The Team

Drahota

Dr. Amy Drahota, Ph.D.

Principal Investigator

Dr. Drahota is an Assistant Research Professor of Psychology at San Diego State University and the Child and Adolescent Services Research Center (CASRC). Her research focuses on developing and evaluating implementation strategies to help agencies provide the best and most effective research-based treatments to youth with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Why is the ACT SMART toolkit important?

My goal is to develop a toolkit that builds the strengths of community agencies toprovide research-based treatments to individuals with autism. It is also critically important that the toolkit be easy to use, relevant, and cost-effective for agencies. It is my aim for the ACT SMART toolkit to meet these goals.

I’m excited to be working closely with community agencies caring for individuals with autism to share what we have developed and learn more about how to best use the ACT SMART toolkit.

Jon

Dr. Jonathan Martinez, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Dr. Martinez is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at San Diego State University and the Child and Adolescent Services Research Center (CASRC). His research focuses on bridging the gap between science and practice by focusing on the design, implementation, and evaluation of culturally-sensitive health services for diverse children and families.

Why is the ACT SMART toolkit important?

The ACT SMART toolkit has been designed be used flexibly to meet the needs of community-based agencies providing services for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). I believe the toolkit will assist agencies in identifying and implementing evidence-based interventions for individuals with ASD and their families, and develop strategies for their sustained use. I am excited at the opportunity to build and foster relationships with community agencies and gain increased awareness on how best to support agencies at implementing evidence- based interventions.

Rosemary

Rosemary Meza, B.A.

Research Assistant

Rosemary was a Research Assistant at San Diego State University and the Child and Adolescent Services Research Center (CASRC) during the development of the ACT SMART toolkit. She is currently in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program at the University of Washington. Her research interests focus on improving mental health services through the settings.

Why is the ACT SMART toolkit important?

As a former direct provider in an ASD community agency, I am strongly invested in the improvement of outcomes for individuals with autism. I believe the ACT SMART toolkit has the potential to improve client outcomes through assisting community agencies in identifying and implementing a research-based treatment that best suits their needs. I look forward to the valuable insight that will be gained through testing the ACT SMART toolkit in ASD community agencies.