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This week’s edition!

Autism Society director to address Rotary Club

Cathy E. Dionne

The guest speaker at the next meeting of the Lewiston-Auburn Rotary Lunch Club on Thursday, May 9, from noon to 1p.m.will be Cathy E. Dionne, Executive Director of the Autism Society of Maine. The event will take place at the Village Inn at 165 High Street in Auburn. 

Dionne is a parent of a 25-year-old son, Ben, with autism, and a 26-year-old daughter, Ashley. She lives in Greene with her husband of 32 years, Rick. When Ben was diagnosed with autism at the age of 18 months, she began educating herself about the world of autism and all of its therapies, appointments, and family adjustments. 

Dionne became involved with the Autism Society of Maine in 1996, first as a member of the Board of Directors and then as its Vice President. Eventually she found herself wanting to do more for Maine families. She decided to become a staff member of the Autism Society of Maine so she could have direct contact with families every day. 

She has been with ASM for 22 years and is now the Executive Director. Over that time, she has been instrumental in expanding the resources and programs which ASM provides for both children and adults with autism and has been responsible for developing ASM’s fundraising efforts, such as the Ride for Autism and the Walk for Autism. Her other accomplishments include initiating the summer camp program based at the University of Maine at Farmington and the Finding the Pieces Summer Camp based in Biddeford and organizing the Annual Autism Family Retreat Weekend held in Standish. She sits on several committees with the Department of Health and Human Services and collaborates with many other agencies. 

Guests are welcome; no reservations are required. Lunch will be available at the restaurant. For more information, contact Club President Thomas MacDonald at 333-4588, follow them on Facebook, or see www.lewistonauburnrotary.org.

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