2011 Conference on Autism

Jalynn Prince



Founder and President of Madison House Foundation

JaLynn Prince is the Founder and President of Madison House Foundation, named after her 20 year old son, Madison, who has severe autism. The Madison House Foundation benefits individuals with autism as they transition to adulthood. Madison House has sponsored many conferences and round table discussions, educating hundreds of parents and professionals on various aspects of autism. In 1999, Ms. Prince was named the National Young Mother of the Year. Her platform consisted of issues facing families of children with disabilities, which she presented to numerous national and international audiences. She is on the Johns Hopkins University School of Education Advisory Board, the Utah Valley University School of Humanities and Social Sciences Advisory Board, and the American Mothers Inc. National Board.



Matt has worked for CTA since 1999 in many capacities. Prior to working for CTA Matt worked as a Team Leader for Alternative Youth Adventures, a wilderness therapy program for adjudicated youth.

Matt holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Speech and Hearing Science from the University of Utah. He finished the necessary course work and passed the BABC national exam to become a Bored Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst in May 2010. Matt is currently the Program Director for CTA’s Autism Support Alternative Program (ASAP).

Kate Andersen


Kate Andersen is the President & Founder of Autism Journeys, the chair of the Training Committee for the Autism Council of Utah, a wife and the mother of two young boys, one of which has multiple special needs.

Kate was introduced to the world of autism through a volunteer project over 15 years ago. While pursuing her degree in psychology from the University of Utah, Kate immersed herself in learning about autism. Within 2 years she was an autism specialist for the Pingree School and running her own classroom. Immediately after college, Kate accepted the position of Executive Director for the Autism Society of Utah, the local chapter for the Autism Society of America. In 2007 Kate founded Autism Journeys, an organization designed to provide individualized, multi-faceted intervention to all affected by autism.

For more than a decade, Kate has traveled the country obtaining certifications and training in cutting edge and research-based intervention techniques such as Applied Behavior Analysis (Natural environment ABA, cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Discrete Trial, etc.). She has attained advanced training in DIR techniques (including P.L.A.Y Project Certification), SCERTS, TEACCH, Social-Thinking Techniques, Social Stories, Comic Strips, Visual/Picture (PECS) strategies, sensory processing, canine therapy, and much more.



Founder and President of Madison House Foundation

Troy has twenty- six years experience in the DD/MR field working with a wide variety of people receiving supports through DSPD. Troy is currently the Director of Behavioral Supports for the provider Community Treatment Alternatives (CTA). Troy works closely with psychiatrists, families, and teachers to facilitate excellent care for individuals diagnosed with Autism and their families.

Shawnee Collins


Shawnee is the Clinical Director at Chrysalis and oversees their behavioral services in Utah and Nevada. She is also a doctoral student at Utah State University studying Applied Behavior Analysis and Disability Studies. Her research interests include staff training, functional assessment, and video modeling. Her current research is testing the effectiveness of video models on staff implementation of the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) with individuals with severe intellectual disabilities.

Shawnee received her Bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University and her Master of Social Work from the University of Utah. She is a nationally accredited Board Certified Behavior Analyst and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.

Jennifer Corenett


Jennifer D. Cornett CSW, QMRP works as a Support Coordinator for Support Coordination Services of Utah, as well as an adjunct faculty member at UVU in the Behavioral Science department. Jennifer graduated from UVU with a bachelors degree in Behavioral Science, and went on to receive a Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Utah. Jennifer has over 10 years experience working with individuals with Autism and other developmental delays.

Dr. Dunn


Dr. Louise Dunn is an assistant professor and pediatric curriculum coordinator in the Division of Occupational Therapy at the University of Utah. She is part of the Autism Enhancement program in the Utah Regional Leadership in Neurodevelopmental Disabiliteis grant and a member of the Interagency Collaborative Council. Her current research includes measurement development, preparation for independent living for children and young adults with ASD, and use of technology to promote social engagement for children with ASD.

Tina Taylor Dyches


Tina Taylor Dyches, Ed.D., is an Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Counseling Psychology and Special Education at Brigham Young University. Her professional interests include adaptation of families raising children with disabilities, multicultural issues affecting children with autism and their families, children's literature that includes characters with disabilities, and provision of appropriate services to students with disabilities. Dr. Dyches lives in Mt. Pleasant, Utah, with her husband, David, and son, Logan.

Daniel Fairbanks


Dr. Daniel J. Fairbanks is a professor, geneticist, artist, and author. He currently serves as Associate Dean of Science & Health and Professor of Biology at Utah Valley University. As author and co-author of four books and numerous articles in scientific journals, he is well respected as a geneticist. Having been raised in a family of professional artists, he studied sculpture from a young age and now has commissioned pieces of sculpture on permanent exhibit in museums, public buildings, and private collections throughout the United States and abroad. He often presents sculpture demonstration lectures to promote public awareness and education in the sciences.

Karen Fairchild


Karen S. Fairchild, MSW, is a Clinical Social Worker (CSW) at Kids on the Move in Orem, Utah where she provides therapy, teaches classes to strengthen marriage, and leads parent support groups. She recently began providing autism diagnostic services for the new Bridges program at Kids on the Move. After spending 20 years at home with 5 children, three with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Karen returned to school so that she could better serve families dealing with the challenges of Autism. She worked for Wasatch Mental Health's GIANT Steps program for almost 10 years, most recently as a case manager. While raising her children, she was actively involved at both the state and county level in promoting autism awareness, supporting autism legislation, and linking families to supports and services. She has been married to and supported by Don Fairchild for 30 years and is the proud grandma of Jonas.

Valerie Hu


Dr. Valerie Hu is a Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at The George Washington University Medical Center as well as a mother of a son with ASD. She redirected her research focus towards autism about 6 years ago and has since published 7 papers on the genes and biological pathways associated with ASD. Dr. Hu received her Ph.D. in Chemistry from Caltech and did her postdoctoral research in Membrane Biochemistry and Immunology at UCLA. More information about her research and papers can be obtained at:

Luwenn Jones


LuWenn Jones lives in Cedar City, Utah with her husband and three children. She holds a BA from Southern Utah University in English. She became actively involved in disability issues on a statewide level 13 years ago when her middle child was diagnosed with severe autism. Her passion for improving programs and family support systems has led her on a quest for systems change and ensuring that all individuals receive appropriate services. She is a trained Autism Navigator through a grant administered by the UCED, Utah Department of Health and Utah Family Voices and has presented the "ABCs of Autism" training to families and professionals in various areas of the state. LuWenn is especially sensitive to the needs of individuals and families residing in rural areas, and ensuring their access to services. Her current position as Southern Utah Outreach Advocate with the Disability Law Center and Utah Developmental Disabilities Council affords her the opportunity to serve this population and their diverse needs.

Bethany Lawrence


Bethany currently works as a Support Coordinator for Support Coordination Services of Utah and as adjunct faculty in the Behavioral Science Department of Utah Valley University. Bethany received her Master's Degree from the University of Utah and has over six years experience in the field of child and family development. She has spent the last three years working with individuals diagnosed with intellectual disabilities and their families.

Sarah Long


Sarah Long is currently a third year student in the occupational therapy master's program at the University of Utah. Her areas of interest include geriatrics, adults with developmental disabilities, international health care, and mental health.