Dr. Daniel Openden is Vice President and Clinical Services Director for the Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center (SAARC) in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Daniel Openden has received his Ph.D. in Special Education, Disability and Risk Studies from the University of California and was mentored by Drs. Robert and Lynn Koegel. Dr. Daniel Openden is an Autism Light because of his important role as a leading autism researcher and clinical services director who has focused on early intervention strategies and the role of parents in educating children with autism.
In addition to his work at SARRC, Dr. Daniel Openden has the following special roles in autism research.
- Advisory Council of the Arizona Autism Coalition.
- Associate Editor for the Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions.
- Adjunct faculty member of Arizona State University. Dr. Daniel Openden received his PhD. in Special Education, Disability, and Risk Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
- In June, 2011, Dr. Daniel Openden received the Phoenix Business Journals Forty Under Forty Award.
- In 2004, Dr. Openden received the CalABA Julie Vargas Award for original research with his study, “A Systematic Desensitization Paradigm to Treat Hypersensitivity to Auditory Stimuli in Children with Autism in Family Contexts.”
Speaker: Dr. Openden is also a frequent speaker at autism conferences and events.
- He spoke at the 2011 National Autism Conference and the program at the 2011 National Autism Conference listed his research interests as, “parent education, professional development, positive behavior supports, early intervention, inclusion, and dissemination of service delivery models for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders.”
- In 2010 Dr. Openden gave a presentation in South Carolina and SCNow.com wrote a news article on that speech.
Research Area: The majority of Dr. Openden’s work has focused on parent training. He explained to me the importance of this strategic partnership with parent education in this way:
I think it is important to recognize that parents can be effectively trained to deliver high quality intervention (in my work, Pivotal Response Treatment [PRT]) and make a positive impact on their child’s symptoms. Parents are often our most committed group of people, and when provided with good training in evidence-based interventions, likely increase the intensity of treatment and improve outcomes. (Daniel Openden)Dr. Daniel Openden shared with me that in his opinion two particular professional studies by others have had the most impact on autism research. These two are:
Behavior Imaging Solutions: The following is the video of Dr. Openden explaining how they use Behavior Imaging Solutions at SAARC to help with early intervention strategies. Behavior Imaging Solutions is a system where parents upload video of children being taught to their Internet site and then trained therapists can access them and offer guidance on the intervention strategies being employed to improve specific behaviors with a specific child.
Social Media: Follow Dr. Daniel Openden on the following social media.