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Retired Today!

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About the Author

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RPMelia RICHARD P. MELIA, Ph.D. I retired May 3, 2006, as Director, Division of Research Sciences, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. I worked for the Federal government on disability and rehabilitation research, training, and policy for 36 years. I'm originally from Newton, MA, just outside Boston. I majored in political science at Northeastern University and completed MA and Ph.D. degrees from UMass Amherst with an emphasis in public administration and public health. I'm pleased that I helped shape many interdisciplinary, interagency, international, and intergovernmental activities and research initiatives in rehabilitation, independent living, and disability policy. Currently I'm an independent research consultant and listed on LinkedIn. I'm a Board Member of the Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy Association and a Member of the Board of Directors (and Chair, Supervisory Committee) of the Queen of Peace Arlington Federal Credit Union. I advocate for the CIFIDS Association of America, the Genetic Alliance, on Disability in Prison Issues for CURE, and for the American Heart Association’s Heart and Stroke Research Coalition. I am a former At-Large Member of the Board of Trustees of the Hearing Loss Association of America, My plans include assisting planning, research, advocacy and awareness efforts for national, regional and local disability and health organizations, social justice groups and credit unions. I also plan to help my wife, Eileen, with her Affirmation Quilts Ministry. I'm interested in independent living programs, programs for deaf and hard of hearing individuals, services for persons for persons with severe disabilities, legal protections for persons with disabilities, disability management at the workplace, transition from school to work, supported employment. Research: performance and outcome measures, strategic planning, human subjects’ protections, program reviews, research methods, and knowledge translation programs. Find out more about RPMelia
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  • Retired Today!

    Wow! What a day today. I retired today after working 36 years for the Federal government to improve disability and rehabilitation services. My colleagues hosted a lunch that was attended by my wife Eileen, my sons Mark, Greg, David, and Greg’s wife Amy, their one-year old daughter Francesca (she stole the show!), and numerous co-workers, friends, and former employees.

    It was a “Who’s Who” of policy leaders and research administrators who serve (or served) in the FDA, DOD, NIH, HHS, Education and various roles in consulting, law, and industry. My co-workers (I call them un-indicted co-conspiritors for the way they worked secretly to put together the program) started it all with the National Anthem, a Flag Ceremony, and continued to a video “tribute” based on a spoof of Jimmy Stewart movies i.e. “Dick Melia Goes to Washington” in which my experiences in the disability field were depicted in various scenes from “It’s a Wonderful Life.” I’m glad they picked Jimmy Stewart – you should see some of the other movie stars they considered for profiling my life.

    The day was very overwhelming but much appreciated. I felt like a retiring Cabinet Secretary! I am excited about new beginnings and the opportunity to explore new directions, help several of the causes I feel strongly about (including HCMA), and spending increased time with my wife and family.

    I think I’ll take Lisa’s advice (sent in a private message) and see tomorrow as the first day of the rest of my newly defined life!

    Dick Melia
    Arlington, Virginia

  • #2
    Re: Retired Today!

    Dick,
    Congratulations on the begining of your new life! I hope you had a wonderful day. I do look forward to talking to you soon about new opportunitues.


    Best wishes to the entire family!
    Lisa
    Knowledge is power ... Stay informed!
    YOU can make a difference - all you have to do is try!

    Dx age 12 current age 46 and counting!
    lost: 5 family members to HCM (SCD, Stroke, CHF)
    Others diagnosed living with HCM (or gene +) include - daughter, niece, nephew, cousin, sister and many many friends!
    Therapy - ICD (implanted 97, 01, 04 and 11, medication
    Currently not obstructed
    Complications - unnecessary pacemaker and stroke (unrelated to each other)

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Retired Today!

      Congratulations on the new begining of your life. May each day bring happiness. Give yourself a little time to enjoy some r and r before jumping into your support groups. I'm sure the r and r is well deserved.

      Take care!
      Sherry
      tommysgirl wishes you a blessed day with many laughs and smiles along the way!

      Wife of Tommy Hall passed 9/22/07
      HOCM, (AA x2, CABG, RFA, Myectomy x2, Maze)
      Tomy 13
      Amber 25
      grandchildren Aiden 6, Maddie 4

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Retired Today!

        Congratulaions! I'm glad your special day was so great for you.

        Reenie
        Reenie

        ****************
        Husband has HCM.
        3 kids - ages 23, 21, & 19. All presently clear of HCM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Retired Today!

          Dick,

          Congratulations on a wonderful beginning to your retirement! And Best Wishes for a great time of rest and relaxation.

          Rhoda

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Retired Today!

            Dick.

            What a wonderful sendoff!

            Leon
            God Squad co-moderator
            Nothing is as gentle as strength and nothing is as strong as gentleness

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            • #7
              Re: Retired Today!

              CONGRATULATIONS....only four years and 144 days and I'm right with you...


              Tigger1
              " Real Courage Is Being Scared To Death But Saddling-Up Anyway "

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              • #8
                Re: Retired Today!

                Dick - Congratulations! I'm so happy for you. Your co-workers must be a special group, and even more special, your family was able to share in the whole event. They obviously think highly of you - Enjoy! Linda

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Retired Today!

                  Dick - congrats! Here's wishing you and your family all the best for a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2006 and beyond! Enjoy.

                  Andy P

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Retired Today!

                    That's great and best of luck on your retirement.
                    Hope to join you in 3 years.
                    Every great thing that has ever happened since the beginning of time has started as a single thought in someones mind.
                    So if you are capable of thought then you are capable of great things
                    Good luck and stay well.
                    Glen

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