UCP Celebrity Ambassadors have committed to help UCP raise awareness about all issues related to people with a spectrum of disabilities, as UCP continues to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams today and beyond.
Actress, Producer and Director Cheryl Hines is a two-time Emmy nominee for her role as Cheryl David on HBO’s Golden Globe Award-winning series “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” the brainchild of “Seinfeld” co-creator Larry David. Cheryl can currently be seen starring in the hit ABC comedy series “Suburgatory” opposite Jeremy Sisto and Jane Levy, returning this fall on Wednesday’s at 9:30pm.
This summer Cheryl filmed a co-starring role in the feature film PASADENA, produced by Midway Films. Cheryl co-stars opposite Peter Bogdanovich and Alicia Witt. Set in present-day Pasadena, the film centers on the eccentric Turner clan, an upper-class family torn apart by secrets revealed over a Thanksgiving weekend. Patriarch Poppy (Bogdanovich) has invited his black sheep daughter Nina (Witt) home for the holiday – her first visit in 15 years. Nina immediately clashes with stepmother Deborah (Hines), and competes with her siblings (Holmes and Walger) for Poppy’s affection – and money. Over three days, the family gradually disintegrates over who will get Poppy’s money – only to discover he’s broke.
Cheryl’s feature film directorial debut, “Serious Moonlight” was released last year through Magnolia Films. The film premiered with critical acclaim at the Tribeca Film Festival. The screenplay was written by the late Adrienne Shelly, who directed Cheryl in the critically acclaimed “Waitress.” The film is a dark comedy centered on the troubled marriage of a high-powered female attorney (played by Meg Ryan) who learns that her husband (Timothy Hutton) is about to leave her for another woman.
Cheryl’s additional television projects included a co-starring role in the live action/CG adaptation of the Nickelodeon hit animated series “The Fairly Odd Parents” television movie “A Fairly Odd Movie: Grow Up, Timmy Turner!” opposite Jason Alexander. She had major story arc on the ABC drama series “Brothers and Sisters” and a starring role opposite Megan Mullally in the ABC Television Network series “In the Motherhood,” a single camera comedy series chronicling the hilarious ups and downs of motherhood.
Cheryl has also produced and directed several television projects including Executive Producer and creator of the NBC Television Series “School Pride,” a proactive, alternative series that told the stories of communities coming together to renovate their aging and broken public schools. The cameras followed students, teachers and parents as they rolled up their sleeves and rebuilt their own schools, concluding with the unveiling of a brand new, completely transformed school. She also produced the award-winning comedy series “Campus Ladies” for the Oxygen Channel and the Starz Networks original comedy series “Hollywood Residential.”
Cheryl is one of Hollywood’s busiest film actresses with starring roles in a number of critically acclaimed feature films and box office hits including ”The Ugly Truth,” “RV,” “Waitress,” “The Grand” and “Bart Got A Room.”
She’s currently on the national board of trustees for UCP where she serves as an advocate for children and adults with disabilities.
RJ Mitte stars on the Emmy-nominated AMC drama, “Breaking Bad”, as Walter White Jr, whose character has cerebral palsy. In real life RJ also has cerebral palsy although it is a milder form than that of his character on the show.
Outside of UCP, RJ is also involved with several organizations that raise awareness of equality and diversity and the prevention of bullying. He has been a featured guest speaker at an anti-bullying town hall discussion at the NAPT Annual Conference for school transportation professionals and has begun working with PACER’s National Center for Bullying Prevention on a national campaign designed to engage and educate those who see bullying – leveraging peer-to-peer support.
As a guest speaker at high schools, colleges, and universities around the country, RJ openly talks about the ways he has overcome obstacles and how he has achieved his goals.
William H. Macy
Oscar® nominee William H. Macy is one of the most distinguished talents of his generation. In the upcoming months, Macy continues to demonstrate his versatility in several diverse roles, adding to his already impressive credits.
Macy received critical acclaim in TNT’s “Door to Door,” opposite Kyra Sedgwick, Helen Mirren, Kathy Baker and his wife Felicity Huffman. The movie, which Macy also co-wrote, tells the true story of the life of Bill Porter, an award-winning door-to-door salesman with cerebral palsy.
Macy is a tireless advocate of UCP. In 2004 he was elected and served on UCP’s Board of Trustees for several years.
Louis “Topspeed” Albornoz
Louis “Topspeed” Albornoz grew up in New York City driving a 1969 Chevy Nova SS street-legal drag car he built himself. Louis found easy success in drag racing on and off the track. Eventually though, he yearned for a greater challenge. In 1998, Louis decided to sell his beloved drag car to pay for professional racing school. He graduated with flying colors and since then, he has been building an impressive racing career.
Recently, “Topspeed” was invited to participate in the INDY 500, the oldest and most well-known motorsport event in the world. He is advocating for United Cerebral Palsy through endorsements on his race car and his website,www.topspeedracer.com. Furthermore, Albornoz is donating 10% of the proceeds from apparel sales on his site.