New York Autism Organization Hosted Autism Acceptance Fundraiser on Nov. 3, 2017 Honoring Lisa Pesante and Perry Cyprus

Special Citizens, a New York nonprofit organization that has supported adults and children with autism for over 40 years, hosted its annual Autism Acceptance Fundraiser on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017 at 6:30 p.m. at St. John’s University at 51 Astor Place in downtown New York City.

The event was an engaging evening bringing together Special Citizens’ friends, families, and supporters that marked another year of tremendous growth and personal achievements for the men and women supported by the agency. Guests enjoyed refreshments, comedy entertainment, and conversation with Special Citizens’ staff and board members, as the organization honored distinguished guests and award recipients, Lisa Pesante, Bronx Administrator at the NYS Office for Persons with Developmental Disabilities, and Perry Cyprus, founder and CEO of Diet Delights.

It was our great honor to present Ms. Pesante with the Award for a Lifelong Commitment in Service of People with Disabilities and their Families. Ms. Pesante is an administrator for NYS Office for Persons with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) in Bronx County and oversees clinical and technical services for the developmentally disabled individuals in Bronx and Manhattan counties. She began working for OPWDD in 1993 and held various supervisory positions until her appointment as an administrator in 2006. During the event, we recognized Ms. Pesante for her 24-year career at the OPWDD in dedication to providing compassionate and comprehensive services to people with Autism Spectrum Disorders and developmental disabilities.

It was with much appreciation and admiration that we presented Perry Cyprus with the Award for Excellence and Dedication in Ensuring the Health and Wellness of People with Disabilities. For over 20 years, Mr. Cyprus and his nutritional team have provided Food and Nutrition Consulting services throughout the New York region. It is with great honor that we recognized Mr. Cyprus for providing excellent services to the people we support.

Both Ms. Pesante and Mr. Cyprus are long-time supporters of Special Citizens and advocates for people with autism. We were honored to celebrate their advocacy, service, and care in support of people with autism.

“This fundraiser allowed us to celebrate the work of two amazing advocates in the field of developmental disabilities. It was a night to celebrate Special Citizens accomplishments and the wonderful people it supports while raising acceptance of autism at the same time,” says Jessica Zufall-Guberman, Chief Executive Officer at Special Citizens.

The Autism Acceptance Fundraiser took place on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017, in New York City. For more information, contact Alexandra St. Charles or 212-643-2663 Ext: 222. For more information about Special Citizens, please visit

Source: Special Citizens Futures Unlimited