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Photo of Dr. Patricia A. Morrissey, Commissioner of the Administration on Developmental Disabilities
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Dr. Patricia A. Morrissey

Commissioner of the Administration on Developmental Disabilities

Pat Morrissey is commissioner of the Administration on Developmental Disabilities (ADD). ADD is housed in the Administration for Children and Families in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Prior to being appointed by President George W. Bush in August 2001, Morrissey was a senior associate at Booz Allen Hamilton where she provided consulting services to federal agencies. Her focus was strategic plans that would facilitate agencies’ compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. That provision of law requires federal agencies to purchase electronic and information technology that is accessible to and useable by individuals with disabilities.

Morrissey came to Washington, D.C. in 1976. Her career includes stints in both the public and private sector. She worked for the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions for five years prior to joining Booz Allen. She oversaw or played a central role in the drafting of major disability legislation – the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act Amendments of 1997, the Developmental Disabilities Act Amendments of 1996 and 2000, the Rehabilitation Act amendments of 1998, the Assistive Technology Act of 1998, the Education of the Deaf Act Amendments of 1998 and the Ticket to Work and Work Incentive Improvement Act of 1999.

She also worked for the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Education and Labor (currently the Committee on Education and the Workforce), also drafting disability legislation, including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). She has written four books and assisted in the production of six training videos on the ADA. After leaving the House committee staff before joining the Senate committee staff, she served as a consultant to Fortune 200 companies on ADA compliance.

Morrissey is a member of the U.S. Delegation to a United Nations Committee working on a disability rights treaty. She was a keynote speaker at an international conference in Beijing in June 2004.

Dr. Morrissey views herself as a problem solver and persuader. She believes the “American Dream” belongs to everyone, and her main job is to help make it happen for individuals with disabilities.