FOUNDER, president and Ceo
While working as a marketing coordinator for 25 years, Paula was raising her son Zak, who has ASD. This journey inspired her to start a new career. She earned her Life Coach Certification from the Life Purpose Institute in 2014 and started her own coaching business. During this time, she founded a meetup group for adults with ASD and served as the adult programs facilitator for UCF CARD. Paula conducts workshops to help adults with ASD develop social, executive function, job readiness and independent life skills. Paula launched the ASD Adult Achievement Center in September 2016. She is passionate about discovering each individual's talents and empowering them to achieve greater success in life. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her Yorkies, family and friends.
Monica is a Florida native, calling Orlando her home for several years. She received her bachelor’s degree in English from Stetson University. Her passion for helping businesses grow was ignited when she began working with nonprofit organizations in 2008. Monica joined the ASD Adult Achievement Center in the fall of 2017 and is in charge of publishing our monthly newsletter, among many other duties. When she isn’t staring at computer screens, Monica enjoys the outdoors and traveling whenever she can.
Tony was born in Puerto Rico and moved to Florida five years ago. He is an adult diagnosed on the autism spectrum. He comes to the ASD Adult Achievement Center having served on the board of directors for the Autism Society of Greater Orlando from 2015 to 2017, representing the autistic population. Tony graduated with his bachelor’s degree in business and information management in December 2016 and has work experience in customer service and retail sales. His passion is to raise autism awareness in the community, especially in helping adults with autism lead independent lives.
PROGRAM ASSISTANT/PEER MENTOR
Patrick received his high school diploma from the Paragon School in May 2016 and began his journey with the ASD Adult Achievement Center in August 2016. A lover of the arts, Patrick worked as a scare actor at A Petrified Forest in the fall of 2017. While waiting on his big acting break, Patrick leads the children's church program K-5 through 5th grade at Orlando Community Church. He also serves as a program assistant for the PEERS program. During this time, he assists with role-play exercises and has became a role model for the other members of the group. He is passionate about helping other young adults with ASD and serves as a PEER mentor. When he’s not gracing the stage with his presence, he enjoys getting together with friends, working out at The Jungle and attending MMA events.
Born and raised in the small town of Charleston, West Virginia, Trina grew tired of the quiet life and craved the career opportunities that only a big city could afford. She moved to Orlando in 2003 and earned her bachelor’s degree in English at Rollins College in May 2017. Since graduating, she has worked as a freelance writer for local nonprofits and as a contributing writer for The Downtown Community Paper. She hopes to combine her background in healthcare and her passion for giving a voice to underrepresented communities to pursue a career in social justice and human rights journalism. Growing up, Trina developed a deep compassion for helping people with cognitive and physical disabilities after watching her mother work with disabled children as a special education teaching assistant. In what little free time she has, she enjoys going for walks, reading and writing.