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Raytown man appointed to Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council

Dr. Tony Taylor
Posted at 7:56 AM, Jul 09, 2024

KSHB 41 reporter Claire Bradshaw covers portions of eastern Jackson County, including areas like Raytown and Independence. If you have a story idea to share, send an email to Claire at claire.bradshaw@kshb.com.

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson recently appointed a Raytown man to the Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council.

Dr. Tony Taylor will serve two years on the council. He has two children with developmental disabilities — Jonah, 25, is on the autism spectrum, and Jaylee, 16, has Down syndrome.

Taylor said he raised his children to know no bounds by making space for them in their communities.

Dr. Tony Taylor appointed to Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council
Dr. Tony Taylor appointed to Missouri Developmental Disabilities Council

“Each individual with a disability is a unique individual and has their own goals and aspirations, and being able to advocate for those and support those, not only for my two children but for the 1000s of individuals in Missouri … it’s quite an honor for me,” Taylor said.

One effort Taylor has made to bring inclusivity to his community is by finding his children jobs.

Jonah sorts donuts at a local bakery on Saturday mornings and has his own vending machine business. KSHB 41 News featured Jonah’s Vending in May 2021.

Jonah's vending machine.png
Jonah Taylor runs his own vending machine business with the help of his parents.

Jaylee recently turned 16, so Taylor said his family is looking for an opportunity for her outside of her theater group.

Overall, Taylor said his goal is to show Missouri the benefits of being inclusive.

“I think there's a lot left still to be done," Taylor said. "I think it's important for everyone to know that individuals with disabilities have quite a contribution to the community and to celebrate them and to focus on the ability and not the disability ... to encourage those abilities to be contributed throughout all aspects of the community is really a benefit to all."

Taylor has completed additional training through MoDDC to learn about the legislative process. He has also held a ministry in his family’s church for people with developmental disabilities.