Providing Support
Promoting Awareness
Advocating for Change

Walk/5K Results are IN!

Thank you to everyone who participated in our 11th Annual One Step Closer… Autism Walk/5K Run! We raised $61,230 and counting! Race results can be seen here.

Our winning teams are:

Teams Who Raised Over $1,000:

  • Kyle’s Crew
  • Matt’s Mavericks
  • Stanley’s
  • Team Rory & Danny
  • Trey’s Train

Teams Who Raised Over $2,000:

  • Team Phoenix
  • Ryan’s Troop
  • Merrill Lynch

Teams Who Raised Over $3,000:

  • Team Boxall

Team Who Raised the Most Money:

  • Sam’s Squad with over $7,000!

We’d also like to acknowledge:

Our Largest Team: Ryan’s Troop with a total of 28 Team Members!

Our Most Spirited Team: Sam’s Squad for their enthusiasm and efforts to support the Howard County Autism Society with this event!

All of these team won awards during the event. If you have not picked up your awards, please contact the office at or call at 410-290-3466.

Mark your calendars for next year’s Autism Walk/5K Run held on October 6, 2018! We look forward to seeing you there!

New Addition to this Year’s Walk: Amazing Racers!

AMAZING RACERS is a new component of our One Step Closer Walk & 5K that offers support for youth and adults with autism who may need additional supports to participate. HCAS will provide one-on-one assistance the day of the event plus the opportunity for two “training sessions” on September 23rd and 30th from 10am-11am at Centennial Park to acclimate individuals to the course and prepare them to take on our Cake Walk ¾-mile course on October 7th. We will meet for the training at the playground near Pavilion D. To guarantee support volunteers for your child, please register by Friday, September 22.

Support will be provided by Spirit Club, The Children’s Spot and student volunteers from University of Maryland and Towson University. Special “Race Clues” will be located along the course to inspire our AMAZING RACERS as they make their way around the course! All racers will be recognized at the Awards Ceremony immediately following the race.

To sign up, please fill out this form. In addition, make sure you’ve also registered
for the event via paper form or online at

HCAS Supporters


The Howard County Autism Society expresses its sincere appreciation for the generous support of the individuals, businesses and organizations who have contributed to its work on behalf of individuals with autism and their families it supports. The following is a listing of individuals and organizations who donated over $500 to HCAS between January 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017 as well as In-Kind Donors and Community Partners:


$5,000 and up
Community Foundation of Howard County
Dart Group II Foundation
Howard County (MD) Government
The John P. Hussman Foundation
United Way of Central Maryland


$1,500 – $4,999
Heidi Abdelhady and Mehdy Rahman
Autism Society of America
John and Kerry Benevides
John and Selena Benevides
Alisa Chernack
John and Deborah Clutts
Elville & Associates, P.A.
Lisa Higgins Hussman Foundation
Janelle Margolis
Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink P.A.
Lowell and Donna Pidel
Emily Russell
Turf Valley Resort


$500 – $1,499
Eric and Carren Adler
American Legion Auxiliary, Unit #60
Theresa and Robert Ballinger
Pam and Steven Beck
Elizabeth Benevides
Linda Boit
Patrick and Lisa Boxhall
Eric and Katie Cha
Evelyn Callahan
Catonsville Counseling
Steven R. Elville
Judith & Edwin Cohen Foundation
Crafton Dental
James Curran
Brandon Dean Babysitting Services
Kristin Detwiler/Colonial Life
ECHO of Northrop Grumman
Exelon Corporation
Jill Galt
Tara Geller
Howard Hughes Corporation
Kentmere Healthcare Consulting Corp.
C. Thomas Jones
Kennedy Krieger Institute CARD
Lori and Kristopher Krausz
LCA-Vision/Lasik Plus
Sally Lewicky
Dawn Lucarelli
Merrill Foundation
Dr. Sonny Goel at LasikPlus Vision Center
Hoenes Family Foundation
Hussman Center for Adults with Autism
M&T Bank
Stephanie Maric / The Legal Team LLC
Maryland Department of Disabilities
Jennifer and Chuck May
Erica Montemarano
Kina Morton
Nicole Orellana
Toby and Hal Orenstein
Phi Sigma Sigma Sorority
Jane Plapinger
Amrita Rai
Jim and Melissa Rosenberg
Michael and Sabina Sambat
Schwab Charitable Fund
Sheppard Pratt Health System
Devin and Mona Shroff
Solar City Corporation
Heather Spratt
Barbara Stromberg
Talbots – Columbia Mall
Roger and Madhu Thibaudeau
TLC Real Estate Group LLC
George and Valerie Veise
Verbal Beginnings
Lisa Wilson


In-Kind Donors
Apple Ford
Columbia Presbyterian Church
Market Impressions
Sharma & Associates
Toby’s Dinner Theatre
Zippy Shell Portable Storage & Moving – Rich Perry, Storage Unit


Community Partners
Accessible Resources for Independence
AMC Theatres – Columbia Mall
Arc of Howard County
Association of Community Services
Athletes Serving Athletes
Autism Society of America
The Children’s Spot
Columbia Association
Columbia Festival of the Arts
Community College of Baltimore County – Single Step Program
Howard County Chamber of Commerce
Howard Community College
Howard County Fire and Rescue Services
Howard County Government
Howard County Library
Howard County Police Department
Howard County Public School System
Howard County Dept. of Recreation and Parks
Leadership Howard County
Maryland Autism Coalition
My Life Learning Center
Pathfinders for Autism
RISE for Autism
Road Runners
Salvere Fitness
Spirit Club
Squire’s Restaurant
Special Olympics – Howard County, MD
Transition Outreach Partnership
University of Maryland – Hearing & Speech Sciences


*Donations and support shown from January 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017. Please contact our office at 410-290-3466 or if any information is missing or incorrect on this list.

12th Annual Pieces of the Puzzle Gala

Thank you to everyone who made our annual 12th Pieces of the Puzzle Gala a success! We are proud to report that the event hosted 265 guests and raised over $80,000 through sponsorships, ticket sales, donations, and the live and silent auctions.  A transcript of John P. Hussman’s keynote address can be found here. We would like to thank our generous sponsors for their support:

We’d also like to thank our In-Kind Contributors:



Sharma & Associates

Toby’s Dinner Theatre

Zippy Shell Portable Storage & Moving – Rich Perry, Storage Unit

For more photos, go to our facebook page!

Stop Waiting & Start Planning at ’17 Transition Symposium on 3/18

The Howard County Autism Society (HCAS) as part of the Transition Outreach Partnership will host the 2017 Transition Symposium on Saturday, March 18, 2017  for youth with disabilities as they begin their post-high school search for employment and education.  The event will be held from 8am – 4:30pm at Cedar Lane School, 11630 Scaggsville Road, in Fulton, MD.
The day-long conference offers parents, caregivers, professionals, and transitioning youth with developmental and physical disabilities an opportunity to learn about a wide variety of transition-related topics.
“This year’s event features a plenary panel of parents whose children have successfully navigated the transition from high school, and an update on Maryland State disability policy and initiatives,” said Patrick Boxall, Vice President of HCAS. “With an expanded menu of 24 different sessions designed for a general audience, or specifically for transitioning youth, the symposium will benefit novices to the transition process as well as those in need of guidance on particular issues.”

The symposium will offer a plenary session and several breakout workshops throughout the day led by experts in the areas of finance, education, law, disabilities, and healthcare. Some sessions will be geared toward a general office, some to youth, and others will target both groups.   Planned general workshop topics include: IEP Planning for Transition, Post-Secondary Vocational Training Programs, Disability Support Services on the Post-Secondary Level, DDA Eligibility and Services, Self-Employment, Assistive Technology for Transition, Social Security Benefits, Guardianships, and Supported Decision Making.   Planned transitioning youth workshops will explore such topics as Public Transportation, Dating and Relationships, Self-advocacy, Cooking, Social Media, Driving, Money Management, and Micro-Enterprises.

Guest speakers include County Executive Allan H. Kittleman and Maryland Department of Disabilities Secretary Carol Beatty.

The Transition Symposium is an event of the Transition Outreach Partnership, a collaborative effort of HCAS, Howard County Public School System, Howard County Government, and Accessible Resources for Independence, Inc. It receives support from the Governor’s Interagency Transition Council for Youth with Disabilities (IATC) and the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council (MDDC).

The cost to attend the symposium is $25 for registration prior to March 10 and $35 per person after. Admission is $10 for transitioning youth ages 14-24.  Registration is online at  For more information, contact Janet Dabu at 410-290-3466 or

Special Announcement: HCAS Receives Service Award from the Howard County Commission of Disability Issues


The Howard County Commission on Disability Issues recognized the Howard County Autism Society (HCAS) for its dedication to improving the lives of people affected by autism at their annual awards ceremony on Oct. 6. A service award winner, HCAS was recognized for its commitment to empowering individuals with disabilities to live self-directed, meaningful lives as full participants in their communities.

The 22nd Annual Commission on Disability Issues Award Ceremony honored the outstanding efforts of individuals and organizations that advance full participation in community life for all people and promote the spirit and intent of the Americans with Disabilities Act and other disability rights laws.

Ellicott City Flooding Affects Longtime HCAS Supporter, Craig Coyne Jewelers

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Ellicott City Flooding Affects at Craig Coyne Jewelers
The devastating flooding that occurred last Saturday, July 30, 2016, affected a longtime HCAS supporter, Sam Coyne and his business, Craig Coyne Jewelers. Many of you may recall Sam was recognized as the Howard County Autism Society’s 2014 Community Partner Award winner for the unique efforts he extended to partner with HCAS to raise both awareness and funds to
support Howard County’s autism community. Sam not only designed a one of a kind necklace featuring the autism puzzle piece (seen below) but also hosted several fundraising events in his Ellicott City store.
In the aftermath of the devastation in Ellicott City, many are looking for a way to help.  And while emotional support is great, at the end of the day, small business owners will be without income for longer than anyone wants to even imagine. Please take the time to read some of Sam’s words about the flood and aftermath in the link and note, he’s still thinking of others. If you are able to help him here, please do. And if you are able to support his store later, please do that as well.
Custom Autism Necklace

HCAS Mourns Passing of Autism Speaks Co-founder

HCAS is very sorry to learn of the loss of Autism Speaks co-founder, Suzanne Wright.  Mrs. Wright lost her battle to pancreatic cancer on Friday, July 29.  Her work to raise awareness of autism was remarkable and she received many awards for her commitment to the cause.   HCAS appreciates her efforts and offer its sympathy to the Wright family. 

Pieces of the Puzzle Gala was a Great Success!!

Our 11th Annual Pieces of the Puzzle Gala was a great success. Thank you for helping us raise $80,000 for programs and services, and thank you to all of our wonderful Sponsors for their support.

Special thanks to our presenting sponsor: The John. P Hussman Foundation .

     For a transcript of John P. Hussman’s Keynote Address please click here.

Also a special thanks to Heather McCabe for sharing her parent’s journey.

     For a transcript of her speech please click here.

Congratulations to our Award Recipients:

President’s Award: Howard County Police Chief Gary Gardner and Academy Class 40

Community Partner Award: The Children’s Spot

Outstanding Volunteer Award: Madhu Thibaudeau

See below for some pictures from the event. For additional pictures, please click here to visit our Facebook page.

    Hussmans     Heather McCabe Speech HCPD award     Jenn wall      Children Spot Award

HCAS Congratulates the Graduates of Academy 40

Congratulations to the graduates of Academy 40!  Thank you for your support and dedication in choosing HCAS as your Community Service Project.

The class began last September as a class of 19. After 31 weeks of intensive training, eight recruits from the HCPD and one from the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office began their law enforcement careers. They will now undergo 14 weeks of field training. As part of a community service project, the class also raised $3,660 for the Howard County Autism Society and participated in several events with autistic youths and their families.

Congratulations, officers!

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FAPE Conference Registration is Now Open! The Out-of-Sync Child: Sensory Challenges and Sensible Solutions

HCAS in conjunction with Rise for Autism and HCPSS Presents The Out-of-Sync Child: Sensory Challenges and Sensible Solutions 
Speaker:  Carol Kranowitz  on Saturday, May 14  at  9 am – 4 pm
Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) gets in children’s way – and in their families’ and teachers’ way too! This presentation is perfect for parents, educators, therapists, and other professionals and will review how SPD plays out at home and school, and how to recognize underlying sensory issues. The program will offer sensory strategies and fun and functional “In Sync” activities, which benefit ALL kids in the family and classroom.

Participant: $35.00 per person, includes the cost of lunch

CEU Participant: $50.00 per person, includes the cost of lunch and 6 Occupational Therapy CEUs

Registration starts at 8:30am


9:00: Sensory Processing

10:30: Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)

1:00: Identifying and Treating SPD in Young Children

2:30: Kids Gotta Move!

Click here to register

2016 Howard County Transition Symposium

**Online registration for this event is now closed!**

**Tickets will be available at the door on the day of the event**


2016 Howard County Transition Symposium

Saturday, March 19th, 8 am – 5 pm

Cedar Lane School, 11630 Scaggsville Rd, Fulton, MD 20759

Click here for more information and registration.

If you’re interested in sponsoring or exhibiting at the Transition Symposium, please complete the form below and return to

2016 Symposium Sponsor Form

Please call with any questions:  410-290-3466

‘Autism from a Parents’ Perspective’ WebEx Available

On January 21, HCAS and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) came together to present a WebEx entitled “Autism from a Parents’ Perspective”.  This 1-hour WebEx starts with an ‘Autism 101’ type presentation, followed by a panel of APL employees who are parents of children on the spectrum to discuss their experiences.

The WebEx in its entirety can be viewed by clicking here.

HCAS would like to thank the APL Parents Information Exchange for sponsoring this presentation and making it happen!

Gala Registration Coming Soon!

Registration for the 12th annual Pieces of the Puzzle HCAS gala is coming soon!  We are honored once again to have the support of the John P. Hussman Foundation as our Presenting Sponsor. Please check back after February 15th when registration should be open for this wonderful event.


At its heart, the Howard County Autism Society is an organization created, inspired and powered by loving parents helping their own children as well as others with autism find their place in this world. Our Board consists of a group of parents, brought together in their individual journeys through the world of autism.

There is a place for every person with autism in our world—a place of value and a place of worth. Much of the work undertaken by our organization is directed toward raising awareness and educating the general public about the complexities of autism. We believe that once people better understand autism, they are better able to welcome and support people living with autism into the greater community.

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