Washington Attorneys with Disabilities Association would like to announce its 2020-2021 Scholarship winners.
Dyana Thurgood (“Dy”) is a third-year law student at the University of Utah’s S. J. Quinney College of law. She has a BA and MA in Deaf Studies, and prior to law school, she worked for the world’s only Deaf university, Gallaudet University, and also taught preschool to Deaf children. She discovered her passion for social justice and community advocacy while simultaneously building a foundation of the principle of ‘Nothing About Us Without Us.’ During law school she clerked for Utah’s Disability Law Center with an emphasis in education, clerked at a private disability law firm that handles social security and disability claims, and partnered with the Salt Lake County’s Office of Criminal Justice Initiatives to help remove barriers vulnerable populations face while trying to get a government ID. Currently she is interning for Women Enabled International, an international non-profit advocating at the intersection of gender and disability (and often in collaboration with different human rights treaty bodies under the United Nations).
Heather Swadley holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Pennsylvania and will graduate with her J.D. from Temple Beasley School of Law in July 2021. Her academic research focuses on community integration for people with disabilities in health, housing, education, and employment settings. During law school, Heather worked at the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, the Women’s Law Project, and Relman Colfax PLLC. In each of these roles, she has fought to advance civil rights for people with disabilities. Prior to attending law school, Heather was a disability research fellow at Mathematica Policy Research and worked in the House of Commons while pursuing her MSc at the London School of Economics. She currently resides in Rockville, MD with her spouse Robert and two rescue cats, Charlie and Iris and looks forward to continuing her advocacy after graduating from law school.
Maggie Austen is a student at Suffolk University Law School, with a passion for international human rights law, intersectionality, and disability justice. Maggie is legally blind, navigating the world with a unique understanding of justice (and her guide dog O’Bella). Before finding her way to law School, Maggie worked in youth development, non-profit fundraising and operations, and universal design in Boston’s non-profit sector. Maggie was raised to be a fierce self-advocate and hopes to leverage that power for others in her future career. When she’s not knee deep in studying, Maggie bakes, hikes, and even rides a tandem bike.
We congratulate the recipients on their achievements thus far, and hope they continue the fine work and advocacy going forward.