Ask Libby: Facial Transplant and Donor Designation

Libby Wolfe is the Project Manager at The Living Legacy Foundation of Maryland. Her main role is to act as a liaison and maintain a relationship with the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration. She often hears the same questions being asked while traveling between Maryland MVA branches and we thought it would be great to let her sound off on some of these questions. Libby will address a common question related to the Maryland donor registry in Ask Libby, a special feature on our blog, each month. Enjoy, and feel free to e-mail her your questions at

Dear Joe:

Thanks for the great question.  This remarkable surgery would not have been possible but for the generosity of organ donors and their families.  Not only has this ground breaking surgery dramatically changed the life of the grateful recipient but it creates new awareness of the impact of organ, eye and tissue donation.

Although donor designation at the MVA grants authorization for organ, eye and tissue recovery for transplantation, research or therapy, customers selecting ‘organ donor’ at the MVA do not automatically consent to facial transplantation at this time. Only families whose loved one meets unique medical criteria would be presented with the opportunity to donate such a gift. A family must give special permission for anything outside of the common transplantable organs or tissues.

PS: Take a look at our past blog post to read more about this incredible surgery.


About libbydwolfe

Libby Wolfe is the Executive Director for Donate Life Maryland. She has over a decade of experience in the communications field working primarily in advertising and marketing. She is motivated everyday to encourage more Marylanders to say YES to organ donation and meet the need of those awaiting a transplant.
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