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New Jersey's Robert Menendez Named National MS Society 2013 U.S. Senator of the Year

February 27, 2014

Cyndi Zagieboylo and Senator Menendez at the National MS Society's 2014 Public Policy Conference

Updated March 11, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC — Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey is the National Multiple Sclerosis Society’s 2013 U.S. Senator of the Year.

As the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Senator Menendez has shown his commitment to ratifying the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), which affirms the rights of Americans with disabilities — including those with MS — living, working, studying, serving, or traveling abroad. Reaching across party lines and bringing together diverse stakeholders, Senator Menendez has worked determinedly to make ratifying the CRPD a well-supported, bipartisan effort.

“More than 20 years ago, the US enacted the historic Americans with Disabilities Act, which has promoted independence and community for people with disabilities,” says Cyndi Zagieboylo, National MS Society President and CEO. “We applaud Senator Menendez for continuing in that spirit and urging Congress to take the next step to affirm the rights of people with disabilities internationally.”

Senator Menendez also supports funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP), and is a dedicated member of the Congressional Multiple Sclerosis Caucus, which seeks policy solutions that will improve the lives of people affected by MS and their families.

“I am proud to be the National MS Society Senator of the Year,” says Senator Menendez. “I strongly believe that Americans living with disabilities should be granted the same rights they have here in the United States all over the world, which is why I support the CRPD wholeheartedly.”

Menendez was sworn in to the Senate on January 18, 2006. Since then, he has worked to make a difference in New Jersey by making healthcare more affordable, protecting consumers, and preserving Medicare and Social Security.

Bestowing its highest honor for elected officials, the National MS Society presented Senator Menendez with the U.S. Senator of the Year award during its annual Public Policy Conference, running from March 10 to 12, 2014. The event brought more than 300 MS activists from around the country to DC to educate elected officials about needs of people affected by MS. View Senator Menendez's acceptance speech.

For more information on Senator Robert Menendez, visit,, or

For more information on the Society and MS issues, visit,,, or search hashtags #MSactivist, #MSresearch or #MS, and #NIH, #CDMRP or #FDA.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are leading to better understanding and moving us closer to a world free of MS. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with at least two to three times more women than men being diagnosed with the disease. MS affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide.


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