The Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) honored Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD) staff member Mallory Finn on November 7 with its 2017 Young Professional Award. AUCD gives the award annually to a professional under the age of 40 who works in the disabilities field and who has demonstrated dedication and commitment to people with developmental disabilities and their families through work in bridging the community with the academic sector.
Finn is a staff attorney for Project HEAL (Health, Education, Advocacy and Law), a community-based program of MCDD. She began working as a law trainee with Project HEAL in spring 2013, during her second year studying law at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. As a practicing attorney for more than three years, Finn has excelled in her contributions to special education law and MCDD, which include mentoring trainees, giving national presentations, and developing best practices in data management.
In addition, Project HEAL families have acknowledged Finn’s expertise and caring, with one parent noting:
I felt like I had somebody on my side. Mallory went above and beyond. She took my case personally; it wasn’t just a job. She got to know my son. She talked to him like he was a person and collaborated with me to get what he needed. She was honest if there were things that were unreachable, and she wasn’t selling me something that wasn’t going to happen.