Story Collider Presents: Stories from Spectrum
The Story Collider is delighted to partner with Spectrum for a special night of true, personal stories about science. This show will feature stories about experiences with autism – from the scientists who study it, medical professionals, advocates, family members, and those who’ve experienced it firsthand.
Hosted by Misha Gajewski and Ari Shapiro. Doors at 6:30PM. Show at 7:00 PM.
Please note: Seating at this event is first come, first served. Please arrive early for best seats.
Spectrum is the leading source of autism research news and expert analysis.
B. Blair Braden received her doctorate in Behavioral Neuroscience, Psychology from Arizona State University (ASU). She completed her Neuroimaging/Neuropsychologoy Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Barrow Neurological Institute, St. Joseph's Hospital in Phoenix. She is an Assistant Professor of Speech and Hearing Science and Director of the Autism and Brain Aging Laboratory at ASU.
TC Waisman has worked with leaders in large organizations to enhance their leadership capabilities and make consequential changes to their leadership practice since 1988. Coaching and training leaders for over 20 years, TC has learned to support her clients’ development using organizational best practices and evidence-based research. TC is an ICF certified coach, holds a Masters degree in Leadership & Training, and is currently undertaking her doctoral degree in leadership in a post-secondary context. Inspired by her late autism diagnosis at 48 years old, her research focuses on how higher education leaders can enhance services and outcomes for autistic students in higher learning. Since beginning her research two years ago, TC has co-founded a not-for-profit society for neurodiverse individuals, spoken on autism related topics, published an academic literature review on autism and the implications for higher learning, and was recently appointed as an editorial board member of the new scientific journal Autism in Adulthood. TC is of Indigenous Fijian and Nepalese origin and moved to Vancouver in 1976 where she lives with Dean her partner of 30 years. TC is a proud mother to her fiercely funny 23 year old daughter Sunshine. As well she is the author of the book 75 Traits of Great Leaders. TC is on target to complete her doctoral degree in 2020.
Brad Ferguson, PhD, is an Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Health Psychology at the University of Missouri (MU). Dr. Ferguson conducts his research at the MU Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders where he studies gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms and their relationship with biomarkers of altered hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis functioning (i.e. stress response) in children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). He also works on a team of scientists and clinicians on clinical trials designed to treat core ASD symptoms. Prior to joining the faculty at MU, Dr. Ferguson completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the MU Thompson Center where he focused on using cortisol, pupillary light reflex, and heart-rate variability as biomarkers of treatment response in clinical trials in ASD. His long-term goal is to discover new treatments for those with ASD and co-occurring medical conditions, especially GI disorders, to increase their quality of life. Dr. Ferguson also collaborates with the Autism Speaks Autism Treatment Network (AS ATN), the Autism Intervention Research Network on Physical Health (AIR-P), and the Center for Discovery in Hurleyville, NY.
Ariel Detzer is a psychologist in private practice in Seattle, Washington. Her work focuses on the needs of neurodiverse children, teens, young adults, and parents to promote positive identity, self-advocacy skills, behavioral health, quality of life, and academic support. Dr. Detzer did her doctoral research on developing a resource for training general education teachers to better support mainstreamed autistic students. She believes that creating a better world for neurodiverse people (and all people) will be realized not only through therapeutic support for clients themselves, but by educating clients, families, and other educational and institutional stakeholders in the social model of disability to promote positive change in the larger environment.
Dr. Detzer’s son, Avi Caspe, is a high school senior at Shorecrest High School in Shoreline, Washington. He began his autistic activism in sixth grade with a school social justice project on the lack of educator preparation for teaching autistic inclusion students. He made his first academic presentation to the Association for Autistic Community Conference in 2014, sharing findings on how autistic middle schoolers process information under stress, which may impact the way they experience bullying experiences as well as school discipline, and how those experiences can be understood quite differently by autistics, teachers, and members of school administrations. Avi is looking forward to studying computer programming next year, as well as improving his standing on Rubik's Cube scores at World Cubing Association events.
Jasmin Morandell is a PhD student at the Institute of Science and Technology (IST) Austria with the Novarino group. Her research investigates the cellular and molecular mechanisms leading to neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism spectrum disorders and intellectual disability. She believes that these efforts in basic research will not only help to better understand this complex group of disorders, but also lead to the discovery of novel drug targets for innovative treatments, to eventually improve the life quality of affected individuals and their families. Prior to joining the Novarino group Jasmin obtained a Masters degree in Biomedicine and Biotechnology from University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna.