2022 Milestones National Autism Conference
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Milestones Autism Resources

4853 Galaxy Parkway, Suite A
Warrensville Heights, OH 44128

Phone: (216) 464-7600

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Staff

Ilana Hoffer Skoff, MA
Executive Director
ihskoff@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 102

Ilana Hoffer Skoff, Executive Director and Co-founder of Milestones, knows that where there’s a will, there’s a way. Determined to bring autism training, resources and services to Northeast Ohio, Ilana co-founded Milestones with Mia in 2003. Wanting each and every child to reach his or her milestones, Ilana has coached and inspired families over the past 17 years providing practical strategies and innovative programming. Previously, Ilana worked for almost 20 years with nonprofit agencies, including consulting in the areas of development, strategic planning and grant writing.

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Mia Buchwald Gelles
Operations Director
miabgelles@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 101

Mia Buchwald Gelles, Operations Director and Co-founder of Milestones, makes sure everything runs smoothly. She oversees daily operations, finance, technology and HR. Mia uses her expertise in nonprofit management and project planning so Milestones can effectively serve the community. Her technical skills have enabled Milestones to develop and evolve the website and database as the organization has grown. Prior to Milestones, Mia provided 20 years of lead program management and data solutions for nonprofits and governmental agencies. Mia serves on the executive board for the Ohio Coalition for the Education of Children with Disabilities (OCECD).

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Maya Holtz Groys, MA
Development Director
mhgroys@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x107

Maya is excited to return to her role as Milestones Development Director and work with the staff, board and community to ensure a sustainable future. She is dedicated to Milestones' mission of helping families and autistic individuals. Maya has 20 years of experience in the nonprofit world with a focus on development, donor cultivation, event planning and grant management. Maya's passion for organizations that help children and families included serving as Board President of Fostering Hope, a nonprofit dedicated to enriching the lives of children in foster care. Inspired every day by her three children, Maya has a master's degree in management of child, youth and family services from Brandeis University. 

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Vanetta Perry
Special Events Director
vperry@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 113

Vanetta is a seasoned development professional with over 20 years of experience. As a certified event planner, she brings to Milestones expertise in planning and executing corporate, community and major fundraising events. Vanetta is passionate about many causes, including premature birth and low birth-weight babies, healthy pregnancies and health disparities in urban communities. During her time with the Solon School System, Vanetta spent time working with special needs children. In that capacity, she worked with many autistic children. She has a bachelor’s of science degree in marketing & computer information systems and has three college-age sons.

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Leslie Rotsky
Conference Director
lrotsky@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 103

Conference Director Leslie Rotsky has 30 years of experience as a project manager, event planner and educator. Leslie is passionate about improving the lives of autistic individuals. In her role at Milestones, she has focused on growing the Milestones Conference into a leading national autism event that delivers evidence-based education and professional development to attendees from across the country. Raising her autistic teenage son informs and inspires her work every day.

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Beth Thompson, MSSA, LSW
Program Director
bthompson@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 108

Beth has over a decade of experience working directly with autistic young adults, guiding families and individuals toward greater independence. Prior to joining Milestones in 2011, Beth served as a Youth Transition Specialist with LEAP (Linking Employment, Abilities & Potential). Beth earned her MSSA with a concentration in Community Development and Social Change from Case Western Reserve University. She has represented Milestones on the Employment First Transition Council for the State of Ohio where she assisted with policy development and implementation and also serves as a field advisor for Case Western Reserve University Graduate School of Social Work and previously sat on the internal curriculum committee. She has also presented on topics related to autistic teens and adults  throughout the state of Ohio and national conferences. Beth is dedicated to mentoring self-advocates to become teachers for others and expanding community engagement for individuals on the spectrum.

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Lisa Danielpour
Marketing and Communications Director
ldanielpour@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 109

Lisa brings 30 years of strategy, marketing, technology and nonprofit leadership experience dedicated to supporting the autism community. A passionate patient/family, disabilities and healthcare technology advocate and national speaker, Lisa is Past President of the Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital Patient and Family Partnership Council. Lisa has presented at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) three times and at the American College of Physicians Internal Medicine Conference, American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Cleveland Clinic Patient Experience Summit. She is a member of the NIH Clinical Center Patient Advisory Group and Rainbow Hospital Quality Council, and was a member of the University Hospitals (UH) System Maintaining the Art of Compassion during COVID-19 Task Force in 2020. Lisa served as Marketing Director for the International City/County Management Association for 20 years, and has a communications degree from Northwestern University. Lisa has two wonderful sons, one of whom has ASD.

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Hannah Harp
Communications & Content Manager
hharp@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 117
Hannah supports Milestones in all communication and content creation efforts, working to broaden the organization's reach and engage our community. Hannah has a degree in journalism and psychology from Miami University and a professional background in content writing. With a passion for educating and strengthening communities through media, Hannah enjoys finding new ways to connect the Milestones community and enrich the lives of others on a daily basis.  

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Nicole Herrera
Office Manager
nherrera@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 106

Nicole provides the foundation that supports all Milestones programming, ensuring efficiency, accuracy and effectiveness. She handles database management and oversees registration for all events, including the Milestones National Conference. Nicole is one of the welcoming, friendly faces checking in autistic individuals and families for consultations. Her previous areas of study and experience include Modern Languages, Education and technical writing. She has also been an aide in a program for children with communication disorders for 10 years.

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Veronica Miller, MEd
Program Manager, Supervisor of Teen/Adult Transition Services
vmiller@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 115

As a program manager for Milestones, Veronica supports transition-age and adult individuals through our Helpdesk and consultation services. Before entering the world of special needs, Veronica spent many years supporting families and children in the welfare system, leading treatment teams and building meaningful relationships with clients and community providers. This experience served her well upon her transition to the Stark County Board of Developmental Disabilities in early 2021, where she discovered a passion for working with individuals in the disability community. 
Veronica has a master’s in higher education administration from Southern New Hampshire University. She enjoys baking, cooking and traveling to Caribbean countries. Veronica is also an avid collector of coffee mugs, tea, and Christmas ornaments that she finds on her travels.

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Jill Lipman
Website & Technology Project Manager
jlipman@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 126

Jill has overseen the day-to-day maintenance and redesign of Milestones' website since 2012. With over 20 years of project management experience, Jill also supports essential technology projects, communications efforts and video content production for the organization. She has a BFA from Syracuse University. Jill has two daughters, one of whom is autistic and was her inspiration for joining the Milestones team.

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Nathan Morgan, MSSA, LSW
Early Intervention/School Age Coordinator
nmorgan@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 118

Nathan first connected with Milestones in 2015 as a professional intern. He then joined the Achievement Centers for Children as a full-time Early Childhood Mental Health Social Worker. Nathan returned to Milestones in 2018 in his current role as Early Intervention/School Age Coordinator. He is a self-advocate, actively sharing his experiences at events, on panels, local news, and our annual conference. Nathan has a BA in Psychology and Japanese from Kent State University and an MSSA from Case Western Reserve University.

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Helena Farkas
Helpdesk Specialist
hfarkas@milestones.org
216.464.760 x116

Helena came to Milestones in 2014 after a lengthy career at Metro Health Medical Center. There, she worked extensively with the special needs population helping families navigate the medical and community systems. Now as a retired social worker with Milestones, Helena coaches families, individuals and professionals to access the multiple resources that promote education, health and independence and has a particular expertise in linking families of low income to available resources. Helena earned an MSSA from Case Western Reserve University.

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Estee Ezinski
Helpdesk Coordinator
eezinski@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x 200

As Helpdesk Coordinator, Estee supports individuals and families in finding resources in their communities. Estee has a professional background in pediatric patient care and is a mother to an autistic child. As a mom, she is dedicated to serving families while being able to utilizes her own child’s and family’s experiences to help guide other families. Estee is an active PTA member currently serving as PTA President in her district while sharing her passion for advocating for the autism community.

  

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Beverly Smith Malone
Spanish Helpdesk Consultant
bmalone@milestones.org
216.464.7600

Beverly Malone is the parent of two twice-exceptional school-age children, one on the autism spectrum. She is the parent facilitator for the Shaker Heights, Ohio Autism Support Group and the 2018-2020 Special Education Chair for her local elementary school.
She is a former teacher and now owns Go Strategies, LLC,  a consulting firm specializing in strategic implementation with frameworks for large scale inclusive change. She is also on the Leadership team of New One Shaker, advocating for a ‘universal design’ lens on local community initiatives.

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Mary Meister
Development Assistant
mmeister@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x124

As the Development Assistant, Mary Meister supports the development team to reach their goals, which include fundraising, donor cultivation and stewardship, event planning, and grant management. Mary is inspired by Milestone’s mission as she has an autistic sibling. Mary earned her bachelor’s degree from Kent State University and has a professional background in a corporate environment. She is excited to take what she has learned and apply it to a meaningful cause.

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Carly Jalowiec
Education Assistant
cjalowiec@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x121

Education Assistant Carly Jalowiec supports the conference team in the preparation and organization of the annual Milestones National Autism Conference, with a focus on technical and administrative work. Her professional background includes proposal writing, administrative organization, and technology expertise. Carly is also a self-advocate who turned to Milestones for assistance with her own autism journey, and looks forward to helping others do the same.

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Nera Birch
Self-Advocate
nbirch@milestones.org
216.464.7600 x114

Nera is a self-advocate with a passion for bringing awareness and advocacy to the Cleveland area. She comes to Milestones as a former volunteer and speaker, with a long history of public speaking alongside the Milestones coaching team about topics important to the autism community. 

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Consultants

Kelli Coleman
Bookkeeper
kelli@milestones.org
216.464.7600

Some photography courtesy of New Image Photography

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Need assistance? Let Milestones be your local guide.

Unsure of where to start? Call our free Helpdesk with your questions, and we will do the research for you!

Call: (216) 464-7600 x200