2022 Peter John Loux Award Winner: Sondra Criddle
“Sondra’s lifetime record of achieving independence is extraordinary.”
— Heather | Tri-Ko Director of Case Management
Sondra was born in 1965 and diagnosed at a very young age with adjustment disorder and a learning disability.
Sondra began receiving Tri-Ko’s services in 2001. Her goal when she came into Tri-Ko’s services was to live independently and work a competitive-wage community job. That same year, Sondra was hired at Paola Middle School to work part-time in the cafeteria. In 2021, she celebrated her 20th anniversary of working at the school.
According to Joshua Lankton, who nominated Sondra for this award, “she continues to be a dependable, well-rounded employee, so much so that she was asked to work an extended school year during the summer school session. She has successfully and consistently met her goal of working a competitive wage community job.”
Sondra has overcome huge obstacles. She has maintained a competitive wage job and raised two children as a single mother. In 2010, she and her two children moved into a two-bedroom duplex in Osawatomie. Now that her children are adults, she currently lives independently. She is solely responsible for the daily upkeep to maintain a clean home and she does a great job, as her home always passes house inspections.
Sondra raised her two children, Destiney and Joshua, to be thoughtful, well-rounded adults and she sees her daughter almost every day. She is also a responsible pet owner of two therapy cats.
According to Heather Wier, Tri-Ko Director of Case Management, Sondra has been an inspiration in her determination toward meeting her employment goals and independence in her home.
She went on to write that what is impressive about Sondra’s progress is her perseverance. She has an intellectual disability and has endured many hardships throughout her life, but she has never stopped working toward her goals of achieving personal independence.
She is still working, thriving, and living on her own with minimal support needed.
Sondra remains enthusiastic about someday achieving her goal of purchasing a home of her own.
The Peter John Loux Award recognizes exceptional Kansans with disabilities.
This annual $1,000 award is presented to a Kansan with a disability who has shown determination toward their employment and educational goals, community activism, personal achievements, and more.
The Peter John Loux Award is an endowed gift established by the late R.C. “Pete” Loux in memory of his son, Peter John, who was fatally injured in an auto accident. Pete Loux was a lifelong advocate for people with disabilities, using his influence as minority leader of the Kansas House of Representatives to help Center Industries Corporation, the nation’s first manufacturing facility to provide competitive employment for people with disabilities, secure its 1975 inaugural contract to produce Kansas license plates (a contract CIC still holds). Mr. Loux also served on the CPRF Board of Directors from 1972-2004.
It is with great honor that CPRF administers this award on behalf of Mr. Loux in memory of Peter John.