Our Board

Executive Board

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Nicole Aptekar, MBA

President

Nicole Aptekar has over 20 years of marketing, public relations and advertising experience in business-to-business, consumer segments and non-profit organizations. She has worked for several Fortune 100 companies as Group Marketing Manager in technology and retail. She is a principal owner of  a marketing firm specializing in working with small-to-medium sized businesses and non-profit organizations.  Nicole is the proud mother of triplets, one of whom is on the spectrum.  Nicole also facilitates the monthly Advocacy for Autism support group in Pomona.

Lillian Vasquez KVCR

Lillian Vasquez
ASIE Vice-President

Parent of a young man with Autism and founder of the KVCR Autism Initiative and has developed five documentaries on autism. She is currently the host of Lifestyles with Lillian Vasquez on 91.9 KVCR.

Rick Gutierrez

Rick Gutierrez, BCBA

ASIE Secretary

Rick is currently the Regional Vice President Autism Administration and Network Provider Services, Easter Seals Southern California.  He started off his career as an in-home tutor and still has a desire to improve the lives of families affected by autism.

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Rebecca Silva, Ph D

Treasurer

Dr.  Silva is a retired Special Education Administrator, consultant, and author.  She has had over thirty years of experience working with students with special needs in the roles of special education teacher, grant coordinator, university instructor, principal and administrator. Over the last 20 years, Dr. Silva has written numerous grants, articles, manuals and curricula. She has also presented on these topics at local, state, national and international conferences. In addition, Dr. Silva has chaired and served on a number of local and state level organizations, committees and work-groups related to autism, developmental disabilities and transition from school-to-career.

Directors

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Luis Baquera

Board Member. Luis is the parent of two AUsome boys and the Manager of Computing Services for the Center for Bibliographical Studies at the University of California, Riverside.  He brings his extensive technical background and his experience as a father of two young boys on the spectrum to ASIE.

Jek

Jek Barrozo OTR/L, ATACP

Board Member. Jek is a school-based Occupational Therapist for Riverside County Office of Education (RCOE). He develops the occupational therapy program currently implemented in RCOE-Reach Autism program. In the last 18 years, Jek has held clinical, teaching and management positions including special education teacher, Early Intervention Occupational Therapist and consultant, Rehabilitation Manager, and college instructor.

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Carol Burmeister

Carol is retired school administrator whose professional experience includes serving as a paraprofessional, general education teacher, special education teacher, program specialist, university instructor, and consultant in a wide variety of educational settings. She is an author and has published a book on Executive Functioning and has presented at local, national, and international conferences on topics related to understanding the strengths of ALL students and determining how to best meet their academic, behavioral, and social-emotional needs using practical solutions.

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Beth Burt, Executive Director

Beth is a parent of a young adult with Autism and co-author of two books on inclusion.  She has been working to improve the lives of all affected by Autism for the last 16 years.  She has served on a number of Task Forces, Collaborations on Housing, Employment, and Public Policy issues related to Autism.

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Stephani Congdon

Board Member. Community member and Non-profit consultant. Stephani has been recognized for her years she has dedicated to helping the Inland Empire non-profit community for many years and serves on countless boards and committees related to issues regarding children, poverty, and autism.

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Edward Dulasong III, Ph D

Edward is currently a board member and administrator for the Colegio de Dagupan, a private non-sectarian college located in Dagupan City in the Philippines.  He has his Bachelors Management, Masters in Education, and Ph.D. in Education. Edward is the father of two extraordinary children including a teenager with autism.

Michelle

Michelle Goodrow
Treasurer

Michelle is a passionate Special Educator with more than 18 years experience.  When not in her classroom, you can find her volunteering her time with Special Needs Football and Cheerleaders, or helping with the Autism Society Outreach and Sky High Nights.

JJ Johnston

JJ Johnston, MA, BCBA

Board Member. Parent and Director Behavioral Provider Network, Easter Seals of Southern California.  For over 20 years, J.J. Johnston has partnered with community leaders to create quality ABA programs for schools, provide consultation on behavioral services, and shape client-centered public policy regarding services for individuals with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities.

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Kelly Londenberg, COTA/L

Board Member. Murrieta Teen/Adult Group Facilitator. A person on the spectrum.  Kelly is a popular speaker on a variety of topics since she was 16 years old at local, national, and international conferences.

She currently is employed at as a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant for Riverside County Office of Education (RCOE).

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Theresa McFarland

Board Member. Theresa is a retired Education Specialist with over 28 years experience in Special Education.  She facilitates Awesome Adults and puts her creative energy to work by developing innovative teaching programs for adults with Autism including Sexuality and Relationships and Self-Advocacy classes.

Linda

Linda Weidner

Linda has been married to her wonderful husband of 23 yrs and has two children we are very proud of. Her 21 yr old daughter is a college senior studying strategic communication and her 17 yr old son is a senior at Portview Preparatory and is on the spectrum. Her 9-5 job is taking care of our son and making sure he gets to school, doctor appts. and numerous other activities. She enjoys spending time with my family and friends, exercising, golfing and volunteering with ASIE.

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