Allies Honors 2022 “DSP Stars” at Special Luncheon

In recognition of “Direct Support Professional Recognition Week,” Allies honored seven DSPs at a special luncheon at their administrative offices on September 13th. The “DSP Stars” were selected by their Executive Directors for going above and beyond in carrying out Allies’ mission. At the event, Executive Directors, Support Managers, and members of Allies’ leadership team shared thoughtful and inspiring remarks about each DSP and why they were nominated.

Michael Haggerty, President and CEO of Allies, addressed the nominees saying, “DSP Recognition Week gives us the opportunity to highlight the incredible work that our organization does. Our organization could not do it without you – our Community Support Staff. You are the backbone of Allies, and I am in awe of the work that you do and the many accolades that you have received from your colleagues and your leadership team.”

As Michael spoke, he also noted the qualities that each DSP in the room possesses: compassion, dedication, a positive attitude, and a deep commitment to providing high quality care and support. He said, “These qualities are what makes each of you, and your work, so exceptional. You are truly role models, not just to your colleagues, but to those you serve as well.”

During the event, Allies also honored their 2022 New Jersey Association of Community Providers “Hero of the Year,” DSP Mattie Byrd, of the Crane Group Home in Ocean County. Mattie was praised for her outstanding work as a Direct Support Professional for the last 11 years. Michael presented her with a special recognition plaque as well as a gift card.

The event concluded with a delicious luncheon and a celebratory cake and more heartfelt words from Michael. He said, “Thank you for the amazing work that you do, your positive attitude and perseverance despite challenges such as COVID, and for never losing sight of our organization’s mission and your personal mission to improve the lives of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. We are so grateful to have all of you as a part of our Allies family.”

To learn about each of these extraordinary DSP Stars and the very special work that they do, click here.

To read more about Allies 2022 NJACP “Hero of the Year”, Mattie Byrd of the Crane Group Home, click here.

Allies’ 2022 DSP Stars from left to right: Olusegun Odedji, Madeline Pichardo, Mattie Byrd, and Rahshan Williams.
Not pictured: Bydria Branch, Magna Telusma, and Mohamed Rafat Siddiqui.

Mattie Byrd, 2022 NJACP “Hero of the Year” and Michael Haggerty, Allies’
President and CEO.











Allies 2022 DSP Recognition Week Cake

2022 DSP Recognition Week Decorations

Allies, Inc. is a nonprofit agency dedicated to providing housing, healthcare, meaningful employment and recreational activities to people with special needs in the communities of their choice. To learn more, visit

Contact: Nicole Zamerovsky, Director of Communications, Allies, Inc.
Cell: 609-508-6181