Derryfield Student Testifies Before Children’s Congress and Senate Committee

Derryfield Student Testifies Before Children’s Congress and Senate Committee

By Elaine Loft

Elise Cataldo ’26, who has Type I diabetes, was chosen to participate in the Children’s Congress through the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. She was one of 160 participants (selected from a pool of 750) who traveled to Washington, DC in July to urge members of the US Congress to pass the Insulin Affordability Act. Cataldo, and another NH student from Pinkerton Academy, met with Senator Hassan, Representative Pappas and members of Senator Shaheen’s staff. The Act passed, and Cataldo noted in an email to Head of Upper School Reina Stimpson, “The entire experience was amazing and so much fun to be surrounded by kids around the country who all have T1D.” 

Cataldo was subsequently sent an invitation by Senator Shaheen’s office to testify in front of the United States Senate Committee on Appropriations, in a hearing titled, “Accelerating Breakthroughs: How the Special Diabetes Program is Creating Hope for Those Living with Type 1 Diabetes.” Of this important event Cataldo stated,

“I was able to have that opportunity because I met with Senator Shaheen last year at a diabetes event, so when this came up she recognized my name and nominated me! I think I was able to feel confident speaking and testifying because of Derryfield’s lessons in public speaking and being able to hear and watch so many speakers at community meetings–so thank you! It was all so much fun, and such an impactful experience that I’m so grateful to have had.”Cataldo’s testimony can be found HERE, on C-SPAN. WMUR also produced a story, entitled, “New Hampshire teenagers testify to Congress about need for diabetes research.”

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