Tijerina honored Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder work

Posted by Jayme Blaschke
University News Service
September 12, 2011

AUSTIN -- Mary Tijerina, associate professor in the School of Social Work at Texas State University-San Marcos was honored for her leadership by the Texas Office for Prevention of Developmental Disabilities (TOPDD) on Sept. 9 as part of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Day.

Tijerina’s work was celebrated and she was presented with the governor’s FASD Day proclamation at the state capitol’s lieutenant governor’s reception room.

A member of the agency’s executive committee, chair of the FASD task force and co-chair of the agency’s Texas FASD leadership and planning collaborative, Tijerina has led the charge for a coordinated, state wide strategy on fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Sept. 9 was the launch of this innovative initiative.

Fetal alcohol exposure is the most prevalent cause of preventable developmental disabilities. With one in 100 children impacted, the plan is designed to change this by implementing well researched strategies that are designed to educate and motivate people to change.

“FASD touches many different areas-children with disabilities, people with chemical dependency, child welfare and minority health issues. There are very few people who have knowledge in every one of these areas but Dr. Tijerina certainly has this unique combination,” said Janet Sharkis, executive director of TOPDD. “Her vision and passion combined with her knowledge, makes Dr. Tijerina unstoppable. And as a social worker, she knows how important it is to put all the pieces together to create community change. The FASD plan that Dr. Tijerina spearheaded is truly visionary. It will put Texas out front in the nation in FASD prevention.”

For more information about FASD, please go to the Texas Office for Prevention of Developmental Disabilities website, www.topdd.state.tx.us.