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About Gotta Be Me

Caleb John Clifton (pictured below with his family and on our home page) was a jammer. This lover of music was a bit of a flirt, authentically joyful, tough and wise. He grew up in a family where anything was possible, including traveling around the country to see The Grateful Dead perform. When Caleb's wheelchair wouldn't navigate the steps of an outdoor amphitheatre in Colorado, his family carried him up the mountain. On other occasions his dad, Rod - a carpenter and Deadhead to the core - built him a wooden chair in a wagon that would go anywhere. So they did.

It's what the Cliftons do.

When Caleb's oldest sister, Tiffiny, began looking into local life-after-high-school options for her brother - who had celebral palsy with a developmental delay and other diagnosis - it sparked an idea. Tiffiny reached out to Marilyn Hinkle, then an adaptive curriculum specialist teacher at Omaha Public Schools. They talked about creating a social club - a safe, welcoming place where people of all abilities could come together and do what they enjoy as part of a larger community. The two decided to start with music - the universal language, and the Gotta Be Me Heartlight Choir was born.

Since its first meeting in a living room in November 2014, Gotta Be Me has grown to include an ever-changing roster of programs and activities based on the interests of the GBM Peeps (a Peep is anyone who participates in GBM activities). Although the focus is on social inclusion, friendship and social capital along with fun, activities include an educational component designed to help members fully participate in the life of their choice.

 

GBM is a support community for the family and caregivers of members, many of whom have become friends outside the organization.​ Got a program or event you think the GBM Crew would be interested in? Contact us at info@gottabeme.org.

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Our Board + Staff

GBM Board of Directors

Erin Brandenburg | Adaptive Therapy Specialist, UNMC Munroe-Meyer Institute

Mandy Castellote | Owner-Operator and Artist, McCloud Designs

Robin Graham, M.D. | Medical Consultant

Chris Hunke | Owner of Cars R Us, Neighborhood Supporter and Advocate

Hans Iwand | Engineer and Adaptive Equipment Fabricator and Designer

Marne Iwand | MPT, ATP

Robin Knudtson | Retired Special Education Adaptive Alternative Curriculum Program Institute Retired Teacher and Alice Buffett Outstanding Teacher Recipient

Annie Leonard | C.N.A., Caregiver, Participant Parent 

Jalayne Prodel | C.N.A., Participant Parent

Samantha Prodel | Recreational Therapist Technician, UNMC Munroe-Meyer Institute Formerly, Participant Parent

Holden Ray | K-12 Psychologist, Former Adaptive Therapy Recreation Staff

Tracy Cook | Day Care Provider and Consultant

GBM Contract Staffers

Tiffiny C. Clifton | Executive Director Of Possbilities

Britta T. | Heartlight Choir Director-Music Master, Program Coordiantor

Stephanie Goodrich, Ph.D. | Disabilities Consultant, GBM CREW and CREW 21+, Program Coordinator

Liz Ferguson | Administrative Guru

Jace | Senior Intern

Emilee | Intern

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