Let’s come together to celebrate Annette! She has recently been the recipient of a very prestigious award – and we are so excited to share all the details with you below…

Annette M. Hines, Esq. Honored with the 27th Annual NAELA Theresa Award

Annette has been chosen as the 27th Annual NAELA Theresa Award Honoree!

Each year, the Theresa Foundation presents a NAELA (National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys) Theresa Award honoring a NAELA attorney in recognition of his or her outstanding efforts and advocacy for individuals with special needs. Theresa Award Honorees are given a grant allocation for which they can choose the recipients.

This year, the Theresa Foundation Board of Directors presented our very own Annette with their 27th Annual NAELA Theresa Award for all that she has done to protect elders, individuals with disabilities, and patients’ rights.

A Lifelong Pursuit Advocating for Special Needs Children

Annette has devoted her life to advocating for children with special needs. She has taken her own personal experiences and has worked tirelessly with families to ensure their child has the highest quality of life.

She has been on a lifelong mission of training and supporting attorneys in the area of special needs planning, which includes her involvement with the Massachusetts Chapter of NAELA and her advocacy for the rights of children with special needs with The ARC of Massachusetts.

Upon learning that she was the recipient of this year’s Theresa Award, Annette was honored, of course…and more than a little surprised.

“I looked at the list of past Theresa Award recipients and thought to myself these people are legends. I’m not even in the same league…”


An All-Star Advocate Committed to the Special Needs Community

Annette is not just in the same league, she is an all-star. And she shares something else with many Theresa Award winners: the compassion, empathy, and commitment born of personal experience. One of Annette’s daughters, Elizabeth, passed away from Mitochondrial disease at the age of 17. Annette’s first-hand knowledge of the challenges they faced fuels her passion for comprehensive Special Needs Planning and her drive to advocate for the special needs community anyway she can.

Annette’s commitment to the special needs community goes far beyond the practice of law. She has been recognized as a Distinguished Citizen by ARC Massachusetts and cited for public service by both the Massachusetts State Senate and House of Representatives. Annette created Special Families, Special Care (now known as Shriver Clinical Services) to provide nursing care for children with special needs.

She is a frequent expert speaker and a regular contributor to ThriveGlobal. She is a host of the weekly podcast “Parenting Impossible: The Special Needs Survival Podcast,” where she offers inspiration, support, expertise, and wide-ranging discussions to help families support their loved ones with special needs.

As if she’s not busy enough, Annette also hosts a rapidly growing interactive Facebook group called Circle of Care, which is comprised of over 400 members from around the world. She is 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.

Without Hesitation, Annette’s Greatest Honor Is…

But there is one honor that stands out above ALL others for Annette. When asked what she considers the greatest honor she has ever received, Annette never hesitates:

Being the mother of two daughters and the time she was able to share with her daughter, Elizabeth.

The Theresa Foundation thanked Annette for her tireless and passionate advocacy on behalf of people with special needs. “Naming her this year’s winner of the Theresa Award is the least we can do in return,” said the Foundation.

See more here: https://theresafoundation.org/theresa-events/the-theresa-awards/