Developing Resources, Raising Awareness & Providing Support for Children with Developmental Disabilities and their Families.
LORI LUZADER MCDONNAL - Executive Director

Lori Luzader McDonnal received her BS in Packaging Science at Michigan Sate University and has extensive business development and marketing experience in both large corporate and small entrepreneurial settings, including The Pillsbury Company (MN), Haagen-Dazs (NJ), Burger King Corporation (FL), and Green Giant (CA). In 2004, she founded MBayKids and Scoop! Magazine, both of which developed into Monterey County's top resource for parents seeking to enrich the lives of their families on California's Central Coast. In addition, Lori is a K-12 math tutor, providing support to children with a wide range of cognitive abilities. Lori enjoys community involvement through volunteerism, having most recently served on boards and committees for the Salinas Valley Business Women's Network, ARIEL Theatrical, the Salinas Valley Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Salinas Valley and Special Kids Crusade. Her proudest role, however, has been as mother to Jennifer, a student at Northern Arizona University. Contact Lori at

MEGHAN HAWKINS, M.Ed., BCBA - Program Manager

Meghan Hawkins holds a M.Ed. from the University of Texas and a BS in Elementary Education from SUNY New Paltz. She started working with children in high school where she worked for a resident/day Camp as a Counselor, Program Director, and Day Camp Director for over six years. There she fell in love with working with children of all abilities and it moved her to work in the field of Special Education. Meghan has worked in school, clinical, and home settings with children of a vast array of developmental abilities and backgrounds. She has developed and run summer/holiday camp programming for children with developmental disabilities. Most recently Meghan has worked in the assessment and programming for children with developmental disabilities as well as addressing their inclusion in school settings. She is currently certified as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA).  Contact Meghan at

MARIA ECHAVARRIA - Family Support Liaison

Maria Echavarria is a certified Immigration Paralegal through the San Jose Evergreen College and has been working with at risk youth and their families since November 1997, providing in home, school and community based support in navigating school and government systems. Prior to joining Special Kids Crusade, Maria has held positions at Aspiranet, providing Intensive Treatment Foster Care trainings for families, Wraparound Parent Partner, as a parent partner and the Action Council of Monterey County as a parent partner consultant. Maria has also worked at the Women’s Crisis Center where she provided immigration support for victims of domestic violence through CART (Child Abuse Response Team) and SART (Sexual Assault Response Team), conducted 0- 5 parenting classes to parent groups and schools and implemented drop TRO’s (Temporary Restraining Orders) classes. Maria was involved with the Citizenship Project as both a Community Organizer and Program Developer assistant. She is a co-founder of Liberty School (La Escuela de Libertad ) and the Youth Academy, both in Salinas. Maria is a member of the National Immigration Law Center Network.  As Family Support Liaison for Special Kids Crusade, Maria handles SARC referrals to SKC's Family Resource Center and Prevention Resource and Referral Services (PRRS), a state-wide, no cost service to parents and caregivers with children birth to three (3) years of age who may be at-risk for special needs services. Maria's passion for creating positive change at an individual, family and community level drives her advocacy work. Contact Maria at

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Special Kids Crusade
1900 Garden Road, Suite 230, Monterey, CA 93940-5334
EIN 20-8580107

Phone: 831-372-2730
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