Founding Board Members


 
 

Devon Orland Christopher (Co-Founder), J.D.,1991 Graduate of the University of California, Davis with a degree in Political Science; 1994 Graduate Georgia State University, College of Law.  Devon is a Senior Assistant Attorney General for the Georgia Office of the Attorney General where she has been employed since 1999.  She currently serves as Section Leader in the Civil Rights Litigation Section where she manages twelve attorneys and eight staff.  Prior to her current position Devon worked as a DeKalb County Public Defender.  Devon is the parent of two, one with ASD.  She is a founding and Active Board member of the Evansdale Education Foundation.

Tonna Harris-Bosselmann (Co-Founder) earned a B.A.in Political Science with a Spanish minor and an M.S. in Teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) and Applied Linguistics from Georgia State University (GSU). She has over fifteen years of classroom teaching experience, having taught at GSU, Gainesville State College (GSC) and presently at the University of North Georgia (UNG). Early in her career, she taught ESL and served as Coordinator for the Homework and English Language Program of Bridging the Gap, a non-profit agency serving at-risk immigrant and refugee families in the metro Atlanta area.   At GSC, she received tenure and worked as Assistant Professor and ESL Program Coordinator for six years. Under her leadership, GSC’s ESL program grew in size and scope, preparing hundreds of English Learners (ELs) for successful matriculation at GSC and other competitive post-secondary institutions.  In addition to her teaching and administrative duties, Tonna also served as Director for Steps-to-College, a highly-esteemed summer bridge program for middle and high school students from all over northeast GA.  Tonna has presented extensively on topics related to second language acquisition, teaching in the multi-level classroom, advocacy, and the socio-political issues facing ELs.  Her professional development includes training in Learning Differences, Developmental Disabilities, and the Lindamood-Bell Processes Visualization/Verbalization Program. She has served as the Chair of the Socio-Political Concerns Interest Section of Georgia Teachers to Speakers of Other Languages  (GATESOL) since 2006, receiving their “Professional Service Award” in 2011 for her dedication to teaching and ELs. Believing that an education is a fundamental human right, Tonna is primarily concerned with the removal of any barriers that would prevent access to education and learning. In addition to being a passionate educator, Tonna is the happy mother of two terrific boys, the oldest of whom is on the autism spectrum.

Michael Burke (CFO), founded Dialog Medical, a medical software company specializing in informed consent, in 1997.  The company was sold to The Standard Register Company (SR:NYSE) in 2011.  Prior to founding Dialog Medical, Michael was director of marketing and general manager atNextGen, a division of Quality Systems, Inc., a provider of electronic medical records and practice management systems.  Prior to NextGen, Michael was a senior marketing manager at C.R. Bard, a medical device company, where he managed product lines in both the Urology and Interventional Radiology business units.  Michael holds a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Dayton and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Cincinnati. Michael continues in his role as President of Dialog Medical, which operates as a wholly-owned subsidiary of SR.  He is also currently involved in several startup ventures. Michael is dad to three wonderful daughters, one of whom has autism.

Dr. Ann Abramowitz has a Ph.D in Clinical Psychology (1988) from the State University of NY at Stony Brook, and is a full-time faculty member at Emory University:  Professor of Practice in the Department of Psychology and Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Prior to her career as an academic and practicing clinical psychologist, Ann was in the field of Special Education, in which she has a Masters Degree. In that field she was a teacher, program coordinator, and the Coordinator of Special Education for a school district.  Since 1999 Ann has had a contract with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, working on a project involving Attention-deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.  She has held a GA Psychology license since 1988.  Since receiving her Ph.D. she has had extensive program in running programs for children with special needs and their families, including directing The Center for Learning and Attention Deficit Disorders in the Department of Psychiatry at Emory and serving as Program Director for the Emory/Egleston Children’s Hospital’s Summer Day Treatment Program.  In her current faculty position she also is Director of Assessment Training for Emory’s doctoral program in Clinical Psychology.  Ann has given many local and national presentations on school-based intervention for children with disruptive behavior, ADHD assessment and intervention, behavioral family therapy, and other topics.

Suzanne Baker is a development professional with broad experience in major gift fundraising in higher education, health care, disability services and scientific research. She currently works half time as foundation grants manager for L'Arche USA, a national nonprofit serving individuals with intellectual disabilities. Suzanne's previous roles include senior director of development at Emory University, director of advancement at Visiting Nurse | Hospice Atlanta, and acting development officer at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, New York. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service and French from Georgetown University. In gratitude for the incredible inclusion education that her 9-year-old son with ASD received in four years at DeKalb County's Coralwood School, Suzanne has served on the board of the Coralwood Foundation since 2009.

Dr. Karen Harris Brown, PhD, CCC-SLP, is a tenured Associate Professor at the University of West Georgia.  Karen provides technical assistance in assessments, distinguishing language differences from language disorders, and in culturally responsive practices at the local, state, national, and international levels. She works as a speech-language pathologist and has worked in a variety of school-based and clinical settings, including hospitals, nursing facilities, outpatient clinics, early intervention centers, and home health. Karen holds a doctorate in Special Education with concentration in issues related to cultural and linguistic diversity from the University of South Florida, an M.S. degree in speech-language pathology, an American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Certificate of Clinical Competence, and an endorsement in English to speakers of other languages; she maintains a speech-language pathology license (CCC-SLP) by the Georgia Board of Examiners and a service certification by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission.

Ashley States is the special education program coordinator for a charter school (K-8) in Grant Park. She is in charge of program development, ensuring federal and state compliance, and coordinating support services for students with disabilities. She has experience with analyzing data, planning activities, monitoring programs/services, responding to others, and consulting with program personnel. Ashley has been working to support students with disabilities for over a decade. She earned a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia in Social Work, and a Master’s of Science Education with a specialization in Special Education. She began as a special education classroom teacher and moved into administration. Ashley is also the parent of two amazing kids, one with autism.

Amy Windom Hilton is president of Bright Enterprise Solutions, Inc., a boutique consulting firm that she established in 2007.  Her firm specializes in complex project management and general management consulting using an analytically driven approach.  In her current work, she is supporting business case development and cross-channel analytics for the Online division of an Atlanta-based Fortune 500 company. Prior to starting her own firm, Amy worked for eight years at AT&T / BellSouth, in director-level roles ranging from corporate strategy and product management to consumer marketing.  While in consumer marketing, Amy and another member of her team coauthored a U.S. patent related to the targeting of consumers for marketing campaigns based on optimization of various financial metrics. Prior to her work at AT&T, Amy worked in information-technology consulting in the D.C. and London offices of American Management Systems (now CGI). Amy received her MBA in 1999 as Richard Jenrette Fellow at The Kenan-Flagler Business School, UNC- Chapel Hill.  Her undergraduate degree is from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where she graduated with honors in 1993. Amy’s nine-year-old stepson, Gavin, is on the autism spectrum.

Simon Huebner, a native of DeKalb County, is a graduate of Lakeside High School and holds a Bachelor of Science in Geology from Georgia
State University. He has worked for Nomac Services, LLC, and is a member of the Atlanta Geological Society. He was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome as a three-year-old and hopes his firsthand experience will help the board make decisions and provide a clearer picture to obstacles that children on the autism spectrum face as they learn in school.

Richard Kaplan has been serving as a cognitive therapist designing the special educational curriculum and delivery models for public and private school systems. He has served as an advocate for families with special education needs to develop systemic strategies that build success for developmentally delayed children and adults. Richard started the psycho-education department at the Marcus Institute and is on the committee for the President’s Employment of the Handicapped. Richard received his BS in Interrelated Areas of Special Education and his Masters, MED. Sp. Ed Psycho Education Therapist from Florida State University.

Barbara Lawson-Lonon has been an advocate for children’s rights from an early age, when her high school dream of becoming a banking executive was put on hold after she moved to Schweinfurt, Germany, at age 18, with her Army Sergeant husband. While overseas, Barbara worked as a Dependent Youth Activity (DYA) Center Counselor with children whose mothers and fathers were in the military and away on assignments. It was during this period that a new passion for working with at-risk children was born.  With the encouragement of her DYA Director, Barbara went on to became a mentor to children who needed support for emotional and stress-related issues. After returning to the States, Barbara went back to school at Broward Community College and also began her career in banking, working for Ameri-First Bank, California Federal and Glendale Federal, where she used her people skills in the Mortgage and Commercial loan departments. Now living in Georgia, Barbara is a wife, mother of two boys, and grandmother to three “adorable” granddaughters. She is the Founder of the Jon Z. Lonon Foundation for Autism Awareness, an organization devoted to helping children with autism, with a focus on Academics/Tutoring, Recreation, and Socialization Skills. Barbara has also served as a Focused Monitoring Parent for the Georgia Department of Education, Division for Special Education Services, for over two years.  She volunteers as a support parent for the organization, Parent-to-Parent, where she speaks with mothers on early intervention for children who have been diagnosed with autism. As the parent of a 16-year old autistic son herself, Barbara is uniquely qualified to understand these parents’ challenges, and help them find the resources they need to help their children lead productive and fulfilling lives.

Stacey Levy is a speech-language pathologist and owner of her private practice, Stacey Levy & Associates, LLC (SLA). SLA provides private speech-language therapy and tutoring services in Atlanta, GA. After receiving her BS at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Stacey then obtained her Masters at the University of Texas-Dallas, Callier Center for Communication Disorders. Stacey and her associate therapists provide speech-language therapy services in multiple areas including auditory and language processing, expressive-receptive language, articulation and multi-sensory reading and writing instruction. Stacey also works as the Learning Coordinator at the Temple Breman School supporting a fully inclusive Sunday school program. She is also a Georgia "Bright From the Start (BFTS)" certified educator providing CEUs for teachers working at BFTS accredited Pre-Schools. Stacey has participated in ongoing education regarding working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorders, a particular area of interest for her.

Dana Maine is a partner with the Law Firm, Freeman, Mathis & Gary. She received a B.A. from Agnes Scott College and is a graduate of Emory University’s College of Law. Dana has a variety of experience representing corporate and governmental entities in trial and appellate matters involving land use and zoning, law enforcement, professional liability, civil rights and tort litigation.  Dana, has two children, one with developmental delays and ADHD.

Dr. Greta Massetti received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from SUNY Stony Brook. Greta has conducted educational research in early childhood, elementary, and middle school settings, focusing on school-based strategies for addressing the needs high-risk youth, school-based mental health services, and classroom management strategies. Prior to moving to Atlanta, Greta lived in Buffalo, NY for five years, where she worked closely with several charter schools and was a co-founder of the Elmwood Village Charter School. Greta is currently Branch Chief in the Division of Violence Prevention at CDC.

David C. Warlick, CPA, CGMA (chartered global management accountant). David is a retired economic analyst with 36 years at the Department of Defense, Defense Logistics Agency, Fort Belvoir, VA, including 3 years on active duty with the Army Airborne.  In Atlanta, David has stayed in accounting as a TaxAide for AARP; treasurer of the Davis Oaks Condominium Association; pilot tester for ThomsonReuter accounting courses; committee member of the VSCPA's Nonprofit Resources Guides; and tax preparer of Form 990s for Tucker's The Hearts of Men Foundation (literacy programs for young, at-risk, Black men) and Decatur's Oakhurst Preschool (a cooperative school).  David participates in numerous nonprofit positions, including as a founding member of the Atlanta Advanced Placement Initiative; member of Hands on Atlanta's Civic Leadership Program, assigned as the 5th Grade Captain of Sagamore Hills Elementary School's Discovery Program; and Investment Volunteer - Education Focus for the United Way Metropolitan Atlanta.  While his four children were in school, David served five non-consecutive years as the PTSA treasurer of the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technology (Alexandria, VA) and one year as treasurer of the TJHSS&T Partnership Fund (the school's 501(c)(3) LEF).  David earned a MA from Virginia Tech ('77) and a BA from the University of Florida ('71).  He has been married to Carol Warlick for more than 40 years.