Gretchen Jacobs, Founder & President of Arizona Governmental Affairs, works with the Governor’s Office, Legislature and state agencies on issues of policy, appropriations and government marketing at the Arizona Capitol.

Prior to establishing her practice in governmental affairs, Gretchen represented corporate clients in civil court as an attorney and remains an active member of the Arizona and California Bar Associations. Since entering the political arena in 1998, she has earned a reputation as one of the hardest working and “most effective” lobbyists in Arizona as noted in numerous publications including the Phoenix Business Journal and Arizona Republic. She has earned the title of “Best Female Lobbyist” by the Arizona Capitol Times.

Gretchen’s clients rely on her practice of working with legislators from both sides of the aisle on technical and often controversial legislative bills, helpful to her clients and the community. She has excellent relationships with legislative leadership and knows from first-hand experience how to successfully assist clients through legislative terrain.

Selected Accomplishments:

▪ Founder/ President, Arizona Governmental Affairs, Resumed 2009 – present

▪ Chair of Governmental Affairs Department, Greenberg Traurig, 2004-2009 (Partnered with Congressman Matt Salmon & Mitch Menlove to establish Greenberg Traurig’s Arizona/State Practice)

▪ Founder & President, Arizona Governmental Affairs (Law Offices of Gretchen Jacobs, Ltd.) 2002 – 2004

▪ J.D., Santa Clara University School of Law, 1995

▪ Named “Best Female Lobbyist”, Arizona Capitol Times, 2017, 2016, 2014

▪ Received “Heart of Business Award,” Phoenix Business Journal, 2008

▪ Awarded “Legislative Leader of the Year” by Arizona Capitol Times, 2007

▪ Named “Forty Under Forty,” Phoenix Business Journal, 2007

▪ Featured, “Women Make a Difference in AZ Politics,” AZ Business Gazette, 2007

▪ Featured, “Arizona Politics,” Arizona Woman, 2007

▪ Featured, “Women in Public Policy,” Arizona Capitol Times, 2006

Dr. Hanna C. Rue is Head of Clinical Development for AST. She oversees clinical standards and assists in the design and implementation of numerous research projects and staff training protocols. Dr. Rue is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in Massachusetts and a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. She obtained her doctorate in clinical psychology at the University of North Dakota and completed her pre-doctoral training at May Institute. Prior to joining AST she played a leadership role at the National Autism Center and also served as a clinical director for the May Institute’s largest special education school. Dr. Rue also served as Chairperson on the National Standards Project, phase 2. Her current research interests include identification of evidence-based practice for treatment of ASD, investigation of behavior reduction procedures, and skill acquisition procedures.

Camille Proctor is the Executive Director and Founder of The Color of Autism Foundation.

In 2006, she gave birth to her second child, a son named Ari. Ari was a typically developing infant, but as he progressed into a toddler, he began to show signs of developmental delay. He didn’t walk until 14 months. He didn’t talk and he couldn’t point. Ari walked on his tiptoes and would flap his hands. Knowing these behaviors were signs of delay, Proctor set out to find what was wrong. Since Ari was affectionate and made eye contact, his behavior was often dismissed. Proctor was told, “Boys are slow.”

At age 2, Ari was diagnosed with PDD NOS, which is sort of the gray area of the Autism Spectrum. Unfortunately, with the diagnosis there was no preparation for the cost of therapy and care for her son. The diagnosis forced this single mom to become a stay-at-home mom, who emptied out her 401k on therapy and care for her child. Spending her days in speech therapy, occupational therapy, and every therapy in between. Because little is understood about autism, information and resources are hard to come by, especially for families of color. There is a huge disparity of care and support services in the African American community. Because of that, in 2009, Proctor launched The Color of Autism, a nonprofit organization dedicated to advocacy, awareness and knowledge among Black parents, connecting families to local services, and providing one-to-one support.

Proctor is also the Executive Producer of a film documentary, “Screaming in Silence, Autism in The Black Community.”

Julie Kornack is the vice president of Government Relations for the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, the world’s largest provider of evidence-based autism treatment. Her work includes identifying, developing, and supporting federal and state initiatives that preserve or increase access to autism services and supports, as well as analyzing the impact of federal and state legislative and regulatory developments on access to mental health services. She is the ABAI representative on the ABA Billing Codes Commission.

She is co-author of The Diversity Is in the Details: Unintentional Language Discrimination in the Practice of Applied Behavior Analysis, Reopening the Doors to Center-Based ABA Services: Clinical and Safety Protocols during COVID-19 and A Response to Papatola and Lustig’s Paper on Navigating a Managed Care Peer Review: Guidance for Clinicians Using Applied Behavior Analysis in the Treatment of Individuals on the Autism Spectrum, published in Behavior Analysis in Practice, and is the author of The History, Pitfalls, and Promise of Licensure in the Field of Behavior Analysis, published in Handbook of Treatments for Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Her analysis of the economics of autism treatment was published in the Handbook of Early Intervention for Autism Spectrum Disorders: Research, Policy, and Practice, and she was an editor of Evidence-Based Treatment for Children with Autism: The CARD Model. She co-founded and serves on the board of directors of the National Coalition for Access to Autism Services and participates in multiple state and national advisory committees and task forces. She was co-chair of Hillary for America’s Disability Policy Health Care Task Force and a co-author of the Democratic National Committee’s Disability Primer for Democratic Candidates.

Dr. Ringdahl, Ph.D., BCBA, currently serves an Associate Professor for the Special Education Program in the Communication Sciences and Special Education Department at the University of Georgia. He received his Ph.D. (1999) and MA (1995) in Psychology from Louisiana State University, and his BS (1992) in Psychology from the University of Florida. He currently serves on a number of boards of editors for such journals as the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, Behavioral Development, and Education and Treatment of Children. In addition, he is the incoming editor-in-chief for the journal Behavior Analysis: Research and Practice. Dr. Ringdahl recently concluded his 4-year term as a standing panel member with NIH’s Childhood Psychopathology and Developmental Disabilities study section. Dr. Ringdahl’s research interests include assessment and treatment of severe behavior problems exhibited by individuals with developmental disabilities, including intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder. He also conducts research in the areas of individual preference, functional communication training, and translational research related to behavioral momentum theory and behavioral economics. Dr. Ringdahl has published a number of scholarly works, including 60 peer-reviewed articles, several chapters, and a text book on behavior analysis. His research has received near continuous funding through the National Institutes of Health since 2000, and has been published in such journals as the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, the Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities, and the American Journal of Genetics. His currently funded project evaluates variables that contribute to the maintenance of treatment effects related to severe problem behavior.

Alicia Like has over 15 years of experience working with adults and children with autism and other disabilities both as a classroom Special Education teacher as well as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. Alicia currently works at The Center For Autism and Related Disorders as a Regional Manager and the lead of CARD Español. Alicia’s areas of expertise include supervising and training BCBAs, RBTs and BCATS, developing programs aimed at improving accessibility and community integration with Spanish speaking families and giving presentations in English and Spanish to assist families with managing challenging behaviors in their home and community.

Melissa Started in the field of ABA in 2001 working as a Behavior Interventionist at Center for Autism and Related Disorders in San Juan Capistrano and also at the Torrance office. She held the BT position as well as the advanced BT position and later assistant case manager position while there until 2004. She became a private ABA consultant working under several BCBA’s implementing programs and training staff to implement ABA programs from 2004-2008, and then in 2008 transitioned to work for the Laguna Beach School District as first a direct support staff for one student and later promoted Behavioral Support Specialist. While acting in this role she trained 1-to-1 in how to implement BSP’s and ABA strategies. She was also the CPI trainer for crisis training and supported the school psychologist and later BCBA with conducting FBA’s and behavior support plans for students during the IEP. She started the social skills program across multiple campuses, and also provided support to staff across campuses. In 2010 she transitioned to Autism Spectrum Therapies as an advanced BT and was promoted to Training and Technician and Mentor in 2015 where she is responsible for training all staff for the Orange County Region. She is Safety Care certified and a CPR certified trainer. Additionally, she mentors and trains all of AST’s Training Technicians across other regions and nationally.

Saxony Dominguez, PhD, BCBA is currently the Clinical Manager at Learning Solutions Kids a non-public agency servicing Northern California. She recently celebrated her 15th anniversary with Learning Solutions where she rose from a direct line interventionist to clinical supervisor, achieving board certification in 2009 and subsequently was promoted to the position of Clinical Manager in 2010. Wanting to gain a better understanding of the art and science pertaining to the practice and research of instruction, she sought and achieved her PhD in Psychology with an emphasis in cognition and instruction in 2017. Currently as Clinical Manager she acts as a liaison between the business administration and direct clinical aspects of Learning Solutions including but not limited to; developing, mentoring, and supporting clinical staff and ensuring clinical approaches are in accordance with institutional best practices. Working closely with the front line staff that are in charge of direct implementation has allowed her to stay tied to how research and best practice are implemented directly with the individuals that it is designed to support.

Additionally, as Clinical Manager, Saxony acts as a liaison between the public and private sector through her work with insurance agencies, school districts, and regional centers in her day to day operations. Furthermore, over the course of her tenure as Clinical Manager she has worked directly with the owner/director of Learning Solutions gaining a working knowledge of the business practices and operations including the inner workings of human and resource management.

Furthermore, Saxony oversees the supervision of all staff seeking board certification ensuring that all standards and expectations are achieved in order for supervisees to be able to sit for the exam. Additionally, she is a part of the team at Learning Solutions that manages all certification including individuals pursuing the BCAT certification. She is also responsible overseeing the development and administration of monthly staff trainings which surround best practices, organizational trends, and current research. Furthermore, determined to promote the science of applied behavior analysis, she has served as a volunteer for CalABA’s Professional Standards Committee since 2015. This committee ensures that the presentations available at conferences are in line with the BACB’s guidelines for continuing education credit. She is a dedicated, hard-working individual that has a passion for behavior analysis and a desire to ensure that the field continues to maintain its legitimacy as a science. Moreover, she passionately promotes and adheres to a high level of ethical responsibility and has been able to work with a vast array of individuals positively and professionally.

Jenna White began her work in the field of ABA in August 2009 in Johannesburg, South Africa. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Masters in Music Therapy. Jenna received her ABA training from supervisors who travelled regularly from the Center for Autism and Related Disorders (CARD) to South Africa, and after working for several years as a senior therapist, she flew to CARD headquarters in Los Angeles for her supervisor training. In 2015, she became South Africa’s first Board Certified Behavior Analyst, having completed coursework through the Florida Institute of Technology and under practical supervision from the Institute of Behavioral Training. She has supervised cases and trained staff in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Rwanda, Mauritius, and Ghana. In March 2020, Jenna relocated to Melbourne, Australia, where she continues to work in the field of autism and ABA.