In the early 1980’s, a doctor in San Diego by the name of Robert Mowry was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Recognizing that there were no organized services or organizations assisting Parkinson’s families at that time, he and his wife, Mary, formed a small support and discussion group for Parkinson’s patients and their care partners.
For the next 20 years, Mary led the development of what became known as the San Diego Parkinson’s Disease Information and Referral (I&R) Center. The center, housed in a small facility within a San Diego hospital, maintained a referral network and database and provided valuable educational material to health care providers, patients with Parkinson’s disease, and their families. As the benefit of support groups became evident, support groups sprang up throughout San Diego County.
In 1989, Mary’s efforts led to the development of what is now the Parkinson’s Association, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Mission: Optimize quality of life for people affected by Parkinson’s disease with programs and services that enhance Mind, Movement and Morale
Vision: To be the leading Parkinson’s resource, setting a world standard for education, support groups, information and referrals, diverse therapeutic exercise and voice programs, community events, social opportunities, and compassion and encouragement