Board of Directors
David Celiberti, PhD, BCBA-D
OFFICERS OF BOARD
Leigh Broughan, MA, BCBA, Sibling – Interim President
Kathryn Dobel, JD – Interim Vice President
Elizabeth Dyer, MA, CCC-SLP – Treasurer
Leanne Tull, MADS, BCBA – Secretary
MEMBERS OF BOARD
Preeti Chojar, MCA, Parent member
Cathy M. Curcio, MSW
Ruth Donlin, MS
Daniela Fazzio, PhD, BCBA-D
Joseph Forgione, MBA
Sabrina Freeman, PhD, Parent member
Karen Fried, PsyD, BCBA-D
Peggy Halliday, MEd, BCBA
Zachary Houston, MS, BCBA
Barbara Jamison, BA, Parent member
Eric Larsson, PhD, BCBA-D
Tracie Lindblad, MSc, MEd, SLP, BCBA
Amy McGinnis, MS, OTR/L, MS, BCBA, Sibling
Daniel W. Mruzek, PhD, BCBA-D
Scott M. Myers, MD, FAAP
Renita Paranjape, MEd, BCBA
Franca Pastro, BA, Parent member
Mary Rosswurm, MBA, Parent member
Dena Russell, MS, Parent member
Tristram Smith, PhD
Mark Sullivan, BA
Bridget Taylor, PsyD, BCBA-D
Leigh Broughan, MA, BCBA, is Vice-President of ASAT. She currently oversees a home-based ABA program for the Eastern and Central Maine Regions of Providence Human Services. Leigh received her undergraduate degree in Special and Elementary Education from Providence College, followed by a Master’s degree in Applied Psychology at New York University. In addition to her professional experience working with children with autism, she is a proud sister to a younger brother with autism.
David Celiberti, PhD, BCBA-D, is the part time Executive Director of ASAT and Past-President, a role he served from 2006 and 2012. He is the Co-Editor of ASAT’s newsletter, Science in Autism Treatment. He received his PhD in clinical psychology from Rutgers University in 1993. In 2000, in response to the increasing number of parents attending professional conferences to learn about applied behavior analysis, he founded the Parent-Professional Partnership Special Interest Group (www.autismpppsig.org) for the Association for Behavior Analysis International serving as its President from 1998 through 2006 and Co-President from 2007-2014. Dr. Celiberti currently sits on a number of advisory boards in the field of autism and early childhood education, and organizes fundraising initiatives to support after school programming for economically disadvantaged children in New Jersey. He works in private practice and provides consultation to public and private schools and agencies in the U.S. and Canada. He authored several articles in professional journals and presents frequently at regional, national, and international conferences. In prior positions, Dr. Celiberti taught courses related to applied behavior analysis (ABA) at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, supervised individuals pursuing BCBA and BCaBA certifications, and conducted research in the areas of ABA, family intervention, and autism.
Preeti Chojar, MCA, has been a Board Member of ASAT since 2007 and currently serves as Co-Chair of the Website Committee. She is a software professional and, when her son was diagnosed, she had no knowledge of autism. She set about educating herself by attending numerous conferences, asking questions and reading as many books and articles as possible. She worked hand in hand with the team at her son’s preschool. She has used her software skills, innovative thinking and her commitment to her son to develop and carry out an unrelenting path forward for him. Her level of involvement and commitment to science-based treatment has sustained over the years.
Cathy Curcio, MSW is a member of the Board of Directors of ASAT since 2013 and is on the Fundraising and Development Committee. She attended Douglass College and Rutgers School of Social Work at which time she became involved in the field of autism. She held a variety of leadership roles in developing ABA early intervention programs, staff training, creating strategies for families to use at home, and sibling support. She was co-creator and president of the Council of Home Programmers (CoHP), a peer supervision group for individuals leading in home, ABA early intervention teams in NY and NJ. She is an advocate for the use of science based treatments for individuals with autism and is proud to be part of ASAT. She is an active member of her community as a Girl Scout leader, president of the PTO, and a member of a too many school committees! She enjoys spending time with her two great kids, playing with her two crazy dogs and reading.
Kathryn Dobel, JD, is a Board Member of ASAT since October of 2005 serving on the Board Affairs Committee. Ms. Dobel is an attorney in private practice in Berkeley, California. For 35 years her practice has concentrated on securing the individual legal rights of students from birth through age 22, diagnosed with Autism, or one or more of the other twelve categories of qualifying disabilities impacting educational performance, pursuant to the federal law entitled Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act. Ms. Dobel successfully litigated the case known as Union School District, the first case in the country to order in 1990 that a preschool student’s Individualized Education Program could be a full time Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) program directed by Ivar Lovaas. After the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Union in 1994, Ms. Dobel consulted and/or co-counseled in cases of first impression obtaining ABA programs as the primary educational programs for children on the Autism Spectrum in Oregon, Nevada, Arizona and Washington. She authored the chapter, Obtaining a Free and Appropriate Public Education for Preschool-Age Children with Autism or Pervasive Developmental Disorders, in the book Teaching Individuals with Developmental Delays: Basic Intervention Techniques by O. Ivar Lovaas.
Ruth Donlin, MS, is a Board Member of ASAT since 2010 and on the Public Relations Committee. She is a consultant in private practice based in New York, and has provided consultation to schools, agencies, and home programs for children and adults on the autism spectrum for 20 years. She has completed the course requirements for a PhD in Clinical Psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute and is completing her dissertation. She presents on a variety of topics such as managing challenging behaviors, using visual supports, team dynamics, and social skill development at conferences regionally, nationally, and internationally. Ruth is Past-President of the Autism Special Interest Group (SIG) of the Association of Behavior Analysis International.
Elizabeth Gibson Dyer, MA, CCC-SLP, has been a member of the ASAT Board of Directors since 2006. She and her husband are the parents of three daughters, the middle of whom has Down syndrome. As a licensed and certified speech-language pathologist, she is dedicated to science-based interventions. Having been in practice since 1994, she is the owner of a business providing speech-language pathology, occupational therapy and educational consulting services in Maine. Her areas of primary interest include Down syndrome, autism and dual diagnosis, as well as intellectual disabilities. Betsy is also a special education director in Maine and holds certification as superintendent of schools. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with family and friends, ocean sailing, skiing, traveling and reading.
Daniela Fazzio, PhD, BCBA-D, is the Co-editor of ASAT’s newsletter, Science in Autism Treatment, and Co-chair of the Newsletter and Website Committee. Daniela has been an international liaison for ASAT, having lived in Brazil, Canada, and now the US. She has a Master’s degree in Behavior Analysis and a doctoral degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from the University of Manitoba, Canada, where she is an Adjunct Professor. She has worked in leadership roles with agencies that provide high quality behavioral intervention for individuals with autism spectrum disorder. She currently lives in San Francisco, CA. Daniela joined the board in 2011.
Joseph Forgione, MBA has served on the board of ASAT since 2002 when he joined to support a friend and founding board member who had children with autism. He holds a BA in political science and economics from Queens College and an MBA from Fordham University. He was a former financial services executive and Adjunct Assistant Professor of business at St. John’s Graduate School of Business having taught numerous courses and summer seminars to graduate business students. Over the last 20 years, he has worked with several non-profit organizations.
Sabrina Freeman, PhD, is a Board Member of ASAT since 2011. She graduated from Stanford University in 1995 with a PhD in Sociology, specializing in small group research and the study of organizations. Upon return to Canada, Dr. Freeman spent 14 years advocating for the rights of children with autism to be included in the government funded health care system for autism treatment. Dr. Freeman created a 35-minute VHS/DVD Autism: Now What Do I Do? to help guide parents through setting up science-based treatment programs for their children. In 2002, she was awarded Queen Elizabeth’s 50th Golden Jubilee Medal for advocacy work done on behalf of children afflicted with autism. Dr. Freeman’s advocacy culminated in the now famous Supreme Court of Canada ruling Auton (Guardian ad litem of) vs. British Columbia in 2004. Dr. Freeman wrote several books on autism, translated into French, Italian and Norwegian. Her hope is that through her scholarship, thousands of parents will not have to go through the uncertain journey of generations of parents of newly diagnosed children. Dr. Freeman also writes a blog (http://www.autismpundit.com) designed to help parents and professionals navigate through current issues in the area of autism. She is the parent of an adult daughter with autism. In addition, she currently teaches a course on Applied Research Methods to students in the Human Services Program at Western Washington University. Dr. Freeman is the parent of an adult daughter with autism.
Karen Fried, PsyD, BCBA-D, joined the ASAT Board of Directors in 2015 and is a member of the Scientific Review Committee. She is Director of Developmental Pediatric Services for the Advocate Health Care hospital system in Chicago. Originally from New York, Dr. Fried is a licensed clinical psychologist and board certified behavior analyst, with a background in school and community psychology. She holds a Doctorate of Psychology from Rutgers University. For the past 20 years, Dr. Fried has specialized in the diagnosis, education and treatment of children with ASD and other disorders impacting behavior, learning, socialization and communication. In prior positions, she led the start-up and management of ABA programs for children with ASD. Dr Fried serves on the Illinois Autism Task Force, an advisory body to the Secretary of the Illinois Department of Human Services. She is a member of the Illinois Psychological Association, American Psychological Association, Association for Behavior Analysis International, and Association of Professional Behavior Analysts.
Peggy Halliday, MEd, BCBA, is a Board Member of ASAT, and serves as the Supervisor of Training and Supervision at the Virginia Institute of Autism (VIA) in Charlottesville, Virginia, where she has been a practitioner since 1998. Peggy oversees trainings for parents and professionals and provides consultation to public school divisions throughout Virginia. She also oversees BCBA and BCaBA training experiences. In addition to serving as a presenter at state and national conferences, including the Organization for Autism Research (OAR), Commonwealth Autism Service (CAS), and Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) Peggy was selected as an autism expert for the “how-to” website monkeysee.com. Peggy has been on the board of ASAT since 2010 and serves on the Public Relations Committee.
Zachary Houston, MS, BCBA joined the ASAT board in August of 2014. He is a Program Director for Applied Behavior Analysis at Boston Public Schools and spends his days supporting and advocating for science in autism treatment for the students. He supports programming for the 700 students with Autism serviced by the district by training support staff, teachers, parents, and related service providers to implement scientifically validated interventions. Zachary has been a Behavior Analyst for 10 years and has served a variety of populations. His orientation throughout his career has been a focus on support system development in order to maintain quality evidence-based services for all people.
Barbara Jamison, BA, has been a Board Member of ASAT since 2009 and is the lead for Media Watch, an initiative addressing misleading information in public media and acknowledging accurate portrayals of autism and autism treatment. As a parent of four children, including an adult son with autism, Barbara has demonstrated a long-term commitment to science-based treatment, both in intervention for her son, as well as in instruction to parents and professionals through an agency serving children with autism and their families. She is a graduate of Partners in Policymaking, a competency-based advocacy and leadership training program.
Eric V. Larsson, PhD, LP, BCBA-D is a Board Member of ASAT. He is the Executive Director of Clinical Services at the Lovaas Institute Midwest, where he implements and researches a program of intensive early intervention services for families of children who suffer from autism. Dr. Larsson is a member of the Clinical Faculty in the Psychology Department at the University of Minnesota, where he teaches classes in Applied Behavior Analysis and in Autism. He is currently a board member of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board and the Autism Recovery Foundation. He is the honorary President of the Fundaçion Planeta Imaginario in Barcelona, Spain. Dr. Larsson served as Associate Research Director of the NIMH Multi-site Replication Study of the UCLA Young Autism Project. He has supervised intensive early intervention services since 1983 and has consulted with over 250 programs and governmental agencies world-wide, particularly on the issues involved in insurance coverage of accountable ABA services. In Minnesota, he authored a law for Medicaid coverage of intensive early intervention for autism. He participated in the development of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board Guidelines for Health Plan Coverage of Applied Behavior Analysis Treatment for Autism Spectrum Disorder. In 2013 he received the Provider of the Year Award from Autism Speaks in Washington, DC. and the Jerry Shook Leadership Award from the California Association for Behavior Analysis (CalABA).
Tracie Lindblad, MSc, MEd, SLP, BCBA is a board member of ASAT since 2015. She is a Speech-Language Pathologist and behaviour analyst with over 25 years experience working with children and youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and other neuro-developmental disabilities. She received her Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of British Columbia, and later attended Brock University where she completed a Master of Education in Curriculum. Tracie is the Clinical Director of Monarch House and continues to function as a Clinical Supervisor for the government-funded Intensive Behaviour Intervention (IBI) centre-based and home-based programs in Southern Ontario, Canada. Tracie has presented numerous workshops within the fields of speech and language, education, and ABA, served as a research investigator on a number of projects within the fields of ASD, ABA, and developmental disabilities, and has also published peer-reviewed research. She also serves on a number of agency boards and associations. She is currently the Co-Chair for the Speech Pathology and Applied Behaviour Analysis Special Interest Group, affiliated with the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI), and is also co-chair of the Autism Special Interest Group for the Ontario Association of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists (OSLA). Tracie serves on the Board of Directors for New Leaf: Living and Learning Together Inc., a non-profit agency that provides residential services to adults with dual diagnoses. She has also recently begun a two-year term on the Board of ONTABA (Ontario Association for Applied Behaviour Analysis).
Daniel W. Mruzek, PhD, BCBA-D, is an Associate Professor at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC), Division of Neurodevelopmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. He received his doctoral training in Psychology at the Ohio State University. Through his appointment at URMC, he serves as a clinician and consultant, training school teams and supporting families of children with autism and other developmental disabilities in western New York. Also, Dr. Mruzek is Director of the University of Rochester Human Behavior Assessment Unit, researcher on three NIH-funded autism intervention research projects and coordinator of his division’s Psychology Postdoctoral Fellowship Program in Developmental Disabilities. He has authored and co-authored several peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on autism and other developmental disabilities and is on the editorial board for the journal Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities. In addition to duties as an ASAT board member, he is the Science Corner editor for ASAT’s Focus on Science newsletter and active in the Media Watch initiatives. He joined the ASAT board in 2009.
Amy McGinnis Stango, MS, OTR, MS, BCBA, joined the ASAT Board of Directors in 2015. Amy holds graduate degrees in both occupational therapy and applied behavior analysis. She is a nationally registered occupational therapist and board certified behavior analyst. She provides consultative direct and consultative services to families, clinics and schools across the United States and internationally. She mentors professionals who are interested in learning about applied behavior analysis and evidence-based occupational therapy. She co-founded McGinnis Dean Press, a publication company devoted to behavior analytic resources. She also conducts and publishes research investigating the effects of various treatments for individuals with autism.
Scott M. Myers, MD, FAAP, is Board Member of ASAT since 2010. He is a Neurodevelopmental Pediatrician with the Geisinger Autism & Developmental Medicine Institute in Lewisburg, PA, where he maintains a busy clinical practice and conducts research. He is also a Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Temple University School of Medicine and Faculty Associate in the Neuroscience Program at Bucknell University. Dr. Myers trained in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities at the Kennedy Krieger Institute/Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and is board-certified in Pediatrics, Neurodevelopmental Disabilities, and Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics. He is also a member of the Advisory Board of the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts (APBA). He previously served on the Executive Committee of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Council on Children with Disabilities and is co-author of the 2007 AAP Clinical Reports on the identification/evaluation and management of autism spectrum disorders. He is associate editor of the textbook American Academy of Pediatrics Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics (Voigt RG, Macias MM, and Myers SM, 2011) and author or co-author of numerous peer-reviewed journal articles and textbook chapters on autism and other developmental disabilities.
Dena Russell, MS, has been a member of the ASAT Board of Directors since 2012. She was the first graduate of ASAT’s 150-hour externship program, and currently sits on the Fundraising and Development Committee. Dena has a BA in Psychology and a MS in Criminal Justice. In 2011, Dena started the Hoboken Special Needs Parent Group as a way to connect families with resources and increase special needs activities within her community. As a mother of twin boys on the Autism Spectrum, Dena is a strong believer in science-based treatments and the mission of ASAT.
Tristram Smith, PhD, a Board Member of ASAT and Chair of the Scientific Review Committee. He is a Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC), where he leads federally funded studies comparing the efficacy of different interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder. He is also a clinician in URMC’s Community Consultation Program, serving students with ASD and other intellectual disabilities in schools and other agencies. His commitment to the study and treatment of children with ASD began in 1982, when he had the opportunity to volunteer as a buddy for an adult with autism who lived near his college. This experience inspired him to apply to graduate school at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he studied clinical psychology and worked as a therapist and researcher with O. Ivar Lovaas, PhD, in the UCLA Young Autism Project. Before moving to Rochester in 2000, he directed clinics for children with autism and their families in the states of California, Iowa, and Washington. He has authored or coauthored several of the most widely-cited studies on treatment outcomes for children with ASD.
Bridget A. Taylor, PsyD, BCBA-D, is a Board Member of ASAT since 2007. She is the co-founder and Executive Director of Alpine Learning Group. She has specialized in the education and treatment of children with autism for the past twenty-five years. She holds a Doctorate of Psychology from Rutgers University, and received her Master’s degree in Early Childhood Special Education from Columbia University. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and a Licensed Psychologist. Dr. Taylor is active in the autism research community and has published numerous articles on effective interventions for autism. She serves on several editorial boards including the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and Behavioral Interventions. She is also a member of the Autism Advisory Group for the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies, is a board member of the Association for Science in Autism Treatment, and serves on the Professional Advisory Board for the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts. Dr. Taylor is also Senior Clinical Advisor for Rethink Autism, an innovative web-based curriculum for children with autism.
Leanne Tull, M.ADS, BCBA, serves as Secretary. She is the past Editing Manager of ASAT’s newsletter, Science in Autism Treatment. As a former Extern, Leanne helped establish the role of Biomedical Advances Coordinator. In this role she focuses on what ASAT can do differently to better address biomedical advances (fads and evidence-based discoveries). In 2011, Leanne received her Masters in Applied Disability Studies, with a specialization in Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA), from Brock University in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. She is committed to the practice of behaviour analysis, grounded in the best available scientific evidence. Leanne has over 12 years of clinical experience; this includes supervising and managing the delivery of government-funded Intensive Behaviour Intervention (IBI) therapy and community-based ABA services for children and youth with a diagnosis of autism. She also has over seven years of experience, teaching in the college setting. Leanne currently teaches courses related to ABA, and supervises student field placements at George Brown College in Toronto. Leanne also works as a curriculum writer and presenter for the Geneva Centre for Autism, Training Institute. She is the project lead and content developer for a Ministry of Education initiative: Online ABA course for Educators and Online Functional Behaviour Assessment (FBA) course for Educators.