Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


OBM in Health and Human Services Conference; Denver, CO; 2017

Event Details

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Invited Panel #8
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Executive Perspective in Health and Human Services
Friday, May 26, 2017
4:40 PM–5:30 PM
Hyatt Regency Centennial Ballroom D
Area: OBM; Domain: Translational
Chair: Donald A. Hantula (Temple University)
CE Instructor: Donald A. Hantula, Ph.D.
Panelists: ROBYN CATAGNUS (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), RITA GARDNER (Melmark), JANE HOWARD (Therapeutic Pathways; The Kendall Centers), LINDA LEBLANC (LeBlanc Behavioral Consulting LLC)

Organizational behavior management is celebrating decades of applied work across industries, countries, and performance challenges. From time to time, its always a good idea to gather the perspective of the consumer of our work, namely the executives who sponsor, lead and own the outcomes of OBM efforts. We are honored to provide such a perspective by bringing executives from various human service organizations together to share their thoughts as consumers, practitioners, and leaders of OBM methodologies to make a positive difference in their organizations.

Target Audience:


Learning Objectives: Pending
ROBYN CATAGNUS (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Robyn M. Catagnus, Ed.D., BCBA-D, LBS, is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst at the doctoral level and has been teaching online since 2009. She has more than 20 years of experience and expertise in autism, behavior disorders, early intervention, special education, and positive behavior supports. As a consultant in home, residential, and educational settings, she clinically supervised cases, created staff trainings, conducted workshops, and presented professional development events. Dr. Catagnus has presented nationally at conferences on a variety of ABA topics and was the founder of Clarity Behavioral Consulting, a special education service agency that provided training, support and supervision to school programs and parents of children with developmental disabilities in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. She built, developed and directed the respected, fast-growing private consulting firm from the ground up, consistently improving and expanding to a 60-employee operation before Clarity was purchased by the Pennhurst Group, LLC, where she served as interim VP of Business Development. Next, she served as the Vice President of Professional Services at an education technology company specializing in online curriculum and staff training for 500+ school districts serving children with autism. Her current appointment is Associate Professor and Chair of the Online campus of the Applied Behavior Analysis Department at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. The Department offers an ABA Certificate, M.S. in ABA, and an innovative online Ph.D. in ABA. Dr. Catagnus is a member of the Trustee of the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies, a reviewer for the APA journal Behavior Analysis: Research and Practice, Diversity in Behavior Analysis section, and a member of the editorial Board for The Behavior Analyst, the flagship journal of ABAI. She is also the Former Founding President Multicultural Alliance of Behavior Analysts, a special interest group of the Association of Behavior Analysis. The purpose of MultiABA is to connect behavior analysts who have an interest or experience in serving multicultural/minority populations, whether they be ethnic, religious, geographic, or socio-economic by promoting the worldwide advancement of multicultural issues through ABA. Her professional interests include online instruction, international dissemination of behavior analysis, and clinical supervision of pre-service behavior analysts. Her research interests include remote clinical supervision, class-wide interventions, cultural competency in behavior analysis, online teaching and professional development, mindfulness for educators, and the intersection of positive psychology and behavior analysis.
Before being named President and CEO of Melmark in October 2015, Ms. Gardner served as Executive Director of Melmark New England, based in Andover, Massachusetts and founded in 1998 as a division of Melmark, Inc. Ms. Gardner, Frank L. Bird, Executive Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer, Peter J. Troy, Executive Vice President and Helena Maguire, Senior Director of School Services (currently Executive Director) led the development of Melmark New England, which offers approved school, after-school and residential programs, adult day and adult residential programs, public school consultation and family outreach services to more than 500 children and their families each year. In the role as Executive Director, Ms. Gardner focused on fiscal prudence, leading Melmark New England to become one of the most nationally acclaimed providers of behavior analytic services to children and adults with severe challenging behaviors. Ms. Gardner earned her Master of Public Health degree from Boston University’s School of Public Health in the School of Medicine majoring in Behavioral Sciences and Health Services Administration. She became a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) in May 2002. Rita has devoted over 30 years of her professional career to the field of community-based services for children and adults with the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders, acquired brain injuries, neurological disorders and severe challenging behaviors. Ms. Gardner has been involved in the organization, design, development and implementation of over 50 community-based programs for children and adults. She has written articles for professional journals and made a number of presentations on topics including program expansion, organizational behavior management and transitioning students with brain injury back to the community. Ms. Gardner has provided project consultation to the Pediatric Alliance for Coordinated Care (PACC), under the direction of the Chief of General Pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital, Boston. In addition, Rita has provided organizational consultation to a program for children with Asperger’s Syndrome at McLean Hospital and the Crossroads Center for Children, a school for children with autism. Prior to her work at Children’s Hospital, Rita directed the service center of Behavioral Health and Rehabilitative Services for The May Institute. The center serves children and adolescents with acquired brain injuries and includes residential services, a day school, school consultation and home-based family training. Ms. Gardner’s legislative advocacy efforts include involvement in the establishment of the Autism Medicaid Waiver through the Massachusetts Division of Autism. She also sits on advisory committees with the Massachusetts Advocates for Children (MAC) and Advocates for Autism of Massachusetts (AFAM). She is an Advisory Board member to Autism Speaks, a founding Board member of the national Council of Autism Service Providers (CASP). She is an appointed member of the Massachusetts Governor’s Autism Commission. She serves as Treasurer of the Board for the Massachusetts Association of Approved Private School (MAAPS), which slates her for President of the Board in two years. Her most recent legislative involvement has been advocating for licensure of Board Certified Behavior Analysts in Massachusetts and the Massachusetts Autism Omnibus Bill.
JANE HOWARD (Therapeutic Pathways; The Kendall Centers)
Jane Howard, Ph.D., is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst–doctoral level (BCBA-D) and a licensed psychologist (California). In 1996 Dr. Howard co-founded Therapeutic Pathways and The Kendall Centers and currently serves as their Chief Executive Officer. Located in California, these agencies currently provide behavior analytic treatment to pediatric and adolescent populations, including comprehensive, intensive intervention to more than 400 individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Dr. Howard is Professor Emeritus (Psychology) at California State University, Stanislaus in Turlock, California, where she taught graduate courses in behavior analysis and child clinical psychology. While at the University she founded The Center for Direct Instruction, an on-campus clinic for children with a range of behavioral and academic needs. Dr. Howard co-authored the textbook Human Behavior: Analysis and Application with Ellen Reese. Her research been published in peer-reviewed journals such as The Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, The Analysis of Verbal Behavior, Research in Developmental Disabilities, and Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders. She is lead author on two widely cited outcome studies comparing different treatments for autism. Dr. Howard has made numerous presentations at international conferences in China, Italy, Sweden, Ireland, South Korea, Japan, Russia, Latvia, Romania, and Poland. Dr. Howard has also served on the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) and is the Past President of its Board of Directors. She is also one of the founding members of The Council of Autism Service Providers and sits on its Board.
LINDA LEBLANC (LeBlanc Behavioral Consulting LLC)



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