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Home of Guiding Hands President and CEO Edward Hershey Named Leading the Charge Award Recipient

Home of Guiding Hands President and CEO Edward Hershey was named the Leading the Charge award recipient, an honor bestowed on an advocate who has demonstrated extraordinary leadership and advocacy for the disability community.

The award was presented by San Diego Regional Center Executive Director Mark R. Klaus on Dec. 2 at the 7th Annual Leading the Charge – collaborating for Effective Services One-Day Educational Event.

Senate President Pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins praised Hershey for his leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Congratulations to Edward Hershey on receiving this year’s ‘Leading the Charge’ award. His work overseeing the distribution of personal protective equipment (PPE) across multiple counties and establishing the Home of Guiding Hands as a vaccination site ensured that more than 1,000 of our most vulnerable residents were immunized during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Senate President Pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins. “Congratulations Edward on this accomplishment and on your new role as CEO.”

Developmental Disabilities Provider Network (DDPN) hosted the event, which provided panel interviews and breakout training sessions designed for individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities and their family members, service providers, agency directors and support staff, regional center and DOR staff, Transition Programs staff and students.

Hershey, 50, holds a master’s in human resource management and a bachelor’s in organizational leadership from Colorado State University. He also has 27 years of management experience. He joined Home of Guiding Hands in 2015 as vice president of operations and was promoted to chief operating officer Sept. 2021.

Home of Guiding Hands serves children and adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities such as Down syndrome, epilepsy, autism and cerebral palsy in California’s San Diego and Imperial counties.

Each year, the 800-employee nonprofit delivers support services to over 3,500 people in San Diego and Imperial Counties. They own and operate 29 specialized group homes, and specialize in early childhood development services, independent living support and county-wide transportation. The nonprofit also provides life-skills training, vocational assistance, and respite care. Visit for details.

To make a monetary donation or to sponsor one of the Home of Guiding Hands 29 residential homes by funding parties for the clients or buying holiday gift cards, please call Kaye Kelley at (619) 933-0339 or visit


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