The PEAL Center
Helping Families of Children with Disabilities and Special Health Care Needs
412-281-4404 (Pittsburgh)
215-567-6143 (Philadelphia)
866-950-1040 Toll Free
412-281-4409 TTY

About PEAL

PEAL Staff

Katie Smith

Katie Smith - Youth Leadership Assistant; Facilitator, Imagine Different Coalition
Katie serves in two roles at PEAL. As the youth leadership assistant, she works with the Leadership, Empowerment, and Advocacy Program (LEAP). There she creates training materials, coordinates and leads youth development and leadership trainings, and provides guidance for transitioning youth with disabilities. She also serves as the facilitator for the Imagine Different Coalition, a group of passionate advocates in Pennsylvania with a common concern about the number of children with disabilities growing up in congregate care that champion for policy and system change to assure that all children grow up in nurturing families. In 2012, Katie received a bachelor’s degree in psychology with certifications in elementary and special education from Seton Hill University. Substitute teaching, Katie has worked with students in all grades and subject areas, kindergarten through 12th grade, at all levels of ability. Katie advocated for individuals with disabilities as Ms. Wheelchair Pennsylvania, encouraging others to realize what made their experiences unique and empowering them to share those stories to create a climate of understanding and has carried on that work in public speaking engagements. She is passionate and enthusiastic about people and their abilities and carries that into adaptive sports as an executive board member and student at Nickers N’ Neighs Therapeutic Riding Center and member of the Pittsburgh SteelWheelers quadriplegic rugby and hand cycling teams.