The NY Alliance’s Ann Hardiman received the honor of being recognized as an Essential Change Agent by the National Historic Recognition Project: 2000-2020. 
The National Historic Recognition Project: 2000-2020 continues the legacy of the 20th Century Historic Recognition Project in recognizing the key people that transformed the field of I/DD within the United States over the past 20 years, contributing to the historical record of the field.  

Hardiman is recognized as an Essential Change Agent for her contribution to the field through service, advocacy and leadership, in addition to, the work she did when appointed by President Barack Obama to a term on the President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities. 

In addition to Hardiman, 25 individuals including Governor Hugh Carey, former OMRDD Commissioner Thomas Maul, and devoted advocate Henrietta Messier, were recognized as Essential Change Agents along with NY Alliance members and colleagues, Donna Colonna, Ed Matthews and Art Webb. These individuals were engaged in service, public policy, and advocacy initiatives that were significant in their region, contributed to the national dialogue, and enhanced the quality of life of people with I/DD.

Sixty-two National Honorees were recognized by the National Historic Recognition Project: 2000-2020 for their significant contributions and impact in the field and they include individuals such as President George H.W. Bush, President George W. Bush, President Barack Obama, Senator Edward Kennedy, Senator Robert Dole and NY Alliance members and colleagues; Joe Macbeth, John Kemp, Regis Obijiski, Chester Finn, Beth Mount, and the band Flame. 

A commemorative booklet, the 2020 National Honors Recognizing Significant Contributions in the Field of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in the U.S. Between 2000 and 2020, was created to celebrate these remarkable individuals in lieu of a celebratory gathering at this time. The commemorative booklet pays tribute to the Unsung Heroes, as well as, contains the following essays that highlight key trends: 

  • Changing Service, Changing Workforce
  • Workforce: Recruiting and Retaining Talent in the Field
  • Advocacy in Action: Power in Working Together
  • The Importance of Defining Quality of Life Through Personal Outcomes
  • The Growth & Evolution of Community System of Supports