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WHEREAS, Williams Syndrome is a rare genetic developmental disorder that is present at birth, and affects many parts of the body; and
WHEREAS, Williams Syndrome affects an estimated 30,000 individuals in the United States; and
WHEREAS, Williams Syndrome is characterized by medical and cognitive problems, including cardiovascular disease, developmental delays, and learning disabilities; and
WHEREAS, the Williams Syndrome Association (WSA), founded in 1982, is a non-profit organization that provides comprehensive resources for people and families living with Williams Syndrome as well as for doctors, researchers, and educators; and
WHEREAS, the WSA has organized May as Williams Syndrome Awareness Month, which includes events all across the United States, including "Jacey's Walk for Williams Syndrome Awareness" held in Virginia, now in it's 9th year; and
WHEREAS, through its efforts to raise public awareness, fund critical new research, provide valuable information, and support families, the WSA has improved the quality of life and futures of those affected by Williams Syndrome; and
WHEREAS, the Williams Syndrome Association, and the families and friends of those with Williams Syndrome, should be commended for their hard work, compassion, and courage for educating the country about this rare disorder;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize May 2019 as WILLIAMS SYNDROME AWARENESS MONTH in the COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.