2021 Milestones National Autism Conference
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Milestones Autism Resources

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Warrensville Heights, OH 44128

Phone: (216) 464-7600

Home Events 2021 Milestones National Autism Conference Achievement Awards

Achievement Awards


Who inspires you? Milestones recognizes individuals who are making a difference in the autism community.

Nominations are now closed. Honorees will be recognized at the conference being held virtually June 16-17, 2021.

Professional Excellence: For a dedicated professional who has been committed to making a difference in the lives of children and families.

Personal Achievement: For a person with autism who has achieved individual excellence in accomplishing a personal goal or milestone (no age requirement).

Family Tribute: For a family member who has gone above and beyond their own family connection to autism, such as developing resources or services to benefit the special needs community.

Corporate Innovation: For an organization or business that has made a profound impact with the involvement of the special needs community.

NEW! COVID-19 Courage & Compassion Award:  For an individual or organization that has demonstrated heroic actions during the pandemic in an effort to serve the special needs community.

Milestones will select award recipients at its own discretion.

Past Award Recipients

Community Innovation Award - Ilene Lainer, NEXT for AUTISM, New York, NY
Family Tribute Award -- Susan Sachs, Project Hope Foundation, Greenville, SC
Family Tribute Award -- Lisa Lane, Project Hope Foundation, Greenville, SC
Professional Excellence Award -- Wendy Duke, Center for Applied Drama and Autism, Akron, OH
Visionary Employer Award -- Rebecca Beam, Auticon, Calabasas, CA

Parent Tribute Award -- Amy and Jeff Belles, Co-Directors of KultureCity Ohio 
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

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

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

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

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

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

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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