On August 1, 2012, the National Advisory Panel met for VR Autism's annual meeting at SEDL headquarters in Austin, Texas. The panel members include:
- Susan Foley, research director, Institute for Community Inclusion and Rehabilitation Research and Training Center of Vocational Rehabilitation, University of Massachusetts at Boston;
- Anna Hundley, executive director, Autism Treatment Centers;
- Alice Hunnicutt, director, New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development;
- Frank McCamant, chair, Texas Council on Autism and Pervasive Developmental Disorders;
- Don Uchida, executive director, Utah State Office of Rehabilitation.
SEDL staff participating in the meeting included John Westbrook, project director, and Ann Williams, program specialist. In addition, Chad Nye and Bruce Blake with the Center for Autism and Related Disabilities (CARD) at the University of Central Florida attended the meeting.
Nine innovative autism employment programs were reviewed by the panel for possible designation as an Effective Program. Prior to the meeting, SEDL staff, an outside consultant, and panel members individually rated the programs. The programs the panel determined to be effective in facilitating movement of people with ASD into competitive settings will be announced in the near future and will be highlighted in new webcasts and on VR Autism's website.