February 10, 2021 
Contact: Abby Matienzo, Communications Manager

NAELA Attorney Receives Theresa Award

Washington, DC — The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) is pleased to announce that Annette M. Hines (Framingham, Mass.) was named the 2021 recipient of the Theresa Award. The Theresa Awards recognize the outstanding efforts of those individuals who go above and beyond in helping and advocating for people with special needs.

Established in 1992, the Theresa Foundation grants funds for arts, music, dance, and recreational programs to help children with special needs attain the highest level of educational, artistic, emotional, physical, and intellectual achievement possible. The Theresa Foundation was created by NAELA member attorney Vincent J. Russo, CELA, CAP, Fellow, and his wife, Susan, in honor of their daughter, Theresa, who was born severely disabled and passed away when she was just five and a half years old.

Annette M. Hines was voted as one of the Top 5 in the category of “Special Needs Legal Assistance” by Boston Parents Paper. She is the founding partner of Special Needs Law Group of Massachusetts, PC and has been practicing in the areas of special needs, elder law, and estate planning for more than 20 years. Ms. Hines brings personal experience with special needs to her practice, as the mother of two daughters, one of whom passed away from Mitochondrial disease in November 2013. This deep personal understanding of special needs fuels her passion for quality special needs planning and drives her dedication to the practice.

Recognized as a Distinguished Citizen by ARC Massachusetts and cited for public service by both the Massachusetts State Senate and House of Representatives, Ms. Hines works tirelessly on behalf of people with disabilities. She was designated a 2016 Top Women of Law from Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly and has been named to the Massachusetts Super Lawyers list every year since 2014.

Ms. Hines is a frequent expert speaker and a regular contributor to ThriveGlobal. She is also the host of the weekly podcast Parenting Impossible: The Special Needs Survival Podcast, where she offers inspiration, support, expertise, and a wide range of discussions that will help you survive and thrive as you support your loved one with special needs.

Ms. Hines is also the author of Butterflies and Second Chances: A Mom’s Memoir of Love and Loss, the inspiring true story of a mother’s special needs journey, and her struggle to secure the best possible life for her child in the face of bureaucratic resistance and marital crisis. It is a story of sacrifice, dedication, and the life-altering adjustments a special needs parent has to make when confronted with the unthinkable. But most of all, it’s about love and an extraordinary mother-daughter relationship that flourished without words in the darkest shadows of adversity.

Members of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) are attorneys who are experienced and trained in working with the legal problems of aging Americans and individuals of all ages with disabilities. Upon joining, NAELA member attorneys agree to adhere to the NAELA Aspirational Standards. Established in 1987, NAELA is a non-profit association that assists lawyers, bar organizations, and others. The mission of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys is to educate, inspire, serve, and provide community to attorneys with practices in elder and special needs law. NAELA currently has members across the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit NAELA.org, or to locate a NAELA member attorney in your area, visit NAELA.org/findlawyer.

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