In this episode, I interview Mark Woodsmall, founder of Woodsmall Law Group, special education attorney, father of a son with autism, and downright awesome person. While we discuss important laws relevant to the transition of disabled students to adulthood, Mark shares his unique mindset and philosophies that guide his legal practice, which are unconventional. Mark believes that the practice of law must be different when supporting individuals who need ongoing support in that being aggressive and adversarial may only work once. What happens when you have to go back to the same people the next year (or the year after) and need support? Fundamentally, Mark believes in preserving the people, all the people involved in a child's life. From the child to the parents, to the IEP team, to all the professionals involved, Mark believes that when collaboration, respect, and relationships are nurtured (yes, even at the legal level), the child (and eventually, adult) wins every time. Finally, Mark and I also explore what a meaningful outcome is and what is needed to help dreams become a reality, no matter one's disability or difference.
To find out more about Mark, check out Woodsmall Law Group.
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I owe Mark a big shout-out 🤗 🙌🏼. While I was already well on my professional path, Mark saw something in me that I didn't see myself and encouraged me to take a leap about 10 years ago. This resulted in my now obsessive focus on supporting disabled individuals in their quest to live an adult life that is healthy, safe, and downright amazing. Thank you, Mark!!!