Speakers/Trainers from Div. TEACCH®.

Laura Grofer Klinger, PhD

Laura Grofer Klinger, PhD Laura Grofer Klinger is a clinical psychologist, a tenured Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry in the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill School of Medicine, and the Executive Director of the UNC TEACCH® Autism Program. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree from Stanford University and her Ph.D. from the University of Washington. She oversees TEACCH’s clinical services (seven regional centers, supported employment program, and the Carolina Living and Learning Center (CLLC) , an integrated vocational and residential program for adults), international training program, and its community-based research program. Dr. Klinger serves on a variety of community advisory boards including Sesame Street (initiative to increase ASD awareness), Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina (supporting their development of an insurance policy for individuals with ASD), Government Accountability Office (adult transition), and Extraordinary Ventures (an employment program for adults with ASD). She consults to school systems and employment programs internationally about best practices for supporting the transition to adulthood including supports for employment and postsecondary education. Her research includes the study of learning differences in individuals with ASD and the development of community-based intervention programs to promote successful adult outcomes. She is the Principal Investigator of a longitudinal study examining outcomes related to employment, quality of life, and aging in 25-60-year-old adults with ASD who were served by TEACCH during childhood. She is also the Principal Investigator of a school-based pilot intervention study examining the effectiveness of the TEACCH School Transition to Employment and Post-Secondary Education (T-STEP) Program.

Mary E. Van Bourgondien,

Ph. D. is a Clinical Psychologist and Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

She is the Clinical Director of the Chapel Hill TEACCH® Center, which is part of the statewide wide TEACCH Autism program that serves children and adults with autism and their families. She is also the Founder and former Director of the Carolina Living and Learning Center, TEACCH’s integrated residential and vocational training program for adults with autism in Pittsboro, NC. Dr. Van Bourgondien received her PH.D. in Child Clinical Psychology from the University of Washington. And she has done numerous presentations and publications on issues related to adolescence and adults with autism nationally and internationally. She is the co-author of the most recent edition of the Childhood Autism Ratings Scale- Second Edition (CARS2).


Kathy Hearsey

Kathy Hearsey,  graduated with an M.Ed. in Special Education in 1981, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.   Following her college education, she spent six years teaching students diagnosed with moderate to severe intellectual disability as well as Autism Spectrum Disorder,  For the past 30 years she has worked with the TEACCH® Autism  Program, consulting and coaching professionals who work with individuals with ASD in a variety of settings including educational,  residential and supported employment.  In her current position as Director of Training, she develops and implements training models in North Carolina as well as nationally and internationally.  Kathy is also one of the authors of the Task Galore Series.