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National Conference on Autism coming to FGCU on April 25

By Staff | Apr 7, 2009

Florida Gulf Coast University College of Education and the College of Arts and Sciences sponsor “The Road to Best Practice in Autism,” a conference for physicians, parents and educators, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 25 in the Student Union ballroom. The conference is free and open to the public.

National experts in the research and study of autism and autism spectrum disorders will address a variety of topics such as diagnosis and treatment, current research, communication alternatives, parents of individuals with autism and the community system, addressing behavioral concerns, and more at the second annual “Promising Pathways” conference.

“We’re very pleased to once again partner with FGCU to present such an in depth look at autism as well as offer a symposium with essential topics. The conference will offer pertinent information for professionals in the medical and educational fields as well as parents and caregivers, and all those affected by and/or interested in the study of autism,” said conference Chairman Armando Galella, executive director of Eden Florida, a non-profit agency that offers lifespan services for children and adults with autism.

Keynote presenters include Dr. Mohammad Ghaziuddin, a child psychiatrist on the faculty of the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. He has authored several scientific articles and book chapters on autism and Asperger syndrome. He directs the Autism Spectrum Disorders Program, and Child Psychiatry Training at the University.

Other keynotes include Dr. Kiely Law, research director of Interactive Autism Network (IAN) at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. She received her medical and public health degrees from Johns Hopkins University and completed an internship in pediatrics at the University of Maryland Medical Systems in 2002.

Law has been impacted personally by autism. In 1996, her 3-year-old son was diagnosed with the disorder at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. During the past years, she has worked on many autism-related initiatives with her husband, Dr. Paul Law.

Dr. Paul Law is director of Medical Informatics at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. He serves as assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics. Law earned his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University in 1997 and received a master’s degree in public health from the JHU School of Public Health in the year prior. He completed his pediatric residency in 2000 and a health informatics fellowship in 2005 – both at Johns Hopkins. He joined Kennedy Krieger in 2005 to lead a project to develop the Interactive Autism Network (IAN), a new national autism database, and to support other researchers at the Institute through the discipline of health research informatics.

Jose Martinez-Diaz, associate professor, is founder and chair of Behavior Analysis Programs at the Florida Institute of Technology, a department offering graduate degrees in Behavior Analysis in Melbourne and Orlando. He is program director of Florida Tech’s ABA Professional Development Program, and CEO of ABA Technologies Inc. He also serves as adjunct faculty at Penn State University’s Distance Learning Center.

Anne S. Holmes is chief clinical officer for the Eden Family of Services in Princeton, N.J. Holmes received her master’s degree in Speech Pathology from Douglass College and holds a Certificate of Clinical Competence and New Jersey licensure, and is a board certified Behavior Analyst. She serves as adjunct in the College of New Jersey. She is on the Autism Society of America’s Panel of Professional Advisors. Holmes has worked in the field of autism for over 30 years and is responsible for oversight for monitoring standards of care including staff development and student/participant outcomes by means of a comprehensive quality management system; as well as supervision of outreach diagnostic, evaluative, and consultative services.

Reservations are required may be made by registering at www.fgcu.edu/events/promisingpathways by Friday, April 17 or by calling 239-992-4680.

For more information, contact project coordinator Peg Sullivan at 239-590-7748.

Source: FGCU