Letter From Our President

Gary W. Goldstein, MDThe understanding and treatment of developmental disabilities have come a long way over the past century. As we reflect on the last 70 years since the founding of the Kennedy Krieger Institute, the past is not always bright, but there are people and moments that stand out as beacons of progress. President John F. Kennedy worked passionately to pass landmark legislation that forever changed the field of developmental disabilities for the better. But as we look forward, we can see that there is still much work to be done in our institutions, schools, and communities.

In this issue we are taking a look at the past, present, and future of developmental disabilities and the role that the Institute's doctors, educators, and researchers have played and will continue to play as we move forward helping children with developmental disabilities succeed in community life.

We'll take a look at the work of Dr. Amy Bastian in the Institute's Motion Analysis Laboratory, where an unusual treadmill holds great promise for patients with brain injuries and those who have suffered a stroke. We're also bringing you the story of Cameron Mott, a six-year-old girl who underwent a hemispherectomy-a surgery to remove half her brain. While she was in rehabilitation at Kennedy Krieger, Cameron spent some time on Dr. Bastian's special treadmill.

Every day the dedicated professionals at the Institute are helping children with developmental disabilities get back into their communities. Whether it's a therapist taking a group of students to play putt-putt golf to practice using assistive equipment or a program that helps teach outside professionals how to apply Kennedy Krieger's best educational practices, our programs and services reach well beyond our own walls.

The cornerstone of these efforts is the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities at Kennedy Krieger Institute. Through the Center's focus on professional training, community service, research, and information dissemination, we are truly changing our communities for the better.