Arc of Acadiana's Day Programs meet the social, recreational, and employment readiness needs within our I/DD community. Meeting these needs impacts clients in a powerful way. These programs enhance quality of life and empower for future success for more than 420 people! We want to share more with you about someone who plays an integral part of our success at Arc of Acadiana.
Meet Arc of Acadiana Day Program Manager, Dana Gradney
Dana Gradney has managed Arc of Acadiana’s Lafayette Day Program for 4 years. She has been an advocate for citizens with disabilities for more than 10 years. Previously, she managed Lafayette’s Transit System, a role in which she also supported individuals with disabilities by means of the city’s para-transit transportation system.
Since joining Arc of Acadiana, Dana has utilized every opportunity to bring awareness to the Lafayette Day Program by providing tours to interested parents, teachers and provider agencies of the newly expanded facility to showcase the service options available to clients.
dana believes Relationships are key
Dana eagerly works on building relationships with agencies and local businesses, seeking employment and social integration opportunities for the clients she and her team serve. As a result, the client base in Lafayette has tripled since 2016.
Under Dana’s leadership, the Lafayette Day program also opened a new resale clothing store, Midtown Jeans and Tees. This resale store is another avenue that provides additional employment opportunities to adults with disabilities, while offering gently used clothing options to the community at extremely affordable prices.
She thanks her team
Dana attributes the success of Arc of Acadiana’s Lafayette Day Program to her team of Administrative and Direct Support Staff.
"The team we have in place today, gels so well together. Each person possesses a strength that falls into place at the appropriate time. We learn from each other and always keep the lines of communication open. I wouldn't be able to direct the program without my team."
Her other interests
Dana and her husband Shawn have been married for nearly 10 years and are the proud parents of two sons Blake (9) and Braxton (6). When she's not working, her favorite past times are her sons' sports activities, Saints football parties with extended family, vacationing and date nights with her loving husband.
hear from others about Dana
“When interviewing Dana for the Lafayette Day Program Manager position, I knew at that moment we finally found the person to propel our program forward. Dana has been so very successful in growing the Lafayette Day program because she is genuine and always communicates honestly with everyone she meets and works with. She embodies the teamwork spirit always with positive energy and her laughter is infectious. She is a natural-born promoter who can market anything she believes in and loves, which is why the Day program and clients in her care have flourished under her leadership. Her goals for the Day Program are high and her motivation even higher! What a privilege it is to work with Dana and have her as one of our gifted leaders at Arc of Acadiana."
Chief Operations Officer
“Dana is a great fit to manage our Lafayette day program. With her bubbly personality and great people skills she compliments every aspect of our Lafayette day services.”
Chief Executive Officer