Sally DePalma

The One Roof Initiative – DIRECTOR

Sally founded The One Roof Initiative in 2013 and serves as it’s executive director. Prior to The One Roof, Sally launched and led Special Connections, a ministry serving those living with disabilities and their families at St. James United Methodist Church in Tampa.

As the mother of a daughter with autism, Sally can appreciate the joys and challenges that come with raising a child with special needs. A challenge that was not expected and came soon after Leah’s diagnosis in 2000 at the age of two, was being told by their home church that, due to her behaviors, the Sunday School class that Leah attended could not accommodate her. With no place for their daughter, Sally and her family eventually stopped attending church. Soon it was realized that her family’s story was not isolated and that many families could not find a church to accept their child with disabilities, thereby foregoing attending church or worse, giving up on their faith altogether and turning their back on God.

Viewing this as a fundamental wrong, Sally was motivated to make church accessible for all and Special Connections came into being.

Special Connections grew to be large and multi-faceted. In mid-2013, the continued growth of the ministry as well as the practical needs of the disability community dictated that a regional ministry be established to educate, equip and mobilize The Church of the Tampa Bay region. The One Roof Initiative is following the Lord’s lead building on the momentum of the seven years of ministry that preceded it to offer spiritual, emotional and practical support to those impacted by disability.

Sally earned her Bachelors of Science in Pharmacy at the State University of New York at Buffalo. She, her husband Rich and two daughters live in New Tampa.

When she can carve the time, Sally loves to hike the trails and paddle the waterways of Florida.