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Building a new generation of housing and community options for people with autism and other neurodiversities is good for everyone.

Join us for the ninth First Place Global Leadership Institute Symposium Webinar. Hear from pioneering developers, researchers and healthcare leaders. Inform your big visions and foundational plans, community outreach and engagement, and more…

Learn about the nonlinear path to real estate and community development that can help you save time and money—and stay the course! 

Discover opportunities for learning, coaching and collaboration on April 7 and 8 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. (PST).

Thanks to the generosity of our donors, First Place is offering these webinars at a reduced cost.

We look forward to gathering on April 7 and 8 and working together to move the needle toward more supportive and sustainable housing solutions for those we serve. Please share this invitation with others! 

Inform your plans through this comprehensive report with co-authors Denise Resnik and Desiree Kameeka Galloway.

Be inspired by new autism documentary and co-producers Caren Zucker and John Donvan.

Focus on health and life course outcomes with researcher Jessica Rast, MPH, A.J. Drexel Autism Research Institute.

Learn from pioneering leaders blazing new trails and expanding the marketplace of options.


Wednesday, April 7

Driving the Future in Good Health

  1. Fueling A New Marketplace of Residential & Community Options

  2. Empowering Our Future by Understanding Our Past

  3. Advancing Your Plans: A Place in the World Study & Tools You Can Use

  4. Moving the Needle on Outcomes – What Matters Gets Measured 

  5. Health Starts at Home – How Do We Define Home?

  6. Pioneering Leaders Share What They Wish They Had Known

Thursday, April 8

The Power of Our Examples

  1. The Power of Our Examples: Tri-Sector Leadership

  2. Leading Affordable Housing 2.0: National & Local Initiatives

  3. Successes, Pain Points: Lessons Learned & Navigation Tips

  4. Speaking the Same Language: Applying the New Narrative/Nomenclature

  5. Exploring Your Next Steps: Case Study on Transition Programming

  6. Building Healthy Communities: Asset Mining in Your Own Backyard & Community

  7. Tools You Can Use: From Early Exploration Through Development & Operations

9:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. (PST)

Transitions and Real-Time Learning

At the residential First Place Transition Academy, we utilize a structured curriculum and targeted support for real-time learning, a combination critical for student success. The Learn4Independence® curriculum’s 32 courses provide the structure for learning, while the daily application led by our sister nonprofit, the Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center (SARRC), helps students build crucial independent living and career-readiness skills. Outcomes include 94% employment at graduation and 88% living in their community of choice, including with roommates or on their own.

Join Marci Muhlestein, First Place Director of the Global Leadership Institute Center for Education, Training & Employment and Managing Director of the First Place Transition Academy, and Paige Raetz, Director of Teen and Adult Services for SARRC, to learn more about Transition Academy operations and the comprehensive Learn4Independence curriculum, including licensing and implementation.

10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. (PST)

Firsthand Lessons Learned: Implementing the Vision for First Place–Phoenix

Denise D. Resnik shares a wealth of knowledge and experience on the following topics:

  • Beyond the Real Estate  Building community within the property and beyond
  • Celebrating Diversity  Creating a culture and an operational plan that support individual needs
  • Becoming Lifelong Learners What we’re learning alongside our residents

10:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. (PST)

Virtual Breakout Sessions

Choose one of the following discussions:

  • Transitions and Real-Time Learning
  • Lessons Learned
Light Rail Transition Academy First Place–Phoenix
Wellness Wednesday - First Place–Phoenix
Night to Shine Prom 2020

Featured Industry Leaders

Denise D. Resnik

Founder & President/CEO
First Place AZ

Desiree Kameka-Galloway

Autism Housing Network

John Donvan &
Caren Zucker

Pulitzer Prize Finalists & Journalists
In A Different Key–The Story of Autism

Jessica Rast, MPH

Research Associate
A.J. Drexel Autism Institute

Denise Juliano-Bult, MSW

Chief of Systems Research
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

David C. Brown

Co-founder, Home Matters;
CEO, Valley Leadership

Featured Properties

Debra Caudy, M.D.

Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board, 29 Acres

Jillian Copeland

Founder, Main Street; Founder, Deiner School

Marlene Sotelo, BCBA-D, MT-BC

Chief Operating Officer, Els for Autism Foundation

Heather M. Tarczan

Executive Director, Urban Autism Solutions

Arizona 2020 tax credit donations can be made by April 15, 2021.Donate Now!