Archived | Autism Coalition: 2003 Celebrity Golf Challenge | Circa June 2003 #NotAnAutisticAlly #AutisticHistory

[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]

2003 Celebrity Golf Challenge

June 30th, 2003 

On June 30th, 2003, stars in sports and entertainment joined our nearly 300 guests for a round of golf at the Fifth Annual Celebrity Golf Challenge to benefit autism, held at the prestigious Winged Foot Golf Club. In addition to mingling with celebrities in the elegant stone clubhouse, guests were thrilled by a number of contests at the end of the day. The fun didn’t end there, however, as cocktails, dinner, and our famous live auction set the stage for an exciting evening.


The Coalition has been fortunate enough to attract several globally philanthropic, community-friendly corporations. For the fifth consecutive year, HSBC and United Airlines have supported the compelling cause of autism and the work of the Autism Coalition.

Other top sponsors included New York Land Services, A Land America Company as our Evening Gala Sponsor, MKP Capital and Deutsche Bank as our Caddie Sponsors, JP Morgan Chase as our Million Dollar Shoot-out Sponsor, Subaru and Ellington Management as our Putting Contest Sponsors and Westchester BMW as our Hole-In-One Sponsor.

Winners & Awards

This year’s overall tournament winners were the individual team of Phil Moran, Phil Marriott, Chris DeAngelis and Brendan Mulshine, who were awarded fabulous prizes including a set of Callaway golf clubs. We had ten qualifiers but, alas, no winners at this year’s Million-Dollar Shoot Out and Hole-In-One Contest. Our Putting Contest participants were more fortunate, however, as Brett Benza and John Murray were each awarded an Odyssey White Hot 2-ball Putter.


The Autism Coalition welcomed Esai Morales (NYPD Blues) as one of this year’s attending celebrities. Morales was joined by past and present NY Giants: Phillippi Sparks, Jeremy Lincoln, Matt Bahr, Carl Banks and legendary tight end Mark Bavaro.

Other sports celebrities included: ESPN’s Rich Eisen, heavyweight boxing contender Gerry Cooney, the New York Jets’ Kevin Swayne, sports announcer Don Criqui, and Yankee pitcher Jimmy Key.

Other celebrities included: actor Macaulay Culkin, actresses Laura Benanti (of Broadway’s Nine) and Molly Culver (V.I.P.), pop star Duncan Sheik, New York 1’s John Schiumo, actor/director James Naughton and actors Kirk Acevedo and Granville Adams (both of HBO’s Oz).

Evening Gala

The evening gala was kicked off with cocktails and dinner. Guests viewed and bid on the silent auction items while the anticipation built up to the live auction. Television’s Molly Culver and Fifth Annual Auctioneer Mike Kenny of UBS Warburg led the auctioning of several exciting items.

Among this year’s packages was “The Week of Too Many Stars,” which featured a trip to Los Angeles and walk-on roles on Frasier and ER. Other hotly contested trips were a V.I.P. trip to the Indy 500 and a golfers dream vacation at the world-famous Pebble Beach. 

We Thank You

Since our inception six years ago, the Autism Coalition has raised over $5 million dollars. This impressive accomplishment could not have been achieved without your tremendous support and for that we thank you. We would also like to specially thank our sponsors, past and present, and our volunteers, who donated so much of their time. Your contributions do make a difference are greatly appreciated.

More With Autism Coalition

More With Celebrity Influencers #NotAnAutisticAlly


Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid. 

ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.

The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t workIn study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work. 

What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.

The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth. 

The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome. 

This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.

Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.

Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.

Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.

[Note: Autism is NOT a disease, but a neurodevelopmental difference and disability.]

Fact: Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.

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