Staff & Consultants
Grassroots Advocacy Manager
Jawanda Mast is national grassroots advocacy speaker and consultant, host of the disability blog The Sassy Southern Gal, and founder of the #321Advocate Social Media Advocacy Group. She is a member of the National Down Syndrome Congress Advocacy Coalition and has been involved in disability policy advocacy since her daughter Rachel was born with Down syndrome almost 23 years ago. Jawanda holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Arkansas and was honored with the 2017 University of Arkansas Alumni Community Service Award for her body or advocacy work. She was among a group of parents and self-advocates who spent eight years advocating for the passage of the federal Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act. She has provided written and oral testimony on a variety of federal and state policy issues including the ABLE Act, Seclusion and Restraint, Organ Transplant Nondiscrimination, and Supported Decision-Making.
Jawanda and Rachel are passionate about the meaningful inclusion of individuals with Down syndrome and other intellectual disabilities in all aspects of the community and have presented at many conferences. Jawanda says her work is a #laborofloveandconviction. Jawanda is married to Jonathan Mast. Along with Rachel, they make their home in Olathe, Kansas.