The Virginia Board for People with Disabilities (VBPD) advocates for better services and supports. We make sure that people with developmental disabilities (DD) and their families have what they need to live their best lives.

The VBPD is a DD Council. Our state agency was formed in 1992. Our funding and rules come from the DD Act. We are independent within the state government. This means that we control our federal funds and staff hiring. Every U.S. state and territory has a DD Council.

Our Mission

To create a Commonwealth that advances opportunities for independence, personal decision-making, and full participation in community life for individuals with developmental and other disabilities.

Our Vision

Virginians with developmental and other disabilities direct their own lives and choose how they live, learn, work, and play.

What We Do

  1. Policy Advocacy and Education: We talk with policymakers. We help shape laws and rules. We push for laws and rules that benefit people with disabilities.
  2. Innovation and Support: We invest in new ideas. These ideas make changes in systems and encourage living in the community.
  3. Advocacy and Leadership Development: We help people with disabilities to grow strong voices. We train them to be advocates and leaders.
  4. Community Outreach and Education: We tell people about disability issues. With this knowledge, we hope for more inclusion in all parts of life.
  5. Evaluation and Reporting: We assess our state’s disability services. We write reports about what works and what can be better.
What is a Developmental Disability

A “developmental disability” (DD) is severe and constant. A DD is often lifelong. It can be mental, emotional, sensory or physical. A person has a DD before age 22. It affects a person’s ability to:

  • take care of oneself
  • understand language
  • communicate
  • learn
  • move
  • self-direct
  • live independently
  • earn money and support oneself

People with DD often need services and supports.

Five-Year State Plan

The VBPD has to make a Five-Year State Plan to help people with developmental disabilities and their families. Our State Plan guides our work. We work on things that the disability community finds most important. We use our State Plan to keep ourselves accountable.

View Plan
Teenage Boy And Girl Having Conversation Using Sign Language


Board members are vital for our Board. They are family members, people with developmental disabilities (DD), and staff from state agencies and other groups. They make sure that we work on goals that are important to people with DD.

More Information


Titles and contact information for each of our staff members. They work hard to support Virginians with disabilities.

Staff Listing


We do not offer direct services. We work to improve services and supports. These services and supports help people with developmental disabilities and their families to live their best lives.

We do not give money to people with disabilities or their families. We fund projects that improve services.

We do not give money for accessible vehicles. We fund projects that improve services.

DD Councils are funded by the federal government. We find out what are the greatest needs for people with DD in our state or territory.

The VBPD is a state agency, but we are independent. We are funded by the federal government. We do not report to the governor or any other state agency. The governor and other parts of state government cannot direct our work. We make all decisions about what we do and how we do it. This is a requirement of the DD Act. The DD Act is the federal law the Council must follow.

The VBPD’s executive director and staff are state employees, but they are responsible only to the Board.

The VBPD is funded by the Administration for Community Living (ACL). The ACL is a federal agency. The ACL oversees DD Councils.

The VBPD funds projects and activities that address the goals and objectives in our five-year State Plan.

Every five years, the VBPD develops a State Plan. The State Plan describes barriers that get in the way of people with developmental disabilities living the lives they want with the support they need. The VBPD picks the most important issues to work on. We set goals and activities to make progress on these issues. The State Plan shows how we will create change that improves people’s lives.

All DD Councils must follow the DD Act. Our Board also follows the Virginians with Disabilities Act.

The full name of the DD Act is the Developmental Disabilities (DD) Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000. The DD Act allows programs to help people with DD and their families. These programs help shape policies, do research and test new services. They bring new knowledge to self-advocates, families, service providers and policymakers.