About the Author
Richard L. Simpson was Professor Emeritus at the University of Kansas. He was a member of the Department of Special Education faculty for over 40 years. While at the University of Kansas he directed numerous University of Kansas and University of Kansas Medical Center demonstration programs for students with autism spectrum disorders and other disabilities and coordinated a variety of federal grant programs related to students with autism spectrum disorders and other disabilities. He also worked as a special education teacher, school psychologist and coordinator of a community mental health outreach program. Rich authored numerous books, articles, and texts on a variety of topics connected to students with disabilities. Rich was the former senior editor of the professional journal Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities. His awards include the Council for Exceptional Children Research Award, Midwest Symposium for Leadership in Behavior Disorders Leadership Award, Autism Society of Kansas Leadership Award, and numerous University of Kansas awards and distinguished roles, including the Gene A. Budig Endowed Teaching Professorship of Special Education. Ellen McGinnis-Smith earned her Ph.D. in Special Education at the University of Iowa and certification as a school administrator from Drake University. She has been a teacher of special education at both the elementary and secondary levels for eleven years primarily in the area of behavioral disorders. Dr. McGinnis-Smith served as an educational consultant at Child Psychiatry, University of Iowa as well as in the public schools. She was principal of Orchard Place, a residential and day treatment center, in Des Moines, Iowa for 10 years and served as Director of Special Education for Des Moines Public Schools. She recently retired as a mental health and dispute resolution consultant for the Iowa Department of Education. Dr. McGinnis-Smith is the author of the Skillstreaming social skills programs. She and her husband, Carl Smith (also a special educator), have two adult children.