Position: Co-Founder and President / Board Member
As the mother of a 24-year-old daughter with autism and legal guardian of her older brother with autism, Alison is a natural advocate. She served on the federal Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) for 12 years, where she chaired the Safety and Housing Workgroups, and served on the subcommittee responsible for writing an annual strategic plan to guide federal spending for autism research. Alison currently serves on the executive boards of the Yale Child Study Center, the Seaver Autism Center at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, the Marcus Autism Center at Emory University, and the University of North Carolina Autism Research Center, as well as on the external advisory board of the CDC’s Center for Developmental Disabilities, and the New York State Immunization Advisory Committee. In addition, Alison serves on the board of directors of the International Society for Autism Research (INSAR) and chairs the INSAR Communications Committee. In 2012, the American Academy of Pediatrics named her an “autism champion.” In 2017 she received the INSAR “Outstanding Research Advocate” award and in 2018 she received the New York Families for Autistic Children Research Advocacy Award.
Prior to founding the Autism Science Foundation in 2009, she served as executive vice president of Autism Speaks and as a vice president at NBC. She graduated magna cum laude from Yale University with a B.A. in Economics and has an MBA from Harvard Business School. In 2020, she was awarded an honorary doctorate from Emory University.
In 2018 she was elected to serve on the Board of Education of the Scarsdale Union Free Public School district and in 2020 was elected Vice President of the BOE. In her free time, she enjoys Crossfit, kickboxing, and judging high school debate tournaments.