Adopt a Special Kid (AASK) Continues 40 Year Old Family Legacy with Appointment of Doni DeBolt as Executive Director

Organization Founder Dorothy DeBolt Passed Away Late February

Apr 08, 2013, 14:18 ET from Adopt a Special Kid

OAKLAND, Calif., April 8, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Adopt a Special Kid (AASK), an award-winning adoption agency based out of Oakland, CA. today announced Doni DeBolt as new Executive Director. Founded 40 years ago by Doni's parents, Robert and Dorothy DeBolt, AASK is a revolutionary adoption agency that focuses on nontraditional families.

Dorothy DeBolt, co-founder of AASK since 1973, died on February 24, 2013.  She and Robert DeBolt advocated for change in the adoption industry and created the first adoption agency in the country to focus on placing special needs children, including sibling sets and older children. Dorothy established AASK's longstanding dedication to nontraditional families and extended this concept to both the children who were adopted and the families looking to adopt.  Dorothy advocated for LGBT adoption, multiethnic families, single parent adoptions, and families with special needs. Dorothy has been honored by four U.S. presidents, selected as the first woman in the national Adoption Hall of Fame, and received the highest speaking award from the National Speakers Association and numerous other awards for her efforts in the adoption industry.  

"My mom believed that all children are adoptable and that there is a rich diversity of families who will make the right home for every child. We welcome all families looking to foster or adopt regardless of race, sexual orientation, marriage status, or income," said Doni DeBolt. "Our goal at AASK is to honor the legacy left by my mom and to continue to place children in loving homes."

A former special-education teacher and administrator, DeBolt brings many years of experience to AASK. She grew up in the DeBolt household and has spent her life dedicated to the organization. As executive director, DeBolt will play a vital role in the organization's mission to pair children in the child welfare system with families in many counties throughout California.  

"I'm thrilled that my role at AASK has evolved," said DeBolt. "Growing up with 19 siblings, 14 of whom were adopted and 9 of whom were disabled, I was raised to understand that all children, regardless of their needs or backgrounds, deserve the love, support and permanency of a stable family. Being a part of an organization that makes that happen on a daily basis is a unique and fulfilling experience that I am proud to have been a part of my whole life."

DeBolt's first initiative as executive director will be to launch the first annual Dorothy DeBolt 5K Fun Run ( in honor of her mom at Lake Merritt on July 7, 2013.

About AASK

Based in Oakland, CA., AASK (Adopt A Special Kid) has provided free adoption, foster care, and family support since 1973. AASK has placed more than 3,400 children with families since 1973. In addition to adoption services, AASK also provides families and their children with workshops, classes, support groups and specialized care during all stages of the adoption process. Before, during, and even after the adoption process is finalized, AASK extends its services free of charge to families within 21 counties in California.

To learn more about these services, AASK's award-winning Camp ALWAYS and the DeBolt Scholarship please visit  

Media Contact:
Peggy Cramer Jara
Harden Communications Partners


SOURCE Adopt a Special Kid