Mary O'Callaghan received an undergraduate degree in Psychology from Creighton University, and received her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from the University of Notre Dame. Her doctoral work was funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health for the study of developmental disabilities and mental retardation. She and her husband, John are the parents of 5 children, including their youngest, Tommy, who has Down syndrome. Since his birth, she has been an advocate at the local level for unborn children with Down syndrome and other disabilities. She has served as a member of the Disabilities Advisory Board for the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, and in conjunction with the Michiana Down Syndrome support group is currently developing a "First Call" Program which will provide mentoring to parents who receive a prenatal diagnosis of Down Syndrome in this area.