Autism Science Foundation Chief Science Officer Dr. Alycia Halladay Elected Board President of Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation

Dr. Halladay will continue in her primary role at ASF as she takes on new responsibilities with PMSF, playing key roles in both organizations as they work to support families and fund critical research projects related to autism and neurodevelopmental disorders

NEW YORK — January 21, 2021 — The board and management of the Autism Science Foundation (ASF), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting and funding innovative autism research, today expressed strong support and enthusiasm for its Chief Science Officer, Dr. Alycia Halladay, on her election as board president of the Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation (PMSF). PMSF is a not-for-profit organization that seeks to improve the quality of life of people affected by Phelan-McDermid Syndrome (PMS), a rare genetic condition that can cause several serious health conditions, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Established in 2002, PMSF has delivered funding to numerous research projects that have led to important advances in treating PMS and holds regular research and networking conferences for scientists, families and other stakeholder groups. ASF and PMSF have collaborated many times over the years and there is significant overlap among the communities they serve – about 60% of kids with PMS also have an autism diagnosis. PMSF is also part of the Alliance for Genetic Etiologies of Neurodevelopmental Disorders and Autism, which ASF manages. Dr. Halladay will continue in her primary role at ASF as she takes on new responsibilities at PMSF, where she previously served as a board member. She holds a PhD in psychology from Rutgers University and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in pharmacology and toxicology at Rutgers University. “I am honored to be helping PMSF achieve its mission of supporting families with rare genetic disorders and ASD,” Dr. Halladay said. “The PMS community is part of a bigger family of individuals with ASD and neurodevelopmental disorders, and my hope is that my involvement will be a benefit to all families with ASD.” Alison Singer, Co-Founder and President of ASF, said: “We are thrilled for Alycia and look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with PMSF to improve the lives of those with autism. Our two organizations share a firm belief that science, research and evidenced-based treatments are critical to helping affected individuals live fulfilling lives.” Under Dr. Halladay’s leadership, ASF has remained actively engaged with the autism research community throughout the pandemic. The organization released an RFA for its 2021 undergraduate summer research grants earlier this month, while last month it announced a third round of COVID-19 Research Grants recipients.

About the Autism Science Foundation The Autism Science Foundation (ASF) is a 501(c) (3) public charity. Its mission is to support autism research by providing funding to scientists and organizations conducting autism research. ASF also provides information about autism to the general public and serves to increase awareness of autism spectrum disorders and the needs of individuals and families affected by autism. To learn more about the Autism Science Foundation or to make a donation, visit

Media Contact Kathy Ehrich Dowd Forefront Communications for Autism Science Foundation 617-970-5842