As someone diagnosed with hEDS, Catherine is so grateful for an organization that makes her feel connected to others who are going through the same thing. EDS is a rare genetic condition that affects the connective tissue of the body.

Catherine and Ashton are excited and thankful to be doctoral scholars in an OSEP funded interdisciplinary program. ECiDC's purpose is to prepare leaders in early intervention, early childhood special education and related services, for infants and young children with high, intensive, interdisciplinary, and individualized learning needs and their families.

The GaLEND program is part of the larger Center for Leadership in Disability at Georgia State University. LEND is a program that Catherine is forever thankful to be a part of and the connections made across community groups and individuals are relationships she will continue to treasure. She highly suggests community members, family and caregivers, and students look into participating! 

Catherine was selected as the 2023 Kennedy Fellow, a fellowship that inserts experts in disability into federal policymaking, to highlight and change policy for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (I/DD ). Catherine spent her first half of the fellowship with the US Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP) Committee, chaired by Senator Bernie Sanders, with the Disability Policy Team. She spent her second half of the fellowship on the policy team with the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD), the national membership organization of all US states and territories Developmental Disability Councils. 

Being able enter the federal policy world and be a part of policy-making and disability advocacy at the national level is an experience never to be forgotten.