Center for Development and Disability

2300 Menaul Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87107

Phone: (505) 272-3000
Fax: (505) 272-2014

News & Events

Celebrate the 25th Aniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act

ADA 25th anniversary

On July 26, 2015 we celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Watch a video about the signing of the ADA here!

The CDD Information Network disseminated information about the ADA throughout the month of July 2015.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law on July 26, 1990, by President George H.W. Bush. The ADA is one of America's most comprehensive pieces of civil rights legislation that prohibits discrimination and guarantees that people with disabilities have the same opportunities as everyone else to participate in the mainstream of American life -- to enjoy employment opportunities, to purchase goods and services, and to participate in State and local government programs and services. Modeled after the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin – and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 -- the ADA is an "equal opportunity" law for people with disabilities.

The CDD Information Network Library Weekly Book Spotlight

CDD Information Network Library Book Spotlight

Check out the CDD Facebook Page to get weekly Book Spotlights from the CDD Information Network Library! We're showcasing a book or resource from the Library's collection every week. So like the page if you're interested or come visit the CDD Information Network Library to see what we have available to check out right now!

The CDD Information Network is proud to partner with the newly opened Disabilities Resource Center (DRC) in Silver City, NM

Disabilities Resource Center (DRC) staff in Silver City, NM

The CDD Information Network is proud to partner with the newly opened Disabilities Resource Center (DRC) in Silver City, NM. The Disabilities Resource Center houses a toy lending library, an Assistive Technology lending library, meeting space and a library resource area. This donated 2-room portable building is located next to the Silver City Recreation Center and provides a space for therapies, assessments, conferences, educational classes, etc. pertaining to disabilities.

Earlier this year Dr. Cate McClain, CDD Medical Director and member of the NM Developmental Disabilities Planning Council, requested that the CDD Information Network come to a presentation about this grass roots effort to open a resource center in Silver City. Since then the CDD Information Network Library has worked with the DRC to provide technical assistance and support by donating books, brochure holders and other materials, as well as providing information on how to setup a library and resource area for families.

Patti West-Okiri, parent of a child with special needs, told the Silver City Daily Press that the Center would be a central meeting place for members of parent support groups. “Everything in the center is donated,” she said. “We don’t have a budget — we didn't’t have any money. But, we had an idea, so it’s pretty cool that it’s come to fruition.”

The CDD joins other partners of the DRC, including Western NM University, the Governor’s Commission on Disability NM TAP, Life Quest Inc., the town of Silver City, Silver City Consolidated School District and others.

National Disability Employment Awareness Month!

Expect. Employ. Empower. What can YOU do? National Disability Employment Awareness Month

New Mexico joins the country in observing October as National Disability Employment Awareness month. Governor Susana Martinez signed a proclamation naming October 2014, Disability Employment Awareness month in New Mexico. The Proclamation encourages businesses in New Mexico to fully utilize the skills and talents individuals with intellectual disabilities bring to the work place. Held each October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is a national campaign that raises awareness about disability employment issues and celebrates the many and varied contributions of America's workers with disabilities. The theme for 2014 is "Expect. Employ. Empower."

Governor Martinez Proclamation recognized the unique collaboration between New Mexico’s State Agencies and University of New Mexico. The partnership includes the New Mexico Department of Health /Developmental Disabilities Supports Division, the New Mexico Department of Vocational Rehabilitation; with the University of New Mexico Center for Development and Disability, the UNM Anderson School of Management, and University of New Mexico Hospital. The Partners for Employment initiative seeks to improve employment outcomes for individuals with intellectual Disabilities in NM.

Representatives of the NM Partners for Employment, presented the Governor’s Proclamation at The SW Conference on Disability on October 10th in which multiple sessions were presented on promising practices for inclusive employment in New Mexico.

Congratulations 2014 LEND Fellows!

NM LEND Fellows

On May 2, 2014, 16 graduate, post graduate and family member trainees successfully completed the New Mexico Leadership in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (NMLEND) curriculum. These outstanding individuals dedicated 300+ hours over 2 semesters developing their skills in leadership, partnering with families, team work, interdisciplinary practice and policy and advocacy. NM LEND is part of a national network of 42 LEND programs across the country focusing on enhancing the clinical expertise and leadership skills of professionals caring for children with neurodevelopmental and other related disabilities. It is funded by a federal grant under the Autism CARES Act.

The trainees were:

Houry Babahekian, Nutrition
Dawnita Blackmon-Mosely, Psychology
Julia Brunson, Occupational Therapy
Brianne Conner, Public Administration
Lynnette Cuellar, Psychology
Frances Esquibel, Public Administration
Antonio Fernandez, Public Administration
Carol Gloetzner, Family
Rachel Goldman, Occupational Therapy
Elaine Jordan, Psychology
Marika King, Speech-Language Pathology
Renee Lombardo, Social Work/Family
Sue No, Nursing
Beret Ravenscroft, Nursing
Kelly Rivera, Social Work
Anjelika Vasquez, Speech-Language Pathology

Seven additional trainees completed their LEND experience in December 2013. They were:

Nicole Aurand-Andes, Occupational Therapy
Jennifer Benson, Psychology
Keon Cheong, Special Education
Nina Helvey, Speech Language Pathology
Roxanna Momeni, Occupational Therapy
Beth Pritchard, Speech Language Pathology
Jennifer Woolf, Occupational Therapy

Congratulations! To learn more about the New Mexico LEND Program, visit their website at

Applications for Camp Rising Sun Available on Jan 3!

All camper, peer, CIT, and volunteer applications will be posted on the Camp Rising Sun website by noon on January 3rd. Download the appropriate application at Applications can be returned by mail or dropped off at the front desk (2300 Menaul Blvd NE, ABQ, NM 87107), or emailed to Details about the camper lottery system can also be found on the website. For questions, please email the address above, or call 505-272-5142.

Albuquerque Center for Hope & Recovery Employment Flyer for ABQ Workshop

Job seekers with disabilities are invited to attend a FREE workshop series teaching the skills needed to find employment. Participants will receive job search materials such as skills worksheets, resume and a generalized cover letter. Upon completion of the series, participants will be prepared fo the Ticket to Work Job Fair on Tuesday, October 8, 2013.

ECHFS Division Home Visit

The Center for Development and Disability, Early Childhood Home and Family Services Division, VISION Program was highlighted in a two part series on Home Visiting in the Albuquerque Journal. Sandra Warren, a home visitor, is a Developmental Specialist, and Dr. Dara Zafran, a Clinical Psychologist, oversees two Home Visiting programs at the University of New Mexico.

Home Visiting programs offer support, information, referrals and education services to expectant mothers and first-time parents. These services continue until the child is 3 years old.

The full article can be viewed at the Albuquerque Journal.

Catherine McClain, MD, 2013 Leonard M. Napolitano, PhD Award Recipient

Catherine McClain, MD Catherine (Cate) McClain, MD, shines locally, nationally, and internationally as an exceptional leader, a passionate physician, and a compassionate clinician. Under her directorship, she leads the Center for Development & Disability at UNM, Department of Pediatrics. She is known world-wide for work with Autism Spectrum Disorders and provides her expertise globally. With her guidance, the Center has a presence in every county in NM providing clinical services, trainings, and consultations. Innovatively, she introduced the use of telehealth to increase delivery of these services statewide. State agencies seek her expertise and tutelage, thus creating valuable partnerships and collaborations. Her work and life embody the qualities of the Leonard M. Napolitano, PhD Award.

Autism Awareness Month has been HUGE!

Governor Sign HB22

Friday April 5th the CDD hosted Governor Susanna Martinez for the signing of HB 22 supporting autism insurance reform for New Mexico public employees. HB 22 was the last bill signed into legislation for 2013 and was celebrated not only by the CDD but by the New Mexico Autism Society, families and public employees across the state. Not only is the Governor "recognizing the spectrum" but KRQE NM Style hosted Pat Osbourn to raise awareness and speak about Autism in our community.

Check out her interview at: Autism Awareness

The CDD is committed to the Autism Community and would like to thank Governor Martinez and KRQE for "Recognizing the Spectrum" this April!

Camp Rising Sun is Recruiting

Camp Rising Sun Recruiting Flyer

Make a difference in the life of an individual with ASD and their family, Camp Rising Sun is now recruiting Summer Camp Counselors and Specialized Program Staff. CRS also offers a UNM course opportunity in Speech, Special Education, Occupational Therapy, Adaptive Physical Education, Exercise Science, and Physical Therapy, as well as an intensive community professional training program.

For more information on the Camp Rising Sun visit us online at:

Good News!

The Center for Development and Disability Information Network Library is now OPEN!

In the near future, we will be holding an open house.

Information Network Library

Meanwhile, we invite you to visit our new space, return your books or items that you have checked out, or pick out some new items. Our hours are the same. Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Closed for lunch from 12:00 Noon to 1:00 p.m.

Address: 2300 Menaul Blvd NE between University and Carlisle.
Phone: 800-827-6380 or 505-272-0281

The CDD is kicking off Autism Awareness Month with a bang!

We would like to thank Clear Channel Outdoor who has graciously donated space for 7 billboards across Albuquerque to raise awareness! April is shaping up to be busy month!

The CDD will host Governor Martinez on April 5th for the signing of HB22 which supports autism insurance reform for NM Public Employees. The event will start at 11 am at the CDD (2300 Menaul Blvd. NE). The governor has until noon that day to sign bills, and she plans to make this her last and biggest bill signing event! We would like to invite all families, advocates and providers to come show support!

Be sure to check out KRQE NM Style on April 4th Patricia Osbourn will be featured talking about Autism in New Mexico!

Also join us every Tuesday in April at ANY Chili's in the state to raise awareness and money for Camp Rising Sun! Just let your server know that you are there in support of Autism Awareness and they will donate 15% of your check to Camp Rising Sun.

For more information on the CDD Autism Programs visit us online at:

NM LEND is now accepting applications for Fall 2013

The New Mexico Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and related Disabilities (NMLEND) is now accepting applications for Fall 2013. NM LEND is an interdisciplinary long-term training program for graduate and post graduate students and families members. Trainees gain knowledge and experience in neurodevelopmental disabilities including autism, family-centered and culturally competent care and leadership and advocacy skills. For information go to

New Look for the CDD!

With support from the Health Sciences Center and the University, the CDD is undergoing a major renovation project to expand their physical site located on Menaul, by over 16,000 square feet. The main focus for this renovation is to improve public space including clinic areas and the CDD Information Network Library, as well as introducing a new multi-purpose training center.

The public areas are scheduled to be renovated and ready for use by early April 2013.

The clinic area will be expanded and each clinic room will be equipped with the latest technologies including audio video equipment for improved observation and evaluation.
The CDD Information Network Library will be redesigned to include new technologies focused on accessibility, colocation of the New Mexico Brain Injury Resource Center and increased physical space to support community areas and the ever increasing library catalog.
The new training center will be equipped with the latest technologies designed to accommodate didactic presentations, active learning, meetings, webinars and video collaboration.

Other remodeling efforts will continue on each of the 8 floors to accommodate the growing number of staff and faculty after the public space renovation is complete.

The CDD is excited to provide increased capacity and improved space for the community they serve!

Developmental Disability Awareness Month

Twenty three years ago the UNM CDD began serving people with Developmental Disabilities in New Mexico. March 1st marks the first day of Developmental Disability Awareness Month! The CDD is "Celebrating Diversity" this March. The CDD, Disability Rights New Mexico and the Developmental Disabilities Planning Council are hosting 7 billboards around Albuquerque throughout March to help raise awareness and encourage all community members to Celebrate Diversity.

Special thanks to Clear Channel Outdoor for donating over $8,000 worth of billboard space and Cumulus Radio for helping raise awareness this month!

CDD Camp Rising Sun Seeking Peers, Counselors and Wish-List Items

Camp Rising Sun is an overnight summer camp designed for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders and their typically developing peers. The camp offers a supportive environment where children with autism can have a fun summer camp experience, while gaining social skills and independence. Camp Rising Sun also is a focused, hands-on educational experience for our volunteers. The camp recruits and trains interested and caring volunteers, students, and community professionals to participate as counselors and program leaders. Camp Rising Sun is also seeking donations of needed camp materials, which can be found online. For more information, visit or contact Camp Rising Sun via phone at 505/272-5142 or email

CDD Medically Fragile Program Newsletter

Check out the CDD Medically Fragile Program's recent newsletter! Inside this issue is an article on healthcare decisions and informed consent for young adults with disabilities, an invitation to Mom's Nights Out, a family spotlight, an inclusion spotlight, and lots of information on resources for families with a member who is medically fragile.

Take a look

CDD Autism Programs Now Accepting 2013 Partners in Policymaking Applications

The Autism Programs at the CDD are now accepting applications for the 2013 Partners in Policymaking course that will begin on March 8th, 2013. This program was introduced more than 20 years ago to help people with disabilities, their family members and community members to learn the skills and techniques needed to change the policies and systems that affect their education, employment and inclusion opportunities.

2013 Partners in Policymaking Flyer | 2013 Application Form (English) | 2013 Application Form (Spanish)

Partners in Policymaking is a national leadership training program that offers an educational opportunity to learn the most current information about disability issues. The program helps to develop the skills necessary for effective advocacy to influence public policy at all levels of government.

The Partners in Policymaking Program is about

  • Becoming an Advocate or Leader
  • The Value of Inclusion
  • Empowerment and Self-Determination and
  • Creating positive change

Attend seven powerful two-day training sessions in Albuquerque. Participants will be selected through an application process. Cost of training(including lodging for one evening and meals) is waived for those selected.

2013 DATES OF TRAINING: March 8-9, April 12-13, May 10-11, June 14-15, July 12-13, August 16-17, and September 13-14

Applications are now available. For more information contact: Lauriann King (505) 272-5304 or

Post-Secondary Education Peer Mentor Training Available

Peer Mentor TrainingCome participate in peer mentor training! The Post-Secondary Education Peer Mentor Trainingis designed for students and professionals seeking an understanding of the joys and challenges that exist for students with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities.

The peer mentor training describes the roles and responsibilities of the peer mentor, ways to support the student in a Post-Secondary Educational setting, and how to access the resources needed on campus to help ensure student success.

Instructions on how to access the Peer Mentor training are on the UNM website through Moodle.

Please go to:

  • You will be prompted to set up a Moodle account.
  • Click on Center for Development and Disability.
  • Select Training for Peer Mentors.


Congratulations Jeanne Favret!

Jeanne Favret Award WinnerJeanne Favret, our Education Specialist at the Center for Development and Disability Information NetworkLibrary was recently honored as one of the recipients of the UNM Health Science Center Pug Burge Staff Award Program during the awards ceremony held August 7th. This award recognizes individuals and work groups for their extraordinary, meritorious and distinguished service to the UNM HSC; exemplified by their demonstration of the HSC Core Values and outstanding performance.

Jeanne was recognized for her significant contribution related to improving library operations by researching, evaluating and installing a new library catalog software system. The new library catalog allows users to set up their own accounts, access specialized resources and locate disability related books and videos quickly.

Congratulations Jeanne!

Medical Home &amp Health Literacy Online Training

Child being evaluatedThe Medical Home &amp Health Literacy training is online. This training session is designed for early childhood professionals who are seeking a basic understanding of the Medical Home model and Health Literacy. There will be two CEU's available for social work and counseling. You can access this training through the CDD Early Childhood Network website at:

Current research supports that a child’s health, safety and development improves when his or her family, medical home providers, home visitors, early interventionists and child care programs work together.

The training describes home visitor roles and responsibilities, how and where to access and locate services and resources and ways to increase Health Literacy.

April is Autism Awareness Month

April - Autism Awareness Month

April is Autism Awareness Month. On March 29th the Center for Disease Control released a new report that estimates the prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders affecting 1 in 88 U.S. children, including 1 in 54 boys and 1 in 252 girls. This April the CDD is "Recognizing the Spectrum of Autism".

The Autism Programs kicked off the beginning of April with Imagine.... a learning journey through Autism Spectrum Disorders, a three day conference with over 220 attendees from across the State and three keynote speakers. Attendees included families, educators and professionals that received up to 17.5 continuing education credits. Training opportunities will be offered across the state for families, educators, and professionals throughout the month of April.

Please check out available trainings HERE.

NEW FIT Training and Resource Portal

FIT Training and Resource Portal

A new training and resource portal has been developed that will be the hub for accessing a wide range of FIT related materials, information and training opportunities. The new portal contains a variety of resources for FIT Program managers and staff, organized in a simple, accessible way. Items accessible through the Portal include FIT Forms, Technical Assistance documents, manuals, online trainings and links to helpful web sites. The Portal was launched alongside the new FIT Web Calendar – – containing information and registration for FIT-related events. Both new sites are maintained by the Early Childhood Network, CDD.

March is Developmental Disability Awareness Month!

March - Disability Awareness Month

The CDD along with Governor Susana Martinez are "Celebrating Diversity" this March. March has been proclaimed Developmental Disability Awareness Month. The CDD will have 7 billboards around Albuquerque throughout all of March to help raise awareness and encourage all community members to Celebrate Diversity.

Dr. Piyadasa Kodituwakku Awarded Fulbright Specialist Grant

Dr. Piyadasa Kodituwakku

Dr. Piyadasa Kodituwakku has been awarded a Fulbright Specialist grant in Public/Global Health at the University of Ruhuna, Sri Lanka. The main purpose of this grant is to assist Sri Lankan investigators in the development and validation of two neuropsychological test batteries: one for the assessment of dementia in the elderly and the other for the assessment of cognitive functions in children. Sri Lanka is an Island nation in the Indian Ocean with a population of over 21 million. While the country’s free health care system has focused on meeting people’s basic medical needs, minimal resources have been allocated for the assessment and treatment of neurocognitive problems. Therefore, the primary aim of this project is to develop and validate culturally sensitive measures to assess cognitive and emotional functioning in children and the elderly.

Another goal of the grant is to assist in the development of a course in clinical neuroscience for physicians at Ruhuna School of Medicine. Dr. Kodituawakku will be working with a clinical neurologist of Ruhuna School of Medicine on its development. Once the course has been developed, he will plan to teach it using distance education technologies available at CDD.

Introducing the 2012 ADD-UCEDD Fellow: Mette Pedersen, PhD

January 31, 2012

2012 ADD-UCEDD Fellow: Mette Pederson

ADD and AUCD are pleased to announce the inaugural ADD-UCEDD Fellow, Mette Pedersen, PhD

Dr. Pedersen has worked with children and adults with disabilities, their families, and communities throughout the United States in university, therapeutic, early intervention, and public school settings. She has worked to create systems of care and education through collaboration of community, family, and state efforts. She helped develop opportunities for inclusive childcare in New Mexico across state agencies and worked there to establish a system of home visiting, including Federal home visiting programs supported by the Affordable Care Act. Mette's recent research efforts have addressed preparation of middle and high school students with intellectual disability to assume adult roles, including those of partnering and parenting. She has a strong interest in supporting parents with intellectual disability and was a founding member of The Association for Successful Parenting, an international organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of families when parents have learning difficulties.

Mette holds master's degrees in early childhood special education and counseling and a doctorate in special education. She was the recipient of the Alexander M. Tymchuk Award of Excellence in 2010 for her research in supporting parents with intellectual disability. Dr. Pedersen currently directs the Division of Early Childhood and Specialized Personnel Development at the Center for Development and Disability at the University of New Mexico where she is also a Deputy Director.

Administration on Developmental Disabilities

The Administration on Developmental Disabilities (ADD), through its technical assistance contract with AUCD, has initiated a fellowship program recruiting outstanding individuals in the UCEDD community for an intensive year-long experience at ADD in Washington, DC. The Fellow will gain experience in collaborating across the federal agencies to advance the goals embodied in the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000 -- " assure that individuals with developmental disabilities and their families participate in the design of, and have access to, needed community services, individualized supports, and other forms of assistance that promote self-determination, independence, productivity, and integration and inclusion in all facets of community life ...". The Fellow will share first-hand knowledge and experience of his or her home UCEDD as well as the UCEDD network with ADD, and will use knowledge gained during the Fellowship year to impact future work in the field of developmental disabilities.