John Barrowman

JOHN BARROWMAN | John Barrowman originally came from a small town in the Californian foothills of the Rocky Mountains called Auburn. He moved to Oregon to attend college at the University of Oregon where he completed his bachelors degree in psychology and a minor in special education in 2009. It was during his bachelors that he was inspired by a guest lecturer to enroll in a masters program called Project PASS (Preparing Autism Specialists for Schools). The instructors of the program sought to train and equip educators with the various tools and strategies needed to support students experiencing autism in schools and the community. He completed Project PASS in 2010 and completed a licensure program for early childhood special education/early intervention and his masters in 2011. In 2011, John moved to Alaska and remained in the Northwest Arctic region working in schools as an intensive needs special education teacher and traveled to support students in the outlying villages for four years. John has worked in adult foster homes and also managed his own independent living home for adults with disabilities. He currently works for SESA (Special Education Service Agency), a state agency that provides consultative services to rural schools in Alaska since 2015.

Dawn Buffington Townsend, Ph.D., BCBA-D

DAWN BUFFINGTON TOWNSEND, Ph.D., BCBA-D |Dawn is the Executive Director of the Alliance for Scientific Autism Intervention (ASAI), a membership organization that promotes excellence in scientific autism intervention. Dr. Townsend is also the current Acting Director of Prevail NJ, an organization dedicated to providing a wide array of residential alternatives to adults with autism and the Executive Director Emerita of the Institute for Educational Achievement (IEA), a non-profit program for children, adolescents, and adults with autism and.  She earned a doctorate in psychology / behavior analysis from the CUNY Graduate School and University Center.  Dr. Townsend was the founding Executive Director of IEA and developed both educational and adult life-skills programs during her 20-year career there.  Dr. Townsend served as the Treasurer of the New Jersey Association for Behavior Analysis for 10 years, as an advisory board member for several autism intervention programs globally, as a guest editor on several journals in the field of autism, and as an adjunct lecturer at Queens College (CUNY).  She has extensive research experience in the area of autism intervention, with an emphasis on developing communication and social skills in children, adolescents, and adults with autism.  Dr. Townsend has mentored many professionals at the masters and doctoral levels.  Her research has focused on the development of social and language skills in children and adolescents with autism and she has published numerous articles in both basic and applied behavior analysis journals.  In addition, she has made numerous presentations on autism intervention at local, national, and international conferences and promotes the application of behavior analysis in the effective education of individuals with autism through consultation with other programs and professionals.

Mari Cerda

MARI CERDA | Mari Cerda is an Indigenous-Mestiza woman, wife, mom of 3, Autist, and board-certified behavior analyst who consults with teachers and schools to provide professional development coaching on various neurodiversity affirming topics. She is currently completing her doctoral dissertation at Texas Tech University.  Mari is also the co-founder of The LEAP (Lighthouse for Equitable Access and Practices) Institute, a non-profit whose mission is to increase equitable access for marginalized groups entering the field of applied behavior analysis through quality supervision support and testing scholarships. LEAP is also working to shift the culture around the supervision relationship in the field of ABA.  When she is not working on one of many projects, Mari enjoys retreating into her home with her family and spending time in her gardens to recharge.

Nasiah Cirincione-Ulezi, Ed.D., BCBA

NASIAH CIRINCIONE-ULEZI, Ed.D., BCBA | Nasiah is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, with a Doctorate degree in Education from Loyola University of Chicago. She holds a Master’s degree in Special Education from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from the American College of Education. In addition to her BCBA credential, she is an Illinois licensed special education teacher and an Illinois Early Intervention provider and State evaluator. Professionally, she has served as a special educator, clinician, educational administrator and professor of special education. Her clinical experience spans infancy through adulthood. Currently, she is the CEO & Founder of ULEZI, LLC, Co-Founder of Pivot 2 Inclusion and serves as a court appointed special advocate, for children in the Illinois foster care system. She is also an Advisory Board member for Black Applied Behavior Analysts, Board member for the Illinois Association for Behavior Analysis and an Affiliate Chapters Board Member for the Association for Behavior Analysis International. Dr. Cirincione-Ulezi has published in the Journal Behavior Analysis in Practice. She has trained leaders and teams in organizations to engage in reflective practices that lead to more diverse, equitable and inclusive environments. Her research interests include supervision, mentoring, leadership and reflective practices. She is a champion for diversity, equity and inclusion and is deeply committed to using her skills and experiences, paired with the science of applied behavior analysis, to empower the lives of the people and organizations she supports and serves, in positive,meaningful and sustainable ways.

Carly Fulgham

CARLY FULGHAM | Carly Fulgham didn’t get her diagnosis until she was 28 years old and credits that moment with changing her life for the better. After re-entering society after years on Social Security Disability, she is now a mother, wife, and operations strategist for a major national bank. She is the first autistic President of the Board of Directors of Autism Society Ventura County and the affiliate’s 2016 Awesome in Autism Individual of the Year. Additionally, she is Vice President of Autism Society of California. Her advocacy passion is education about women and girls with autism, as well as outreach to both employers and prospective employees with autism to enable a more diverse and inclusive workplace.

Dr. Peter Gerhardt

DR. PETER GERHARDT | Dr. Gerhardt has more than 30 years experience utilizing the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis in support of individuals with autism spectrum disorders in educational, employment, residential and community-based settings. Dr. Gerhardt is the author or the coauthor of many articles and book chapters on the needs of adolescents and adults with ASDs and has presented nationally and internationally on this topic. Dr. Gerhardt is the founding chair of the Scientific Council for the Organization for Autism Research (OAR) and currently sits on numerous professional advisory boards including Behavior Analysis in Practice, the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies, the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts, and the Autism Society of America.  He received his doctorate from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, Graduate School of Education.

Casey Grothus

CASEY GROTHUS | Casey Grothus is an employee at a multi-billion dollar tech company. He manages their autism outreach initiative and works to not only find new interns for their program but to support them after they are hired on with the goal of turning that temporary internship into a full-time position. He also is one of the co-founders of the company’s employee resource network for neurodiverse individuals, a group focused on providing support for employees with neurodiverse conditions and allies of the neurodiverse community. He is also a member of the neurodiverse community himself, having been diagnosed with autism back in the mid-’90s as a child. His long-term goal is to find a way to replicate the success of the initiative at the company he works at and offer it to other companies in hopes of someday reducing the unemployment rate for the neurodiverse community. When he is not busy at work, he enjoys playing computer games and building model kits.

Jim Hogan

JIM HOGAN | Jim Hogan is an advocate for change and a strong representative of what is possible for people on the spectrum. A self-taught Computer Scientist at the age of 16, Jim found his passion for working in leadership positions in Corporate America. Throughout his career, he has engaged in advocacy and supported HR departments to better understand the needs of neurodiverse employees.
Jim has willingly taken on the role of peer mentor and support to many young professionals with autism who are struggling to enter the workforce. With his powerful voice and advocacy for change and acceptance, he has led the way for hundreds of professionals with autism who entered the workforce behind him. Jim currently works as an Innovation Strategist at @google.

Andrew Komarow, MSFS, CFP,CNP

ANDREW KOMAROW, MSFS, CFP, CNP | Andrew is the Founder of Planning Across the Spectrum and specializes in helping any self-advocating client or family with autism and intellectual disabilities. Andrew is a passionate advocate for autism awareness in his community and for his work as a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Certified Neurodiversity Professional (CNP). He has always worked toward helping his clients gain financial security now and for their future. Putting both of these interests together, Andrew was inspired to launch Planning Across the Spectrum. Andrew understands the difficulty and stigma that many individuals with special needs face. Having received his Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis as an adult, many questions about the struggles he had growing up, and as a young adult, were answered.

Andrew earned a Master of Science in Financial Services (MSFS) and has achieved the distinction of being a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) and a 2020 ABLE NRC Ambassador. He has certifications as a Behavioral Financial Advisor(BFA), Chartered Special Needs Consultant (ChSNC), and an Accredited Estate Planner (AEP) among his other designations. As a business owner, husband, and father Andrew does not get much spare time, but when he does, he enjoys tinkering with electronics, travel, and bike rides. He resides in the Farmington Valley with his wife, daughter, and his dog Bentley.

Johanna Murphy

JOHANNA MURPHY | One of the hosts of “The Tism” a podcast produced especially to entertain older women on the autism spectrum, Johanna “Joey” Murphy
has an M.F.A. in Non-Fiction writing and a B.A. in Philosophy. After
being diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, or ASD level one at the age
of 42, her life began to make a lot more sense to her. She divides her
time between writing, teaching and advocating for greater awareness of
the needs of people, especially older women on the autism spectrum,
and has served as Evolve-Coaching’s Development Associate since
September 2020.

Maria Davis-Pierre, LMHC

MARIA DAVIS-PIERRE LMHC | Maria is the Founder and CEO of Autism in Black Inc., located in West Palm Beach, Florida. This organization aims to bring awareness to Autism and reduce the stigma associated with the diagnosis in the Black community. As a licensed mental health therapist, Maria primarily works with parents to provide support through education and advocacy training. Her passion for working in the field stems from her personal journey with Autism when her daughter received the diagnosis at a very early age. In addition to therapy, Maria dons many other titles including coach, speaker, advocate, and author. Her first published work, The Self-Care Affirmation Journal, is currently available for purchase on Amazon. Maria’s unique approach to coaching and counseling exemplifies her drive and motivation toward greater acceptance and overcoming the barriers and personal struggles associated with raising an autistic child.

Anne Roux, MPH, MA

ANNE ROUX, MPH, MA | Anne Roux has a master’s degree in public health from Washington University in St. Louis, where she completed training in health communication and participated in a NIMH pre-doctoral fellowship in Social Work. She also holds a master’s degree in speech-language pathology and has 15 years of clinical experience in autism early intervention. Her recent publications include journal articles on various postsecondary outcomes for adults on the autism spectrum and autism screening for underserved populations. Anne is an author and co-producer of the award-winning National Autism Indicators Report series.

Maurice Snell

MAURICE SNELL | Maurice is the Development Coordinator for De Lasalle Institute. He graduated from St. Xavier University with high honors obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts with minors in Spanish and Music. As a past National Adult Representative of Easter Seals Maurice has traveled extensively, met some famous faces, and promoted awareness and acceptance of autism for many years. Maurice is also the lead in the band The Naturals.