Cpt. William A. Cannata Jr. has been a member of the fire service for more than 30 years, and became a member of Massachusetts’ Autism and Law Enforcement Education Coalition in November 2003. He is now its statewide coordinator. Bill is also the parent of a child with an autism spectrum disorder.
Sgt. Jimmy Donohoe spearheaded the Take Me Home program for the Pensacola Police Department. Working with a local law enforcement software company, Officer Donohoe created a database where participants who are unable to speak or properly identify themselves to police officers register with a photo, physical description and contact information so first responders can provide special assistance that may be required when contact with a person with autism occurs.
Judge Kimberly S. Taylor retired as a Superior Court Judge from the Sixth Judicial District of North Carolina. The mother of a young adult with autism, Judge Taylor played an integral role in getting autism spectrum disorder information added to the basic law enforcement training for the state of North Carolina. Judge Taylor currently works for a law firm in Taylorsville, NC.
Dr. James Ball, a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, is the president/CEO of JB Autism Consulting. He has been in the autism field for more than twenty years, providing educational, residential and employment services to children and adults affected by autism. He is the Director of Clinical Services for New York Families of Autistic Children (NYFAC), a private not-for-profit organization providing support and training for children and families in New York City. He provides private consultation to organizations, schools, and families regarding staff training, parent training, home support services, classroom design/support, and behavior management/assessment.
Dr. Ball is also a former member of the New Jersey Center for Outreach and Services for the Autism Community (COSAC) Board of Trustees and a member of the COSAC Professional Advisory Board. The chair of the Autism Society Board of Directors, he is currently on the Autism Society Panel of Professional Advisors and the advisory board for Autism Asperger’s Digest magazine. Dr. Ball has lectured nationally and internationally on various topics related to autism, such as early intervention, inclusion services, functional behavior assessment, social skills training, behavior management, direct instruction, sensory issues and accountability. He has published in many of the above areas and authored the breakthrough book Early Intervention and Autism: Real-life Questions, Real-life Answers.
Dr. Stephen Shore works with children and talks about life on the autism spectrum through international consults and presentations on adult issues pertinent to education, relationships, employment, advocacy and disclosure. Diagnosed with “atypical development with strong autistic tendencies,” Stephen was nonverbal until the age of four. He has published several books and many articles and completed his doctoral dissertation at Boston University, focused on matching best practice to the needs of people on the autism spectrum. Dr. Shore accepted a professorship at Adelphi University to teach courses in special education and autism. Stephen is president emeritus of the Asperger’s Association of New England, and has served on the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC), the Autism Services Association of Massachusetts, MAAP, and the College Internship Program.