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Margaret Giannini, Champion of People today With Disabilities, Dies at 100


She hardly ever graduated from Temple and essential a person much more credit, in natural chemistry, to satisfy the pre-med necessities at Hahnemann. The only college close by that was giving natural chemistry around the summer time was Villanova, which at the time recognized only males. She enrolled anyway, but after she experienced attended class for a week, officials insisted she leave. Her professor made available to give her non-public lessons and explained that if she could pass the test, he would give her the credit history she needed. She passed and began medical university in the fall of 1941.

She graduated in 1945 — one of 3 gals in the class, Hahnemann’s 2nd to take females — and did her internship at New York Health care College in Valhalla. A buddy there established her up on a blind date with Dr. Louis J. Salerno, who experienced just returned from company as a major in the Army at the close of the war. They married in 1948 at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York.

She saved her very own name, which was remarkably abnormal in that period. She and her spouse had been both of those professors at New York Health care Faculty (she taught pediatrics he taught obstetrics and gynecology), and she desired to limit any confusion.

In addition to her son Louis, she is survived by 3 other sons, Robert, Justin and Mark Salerno five grandchildren and two fantastic-grandchildren. Her husband died in 1988.

Dr. Giannini’s do the job at the Mental Retardation Institute, of which she was director from 1950 to 1978, drew the attention of President Jimmy Carter, who appointed her the to start with director of the Nationwide Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (now the Countrywide Institute on Incapacity, Independent Residing and Rehabilitation Investigate).

Just after Mr. Carter shed the 1980 election, she joined the Section of Veterans Affairs, exactly where she expanded her work to encompass physical disabilities associated to military provider, like submit-traumatic worry ailment, traumatic mind damage, blindness, deafness and other problems.

In her next presidential appointment, President George W. Bush named her the principal deputy assistant secretary for getting older at the Section of Wellness and Human Products and services. There she received to know Tommy Thompson, the secretary of the section, who appointed her director of the department’s workplace on disability in 2002.



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