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Today's Takeaway with Florine Mark

Feb 1, 2021

With Sheryl Stumbaugh, Governor’s Developmental Disabilities Council 

Throughout my life, I’ve always encouraged others to reach for their dreams. When I’ve struggled personally, I look in the mirror and tell myself, “Keep going, Florine! You can do this!” And I do this until I achieve what I want to happen without hurting anybody. But what if others try to limit you socially or professionally simply because you’re different? Have you ever felt embarrassed or uncomfortable because you’re not like everyone else? That’s what it’s like to have a physical or intellectual disability. Our guest today, Sheryl Stumbaugh, is a Clinical Social Worker at Beaumont Hospital who was recently appointed by Governor Whitmer to the Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council which seeks to eliminate barriers for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities. Sheryl knows firsthand what it’s like to overcome those barriers because she was diagnosed with cerebral palsy as an infant. My own beloved sister was in a wheelchair due to Polio, so I personally relate to the struggles Sheryl discusses on the podcast. We’ll learn how to best encourage and support people with disabilities or physical limitations so they too can find success.


What You’ll Hear on This Episode:


  • How old was Sheryl when she was diagnosed with CP?
  • What are Sheryl’s limitations?
  • What kind of vocation did Sheryl’s middle school prep her for?
  • What kind of mental aptitude test did schools give Sheryl?
  • How old was Sheryl when she first noticed she was different from her peers?
  • Did Sheryl get to do “normal” social activities like other kids?
  • What was Sheryl’s college experience like?
  • Did Sheryl have to study harder because of her disability?
  • How Sheryl is able to live alone with the aid of her service dog.


  • What does Sheryl do in her profession?


  • What are some of the things Sheryl recommends in her job to help kids with disabilities feel included?
  • The importance of setting expectations for people despite their abilities.
  • Sheryl’s thoughts on what it means to fail.



Today’s Takeaway: If you’re trying to achieve your dreams, don’t let anyone hold you back. Don’t be afraid to try something different. Even if you fail, every day and every failure is a gift. We learn the most from our mistakes and when we’re able to get up and try again, that’s when we’re always a winner. Believe in your dreams. When Sheryl first applied to the Governor’s Council, she didn’t hear back so she applied a second time. She refused to take no for an answer, and that eventually led to her successful appointment. Look in the mirror. Talk to yourself. Tell yourself what a great person you are and how today’s going to be a good day. Be fearless, tell yourself you can do it, and be your own best advocate. Most people respect someone who is passionate and confident about themselves and the people around them. I’m Florine Mark and that’s “Today’s Takeaway.”

Brought to You By:

Florine Mark


Mentioned in This Episode:

Sheryl Stumbaugh

Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council