Our History

AADD is one of the longest-serving organizations in metro Atlanta and Georgia meeting the needs of individuals with developmental disabilities. AADD was founded in 1951 by a group of parents seeking educational opportunities for their children and incorporated in 1956 as a school for children with developmental disabilities.

We closed the school in the late 60’s when education legislation mandated programs for special needs students. We have worked on fetal alcohol syndrome, undertook programs for Model Cities and low-income families in Atlanta and helped found the ARC of Georgia, Nobis Works and Bobby Dodd Institute. AADD operated a thrift store for over 30 years and ended its operation in 2013.

Advocacy has also been an important component of AADD since its beginning. We have more than 700 graduates of our Partners in Policymaking program acting as advocates at the Capitol and in their communities. Each year, we engage hundreds of people in Conversations That Matter sessions across the state to discuss key issues relevant to our population and encourage engagement with local representatives.

All About Developmental Disabilities has grown and evolved over the years as we identified emerging needs in the community, all the while staying focused on our mission to support individuals and their families living with developmental disabilities.

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Timeline

2009 AADD & partners successfully advocate for services for more than 5,000 individuals with developmental and physical disabilities
2007 AADD changes Project Future to Project LEAP and shifts focus to supporting parents with intellectual disabilities
2006 AADD begins administering the Unlock the Waiting Lists! Campaign, a coalition advocating increased community supports for people with Developmental Disabilities
2004 AADD participates in the pilot program of the Aging and Disability Resource Connection (ADRC)
2003 AADD Initiates Women Against Violence and Exploitation Support Group (WAVE)
2000 AADD creates Interfaith Disability Network
1992 AADD brings advocacy program Partners in Policymaking to Georgia
1991 AADD launches Project Future, a program to support and educate parenting teens
1986 The AADD-backed Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Bill passes
1978 The AADD-supported Metabolic Screening Bill passes
1975 Georgia General Assembly passes the Mentally Retarded Offender Act which requires treatment or education as rehabilitation for persons with intellectual disabilities (est. 40% of jailed juvenile offenders and 25% of adult offenders)
1969 AADD launches Project Rescue, a case management and in-home training program
1968 AADD-supported Mandatory Education Bill for Exceptional Children passes
1966 AADD supports and helps pass a bill requiring newborn testing to identify phenylketonuria, which can cause developmental disabilities
1956 AADD Founded and incorporated
1951 AADD conceived by concerned parents