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Jeanne Beard, Founder of the National Autism Academy, Forecasts a Shift From Autism Awareness to Autism Appreciation by the End of 2021



April was Autism Awareness month. This year, a group sought to shift it from Awareness to Acceptance. But some think that’s not enough. Jeanne Beard, Founder of the National Autism Academy, forecasts a shift to Autism Appreciation by the end of 2021.

April has been heralded as Autism Awareness month since its inception back in the early 1970’s.  Nearly 50 years later, some think it’s time for a change.  Among them is Jeanne Beard, Founder of the National Autism Academy and an expert on parenting children with autism.  

Jeanne Beard believes that society needs to move past Autism Awareness for there to be the kind of positive change that people with autism and their families deserve.  She advocates for more appreciation – meaning a full understanding – of what individuals with autism and their family members experience.  And she forecasts that this shift towards Autism Appreciation will take a more prominent place by the end of 2021. 

“It’s been fifty years,” said Ms. Beard. “And we are starting to see a need and a demand to move past basic awareness into a deeper understanding of what people with autism and their families experience.  While some progress over the past five decades has been made, there still is little room for neuro-diversity.” 

Jeanne Beard isn’t the only one recognizing that there needs to be a change away from simple awareness.  This year, the Autism Society of America, one of the oldest autism groups around, used social media to try to shift the focus for April from awareness to acceptance.  Yet another autism advocacy group, the Autistic Self Advocacy Group, has been calling for a change since 2011. 

But both the Autism Society of America and the Autistic Self Advocacy Group stopped at calling for a shift past awareness to acceptance.  And Jeanne Beard believes stopping at acceptance is stopping too soon. 

“As parents looking to give our children a positive future, we have to prepare our kids not only to be independent but also to navigate a world that has a long way to go to understand how their brains operate.” she said.  And too few parents are taught how to do either part of that.  To Jeanne Beard, that’s a problem.   

That’s because Jeanne Beard isn’t familiar with what it takes to prepare a child with autism to be more independent only as the founder of the National Autism Academy or as an expert on the impact of autism on the family.  She’s also a parent of two sons with autism. 

Her personal experience led her to start the National Autism Academy. The website is  Through her work, she has interviewed hundreds of parents, teachers and health care professionals.  She knows what works and what doesn’t.  From those interviews, hours of research and her own experience, she has developed online trainings, workshops and programs to better equip those who help people with autism live a more positive, independent, fulfilling life. 

Ms. Beard believes a change towards Autism Appreciation is not only needed but imminent given the growing number of people with autism.  Just last year, the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) disclosed that 1 in 54 children under the age of 8 were diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum in the United States based on data from 2016.  That’s about a 10% increase in just two years.  

But the number doesn’t include children who are diagnosed later or are undiagnosed.  It also doesn’t include adults.  And based on the data, the CDC revealed last year that there are approximately 5,437,988 adults with autism in the US. 

“We have a growing population with autism.  And the call for more autism appreciation – or understanding – is rising.  By the end of 2021, it will be an important focus.” she shared.  Looking at the growing number of Ted talks on autism, characters on television depicted with autism and the presence of the Netflix program, Atypical, it’s clear that a bigger conversation is picking up steam. 

But Jeanne Beard is not looking to just change the words used each April.  “Right now the world pays attention to autism one month a year,” she said. ‘But for the child and their family, it’s something that’s with them for life.  That’s why Autism Appreciation is a shift that families need now.” 

That’s just one of the reasons why Jeanne Beard and the National Autism Academy have been developing new programs to show parents, teachers, counselors and others how to help the child with autism get ready for what happens when they age out of school.  It, like Autism Appreciation, simply can’t wait.    

Jeanne Beard can be reached at Jeanne (at) nationalautismacademy (dot) com 

Media Contact

Company Name: National Autism Academy
Contact Person: Jeanne Beard
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 800-266-7013

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Premier Travel Founder Anne Kulhanek Reveals How To Plan A Bucket List Vacation On Influencers Radio



On a recent episode of Influencers Radio with Jack Mize, Anne Kulhanek, founder of Premier Travel, talks about how she is helping travelers, especially those 50 and over, plan once-in-a-lifetime bucket list vacations.

Since the COVID-19 travel shutdowns, would-be vacationers have been cooped up for a long time. Now that much of the world is opening up, they are ready to get out and about.

While planning a vacation was a DIY exercise for many before the shutdowns, things have certainly changed. More and more discerning travelers aren’t willing to jeopardize their vacation experience trying to navigate travel restrictions and COVID protocols on their own. Instead, they are turning to pros like Anne Kulhanek.

Specializing in once-in-a-lifetime bucket list vacations, Anne’s team at Premier Travel amplifies traveler’s vacation dreams beyond what they thought was possible. Her vacations are never cookie cutter and always customized.

During the interview, Anne explained that what makes a trip ‘once in a lifetime’ is defined by her clients, saying, “Luxury for everyone is so different. The word luxury is commonly used in travel, and it’s funny because every travel supplier considers themselves to be luxury. But it really is defined by you. For you, luxury might be a first-class airline ticket to Europe, and staying in a penthouse suite at a certain hotel. For somebody else, luxury might be traveling to Ireland just being among the locals, staying at an authentic hotel, and meeting the owner of a little pub. So luxury really is, in my opinion, about doing what you want to do in the way that you want to do it. Whether it’s off the beaten path or an iconic place that’s very popular, it is about you, what you want out of this trip, and what’s customized just for you.”

With over two decades of travel agency experience, Anne’s strong relationships with quality travel providers, along with her network of local partners and guides, ensures her clients have the trip of a lifetime. As independent agents, Anne’s team at Premier Travel works on behalf of their clients, shopping and selecting travel providers who will deliver exactly what they need and at the best price.

To listen to the full interview, visit

To learn more about Anne Kulhanek and Premier Travel, visit

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Toastmaster’s International Corporate Award given to Christian Care Ministry



Christian Care Ministry/ Medi-Share’s Acts2Speak Toastmaster’s club was awarded the Toastmaster’s International Corporate Award for enhancing employee engagement.  Toastmasters International is a worldwide nonprofit educational organization that empowers individuals to become more effective communicators and leaders. Christian Care Ministry/ Medi-Share offers Toastmasters as a benefit of employment and as a way to promote professional development. District 84 is made up of over 100 clubs. Only two were given this distinction.

“I have always felt that good communication is what differentiates those who advance within their organizations or their profession vs. those who don’t,” said Scott Reddig, Christian Care Ministry CEO. “You can be great at your job, but if you can’t explain to others what you do or what you are proposing, it limits your effectiveness. I encourage all our employees to take advantage of Toastmasters. It undoubtedly can help your career.”

 “When I was elected club president in the middle of a pandemic, I knew it would be challenging as our employees were all working remotely at the time. But being surrounded by a team of strong club officers and with the continued support from the leaders in our organization, we have been able to not just sustain our club, but thrive by adding new members,” says Rebecca Barrack, Acts2Speak Club President and Asst. Manager of Communications at Christian Care Ministry.

Headquartered in Englewood, Colo., Toastmaster’s International membership exceeds 357,000 in more than 16,600 clubs in 143 countries. Since 1924, Toastmasters International has helped people from diverse backgrounds become more confident speakers, communicators, and leaders.

“It’s an honor and a privilege to present the Toastmasters Corporate Club Recognition Award to Christian Care Ministry. Having a Toastmasters Club onsite shows how much the company values their employee’s Leadership and the development of their Communication Skills. The club has demonstrated exemplary service to their members in meeting the goals of Toastmasters,” states District 84 Director Pim Parpart, DTMTo learn more about Toastmaster’s International go to

 To learn more about Medi-Share go to

About Christian Care Ministry/ Medi-Share: Christian Care Ministry (CCM), a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation, based in Melbourne, FL, operates the Medi-Share program,  a Christian health care sharing program that provides an affordable alternative to health insurance for faith-based consumers. Founded in 1993, Medi-Share currently serves over 400,000 members across America.


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Sarah Pulido signs a book deal with Launching Leaders Publishing Group



Influencer and former Social Media Strategist turned international business owner Sarah Pulido, recently signed an agreement with Launching Leaders Publishing Group to release a book which highlights 5 principles to inner and outer success for women in business. 

Pulido states, “I’m excited to share my message around women’s empowerment with aspiring and current women entrepreneurs. I want to reinforce the message that you can rise above any current or former circumstance and achieve whatever you put your mind and heart to. The book ‘Mindset for Success‘ shares my 5 key principles for overcoming challenges and thriving in life and business.”

According to the National Association of Women Business Owners, more than 11.6 million firms are owned by women, employing nearly 9 million people, and generating $1.7 trillion in sales as of 2017.

Sadly, around 20% of small businesses, in general, fail in the first year, and 50% do not survive beyond five years.

This book was written to help women entrepreneurs apply Pulido’s top 5 business success principles and beat the odds.

Launching Leaders Publishing Group specializes in publishing personal development and business books meant for entrepreneurs, small business owners, and professionals.

Pulido’s book will be available for purchase on beginning in July 2021.

For more information or to connect with Sarah Pulido, please reach out to her at [email protected]

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