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Featured Speakers

February 21, 2019

All featured speakers will also be showcased via livestream.


Steve Silberman

Keynote Speaker

Keynote Address: "Great Minds Don't Always Think Alike"

Steve Silberman is an award-winning science writer and author of NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity.


Dr. Vickie J Mitchell

Keynote Speaker

Eleanor & Charles Garrett Endowed Chair in Special Education at Sam Houston State University.



Sasha Long, BCBA, M.A.

Livestream Session: "Can’t Do or Won’t Do? Solving Classroom Challenges Using Positive Reinforcement & Executive Functioning Skill Building"

Sasha Long, BCBA, M.A., is the founder and president of The Autism Helper, Inc.

The goal for all general education and special education students is to be learning, engaged, and independent. Begin this process by identifying each learning and behavioral challenge as a Can’t Do or Won’t Do. Is the work or work process beyond your child’s skill level or is the motivation to complete the task not there? Explore learning obstacles by improving executive functioning skills and adapting academic work. Add a proactive element to your behavior management system by implementing positive reinforcement to increase positive behaviors within your class. This session is jam packed with ready to use strategies for general education and special education classrooms.


Robert Pennington, Ph.D. BCBA-D

Livestream Session: "Write On! Teaching Written Expression to Students with ASD/Intellectual Disability"

Robert Pennington PhD BCBA-D is associate professor at the University of Louisville in the Department of Special Education.

This session presents the most current research on teaching writing to students with ASD/ID and provides step-by-step descriptions of teaching methods for this unique population of learners.

dwilkses_1.jpgDebbie Wilkes

Livestream Session: "Person Centered Approach to Supporting Transition: PPCD through High School"

Associate with the Institute on Person Centered Practices.

Transitioning a student to a new environment, whether it is from early childhood to elementary, to middle, to high school and beyond, the introduction is of utmost importance. Using tools from person-centered thinking, participants will learn to create a one-page description to support teachers, therapists, assistants, agency members and others to understand the positive characteristics of the individual, what is important to him/her and how to provide support that will lead to a successful transition.

Photo of Lee Lentz-Edwards and Rebecca Bilyeu

Lee Lentz-Edwards B.A., M.Ed., M.B.A.

Rebecca Bilyeu, B.S., M.Ed.

Livestream Session: "I Can See Clearly Now: Special Education, Autism and You"

Addressing the complexities of the special education process can be overwhelming. Join us as we explore THE LEGAL FRAMEWORK, a user-friendly format centering on state and federal requirements, publications, and resources that can be invaluable to parents and teachers of children with autism. We will look specifically at new items; the eligibility criteria for special education services for a child with autism; the parents’, administrators’, and educators’ roles as members of the ARD committee; laws regarding time-out and restraint; and SPECIAL FACTORS that must be considered for students with autism.

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