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Woman From Stamford Finds Her Calling In Helping Disabled Vets

Adriana Mallozzi, left, with Shana Penna, right, of Boston-based Puffin.
Adriana Mallozzi, left, with Shana Penna, right, of Boston-based Puffin. Photo Credit: Submitted

STAMFORD, Conn. — Stamford native Adriana Mallozzi has received a $200,000 grant from Veterans Affairs for developing technology to aid disabled veterans and help them live independently.

The Puffin is a breath-activated portable input device that connects to mobile devices and computers – facilitating access to apps such as home automation systems. This allows users to control their environment with minimal assistance and aids in reclamation and independence.

Additionally, access to computers and mobile technology will allow users to increase their employment opportunities with the option to gain valuable skills, such as coding, engineering, CAD development, and so on.

“From my own experiences living with a disability, I saw a need to create an inexpensive and easily manufacturable device for the disability community,” said Mallozzi, a Stamford High graduate who now lives in Boston, MA.

“And that community is growing every day. My team and I look forward to building relationships with military programs and members to ensure that the technology will meet the needs of all participants in the community. The grant from the VA is a big, first step in our mission to make technology accessible for all."

Added Shana Penna, Puffin’s co-founder: “My family has a long history serving in the US military – from my grandfather who stormed Normandy, to my brother who fought in both Iraq and Afghanistan. I even served in the Massachusetts National Guard, so working with disabled vets makes me incredibly proud.”

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