People do not grow out of autism. Autism is a lifelong disorder; however, the manifestation of symptoms may change over time. While there is yet no known cure, autism is definitely treatable.
Lynn has always been keenly interested in social justice and supporting people in overcoming challenges to live the life they desire for themselves.
A 25-year career at CNIB; service on various boards, including 9 years with CLASSIC (Community Legal Assistance Services for Saskatoon Inner City); and completing the Executive Coaching program through Royal Roads University, were all foundational building block experiences that Lynn draws on every day in her role at Autism Services. She has been with Autism Services as of September 2014, serving as the Executive Director.
What uplifts and motivates Lynn is being able to contribute to an organization doing meaningful work with compassion and integrity. She finds inspiration in the people Autism Services serves—along with the employees, volunteers, donors and funders—who demonstrate unwavering commitment, creative approaches to overcoming challenges and celebrating successes…big and small…with one another.
DeAnn Eckdahl, CPA, CA
Director of Finance
DeAnn began working with a non-profit after receiving her accounting designation. She moved into an Education role in 2005 contracting with the CPA Western School of Business as a Facilitator for the CPA Professional Education Program and previously a legacy designation program. DeAnn joined Autism Services in 2014 in a part time role as Senior Accountant while continuing to facilitate in the PEP program; and was promoted into the Director of Finance role in 2021. DeAnn volunteered with her children’s school, School Community Council and children’s activities.
As a parent of a child on the Autism Spectrum, she enjoys being able to contribute to the valuable work being done for children and adults on the spectrum and their families. She finds inspiration and hope in the people at Autism Services; co-workers, funders, donors and clients.
Director of Fund Development, Marketing and Communications
Alle Guarnieri brings over 20 years of Marketing, Sales and Communications experience working across many countries, with background in the automotive sectors. She joined Autism Services in August 2022, as Director of Fund Development, Marketing and Communications, leading purpose-driven programs that create brand value and influence through sustainable partnerships. Alle has a Bachelor of Business Administration & Marketing as well as a Post-graduate Degree in Communications and Digital Design from ESPM University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. She also holds a Certificate in Corporate Governance at Brazilian Institute of Corporate Governance.
Alle is seeking ways to use her creativity to improve best practices, streamline processes, and increase community impact. She is excited to cultivate relationships with cross- functional stakeholders to ensure continuous advancement of Autism Services of Saskatoon priorities.
Interim Director of the ABA "Little Tots" Program
Janelle is a BCBA and has her Masters of Professional Education in Applied Behavior Analysis. She also has an undergraduate degree in Kinesiology. Janelle began working at Autism Services in 2008 in family programs, it was then that she knew that she had to pursue work in this field as a career. Upon her completion of her undergraduate degree in 2011, Janelle began working full-time as a behavior therapist in AIP. Janelle has been a part of the ABA Little Tots team since its conception in 2012. She began as a Behavior Therapist, then moved to the Senior Therapist position, and is now currently in the interim Director role.
Janelle loves being part of a team that is full of wonderful and passionate individuals with the shared mission of helping and supporting individuals with Autism and their families. She enjoys seeing her clients’ individual goals and milestones being reached every day and for them to be able to do so in a safe, positive, and supportive environment.
Director of ABA "Little Tots" Program
Desirae is currently on leave.
Desirae is a BCBA and has a Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis and Autism. She also has an undergraduate degree in Communication Disorders and worked as a behavior therapist privately along with working as a 1:1 in a daycare setting. Once she saw the way she could help children through ABA in the Little Tots program she decided to complete her masters in ABA. She joined Autism Services in October 2014 where she began working as behavior therapist, then moved into a lead therapist position and after becoming certified moved into the Director position.
Desirae enjoys being able to celebrate each and every small and large success with the children, with the team, and the parents on a daily basis. She feels grateful to be a part of a team of wonderful people who are all dedicated to assisting others in any way they can.
Director of Autism Intervention Program (AIP)
Lauren has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and a Masters of Education degree (Educational Psychology and Special Education) from the University of Saskatchewan. She began working for Autism Services in 2013 and has enjoyed working in a variety of positions including: Behavior Therapist, Consultant (remote and urban), Senior Consultant, and currently the Director of AIP. Lauren appreciates working with and leading the phenomenal professionals in AIP. She enjoys how the uniqueness of each autistic individual is celebrated and how we support our clients and their families in working toward the goals that are meaningful to them in their daily lives.
Lauren has a love of learning and strives to learn all that she can from the team she supports, her colleagues, and the clients and families we serve, so that we are able to support the autistic community in ways that are significant to them.
Director of Family Programs
Alex has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from the University of Saskatchewan. He has worked with Autism Services since 2011; starting as a Behaviour Therapist in the Autism Intervention Program before moving into ABA-Little Tots. He later moved into the Family Programs Coordinator position and has been the Director of Family Programs since 2014.
Alex thrives off of energy, team-work and collaboration. He enjoys leading a team with a like-minded vision and continues to build capacity and form new partnerships within the community. He achieved certification in the Leadership Saskatoon program in 2017 and has served on local, provincial and national boards and committees within the sport of Lawn Bowling. In his personal life, he enjoys his time with his wife and two young sons. He is also a competitive lawn bowler in the summer, a recreational curler in the winter, and a collector of sports and middle earth memorabilia.
Director of Adult Support Programs
Glenda began working in the Human Services Field in 1990. After working for six years on the front line in community homes, she started training and working in management. She began working for Autism Services of Saskatoon in 2000 and became Director of Adult Support Programs in 2011. “I enjoy being part of Autism Services because of the valuable connections with so many people. Even after many years in the field I learn something new every day so I am able to stay engaged and interested. Serving others and supporting them to have the best quality of life possible is rewarding in so many ways.”
Rylund joined the Autism Services’ board in June, 2017 and is currently the Chair. He holds a J.D. from the University of Saskatchewan, College of Law and is a practicing lawyer at McDougall Gauley LLP. In addition to practicing law, he owns Astro Jump Saskatoon. Rylund also serves on the boards of KidSport, Saskatoon Minor Football, Huskie Football Alumni and the Saskatoon Public School Foundation.
Rylund joined the board as he wanted to help support the organization’s goal of “ensuring all people with autism have the opportunity to live with dignity and to reach their full potential”. He feels fortunate to have so many opportunities in life and believes autistic people deserve the same. He enjoys being part of a dedicated and passionate community that puts the people who use Autism Services first at every opportunity.
Chief Operations Officer (Vice-Chair)
Mike joined the Autism Services’ board in Feb 2022 and is currently the chair of the HR and Governance Committee. He holds a PMP designation as well as a six sigma Green Belt in Lean. Mike is the Chief Operations Officer for Shercom Industries, the tire recycler in Saskatchewan. Shercom is heavily involved in creating play spaces for physical and intellectual disabilities by creating safe and interactive playgrounds for all children. Mike was able to help Shercom partner with Playtop and Nike to be able to provide play areas using recycled tires and recycled Nike running shoes. He is currently working towards an MBA in Operations. Mike has 2 nephews on the autism spectrum and the opportunity to be a part of making life better for people like them is what motivates him to be involved. The opportunity to help even one person in Saskatoon achieve a better standard of life through Autism Services is worth every minute spent. To help others live to their full potential takes kindness, determination and a big heart. Autism Services is all that and more.
Accountant, CPA (Treasurer)
Kelly joined the Autism Services’ Board June 17, 2019. She currently holds the position of Treasurer. She works at MNP LLP on the Special Tax Team. Her motivation to join our Board of Directors is to help support Autism Services in all its endeavors and give back to the community. She enjoys spending her time with her fellow board members who are also passionate and committed to their work on the Board. She also thoroughly enjoys working with the management team at Autism Services, who she feels are amongst the hardest working and most caring people that she knows.
Speech-Language Pathologist (Secretary)
Sarah joined the Autism Services’ Board June 17, 2019. She currently holds the position of Secretary. She is a Speech Language Pathologist, with a B.A. in Linguistics from the University of Saskatchewan and an M.Sc. in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the University of Alberta. Sarah has previously worked as a Speech Language Pathologist for Saskatoon Public Schools and in private practice. She now holds an SLP contract with Prairie Spirit School Division. She also volunteers with the MS Society of Canada. Sarah feels that the large number of autistic students she works with were a primary motivating reason for her desire to join the Autism Services’ Board. She wants to work alongside our agency to ensure autistic people experience success and have access to the support they need to achieve their goals. She enjoys connecting with other community members through the agency who share a passion for supporting and celebrating neurodivergence.
Celine joined Autism Services’ Board in June 2019. She obtained her Chartered Professional Accountant designation (CPA) in 2018, having obtained a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Saskatchewan in 2014. She is currently a Manager at MNP LLP in Saskatoon where she works primarily with public sector and not-for-profit organizations. Celine joined the board to show support and spread awareness for those diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). She is very committed to her community and looks forward to bringing her knowledge to assist in the continued success of Autism Services’ of Saskatoon.
Special Education/Autism - Saskatoon Public School Division
Brandi-Rae joined the Board in June 2022. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from the University of Jamestown ND, Master of Education in Special Education from the University of Saskatchewan, Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis and Autism from Russel Sage Colleges. She has been a teacher for nine years, two of those years with the North East School Division, three years with Horizon School Division and four years with Saskatoon Public School Division.
Her reason for joining the Board is to act as a liaison between the public and school supports for families of autistic individuals. She enjoys being part of a group of passionate individuals with like-minded interests in ensuring autistic individuals and their families have access to a variety of supports and resources.
President, HMG Inc
Hanif joined the Autism Services’ board on June 20, 2022
Parent & Product Marketing Lead
Emily joined the Autism Services’ board as of June 20, 2022, to help advocate for ASD support in the community. Her son Owen is autistic and she is eager to be part of creating a space where he can lead his best life.
Emily is a certified yoga instructor and currently works at 7shifts in Product Marketing. She explored and learned in Europe while completing her Masters of International Management at Western University where she specialized in marketing and strategy. She has also worked at Vancouver based Lululemon Athletica and Kit and Ace. She is a world traveler, a visual artist, an avid supporter of environmentally sustainable practices and a marathon runner.
Registered Psychologist - Prairie Spirit School Division
Kristina joined the Autism Services’ board on May 23, 2023