CB&A had the opportunity to attend the Autism Society National Conference in Pittsburgh, July 11 – 13. As a bonus, our Special Needs Division representatives coordinated the 2nd Innovation Reception for companies serving the autism community with new products and services to meet the needs of children and adults nationwide. The conference was enlightening and eye-opening, to say the least. We had the opportunity to meet people from all walks of life and with various needs, making our jobs that much more fulfilling and rewarding. Finding ways to reach the autism community and share stories of success has been a true benefit to launching the CB&A Special Needs Division.
We attended a session on Autism in the Media on Friday morning, which was extremely interesting. The session was moderated by Richard Wolf of USA Today and included a panel of representatives – Mark Roth, Karen Weintraub and Daniel Heinlein. They shared their insights on how autism is being portrayed and spoke to the tremendous need for education and heightened awareness to dispel myths and misconceptions about children and adults on the spectrum. The narrow media focus on autism extremes was mentioned multiple times during the session, that unfortunate tendency to cover only the most heartwarming or tragic stories. The panelists said they try to convey the whole picture, including the middle-functioning individuals with daily battles and victories, which are often overlooked.
The Innovation Reception on Friday evening included Brain Parade, HandHold Adaptive, C8 Sciences, Hanson RoboKind and STAR Autism Support. Each company had the chance to speak one-on-one with industry influencers, educators, administrators and investors, plus a few minutes to present to the entire group. The presenters did an outstanding job and made many valuable connections.
Stay tuned for more from our Special Needs Division…we’ll be planning and executing multiple events in the coming months, and we can’t wait to share them with you!