New York, N.Y. (October 29, 2012) – Autism Speaks, the nation’s leading autism science and advocacy organization, has named Stuart Savitz, a Chicago-based attorney and parent of a child with autism, to its board of directors. The announcement was made by Autism Speaks Co-founder and Chairman of the Board Bob Wright at a recent board meeting.
“We are thrilled that Stuart has agreed to bring his knowledge, insight and passion for our cause to the Autism Speaks board,” said Wright. “His new role with Autism Speaks is yet another example of the Savitz family’s ongoing commitment to serving our community and helping to advance the work of this organization.”
The Savitz family has supported autism research for many years, beginning with Cure Autism Now (CAN) and subsequently with Autism Speaks. Mr. Savitz has served on the Autism Speaks Family Services Committee for more than two years.
Mr. Savitz and his wife, Amy, have two sons, Tyler, who has autism, and Spencer. Spencer has raised nearly $600,000 in just four years through his Walk Now for Autism Speaks team and has been a nationwide top Team Captain. In addition, Spencer has been interviewed extensively by Chicago area press on his amazing fundraising success. The Savitz family participated in Chicago Walk Now for Autism events from 2008-2010, and in 2011 founded the first ever North Shore Walk Now for Autism Speaks.
Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders – autism spectrum disorders – caused by a combination of genes and environmental influences. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by communication difficulties, social and behavioral challenges, as well as repetitive behaviors. An estimated 1 in 88 children in the U.S. is on the autism spectrum – a 78 percent increase in six years that is only partly explained by improved diagnosis.
About Autism Speaks
Autism Speaks is the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization. It is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. Autism Speaks was founded in February 2005 by Suzanne and Bob Wright, the grandparents of a child with autism. Mr. Wright is the former vice chairman of General Electric and chief executive officer of NBC and NBC Universal. Since its inception, Autism Speaks has committed over $180 million to research and developing innovative resources for families. Each year Walk Now for Autism Speaks events are held in more than 95 cities across North America. On the global front, Autism Speaks has established partnerships and related activities in over 40 countries on 5 continents to foster international research, services and awareness. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visit AutismSpeaks.org.