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Two Community Members Appointed to Autism Speaks Scientific Advisory Boards

December 16, 2009

The Autism Speaks Science Program announces the addition of two new community members, Doug Compton and Nancy Simon, to the scientific advisory boards that form the core of Autism Speaks' grant review process. Board members provide expert review of the many applications submitted to Autism Speaks, ranging from basic to clinical to treatment research, and are responsible for ensuring each proposal has the scientific rigor, innovation and relevance to the mission of the organization.

To provide additional guidance and counsel during the review process, Autism Speaks has now named two new "stakeholder experts" to the Scientific Advisory (SAB) and Treatment Advisory (TAB) boards. The new stakeholder board members will participate in the grant review meetings and provide insight on the relevance of each grant application to the needs of the autism community. Doug Compton is the father of a 16 year old son with autism and has a research background in lipid metabolism. Mr. Compton is a former member of the Cure Autism Now foundation executive steering committee and has been a long-time activist for autism funding. Among his many accomplishments, he was pivotal in the launch of the Autism Genetic Resource Exchange program and in securing autism funding for the state of New Jersey. Nancy Simon, M.D., is the mother of a 9 year old son with autism. Dr. Simon practices internal medicine at the University of Washington (UW) School of Medicine and has a masters degree in public health with a focus on epidemiology. She has spent many hours volunteering for the UW Autism Center and has formerly served on the governor's state Autism Task Force. About the new appointments, Geri Dawson, Ph.D., Chief Science Officer at Autism Speaks remarked, "It is essential that our grant funding reflect the needs and perspective of the community we serve, namely, persons with autism and their families. We are very pleased to have two parents of children with autism on our scientific review board."

Each lay expert will serve a three year term.

Read full bios of the advisory board members: SAB | TAB