Geraldine Dawson became an Autism Speaks' Chief Science Officer in 2008. Dawson is a Research Professor of psychiatry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, an Adjunct Professor of psychiatry at Columbia University, and a Professor Emeritus of psychology at the University of Washington (UW). She received her Ph.D. degree in developmental psychology with a minor in child clinical psychology from UW, Wash, USA, and was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Neuropsychiatric Institute at UCLA. Prior to joining Autism Speaks, Dawson was a Professor of psychology and psychiatry at UW and a Founding Director of the UW Autism Center, which has been designated as NIH Autism Center of Excellence since 1996. While at UW, she led a multidisciplinary autism research program focusing on genetics, neuroimaging, diagnosis, and treatment. Her research has been in the areas of early detection and intervention, early patterns of brain dysfunction, and development of endophenotypes for autism genetic studies. In collaboration with Sally Rogers, Dawson developed and empirically validated the Early Start Denver Model, a comprehensive intervention for young children with autism. She received continuous NIH funding for her research from 1980 until 2008 when she left UW to join Autism Speaks. Dawson has published over 180 scientific articles and chapters and coedited or authored a number of books about autism and brain development, including The Early Start Denver Model for Young Children with Autism; Autism Spectrum Disorders; Human Behavior, Learning, and the Developing Brain; and A Parent's Guide to Asperger Syndrome and High-Functioning Autism. From 2000 to 2007, she founded and directed the UW Autism Center's Autism Treatment Program, the largest of its kind in the northwestern United States. She has testified before the U.S. Senate on behalf of individuals with autism and played a key role on the Washington State Autism Task Force.
Biography Updated on 15 September 2009