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Event Details + Registration

70 Years of Progress:
Advocacy, Empowerment, and The Arc of Massachusetts

Thursday, May 23, 2024 2:30pm
1360 Worcester Street | Natick, Massachusetts

For 70 years, The Arc of Massachusetts has banded together with advocates, families, public officials, human service agencies, and friends to enhance the lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and autism. During that time so much has changed and improved, as we have moved from institutions and segregation to inclusion and opportunities. Today, the 200,000 Massachusetts residents living with IDD have more opportunities to lead full lives in the community than ever before. Thousands have worked tirelessly to reach this milestone, but progress was not fast nor easy.

Join us for 70 Years of Progress: Advocacy, Empowerment, and The Arc of Massachusetts as we examine the history of disability policy and advocacy. See how life has changed through the personal experiences of a panel representing members of the disability community and be inspired to continue on the journey.


  • Robert DeLeo, Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, 2009-2020
  • Cynthia Haddad, Sibling and former Board Member of The Arc of Massachusetts
  • Roger Walsh, Self-Advocate and former Board Member of The Arc of Massachusetts


  • Leo Sarkissian, Executive Director of The Arc of Massachusetts

The program will be followed by a reception and The Arc of Massachusetts Annual Meeting and Dinner.


  • 2:30 – 3:00 pm Registration and welcome
  • 3:00 – 4:45 pm 70 Years of Progress Program
  • 4:45 – 6:15 pm Reception
  • 6:30 – 8:30 pm Annual Meeting and Dinner


  • 70 Years of Progress $70 per person
  • Dinner and Annual Meeting $75 per person
  • Both the program and dinner $125 per person

History Webinars

70 Years of Progress:
The Evolving Service System and the Push for Community

With Phil Campbell and Mary Lou Maloney

70 Years of Progress:
The Beginning of The Arc and the Evolution of Family Supports
With Jo Ann Simons and Terrie Varnet



As a sponsor, you will improve the lives of individuals with disabilities and their families. The 70th Anniversary will bring together our partners and friends, while celebrating the progress that has been made. The funds raised are critical to sustaining the advocacy and programs of The Arc of Massachusetts.

Corporations and Agencies

Please contact Katrin Aback, Director of Development, at to learn more about our constituency and the benefits of sponsoring this event or to develop a sponsorship package that meets your organization’s needs.

70th Anniversary Sponsors

Platinum Sponsor

Scott and Julie Borchardt
Vibeke and Gustav Christensen

Gold Sponsor

John and Tracy Atkinson

Silver Sponsor

Janet and Art Rico

Bronze Sponsor

Rick Daswani

Advocate Sponsor

Robert and Karen Bagdasarian
Jayme and Robert Betts

Supporter Sponsor

Berkshire County Arc

Charles River Center


The Arc of Greater Haverhill-Newburyport

The Arc of Plymouth and Upper Cape Cod


Susanna Peyton and John Campbell

Road to Responsibility, Inc.

Sevita Health

Friend Sponsor

Disability Law Center

Economised Time Services

The New England Council


Leo and Mary Beth Sarkissian

Incompass Human Services

Northeast Arc

Opportunities for Inclusion

Katrin Aback

A.W. Perry, Inc.

Interested in becoming a sponsor? Contact Katrin Aback for more information:

Become a Sponsor

Official Media Partner

70th Anniversary Celebration Raises Nearly $290,000 to Support Advocacy for People with IDD and Autism

On November 9, 2023, The Arc of Massachusetts celebrated seven decades of advocacy for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and autism with their 70th Anniversary Celebration at the Boston Marriott Newton. The event was a true success, with over 300 supporters in attendance and nearly $290,000 raised to support The Arc’s crucial work. Read the full press release.