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About Us 

OUR PHILOSOPHY

The Olean Center inspires individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to maximize their potential through our nurturing environment that promotes independence and inclusion.

Guiding Principles

Treat everyone with dignity and respect.

Empower the individual.

Build team support.

Promote self-advocacy.

Support the elimination of discrimination.

Value diversity.

Develop friendships and meaningful relationships.

Embrace community inclusion.

A History of Support

Throughout its existence, the Olean Center has recognized the dignity and importance of each individual, assisting people of all ages to achieve their highest potential.

Jay Olean

The Frank Olean Center, Inc. is a non-profit community-based organization. Since its inception in 1966, the organization has grown from a parent-based advocacy group to a licensed organization providing comprehensive services and supports people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. The Frank Olean Center, Inc. serves adults Washington County and children throughout the state. Through the array of services, supports and programs the Olean Center, Inc. acts as a catalyst for individuals to grow, develop and maximize their potential.  

The organization's headquarters have occupied various sites including its beginning at St. Joseph’s Church in Hope Valley and the former Greyhound Bus Terminal (also known as the Post House) in Hopkinton. To allow for further expansion the decision was made to build a new facility. In 1977, the organization moved to its present location on Airport Road. In 1987 a 5,000 square foot addition was completed.

In 1993, services for children were formally established and have grown to provide services to more than 65 children and their families throughout Rhode Island. Through family-centered, personalized plans, children benefit from a variety of strategies to strengthen cognitive development, social skills, motor skills, expression, independence, and positive family dynamics.  Thanks to the support of generous donors we have been able to expand our lending library for sensory and therapeutic items for families to use with their child to stimulate sensory development and alleviate anxiety. 

For the past few years—through growing partnerships with local businesses--we have been proud to offer job opportunities to adult participants

Frank Olean, one of the founders of the Center and its first President, devoted over 35 years of his life as a voice, conscience and advocate for people with developmental disabilities. Inspired by his son Jay, he worked tirelessly to improve life - not only for his own son, but for all individuals with disabilities. He was a significant force within the State of Rhode Island and an important, insightful, positive role model to all.

In the past few years, government funding cuts and restrictions have driven us to reach out more frequently through appeals, social media, and grant proposals. We are working hard to continue to provide the same caliber of services for children and adults with disabilities in Rhode Island. And, of course, we would welcome your support - whether you can lend a hand volunteering, mentoring, providing job opportunities, contributing through personal donations or grants; we hope you will partner with us.  

Through community activities, job opportunities, and the compassionate professionalism our staff provides each day, we’re thrilled to see our clients reach their greatest potential. Here is to another 50+ years of helping each Olean participant reach for the stars!

Meet Our Management

Board of Directors

Ruth Tureckova
Executive Director

Ray Walsh
Director of Finance

Tina Cherenzia
Director of Human Resources

Karen Babik
Director of Community Supports

Josette Sobers

Director of Community Partnerships

Jason Lanzillo
Director of Children’s Services

 

2023 - 2023 Officers

Bethany Lyons, President 

Banker,  2014*


Joanna Valentini, Vice President 

Financial Management,  2017

David Kmetz, Treasurer 

Banker,  2010

2022 - 2023 Board of Directors

Evie Martin,

Retired Educator, 2017
 

William A. Nardone, Esq.

Lawyer, 2013
 

John Nicolosi

Builder, 2014
 

Dr. Anne Wood, MD, Obstetrician/Gynecologist, 2008

Jay Olean
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