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News & Press: General

COPAA Thoughts on the Passing of Mark Kamleiter

Monday, March 9, 2020   (4 Comments)
Posted by: Denise Marshall



Protecting the Legal and Civil Rights of Students with Disabilities and their Families



picture of Mark Kamleiter; man with white hair and beard resting face on armWe are saddened to learn of the death of our collegeaue, friend, and COPAA family member Mark Kamleiter yesterday. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this difficult time.


Mark was a longtime member of COPAA, on the Board for many years. He was a trainer at the national conference, a SEAT instructor, and a mentor to many.


The law firm of Special Education Law & Advocacy (SELA) was established by Mark in St. Petersberg Florida in 1993. The practice has expanded over the years to include advocates and attorneys in different regions of Florida, to better serve children with disabilities throughout the state.


In 2018 Mark moved to Paris, France to establish the christian ministry Ville Lumière - Paris Ministries, Inc. with his wife Julia.


Mark was a warrior for kids, and a true hero in the advocacy community. He was a model for how civility works better than confrontation and how far human decency can go to produce successful outcomes for children with disabilities.


Mark was so clearly on the side of good. Though our hearts hurt at his loss, a part of us feels a little bit better knowing that he is now and forever watching over us.


Rest in peace, power and praise Mark.



Sonja Kerr says...
Posted Thursday, March 19, 2020
I was sad to hear about Mark. I enjoyed working with him on the COPAA board and various activities. He was a great advocate for parents and a good colleague. The lives of many children are better because of Mark's work. Sonja Kerr
Catherine M. Reisman says...
Posted Monday, March 9, 2020
Mark will be missed greatly. People with such compassion and passion are rare in this world. It was an honor to know him and to work with him.
Eileen Crumm says...
Posted Monday, March 9, 2020
Mark was a remarkable man. A brilliant mind, a funny and engaging story teller, a wonderful teacher, a kind heart and a passion for making a difference in the world. He will be missed.
Robert Berlow says...
Posted Monday, March 9, 2020
Ah Mark. I missed you in between COPAA conferences but once on the Board got to see you more. I missed you when you returned to France but we stayed in touch. I missed you for your warmth, knowledge, expertise, and willingness to share. You were a students/parents lawyer but also a lawyers lawyer. It was clear you loved the teaching and sharing as much as the practice of law which partially enabled you to teach so well. You were as passionate and compassionate as you were competent. We almost always agreed but when we disagreed, as for example on the Nader vote, you were never disagreeable. When we last messaged I told you I'd get back to you on visiting in Sept. to take you up on your offer to show me Paris as only a Parisian can do. You described excitedly your mission work and I looked forward to seeing it first hand knowing that whatever you were doing you were doing well. You made a difference my friend and I miss you.

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