The Adult Public Guardianship program exists to safeguard the welfare of persons with disabilities. Public guardianship is a legal procedure in which the court determines if a person’s ability to make health and safety decisions for themselves is significantly impaired by disease, accident or disability. If so, the court will appoint a guardian to act as a substitute decision-maker. Public guardianship in Maryland is administered by local Departments of Social Services for those aged 18-64, and the Department of Aging for those aged 65+. Public guardianship is a situation of last resort when there are no family members, friends and loved ones to serve in this capacity.

There are two types of adult guardianship:

  • A guardian of the person is authorized by the court to make decisions for the disabled person about their health care, shelter, or other daily needs.
  • A guardian of the property is a person or agency appointed by the court to manage the property of a disabled person. A public agency may not be the guardian of the property.


Ms. Deborah A. Hanna Non Profit June 30, 2024
Ms. Lauren Hickey Lay Person October 1, 2024
N/A Physician  
Ms. Samantha Messick Public Health Nurse August 31, 2026
Ms. Mary Jane Overby Comm. On Aging Rep. November 5, 2026
Mr. Matthew C. Peeling  Person w/ Disability June 30, 2024
Dr. Laszlo R. Trazkovich Psychiatrist June 30, 2024
Ms. Marisa Cooke   Lay Person August 31, 2026


Ms. Michelle Jacobs              Professional Rep of Local Dept - Chairperson     

Carroll Co. Dept. of Social Services
1232 Tech Court
Westminster, Maryland  21157
410-386-3379 (Office)

Updated 04/24 cbs