This past month, Marty Ford, our Senior Executive Officer of Public Policy, was awarded the first-ever AAIDD Public Policy Award. Our Director of Public Policy Nicole Jorwic shared a few words about the immeasurable impact Marty has had on our organization and the disability sector as a whole:
“For Marty’s entire professional career, she has worked for The Arc and fought to create policy and protect programs that make the lives of individuals with I/DD and their families lives better. Marty has relationships on the Hill and in the field that are based on trust and respect. Marty is tactful and brilliant as a lobbyist and policy guru which is why The Arc is so often the first phone call from Hill staffers, from both sides of the aisle. Because of Marty’s reputation, anyone calling knows that they will get the most accurate information, with all the nuances and discretion if it is required.
Marty is everyone’s go to person because nobody understands how all of the different programs work together, and the technical and historical perspective better than Marty. Marty can cite the specific part of the Social Security Act you may need, and explain the negotiation process of every major piece of legislation for the past several decades since she was there, but what is even more special is her passion for the work. Marty is also a sibling. Marty has worked hard to support the policy work, legal advocacy efforts and advocacy of The Arc for decades driven by clear and unshakeable values and pure integrity. There is nothing as forceful as a fired up Marty Ford and as we have faced the policy challenges of the last 18 months, her passion has driven all of us. We never forget what we are fighting for on the policy team with Marty as our fearless leader.” – Nicole Jorwic, Director of Public Policy