Autism Father’s Conference


A Conference for Fathers and Grandfathers of Children (of any age) with Autism

About the Conference
When a child gets a diagnosis of autism , regardless of how the parents react to the news, one thing is for certain - life as they know it is about to change.   Sometimes parents can feel overwhelmed.  The experience for fathers can be very different than it is for mothers. Mothers seem to have many avenues for information and support whereas fathers may not have as many options.   This conference is designed to help fathers of children of any age, to cope with and understand the diagnosis, participate in the process of education and transition, understand and address challenging behavior, and to help the family thrive. Bring your questions and concerns or just sit back and take in all the information.

Breakfast, lunch, and tee shirt included.

Conference objectives:

  • Coping with the loss of the "expected child" and finding the joys in living with a child with challenges
  • How to become an active participant in the process of parenting a special needs child and the steps in becoming more involved
  • Understanding and participating in the IEP process
  • Keeping your child and family safe
  • Meeting the challenges of difficult or maladaptive behavior and how this relates to discipline
  • Planning for future challenges such as life after high school
  • Resources, Q and A, Next Steps

Conference Schedule:

8:00-9:00am  Check-in and breakfast

9:00-10:00am  Keynote 

10:15-11:45  Managing Challenging Behavior

11:45am-12:45pm  Lunch

12:45-1:45pm   Planning for Your Child's Future

2:00-3:00pm Father's Panel Discussion and Closing Remarks

About the Presenters:

Gary Weitzen

Gary Weitzen is the Executive Director of POAC Autism Services, which is the largest provider of free autism training and education in the state of New Jersey.  Mr. Weitzen, comes to POAC with 20 years experience in the risk management field. He is a Masters Level, safety and education expert with over fourteen years experience in special needs program provision and education.  In addition to his duties at POAC, for the past thirteen years he has worked for an autism program teaching life skills to adults with autism.  Mr. Weitzen currently serves on the New Jersey Governor’s Council for Biomedical Research.  In the past he has served as New Jersey representative for Unlocking Autism, and Vice President of Princeton Autism Technology.  He has appeared on virtually every major network and local news station as an expert on autism and has given presentations to tens of thousands of people across New Jersey.  Mr. Weitzen has three children.  His eldest son Christopher has autism.  He has been a passionate advocate of children and adults with autism for well over a decade.  

Bobbie J. Gallagher, M.A.  BCBA

Board Certified Behavior Analyst and Founder of the Autism Center for Educational Services, LLC. Bobbie has worked in the field of autism since 1997, shortly after the two youngest of her three children were diagnosed with autism. Bobbie is a private consultant to families, schools, and agencies, and adjunct professor at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology where she is also pursuing her PhD in ABA. Bobbie is also the author of "A Brick Wall - How a Boy With No Words Spoke to the World".

S. Paul Prior

S. Paul Prior has spent his entire legal career representing people with disabilities. As the younger brother of a man with autism, he has a life-long commitment to disability law. His legal work has focused on special education, guardianship, financial entitlements, and access to appropriate services. A substantial part of his practice is devoted to assisting families in estate and trust matters. He has successfully argued leading cases before the New Jersey Supreme Court, Third Circuit Court of Appeals, as well as other state and federal courts. He served as a federal monitor overseeing conditions at state-operated institutions. He holds a JD from Seton Hall University School of Law, and serves on the board of directors of The Arc of New Jersey and Autism New Jersey. Previously, he served on the Board of Special Olympics New Jersey and the Eden Foundation. He is a member of the Elder Law Section of the New Jersey Bar Association. He writes and lectures frequently on topics concerning the law and disability as well as issues affecting siblings.

Date & Time Location Status
There are no upcoming workshops at this moment.