Milestones Annual Benefit 2019 - October 26, 2019
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Milestones Autism Resources

4853 Galaxy Parkway, Suite A
Warrensville Heights, OH 44128

Phone: (216) 464-7600

Home Events National Autism Conference Special Features Awards

Achievement Awards

Milestones recognized individuals making a difference in the autism community.

Congratulations to our 2019 honorees! 

Community Innovation Award - Ilene Lainer, NEXT for AUTISM, New York, NY
Ilene Lainer co-founded NEXT for AUTISM because she is committed to transforming the system of services and pursuing the latest innovations so that all families living with autism have access to the educational, social, recreational and support services they need. NEXT for AUTISM transforms the national landscape of services for people with autism by strategically designing, launching, and supporting innovative programs.

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Family Tribute Award - Lisa Lane, Project Hope Foundation, Greenville, SC
Lisa Lane and Susan Sachs met in 1996 when the rate of autism was relatively rare and services in South Carolina were nearly non-existent. They tackled the necessary paperwork and formed a nonprofit, Project HOPE Foundation, based on their desire to “Help Our Potential Emerge.” 

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Family Tribute Award - Susan Sachs, Project Hope Foundation, Greenville, SC
Susan Sachs and Lisa Lane met in 1996 when the rate of autism was relatively rare and services in South Carolina were nearly non-existent. They tackled the necessary paperwork and formed a nonprofit, Project HOPE Foundation, based on their desire to “Help Our Potential Emerge.” 

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Professional Excellence Award - Wendy Duke, Center for Applied Drama and Autism, Akron, OH
Wendy is the founder of the Center of Applied Drama and Autism. She is also a teacher with Theater on the Spectrum. She works with people with all kinds of disabilities to encourage them to be self-advocates and advocate for others. 

Wendy duke photo2

Visionary Employer Award - Rebecca Beam, Auticon, Calabasas, CA
Rebecca Beam is President of Auticon U.S., an IT consulting firm that employs people on the autism spectrum by matching their unique cognitive abilities with job requirements of leading technology clients. Auticon currently employs 26 individuals on the spectrum, with plans to employ 60 individuals by the end of 2019. Rebecca believes in creating careers in tech for the under-served and overlooked autism population.

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Past Award Recipients

2018      
Parent Tribute Award -- Jeff Belles, Co-Director of KultureCity Ohio & Metro RTA Supervisor, Kulture Kids
Parent Tribute Award -- Amy Belles, Co-Director of KultureCity Ohio & Adapted Phys. Ed. Teacher, Kulture Kids
Everyday Hero Award -- Jennifer Casamento, Paraprofessional with Field Local Schools
Professional Excellence -- Brad McGarry, Director of the Autism Initiative, Mercyhurst University
Professional Excellence -- Chris Filler, Program Director, Lifespan Transitions Center with Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence (OCALI)
Personal Achievement Award -- Jordyn Zimmerman

2017
Trailblazer -- Grace Blatt
Trailblazer -- Tyler Aldrich
Research & Medicine -- Stephen Ruedrich MD, CWRU School of Medicine, University Hospitals
Research & Medicine -- Thomas Frazier, Chief Science Officer, Autism Speaks
Parent Tribute -- Catherine Krammer, PhD, Founder of Lake/Geauga Support Group for Parents
Parent Tribute -- Saundra Jordan, Parent Mentor at CMSD
Outstanding Educator -- Tabatha Devine, Work Study Coordinator, Westlake High School
Community Innovator -- Nicole Gerami, MA CCC-SLP, Friendship in Teams (F.I.T.) Program
Personal Achievement -- Lucas Estafanous

2016      
Teen Trailblazer -- Alexandra Wiskes
Professional Excellence -- Mary Beth Koss Achievement Centers for Children
Parent Tribute -- Keith Bambic
Parent Tribute -- Shari Goldberg, Past President and Founder, Autism Speaks NE Ohio Chapter
Community Innovator -- Kelly Florian, Playhouse Square
Community Innovator -- Daniel Hahn, Playhouse Square, Great Lakes Theater
Personal Achievement -- Brittany Lieberman JFSA Transitions
Personal Achievement -- Sari Gonick JFSA Transitions
Personal Achievement -- Adam Freireich, JFSA Transitions
Personal Achievement -- Evan Burg, JFSA Transitions

2015
Teen Trailblazer -- Michael Whary
Parent Tribute -- Sandee Winkelman
Outstanding Educator -- Terry Kobetitsch, Intervention Specialist, Revere Local School District
Community Innovator -- Doug Blecher, Autism Personal Coach
Professional Excellence -- Lisa Audet PhD, CCC-SLP, Kent State University
Personal Achievement -- Timothy Ray Smith, Self-Advocate

2014
Teen Trailblazer -- Justin Bachman
Visionary Employer Award -- Cleveland Clinic
Visionary Employer Award -- City of Independence
Visionary Employer Award -- Natural Essentials
Professional Excellence -- Sister Agnesmarie LoPorto
Parent Tribute -- Sarah Rintamaki, Connecting for Kids
Outstanding Educator -- Alison Edie-Krohe
Community Innovator -- Dianne DePasquale-Hagerty, Medina Creative Housing


2013
Teen Trailblazer -- Molly Dann
Professional Excellence (in memorium) -- Debbie Avner
Professional Excellence -- Lori Wotowiec, ASGC
Professional Excellence -- Jim Wotowiec, ASGC
Parent Recognition -- Joy Spencer, Aspres Group
Volunteer Appreciation -- Josh Eyre

2012
Teen Trailblazer -- Aaron Danielpour
Volunteer Appreciation -- Andrew Wasserman
Professional Excellence -- Aletta Sinoff
Professional Excellence -- Karin Hess-Hopkins, Monarch School

2004 – 2011

2004 Catherine Maurice
2005   Barbara  Yavorcik, Autism Society Ohio
2006   Toby Bresky, JFSA
2007   Teresa Karsnak, Strongsville City School District
2007   Heidi Solomon, JFSA
2008   Kriselle Fox, Cleveland Municipal School District
2008   Stacie Mamula, Revere School
2008   Sherri Appleton, Asperger Team
2008   Sarah Taub, YACHAD
2009   Debra Mandell, Monarch School
2010   Parent Tribute Jeanna  Syndenstricker
2010   Parent Tribute Ann Regan, UpSide of Downs
2010   Professional Excellence William D. Thomas, Solon Blue Ribbon
2010   Professional Excellence  Kimberly C. English


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