December 31, 2018 marked the end of our official 35th year – a milestone that makes us extremely proud. As we begin the next 35 years, I want to personally thank each one of you for making our association so vibrant and helping us grow in so many ways.
Message from the Executive Director
Dr. Ursula Bellugi: Special Friend to the WSA, Individuals with Williams Syndrome, and the Research Community
After nearly forty-eight years at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, Dr. Ursula Bellugi has retired. The closing of the Laboratory for Cognitive Neuroscience last month has signaled the end of an era.
Those of us who are parents assume that we will be our childrens’ hero- and we are, MOST of the time. But when we become parents to an individual with Williams syndrome, the potential for our role as heroes changes dramatically... and not just in regard to our son or daughter. Throughout our journey with a child with Williams, we will both be heroes and receive the benefits of many heroic acts.
When our son or daughter is born we immediately want everyone – especially our immediate and extended family to share in our joy. But what happens when sometime in the future – perhaps within days, but more likely months, or even years down the road, we learn that our son or daughter is challenged in some way – medically, developmentally or in the case of those with Williams syndrome, medically AND developmentally.
How many times have we sat around the kitchen table at a family gathering and listened to our elders tell us how much things have changed – they love to remind us that it wasn’t that long ago that candy bars were a quarter, gasoline was less than $1 per gallon and you could go to a Saturday Matinee for just a dollar or two? It is not just the material things that have changed in price and quality over the years. As the WSA becomes more involved in its Assistive Tec