To transform the lives of children, youth and adults with, and those at risk for, disorders of the developing nervous system, through innovative, equity-based and culturally relevant clinical care, research, education, community partnership, advocacy and training. Diversity, cultural and linguistic competency, and inclusion are foundational in services the Institute provides.
We envision a world where Kennedy Krieger will continue to lead with intention, through innovation, to provide equitable, relevant and effective clinical care, research, educational interventions, training and advocacy services, in partnership with the community, to improve the lives of all individuals who have, or are at risk for, disorders of the nervous system.
We value each individual. We are teams of compassionate, dedicated and skilled clinicians, scientists, educators, staff members, advocates and trainees, working in partnership with patients, students, families and community members to advance our mission. Our approach is person and family-centered, and culturally congruent to ensure that all those we serve have access to the resources they need—clinical care, research, education, community programs, advocacy and training—to live fully inclusive, valued and meaningful lives.
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An Original Vision
Kennedy Krieger’s tradition of improving the lives of children with neurological disorders dates back to 1937, when Winthrop Phelps, MD, an orthopedic surgeon from Baltimore, responded to a dire need for treatment for individuals with cerebral palsy. He founded the Children’s Rehabilitation Institute, the first treatment facility in the country dedicated solely to children with cerebral palsy. The Institute was renamed the Kennedy Institute in 1968 in memory of President John F. Kennedy, who enacted the Medical Training Act during his administration, to protect the rights and improve the lives of persons with disabilities. In 1992, the name was changed again to Kennedy Krieger Institute to honor original board member and long-time supporter, Zanvyl Krieger.
A Relentless Pursuit
More than eighty years after its founding, the Kennedy Krieger Institute has evolved into an international resource for children with diverse brain-related disorders, from mild learning disabilities to rare genetic disorders. Thousands of individuals with developmental disabilities and their families come to Kennedy Krieger to receive the best possible medical care, schooling, community initiatives, and benefits of leading edge research available. Individuals the world over have improved outcomes thanks to discoveries made and treatments implemented at Kennedy Krieger. Each year, several hundred graduates and post-graduates on their way to becoming practicing professionals in this field, also receive exemplary training at Kennedy Krieger and go on to improve the lives of individuals with developmental disabilities worldwide.
Kennedy Krieger is committed to improving the lives of children and adolescents with disorders of the brain, spinal cord, and musculoskeletal system, either of congenital onset or acquired through injury or illness. Its focus on pediatric brain disorders, interdisciplinary treatment, ground-breaking research, and application of specific and proven therapies are what make Kennedy Krieger world-renowned.