ActToday! Autism Care & Treatment
Our Mission: ACT Today! is a national nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to raise awareness and provide treatment services and support to families to help their children with autism achieve their full potential.
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Proud member of the Global Autism Collaboration
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ACT Today! Team


Executive Board of Directors

Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh
Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh

Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh is a world-renowned clinical psychologist and expert in the field of autism research and therapy. Dr. Doreen has worked with a wide range of patients – from high-functioning children with autism to the most challenging individuals whose families have been told to give up hope. Dr. Doreen has an unparalleled recovery rate, enabling children with autism to lead independent lives. With a PhD in Psychology from UCLA, Dr. Doreen is licensed by the medical boards of California, Texas, and Virginia and Arizona State Boards of Psychologists and is a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst. She is the 2011 recipient of the American Academy of Clinical Psychiatrists' prestigious Winokur Award.

Dr. Doreen founded the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc., (CARD) in 1990, the world's largest and most experienced organization effectively treating children with autism. CARD develops individualized treatment plans utilizing the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA), a behavioral treatment approach which the scientific community has empirically validated. Under Dr. Doreen's leadership, CARD has seen success with every child over the past 20 years.

Click here to see Doreen Granpeesheh's full bio.


Nancy Alspaugh-Jackson
Nancy Alspaugh-Jackson
www.nancyalspaughjackson.com

Nancy Alspaugh-Jackson is a former high-powered television producer turned author and activist on the subject of fearless aging and autism awareness. She co-authored Not Your Mother's Midlife: A Ten Step guide to Fearless Aging (Andrews McMeel) and Fearless Women: Midlife Portraits (Stewart, Tabori & Chang). She wrote and performed in the stage show “Boomer Babes” and has done motivational speaking to sold out audiences around the country. Alspaugh-Jackson is an Emmy-Award winning television producer and executive who pioneered the magazine program format with Westinghouse's PM Magazine. After serving as Vice-President of Group W Productions, she served as executive producer for a number of network and nationally syndicated programs, including the long-running NBC talk show, LEEZA. She has been honored with the United Press International Award, the Associated Press Award, the Gabriel Award, the Genesis Award, as well as having been named one of the Hollywood Reporters “Women to Watch”.

Alspaugh-Jackson feels her most important assignment came after her adopted son Wyatt was diagnosed with autism at the age of three (Wyatt is now 8 and making tremendous progress). She saw an urgent need for families to have somewhere to turn to for advice and assistance when dealing with this devastating disorder. “As difficult as it was getting the diagnosis for our son, we have never forgotten that we are the lucky ones in that we have the resources to find help – what about those families that don't have the time or money to access treatment and care?” With that in mind she began the annual Denim and Diamonds for Autism fundraiser to benefit ACT Today! at the ranch home she shares with her husband, Fox television executive Read Jackson. Denim and Diamonds just celebrated its fourth year as an annual ACT Today! event, the most successful ever! Nancy has now been at the helm of ACT Today! for the last year and a half, overseeing its numerous annual fund raisers, special events and campaigns. Nancy is married to FOX SPORTS television executive Read Jackson. When she is not running the activities at ACT Today!, she runs marathons and spends time with her family and their menagerie of animals -- one Bernese Mountain dog, two Jack Russell Terriers, and three and a half horses (one miniature).


Greg Anderson
Greg Anderson

Gregory C. Anderson is a Managing Member of TWIW Insurance Services, LLC. He is responsible for strategic planning and direction of their marketing effort, including the recent growth of its Employee Benefit Division. A keystone of his employee benefit marketing effort has been the recognition of the service needs of not just the corporate client but its employees and Human Resources function. The TWIW strategic stance is that the retail broker must be an extension of the client's Human Resources function. Informing its marketing efforts with that basic principal has allowed TWIW its dramatic and unparallel growth and impact on the local health insurance marketplace.

Gregory C. Anderson has been a principal of TWIW Insurance Services and Tolman and Wiker Insurance since 1992. He has been active as an insurance adjustor, underwriter, educator, training professional, producer, sales manager and corporate sales and marketing principal since 1972. He has been an active fundraiser for non-profit causes. His Past service has included membership and service as the President of the Oxnard Chapter of the American Heart Association. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in education and has pursued doctoral level studies in human organizational development.


William Cernius
William Cernius

Bill Cernius is a Partner in the Corporate Department of the Orange County law firm, Latham & Watkins.  He also serves as the Secretary on the ACT Today! Board of Directors. He received his BA at the University of Southern California and graduated from Hastings College of the Law.

Bill Cernius has practiced law with Latham & Watkins since 1985 and has been a resident attorney in each of the San Diego, Los Angeles, London and Orange County offices of the firm. Bill has extensive mergers and acquisitions experience representing both sellers and buyers. Bill is a member of the Orange County and American Bar Associations. He is also the Editor of the Hastings Law Journal.


Austin Beutner
Austin Beutner
www.austinforla.org

Austin Beutner has three decades of accomplishment in the private and public sectors.

As a business leader and philanthropist he has built organizations and led them to achieve outstanding results.

In his most recent role as Los Angeles First Deputy Mayor and Chief Executive for Economic and Business Policy, Austin worked to build a stronger Los Angeles. He served as the city's Jobs Czar from January 2010 to April 2011 for a salary of $1 a year. He oversaw 13 city departments ranging from Building and Safety, Planning, and the LA Convention Center, to the Port of Los Angeles, Los Angeles World Airports and the Department of Water and Power (DWP).

He brought an innovative “do more with less” approach to getting city government to work and provide better service to constituents. His many accomplishments included cutting $263 million out of DWP's budget to avoid a rate increase, cutting in half the time it takes to permit a restaurant and refocusing the city's efforts to support small and minority-owned businesses.

He started an effort to reach out to businesses in Los Angeles, which helped many employers keep their doors open and allowed them to hire more people. He implemented important policy changes, such as creating a business-tax holiday and eliminating red tape. This helped attract companies like Google, BMW, Blackline, BYD, Gensler and Mission Foods to the City, creating thousands of good-paying jobs.

Austin has spent most of his career working in the private sector. At age 29, he became the youngest partner at The Blackstone Group, one of the world's leading investment firms.

At 33, he served in the U.S. State Department under President Bill Clinton where he led a team that helped Russia transition to a market economy after the collapse of the Soviet Union. He went on to found Evercore Partners with former Deputy Treasury Secretary Roger Altman. As President and Chief Executive Officer, Austin built Evercore into a global leader, with offices in the U.S. and around the world.

Austin is deeply involved in the community, serving as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of CalArts, Chairman of the Board of the Broad Stage, Chairman of the Governor's Council on Sports and Physical Fitness, Co-Chairman of CalArts Community Arts Partnership, and Chairman and Founder of Mammoth Mountain Community Foundation. He also serves on the Boards of ICEF Public Schools and ACT Today! and is Chairman of the Mayor's Blue Ribbon Commission on the NFL Stadium. He and his wife have four children.


Shawn Carson
Shawn Carson

Shawn Carson specializes in workers' compensation, multimedia liability, international exposures, errors and omissions, medical and biotechnology, information technology, electronics manufacturers and industrial machinery. He holds a degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing from California State University, Chico.

Prior associations: St Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Company, Technology Group; joined Tolman and Wiker Insurance in 2000.

Recognitions: Nominated twice for the St. Paul's Chairman's Award.


Trish Coury

Trish is a Real Estate agent at Coldwell Banker Previews International located in Newport Beach, California. She received her Bachelors in Business Administration from University of Southern California and has a Masters in Organizational Management.

Trish has been a resident of Newport Beach for the past 11 years and has actively participated in various charity fundraiser's in Orange County including serving as the co-chair of the St. Jude Children's Hospital annual Orange County fund raiser, co-chair of the Susan G. Komen Pink Tie Ball and is a member of the Board of Directors for Children's Bureau.


Eddie Guardado
Eddie Guardado

Edward Adrian Guardado (born October 2, 1970, in Stockton, California) is a former Major League Baseball relief pitcher. Throughout his career, Guardado had played with the Minnesota Twins (1993–2003, 2008), Seattle Mariners (2004–2006), Cincinnati Reds (2006–2007), and the Rangers (two separate stints in 2008 and 2009).

His common nickname is "Everyday Eddie", a testament to his durable arm during his first stint with the Twins.

Eddie was born and raised in Stockton, CA. Currently resides in Tustin Ranch, CA with wife Lisa, sons Niko, Jacob and daughter Eva. Eddie enjoys coaching little league, fishing and spending time with his family.


Lisa Guardado
Lisa Guardado

Coming soon.


Jake Kloberdanz
Jake Kloberdanz

Jake is a founder and the current CEO of ONEHOPE Wine. Jake started on the quest to build the ONEHOPE brand after his close friend, Morgan Lewis, found out she got cancer at the young age of 23. He was recognized by Business Week as the "Top 25 under 25", Orange County's "Top 40 under 40", and was the youngest nominee for entrepreneur of the year by Ernst and Young, and the youngest male nominee for San Francisco's Man of the Year for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society. He was recently honored to fly on the "medal of honor" flight with surviving medal of honor winners and got to meet the president. Jake was a 3 year Scholar Athlete at UC Berkeley graduating from The Haas Business School and taking home two national championships in college Rugby. Jake is proud to have served over 5,000 volunteer hours since 2001.


Raphael Lunetta
Raphael Lunetta

Los Angeles Rising Star Chef Raphael Lunetta is one of the most talented and well-known chefs in southern California. In May 2008, JiRaffe received the prestigious "Fine Dining Award" from Nation's Restaurant News, showing Lunetta continues to soar as one of LA's premiere chefs and personalities.

As well as for his work in the kitchen, Lunetta is known for his second passion … surfing, and has gained the title "the surfing chef" as he is often seen on Southern California beaches spending time in the water.

Lunetta was named to the prestigious group of "Top Ten New Chefs" by Food and Wine Magazine (April 1997) and "Rising Stars – 1997" by Restaurant Hospitality Magazine (May 1997). Additionally, Lunetta is a favorite special guest chef on several shows at the national Food Network and has appeared as a guest chef at many locations throughout the world, including Hawaii, Orlando, New York City, Bali and Singapore, Sundance Resort, Utah and on Crystal Cruises. In 2006 he was a guest chef for BRAVO TV's "Top Chef" series when Top Chef Tom Colicchio brought the show to Los Angeles. In July 2007 he was a guest chef of famed Chef Alan Wong at the Hualalai Grille at Wong's restaurant at the Four Seasons hotel, Kona, Hawaii.

Raphael co-owns Lemon Moon restaurant, a more casual restaurant in West Los Angeles, with his former JiRaffe partner Josiah Citrin.

Raphael is a true "favorite son/chef" in his hometown of Santa Monica and was named to the Santa Monica High School "Hall of Fame" for its outstanding alumni. He is married to television news personality Gabriela Teissier. They have two sons.


J Ocana
J Ocana

J Ocana is Director, President & COO of Reaction Audio Visual. He is an entrepreneur in Orange County and has been involved in several start up organizations. He has a B.S. in Business from USC, and an Executive MBA from Pepperdine. His background includes over 20 years in the high technology industry as a manager and/or executive for such companies as Nokia, GE, and Peregrine Systems. He brings a wealth of business acumen to the team along with the experience of being the father of a child recovering from autism. He lives in Ladera Ranch with his wife Jennifer and their four children: Aubree, Alexis, Christian, and Cole.


Sandra Howarth Stone
Sandra Howarth Stone

Sandra (Sandy) Stone is a SoCal native who has worked 35+ years in real estate development as well as property management in Orange and Riverside Counties.

Sandy's philanthropic work in the community spans over 25 years beginning with the Assistance League of Newport-Mesa where she served as Building and Expansion Chairman and helped to move the organization from their cramped quarters to their new state of the art 20,000 square foot facility. She and her husband David are also active in the United Way of Orange County where Sandy was a founding member of the Women's Philanthropy Fund. They are committed to making a difference through causes they care deeply about including children, education, and scientific research on aging that impacts the future of humanity. Sandy and David are also devoted patrons of Chapman University, Salk Institute for Biological Studies, UC Irvine Medical Center, American Red Cross and the Boys and Girls Clubs of America.

Sandy is currently semi-retired and lives in Newport Beach with her husband David and has two children and four grandchildren. When she is not home in the OC she is traveling the globe with her husband on their boat Solaia.


Gabriela Teissier
Gabriela Teissier

Gabriela Teissier is a news anchor at Univision 34 KMEX-TV, the number one Spanish-language television station in the nation. She joined the “Primera Edición” (First Edition) news team in March of 2004 after being the news anchor for Telefutura 46 - KFTR-TV, the flagship station of Telefutura (now rebranded as Unimas).

For the past eight years Teissier has addressed such topics during the two-hour morning show that include: education, health, immigration and current affairs. Some of Teissier’s most recent interviewees include Your Excellency President of the State of Israel and Nobel Peace Prize Shimon Peres, Barack Obama, Maria Shriver and former President of El Salvador, Antonio Saca. She has received an Emmy for excellence in journalism and five nominations for producing and hosting along with seven Golden Mike awards.

Teissier sits on the board of the Greater Los Angeles Division of the American Heart Association. She is also a board member of ACT Today! (Autism Care and Treatment Today!), a not for profit organization that provides therapy and services for families with people with autism.

While studying communications and graphic design at the Universidad Iberoamericana, Teissier was already working in the news business in Mexico City. Her first position as a news anchor was in Telerey, Mexico. Almost immediately she landed a contract to come to the USA as an anchor.


Eunice Viola
Eunice Viola

Coming soon.


Michelle “Shelly” Volner
Michelle “Shelly” Volner

Shelly Volner is a proud mother of two, a columnist for an Orange County online magazine and a part time personal assistant to her parents. Her mother is fellow ACT Today! board member, Sandy Stone. 

Shelly graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a B.S. Degree in Agricultural Business and a minor in Psychology.  She has worked in an administrative management capacity in the auto and real estate businesses, food and floral industries as well as an assignment working for the non-profit wing of the U.S. National Arboretum in Washington D.C. Needless to say, Shelly is proud to say she has “done a little of everything!”

When Shelly's son Will was diagnosed on the autism spectrum at the age of two, she and her husband became vigilant in locating resources to help him along what was sure to be a challenging journey. After 12 months of various neurological testing, their son's diagnosis was ruled a mis-diagnosis and recategorized as a speech and language delay.  Two and half years later they would go through an almost identical process with their daughter Nancy. Shelly and her husband feel as though they only merely dipped their toe into this pool called “autism” and feel overwhelmingly blessed that their children's challenges could be remedied by weekly speech therapy classes and a year of ABA therapy for their daughter. Most families with this diagnosis are not as fortunate and it is because of this they are so passionate about helping other families that are living, eating and sleeping with this developmental disorder. She hopes that during her lifetime she can witness the extinction of new cases of autism, but until then she is dedicated to ACT Today!


ACT Today!
Autism Care & Treatment Today!
6330 Variel Ave., Ste. 102
Woodland Hills, CA 91367
818-340-4010
877-9ACT-TODAY
(877-922-8863)
Info@act-today.org