Sutter East Bay Medical Foundation Neurologist Receives Public Service Award from KPIX-5 TV
Dr. Joanna Cooper, a Sutter East Bay Medical Foundation (SEBMF) neurologist has received the Jefferson Award from KPIX-5 San Francisco for her work co-founding Maya’s Music Therapy, a music therapy nonprofit that improves the quality of life developmentally disabled participants.
Maya’s Music Therapy Fund honors Dr. Cooper’s severely disabled daughter, Maya who died at age 14 from a rare neurologic disorder.
“She was nonverbal, but she could really come alive with music,” Dr. Cooper recalled.
When Dr. Cooper and Maya’s father founded the nonprofit in 1989, they started with a handful of children. Today, the nonprofit is 29 years old and serves more than a hundred children and adults.
“While the award was given to me as an individual, I am humbled by the commitment of the many volunteer members of the board of directors of Maya’s Music Therapy Fund, who over the past nearly 30 years made this continued work possible,” said Dr. Cooper. “I am also grateful for the unmatched dedication and talent of our music therapist, Titia Martin-Nagle, who has worked with our clients from the program’s inception and, of course, to the help from our many donors and supporters who make the work possible.”
Over the years Dr. Cooper has expanded the program sessions to several locations in Richmond and Berkeley. There is a small fee, usually one to five dollars, but no one is turned away because of inability to pay.
Click here to learn more about Maya’s Music Therapy and how this program empowers people with developmental disabilities and expands artistic expression through music therapy.
Congratulations to Dr. Cooper for receiving this wonderful award and the positive impact Maya’s Music Therapy has made on so many people in our community over the years.