blind A comprehensive personal adjustment center for adults who are blind, visually impaired or deaf-blind.
  • Life Without Limitations: Derrick Teague Derrick Teague is living life without limitations even though he is losing his eyesight. 
  • Terry Lowery A Vocational Rehabilitation for the Blind success story
  • Micah Morgan – Teacher With Visual Impairment Overcomes Challenges