EPU Story

Exceptional Parents Unlimited (EPU) was founded to help struggling parents become exceptional parents of their exceptional children.

EPU Referral Form


Founded in 1976 by Marion M. Karian, EPU started as a support group for the parents of children with Down’s syndrome. The name Exceptional Parents Unlimited was chosen because EPU wanted to provide services for the parents of children with all kinds of special needs. The concerns and efforts of these parents became EPU’s foundation.

Family - Centered Services

Over the years EPU developed a wide range of programs and services in response to the expressed needs of the families in our community. Today, known as the EPU Children’s Center, over 4,000 children and families are served each year, and has an annual budget of $7.6 million. EPU has become a national leader in providing and promoting comprehensive, family-centered services through five major EPU programs.

Providing Direct Services in English, Spanish and Hmong

More than 3,000 families receive direct services each year in English, Spanish, Hmong and American Sign Language. These services are available through home visits and our urban and rural centers.

Family Resource Center

EPU’s Family Resource Center provides training and support to families through the (Parent Training and Information Center (PTI) Grant and Family Empowerment Center (FEC) Grant.

Our Staff

Since EPU began in 1976, it has grown to a staff of more than 100 therapists and early childhood specialists. This staff includes experienced management personnel, including a Chief Financial Officer who is a Certified Public Accountant, a Director of Human Resources, a Director of Fund Development, and departmental leadership with a broad range of expertise, experience and knowledge in relevant fields.