News Tip

The Arc Baltimore Names Denitta Hawkins Direct Support Employee of the Year

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Denitta Hawkins has been named Employee of the Year – Direct Support by The Arc Baltimore.

Presented annually to a direct support professional at The Arc Baltimore, the award honors staff members for exemplary dedication to both their profession and The Arc.

“As a direct support professional, Denitta has provided personal support to Nathaniel Newsome for two years, building a trusting relationship and helping to create fantastic memories with trips to Cancun, New Orleans, and Ocean City,” says Kathleen Durkin, The Arc Baltimore’s Chief Executive Officer. “She knows how hard Nate works in his landscaping job with The Arc and wants him to achieve his dreams.”

Durkin continues, “Denitta advocates for Nate and keeps his team aware of both his challenges and his successes. When Nate went through a hard time recently and wanted to isolate himself, Denitta gave him space but made sure he was safe. Nate is known for his wide grin and we know it’s often the case that Denitta put it there.”

The Employee of the Year – Direct Support Award was presented during The Arc Baltimore’s recent Annual Meeting and Awards Reception. The event honors individuals who have gone “above and beyond” in their service to the organization and the people with developmental disabilities who are recipients of its programs and services.

“The Annual Meeting is our opportunity to honor all those who have given so much of themselves to the mission of The Arc Baltimore, from community partners and volunteers to supported individuals, staff members, and other heroes of the organization,” explains Durkin. “It is their hard work that is at the very heart of our vision for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to live independently, work in meaningful jobs, and enjoy friendships and activities in the community.”

As in past years, the 2023 Annual Meeting and Awards Reception featured a number of recognitions, as well as the election of The Arc Baltimore’s new board of directors and officers.

The Arc Baltimore supports people with developmental disabilities (autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, intellectual disability) to lead fulfilling lives with a sense of belonging, purpose, and meaningful relationships. The Arc provides employment training and support, day and residential services, family support and education, treatment foster care, respite care, public policy advocacy, and information and referrals. For more information, visit or call 410-296-2272.

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