Episode 3: Cody and Todd



Photo: Alejandra Pavez


Cody went “straight to the top” when he started working at the Alberta Treasury Branch’s head offices where one of his primary responsibilities is cleaning the meeting rooms. Cody is known at work for his sense of humour and willingness to grow, not to mention his arm-wrestling skills! Unwilling to let his Down syndrome to define him, he takes great pride in his work and approaches everything he does with diligence and an upbeat attitude.

“I love being here. I am proud of myself.” — Cody Strass


Working as a shop hand at RAM Elevators & Lifts, Todd is known by his supervisor and co-workers for being on top of everything. Adopted at the age of seven, Todd’s early life resulted in numerous challenges to overcome, including Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder. The stability of his job and the support of his family have given new meaning to Todd’s life, allowing him to mature and grow into a responsible and reliable co-worker, a loving husband, and a valued son and brother.

“Where I am now, I’ve worked at for about ten years. They treat me with respect and I do the same thing to them.” OR “I’ve got caring parents who I care so much for, and a brother who I enjoy spending time with cause I’ve got a nephew and niece who I love dearly. Got a lovely wife at home and a cat too.” — Todd Uditsky


Ruth Ann is Cody’s mother. They share a great sense of humour and a lot of mutual respect and affection.

“When Cody first started working at Alberta Treasury Branch and I found out that it was right downtown in the corporate head office, we told everyone that Cody went straight to the top.” — Ruth Ann Chaffe



Bruce is Todd’s father and the CEO of the Alberta Association for Community Living. He and his wife provided Todd with a second chance at life when they adopted him. Through his work with the AACL, Bruce has had a lasting impact on the lives of many people with intellectual disabilities.

“If I hadn’t met [Todd] by accident as a result of my work, the odds are quite clearly he would have ended up dead, on the streets, in jail.” — Bruce Uditsky