About the Center for Autism Research

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The Center for Autism Research (CAR) is a collaborative effort between The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania. Our three-part mission to understand the causes of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in order to develop effective treatments through research; to serve the needs of individuals with ASD and their family members through education and guidance throughout the lifespan; and to train the next generation of master clinicians and scientists in state-of-the-science best practices for autism screening, diagnosis and treatment. Our multidisciplinary team is made up of psychologists, developmental pediatricians, neurologists, nurses, occupational therapists, social workers, radiologists and computer scientists who are working every day to discover ways to dramatically improve the lives of individuals with ASD and related conditions throughout a lifetime- from infancy through adulthood.

Senior Leadership

Robert Schultz, PhD
Scientific Director
Robert Schultz, PhD

Bob Schultz, PhD, is the Director of the Center for Autism Research (CAR), a multi-faceted research program at CHOP working to understand the causes of the autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and to develop better treatments.

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Judith Miller, PhD
Clinical Training Director
Judith Miller, PhD

Judi Miller, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and the Clinical Training Director for CAR. She is also Autism Director for CHOP’s Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disorders (LEND) program, ensuring the next generation of master clinicians are prepared to deliver informed and compassionate care.

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David Mandell, ScD
Associate Director
David Mandell, ScD

David Mandell is CAR's Associated Director and also directs Penn's Center for Mental Health Policy and Services Research. His work combines epidemiology and health services research to learn the best ways to organize, finance and deliver services to children with psychiatric and developmental disabilities.

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Susan Levy, MD, MPH
Medical Director
Susan Levy, MD, MPH

Susan E. Levy, MD, MPH is CAR's medical director and an attending developmental pediatrician at CHOP. She is also a Professor of Pediatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Levy's research focuses on the etiology of autism, improving early detection and intervention and supporting shared decision-making. 

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Tiffany Ryan-D'urso, MS, MS
Administrative Director
Tiffany Ryan-D'urso, MS, MS

Tiffany is CAR's Administrative Director, responsible for the financial, administrative, strategic planning, human resource, and organizational processes and infrastructure that support CAR’s research mission.

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Scientists and Clinicians

Keith Bartley, MS
Principal Investigator
Keith Bartley, MS

Keith Bartley co-leads CAR's Technology and Innovation program, where he uses advanced perceptual computing technologies to understand autism and behavior, particularly with social communication.

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Amanda Bennett, MD, MPH
Developmental Pediatrician
Amanda Bennett, MD, MPH

Amanda Bennett, MD, MPH, is a Developmental Pediatrician at CHOP and is site director for the Autism Treatment Network at CHOP, funded by Autism Speaks. Dr. Bennett's research focuses on novel treatments for ASD through medication trials.

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Lisa Blaskey, PhD
Pediatric Neuropsychologist
Lisa Blaskey, PhD

Lisa Blaskey, PhD is a co-investigator and clinician at CAR including studies exploring electrophysiological underpinnings of language impairment in autism spectrum disorders and risk factors and precursors to ASD.

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John Herrington, PhD
Faculty Researcher
John Herrington, PhD

John Herrington, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Child Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at the Perelman School of Medicine. His work concentrates on social and emotional information processes among children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), with a particular emphasis on the co-occurrence of anxiety disorders in ASD.

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Emily Kuschner, PhD
Scientist/ Licensed Psychologist
Emily Kuschner, PhD

Emily S. Kuschner, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist and scientist at CAR and in CHOP's Lurie Family Foundations MEG Center. Her programs of research involve treating food selectivity in individuals with ASD and developing clinical support protocols to help children of all ages, cognitive and language levels participate in MEG and MRI research.

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Jennifer Maldarelli, PhD
Clinical Psychologist
Jennifer Maldarelli, PhD

Jennifer Maldarelli, PhD, is a licensed psychologist at CAR and in CHOP's Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, where she provides developmental and diagnostic assessment services to families. 

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Joseph McCleery, PhD
Developmental Neuroscientist
Joseph McCleery, PhD

Joe McCleery, PhD, is a Developmental Neuroscientist at CAR. His research examines the neural mechanisms of social processing and perception in infants, children and adults with and without ASD; the genetic impacts of brain functioning; and the development of cognitive-behavioral interventions.

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Juhi Pandey, PhD
Faculty Researcher
Juhi Pandey, PhD

Dr. Pandey is a pediatric neuropsychologist and scientist at the Center for Autism Research  as well as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. 

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Julia Parish-Morris, PhD
Faculty Researcher
Julia Parish-Morris, PhD

Julia Parish-Morris is a Research Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania and a Principle Investigator at the Center for Autism Research. Her research interests include language development in autism spectrum disorder.

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Birkan Tunç, PhD
Faculty Researcher
Birkan Tunç, PhD

Birkan Tunç, Ph.D., is a computational scientist CAR and a Research Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at University of Pennsylvania. His primary area of research is the application of machine learning and statistical data analysis in various domains such as psychopathology, neuroimaging, connectomics, and complex network analysis. 

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Benjamin Yerys, PhD
Faculty Researcher
Benjamin Yerys, PhD

Benjamin E. Yerys, Ph.D., is a child psychologist  in the Center for Autism Research (CAR) at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Dr. Yerys leads CAR’s research on the brain basis and treatment of attention and executive function. 

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