Henry Winkler to Be Honored by Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities

November 7th, 2008

Smart Kids With Learning Disabilities, Inc. Announces Its 2009 Youth Achievement Award Contest, A National Contest Recognizing High Achievers with Learning Disabilities

Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc. announces its 2009 Youth Achievement Award Contest, a nationwide recognition for high achievers with learning disabilities. Students, ages 19 or younger, are eligible for the $1,000 award. Candidate must demonstrate initiative, talent and determination resulting in a notable accomplishment in any field, including art, music, math, athletics, or community service.

Teachers, coaches, mentors, parents or students themselves are invited to submit an application. Application forms are posted on the organization's website. Contest deadline is January 31, 2009. Applications from Canada are also welcome.

The winner will be expected to attend the awards ceremony, to be held during the annual benefit gala on Saturday, April 25, 2009, in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Transportation and hotel accommodations will be provided for the winning student and his/her parents.

Honorable Mentions will also be awarded, though attendance will not be required.

Henry Winkler, author of the Hank Zipzer books featuring a hero with learning disabilities (LD) and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), will also be honored at the event, according to Jane Ross, Executive Director of Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc.

“Henry Winkler is perhaps better known as “The Fonz,” the highly popular fictional character on Happy Days, which resulted in at least two Golden Globe Awards for best TV actor for Winkler,” said Jane Ross. “What may be less known about Henry Winkler is that he grew up struggling with dyslexia. We are proud to be honoring him during our annual benefit gala and Youth Achievement Awards presentation. We are proud to celebrate the strengths and accomplishments of both adults and students with learning disabilities and ADHD.”

Last year, the winner of the 2008 Youth Achievement Award was 19-year-old Evan Paul of Lynnfield, MA, a sophomore at the University of Arizona in Tucson and CEO of egameplace.com, a videogame-trading site he set up at age 15. He is also the co-founder of Dyslexic Dreams, a nonprofit supporting young people with dyslexia.

About Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc.:
Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering parents of children with learning disabilities (LD) and attention-deficit disorder (ADHD). Its mission is to educate, guide and inspire families dealing with disabilities and to change the perception of learning disabilities as a stigmatizing condition. David Neeleman, founder and former chairman of JetBlue Airways, serves as the organization's Honorary Chairman.