“Don’t turn your back on children with disabilities” 2.19.2015

The Baltimore Sun, 2.19.2015 4:00 p.m.
Major proposed cut in state support for schools that serve children with disabilities:  read more…

Dr. Patricia Ritter, MANSEF President, advocates for children with special needs.

Maryland Association of Nonpublic Special Education Facilities (MANSEF) represents more than 90 nonpublic schools throughout Maryland that serve students with a range of disabilities.  MANSEF schools serve young people with physical, emotional, and developmental needs that cannot be adequately met in public schools.

LINWOOD CENTER is one such school within the MANSEF organization.

Linwood’s Donors Recognized

Giving treee20140728_09343420140925_09383020140805_152633Pidel name plate












As the Linwood School has settled into its second year of operation in the new building, we take pause to recognize those who made our success a reality. We proudly partner with the Howard County Public School System and surrounding school systems as we meet the needs of the autism community. We have tripled our enrollment since opening the school and aligning our practices with those of the school systems.

We have erected permanent signage both inside and outside of our new school building, recognizing our generous donors whose contributions made our new building a reality. We have erected our Giving Tree in the lobby as well as donor recognition signage proudly affixed to our special rooms and our newly installed courtyard benches.  We welcome visitors to tour our building. Please call 410-465-1352 or email

Annual Golf Tournament a Success

IMG_0346On Monday, Sept. 8th, at Cattail Creek Country Club, The Alex Berzins Charity Golf Committee hosted the 33rd Annual Golf Tournament to benefit Linwood Center . The event attracted a field of veteran and new golfers who have been raising funds for over three decades to support the Ellicott City-based organization serving children and adults living with autism.  The tournament began with breakfast at 7 a.m. and a shotgun start at 9 a.m.  Following the tournament, golfers gathered at Stella NIMG_0288otte, an Italian restaurant in Ellicott City. Festivities included an open bar, dinner, awards and prizes.

Linwood owes a debt of gratitude to this year’s golf committee, particularly Debbie Lane, who chaired the committee. Members included Doris Slack, Belinda Berzins, Anne McArthur, Leah Kable, Kathie Panasuk, Jack Boender and Bill Moss. This year’s tournament proceeds exceeded all other years of single tournament proceeds, totaling over $21,000. Proceeds will be used to enhance Linwood’s programs and services.

Linwood Medical Director Honored

Scott Hagaman and Bill Moss-1 copyLinwood Center’s long time medical director, Scott D. Hagaman, M.D., was recognized for his service and dedication to children and adults living with autism and related developmental disabilities at a luncheon in his honor hosted by the Linwood Board of Directors.

Hagaman is resigning as Linwood’s Medical Director after 21 years of service but will remain as a Autism and Legislative Affairs Advisor, according to Executive Director Bill Moss.  “We are grateful that we can continue to rely on the knowledge and experience of Dr. Hagaman,” Moss said.

In addition to an award of recognition from the Linwood Board of Directors and a gift from the staff, Hagaman was presented a proclamation recognizing his accomplishments signed by Howard County Executive Ken Ulman, who designated July 1, 2014, “Scott D. Hagaman, M.D. Day in Howard County.”

“My many years of experience at Linwood substantially shaped my approach to clinical care throughout  my practice of medicine,” Hagaman said.

Hagaman maintains a private practice in Catonsville, serves as consultant psychiatrist to Creative Options, Inc. of Baltimore and is Senior Psychiatrist for The Children’s Guild.  He is on the volunteer faculty of the University of Maryland School of Medicine, where he is Assistant Clinical Professor in the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Linwood provides programs and services for children and adults living with autism and related disabilities. It opened a new state-of-the-art school building in the Fall of 2013, adjacent to Linwood’s historic Manor House in Ellicott City.  With a capacity for 70 students, the school includes a non-graded Special Education Program for students, ages 5-21 and a General Education Program for special needs students in kindergarten through 8th grade.

In addition to its programs for students, Linwood Center provides adult services, including supported employment, vocational training, recreation and opportunities for volunteerism and community involvement. The Linwood Center Boutique in downtown Ellicott City provides employment and job training on-site. Community-based residential services for adults are available in homes throughout Howard and Baltimore Counties.

Linwood School Selects Assistant Education Director and Behavior Specialist



Erica Sherry

Erica L. Sherry and Leaora Wagner have joined Linwood School.  Sherry is the new Assistant Education Director, and Wagner, a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, has joined the school as Behavior Specialist. Linwood School is operated by Linwood Center, which provides programs and services for individuals living with autism and related developmental disabilities.

Sherry previously served as Director of Young Adult Autism Services at The Chimes, Inc., in Baltimore.  She has also worked for the Howard County Public School System as Autism Specialist in the Department of Special Education.  She has a Master of Arts in School Psychology from the University of Maryland College Park, and a Bachelor of Science in Clinical Psychology from Towson University.

Leora Wagner

Leaora Wagner

Wager has served as a Behavior Analyst for Optimal Beginning in Bethesda, Lead Behavior Therapist at The Shafer Center for Early Intervention in Reisterstown and Assistant Behavior Specialist at The Forbush Therapeutic Preschool in Towson.  She also worked at the Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore.  She is an adjunct faculty members of The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, D.C. Campus. Wagner has a Master’s degree in Human Services Psychology, Applied Behavior Analysis, from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Hood College.

Linwood School is a nonpublic special education programs that offers the academic rigor and positive behavior supports needed for students on the autism spectrum.  The school, which opened in the Fall of 2013, utilizes state-of-the-art technology, including smart boards and a sensory integration room.  The building features an indoor walking track, training apartment, library, school store, gymnasium and dining facilities.  The school has a capacity for 70 students and is approved by the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) to provide a Special Education and related services program for students living with autism in a Nongraded (ages 5-21) education program with additional residential components, and a General Education program for students in kindergarten through 8th grade.


For information, visit, or call 410-465-1352.