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The founding of the Wendy Klag Center

About Wendy Schagen Klag

Our Center's name honors the late Wendy Schagen Klag, the first wife of Dean Emeritus Michael J. Klag and a devoted mother to their three children.

Wendy was known for her selfless devotion to children and family. After her sudden death in 2006, friends, family, and the Johns Hopkins community contributed to a memorial fund that has since been used to support doctoral students who study an array of topics related to developmental disabilities.

In the spring 2012 edition of Johns Hopkins Public Health magazine, Dean Klag wrote movingly about their youngest child, Sarah, and her diagnosis of autism at age five. He described the emotional toll, the couple’s search for answers, and how this private challenge has served as motivation to support research into autism and developmental disabilities.

Klag has remarked that the magazine column was too brief to share the whole story: “I most regret leaving out the saddest and happiest parts. The saddest is that Wendy, Sarah’s mom and pillar of strength and my first wife, died suddenly when Sarah was 15 years old. The happiest is that my second wife, Lucy Meoni, has embraced Sarah, loves her, and is an equally staunch advocate.