NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwired) -- Major breakthroughs in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research and policy were featured at ICare4Autism's annual international autism conference which commenced on Monday, June 30th at Hotel Pennsylvania in New York City. Top national and international experts in autism discussed medical advances, evidenced-based practices and innovative initiatives in music, movement and technology. Dr. Joshua Weinstein, founder and CEO of ICare4Autism, welcomed hundreds of guests from all over the globe, representing autistics, parents, teachers, therapists, behavior analysts, practitioners and researchers. The ICare4Autism International Autism Conference was dedicated to the Global Autism Workforce Initiative, featuring keynote speaker Randy Lewis, former Senior VP of Walgreens' logistics division, and guest speaker Ari Ne'eman, president of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network. There was also a moving musical performance by the inspirational and the talented Christopher Duffley, a blind and autistic 13-year old.
Monday's conference program discussed the current plans for the Autism Workforce Initiative, as Dr. Weinstein elaborated on the importance of creating new opportunities at this current time. He emphasized that many companies are starting to realize how critical it is to implement programs that employ autistics, and are beginning to see that their individual qualities can create a great competitive edge.
Tuesday, July 1st, marked the second day of the conference, focusing on recent scientific advances, drug development efforts, and other medical breakthroughs. Dr. Eric Hollander, chairman of the advisory committee for ICare4Autism, outlined ICare4Autism's mission and goal of collaboration with like minded organizations worldwide, as well as presented some of his scientific research, focusing on the effects of oxytocin on chronic and impulsive behaviors.
Other presentations included BCBA workshops in applied behavior analysis. Dr. Gregory Hanley led a very interesting workshop that analyzed functional assessment of problem behavior. He stated that we all should respect why an individual engages in specific actions, and we need to do an open-ended analysis, as opposed to a close-ended, indirect assessment.
At the conference awards dinner, Harley Lippman, Founder and CEO of Genesis10, was honored with the ICare4Autism Workforce Award, and Jason Maier, Director of the New York Office of Stan Johnson Company, was given the ICare4Autism Leadership Award. The conference, which concluded on Wednesday, was an incredible success, bringing together hundreds of families and autism professionals, united in the goal of creating better opportunities for those on the spectrum.
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