Autism Speaks elects three business leaders to its national board

New members bring experience in disability advocacy, philanthropy, technology and investment

NEW YORK (January 18, 2019) Autism Speaks, which is dedicated to promoting solutions across the spectrum and throughout the life span for people with autism and their families, announces the election of three new members to its national board of directors, effective December 11, 2018.

“We are deeply grateful to these accomplished business leaders and philanthropists for their commitment to the autism community,” said Autism Speaks President and CEO Angela Geiger. “The ideas and expertise these new board members bring will help us sustain momentum toward our mission to fund research, be a leader in advocacy and deliver resources that meet diverse needs, from early childhood through adulthood.”

Aidan Kehoe photo
Aidan Kehoe

Aidan Kehoe is co-founder, CEO and board member of Skout Secure Intelligence, a cybersecurity firm headquartered in New York. Mr. Kehoe has been actively involved in all aspects of the firm’s development and expansion since its founding in 2012, with the goal of making cybersecurity accessible to all companies.

Prior to Skout, Mr. Kehoe founded several other enterprises including Oxford Global, a global risk management company, which was acquired by Willis Towers Watson in 2013. He also has many years of experience working in an investment capacity with an institutionally sized private family office.

Mr. Kehoe is also the chairman of the U.S. Leaders Council of Cordaid, serving the most vulnerable people in the most fragile places in the world. Originally from Ireland, he has served as a board member to both public and private equity-backed companies throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. He has extensive experience in leading and building teams.

“It’s an extreme honor to join the board of Autism Speaks,” he said, “and I am looking forward to serving the team and the board in their endeavors.”

photo of Jacquelyn “Jakki” Nance
Jacquelyn “Jakki” Nance

Jacquelyn “Jakki” Nance is an attorney and president of Philanthropic Solutions, Ltd., where she advises nonprofits on strategic planning, resource and board development, and event planning. She also works with executives and athletes to help them achieve their philanthropic objectives.

Previously, Ms. Nance served as chief operating officer for Swin Cash Enterprises and the charity Cash for Kids, both founded by Swin Cash, the two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time WNBA champion.

Ms. Nance also served for three years as the executive director of the LeBron James Family Foundation. During that time, she oversaw its bikeathon, developed a partnership with Nickelodeon, worked with corporate partners and built playgrounds around the country.

Her clients have included the WNBA; the cancer charity Flashes of Hope, and State Farm Insurance, where she worked with the 50 Million Pound Challenge’s grassroots initiative to establish simultaneous health walks around the country. She also was featured in an “Ebony” magazine profile, “Women in the NFL.”

An Ohio native, Ms. Nance was a senior planned giving attorney with The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, where she also served as the event coordinator for Olympic gold medalist Scott Hamilton’s annual fundraising ice show and gala. She has been honored by The Arthritis Foundation’s Northeast Ohio Chapter and Cleveland Public Theater.

Ms. Nance has more than 20 years of nonprofit board service for organizations including the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, the Ohio Arts Council and the Thomas Moyer Ohio Judicial Commission. Causes she has championed include children’s health, education, diversity and inclusion, and planning for the special needs of adults with disabilities.

She graduated from Spelman College and Case Western Reserve University School of Law. Ms. Nance and her husband, Fred Nance, have two teenagers with autism.

“My passion for autism awareness and acceptance comes from being a parent of two children on the spectrum with very different needs,” said Ms. Nance. “My desire to make a difference not just for my children but for all the adults and children with autism and their families led to my interest in serving on the Autism Speaks National Board.”

Lisa Yang photo
Lisa Yang

Lisa Yang retired from a successful career in financial services and investment banking and became an advocate for people with disabilities and learning differences. She and her husband, Hock Tan, made a kickoff commitment of $20 million to set up the Hock E. Tan and K. Lisa Yang Center for Autism Research at The McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT. In 2016, the couple donated $10 million to The K. Lisa Yang and Hock E. Tan Employment and Disability Institute at Cornell University.

Two of the couple’s adult children are on the autism spectrum.

Ms. Yang said, “I believe there needs to be a strong and powerful voice to articulate the needs and formulate individualized ecosystems that will allow people on the spectrum to lead meaningful and fulfilling lives, where they can feel safe and happy when their parents and family members are not near.  I hope being on the board of Autism Speaks will allow me to help advance this goal.”

A native of Singapore, Ms. Yang earned degrees from Cornell University and Columbia University Graduate School of Business. During her tenure at Lehman Brothers and The First Boston Corp, she supported numerous nonprofit organizations. Her leadership and service earned awards from the Center for Autism, in Philadelphia; the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; Devereux Foundation; Cornell University ILR School and Asian Alumni Association.


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