e-Speaks: Autism Speaks Co-founders Bob and Suzanne Wright Featured in the TIME 100 List of the Most Influential People in the World; AutismCares Offers Support Grants for Families in Crisis | Circa May 1, 2008

Thu, May 1, 2008, 9:38 PM | Newsletter

e-Speaks || May 2, 2008

Autism Speaks Co-founders Bob and Suzanne Wright Featured in the TIME 100 List of the Most Influential People in the World

TIME magazine has named Autism Speaks Co-founders Bob and Suzanne Wright to its list of the 100 most influential people in the world. In the TIME 100 issue hitting stands on Friday, May 2, the Wrights are featured in the “Heroes and Pioneers” category, alongside such figures as Tony Blair, Oprah Winfrey, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie and Lance Armstrong. The TIME 100 features often-surprising pairings of the influentials and the guest contributors TIME selects to write about them. This year’s list includes Bill Clinton on Tony Blair, George Clooney on Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, Silvio Berlusconi on George W. Bush, Michelle Obama on Oprah Winfrey and Donny Osmond on Miley Cyrus. NBC News’ Tom Brokaw writes about the Wrights’ commitment to autism advocacy, sparked by their grandson Christian’s autismdiagnosis. Click here to view the whole story.

Over $1.2 Million Raised at Los Angeles Walk Now for Autism

The 6th Annual Los Angeles Walk Now for Autism took place at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif. on Saturday, April 26. The event, which featured the nation’s largest Walk Now for Autismresource fair, attracted 15,000 participants and raised more than $1.2 million. Read more and view photos and video here.

AutismCares Offers Support Grants for Families in Crisis

AutismCares, an association of leading autism organizations that supports families affected by autism in crisis due to natural disasters or other catastrophic life events, announced its first round of Family Support Awards. The individual grants provide up to $1,500 in financial support for families facing crisis such as the death of a family member, forced relocation, or loss of a job. Read more.

Face Processing Area of Brain Shows Anatomical Differences in Autism

A new publication in the journal Brain describes significant anatomical differences in a facial processing area of the brain in people with autism. As the basis for the study, Imke van Kooten, Ph.D., and an international team of researchers have diligently measured neuronal features in post mortem brain sections, demonstrating that patients with autism have significant reductions in the density, total number, and mean cell volume of neurons in the area known as the fusiform gyrus. The authors suggest that these reductions might contribute to the impaired face processing seen in autism which, in turn, may contribute to some of the social deficits of autism. Plans are underway for further study of additional cortical areas implicated in visual processing. This continued research will be part of the Brain Atlas Project, a larger study supported by Autism Speaks’ Autism Tissue Program. Read more.

PGA, Els Family Tee Up to Raise Awareness

In honor of Autism Awareness Month, the PGA recently collaborated with Autism Speaks on a public service announcement (PSA) that debuted on the Golf Channel and CBS during the 2008 Verizon Heritage tournament. The PSA features a heartfelt autism awareness message from Liezl Els, wife of pro-golfer Ernie Els, whose five year old son Ben has been diagnosed with autism. Read more and watch the PSA here.

St. Louis Cardinals Host Autism Awareness Night

On April 27, the St. Louis Cardinals hosted the 3rd Annual Autism Awareness Night at Busch Stadium. Local volunteers and their children were recognized in a pre-game ceremony on the field, during which Cardinals pitcher Russ Springer presented a $5,000 check to Autism Speaks, on behalf of Cardinals Care. Read more and view photos here.

U.S. Senator Menendez Unveils the Helping Hands for AutismAct

U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) unveiled new legislation today to support families dealing with autism spectrum disorders. The Helping HANDS for Autism Act is a three-part legislative package that includes a program to guide families seeking services and care, increased public awareness, and housing for adults with ASD. Read more.

Outfit yourself for spring with Autism Speaks branded apparel, including the brand new camouflage “It’s Time to Listen” hat. Other exciting new items include the fitted textured cap and the Autism Speaks tee. There is still time to get a great gift for mom before Mother’s Day – check out the limited edition Judith Ripka necklace and other suggested gift items here.

Check Out Hot New Arrivals in the Online Store

Outfit yourself for spring with Autism Speaks branded apparel, including the brand new camouflage “It’s Time to Listen” hat. Other exciting new items include the fitted textured cap and the Autism Speaks tee. There is still time to get a great gift for mom before Mother’s Day – check out the limited edition Judith Ripka necklace and other suggested gift items here.

In Their Own Words: “What’s that like?”

In our latest “In Their Own Words” essay, a mother describes how her perception of living with autism has changed in the few years since her daughter’s diagnosis. Read more.


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