Mollie Gavigan Award

Mollie Burd Gavigan was a dear friend and support to DSAMT and the Down syndrome community. When her daughter Jeanne was born with Down syndrome, Mollie was determined to provide her with a Catholic education, so Mollie helped to establish the Hand in Hand program for children with cognitive disabilities at Pope John Paul II High School in Hendersonville. Mollie was a strong advocate for the Down syndrome community, and her support greatly benefited DSAMT.

In honor of Mollie’s legacy, DSAMT created the Mollie Gavigan Service Award to recognize outstanding service to the Down syndrome community.

2022 Recipient - Carter Abel

Carter Abel, Executive Director of Gigi's Playhouse Nashville, has been a truly valuable asset in the Middle TN Down syndrome community, keeping the needs of individuals with Down syndrome at the top of his priority list!  Carter has gone above and beyond to both work with other disability organizations, especially DSAMT, and to provide desperately needed programs at Gigi's Playhouse to ensure every individual with Down syndrome receives the information and support they need to be successful.  Gigi's Playhouse, Nashville and DSAMT have a strong partnership and collaborate on webinars and workshops as well as events and activities, like our Halloween Trunk or Treat. Thank you Carter Abel for your EXTRAordinary™ service to the Down syndrome community! 

Past Recipients:

2021 - Kay Dodd
2020 - Carolyn Naifeh
2019 - Justin Gilbert, Erin Richardson & Jessica Salonas
2018 - Award moved from Buddy Walk® to 3.21.2019

2017 - Adelaide Nicholson, Ed.D 
2016 - Stephanie Mullowney
2015 - Elise McMillan
2014 - Sheila Moore

Nominate Someone for the Mollie Gavigan Award