February 24, 2016
Insel Joins ASF SAB
Bak and Lopes Win Award
Apply for IMFAR Travel Awards
Give a Spit

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Former NIMH Director
Dr. Thomas Insel Joins
ASF Scientific Advisory Board 
Dr. Thomas Insel, former director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and currently Director, Clinical Neuroscience, in Alphabet Inc.'s Verily Life Sciences division, has joined the Autism Science Foundation's Scientific Advisory Board. As director of the NIMH for thirteen years, and chairman of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) for eight years, Dr. Insel was responsible for overseeing the creation and implementation of the federal strategic plan for autism research.

"We are deeply honored to have Dr. Insel, a remarkable leader and champion of autism and mental health research, join the Autism Science Foundation and help inform the scientific direction of our organization," said Alison Singer, president of the Autism Science Foundation. "At the NIMH, Tom was instrumental in developing public-private partnerships that led to great progress in autism research and improved outcomes for people with autism. His expertise and wisdom will be invaluable assets to ASF."  
Parent Advocates Lopes and Bak to receive annual "Schwartzman Spirit Award" at ASF's "Day of Learning"
TED-style Autism Conference  
Autism advocates Tim Bak and Erin Lopes, co-founders of Scoring Goals for Autism and dedicated parents of 16-year-old son Tommy who is diagnosed with autism and 14-year old daughter Evee, will receive this year's Caryn Schwartzman Spirit Award, which recognizes excellence in autism advocacy. The award will be presented at the third annual "Day of Learning," ASF's science conference for the autism community, on Wednesday, April 14 in New York.

The Caryn Schwartzman Spirit Award is presented annually to a parent advocate whose energy, tenacity, and commitment to enhancing the lives of individuals with autism best emulates Caryn's. Caryn was a loving and dedicated mom, and a tireless advocate who worked with the National Alliance for Autism Research (NAAR), Autism Speaks and the Autism Science Foundation to raise money, advance autism research and improve the lives of children around the country.
Register here for our 3rd annual TED-style science conference on 
April 14 at the New York Athletic Club. This event sells out every year.  


Apply Now for IMFAR Stakeholder Travel Awards
For the sixth year in a row, ASF is  offering a limited number of grants to parents of children with autism, individuals with autism, siblings, special & gene
ral education teachers, students and other stakeholders to support attendance at the International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR). Awards of 
u p to $1000 can be used to support reimbursement for registration fees, travel, accommo dations, meals and other directly related expenses, including childcare or special accommodations to enable individuals with autism to participate. Applications are due on Monday February 29.

IMFAR is an annual scientific meeting, convened each spring, to promote, exchange and disseminate the latest scientific findings in autism research and to stimulate research progress in understanding the nature, causes,
and treatments for autism spectrum disorders. 
Easy Way to Participate in Research
and Make a HUGE Contribution
The Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI) has launched a landmark project to speed up the pace of autism research and has asked the Autism Science Foundation to help this winter during a pilot phase. The ultimate goal is to recruit 50,000 individuals with autism and, when possible, their biological parents. Participants will provide basic medical information about themselves and a DNA sample and asked to agree to be contacted for additional research studies. Participation in the SFARI project can be done entirely at home; registration can be completed online, and the DNA sample can be provided using a saliva collection kit mailed to the home. Upon completion of registration, the individual with autism will receive a $50 gift card. Click here for more information