Building a Lifetime of Opportunity
The Center of Excellence in Autism and Developmental Disorders has developed over the years from a single, specialized, hospital unit to a multi-level continuum of care, research and training that has gained national recognition. With the strong support of our community and parent organization MaineHealth, we have built a unique home - dedicated to caring for some of our most vulnerable citizens.
We are passionate about providing the best treatment for our patients and have created a model of care unlike any other in the nation. We attract experts in their field from across the country, bringing together the best talent and care practices for our patients. If you would like to join our growing team, please view our current list of open positions.
- Matthew Siegel, MD, Vice President of Medical Affairs, Developmental Disorders Service Line
- Colleen Foley-Ingersoll, M.Ed., BCBA, Senior Director, Developmental Disorders Service Line
- Kimberly Loika-Smith, LCSW, Clinical Director, Center of Excellence
- Michele Rock, DO, Medical Director, Center of Excellence
- Cathleen Small, PhD, BCBA-D, Director of Hospital Behavioral Services and Spring Harbor Academy
- Adam Golonka, PsyD, BCBA, Director of the Developmental Disorders Partial Hospital Program
- Angela Evans, M.Ed, BCBA, Director, Kindergarten-12 Day Treatment Program
- Kathy Hill, M.Ed, Director, Preschool Day Treatment Program
- Lucy Lambert, M.Ed, Director, STEPP Maine In-home Service Program
- Markos Sountis, RN, Spring Harbor Developmental Disorders Unit Nurse Manager
- Ann Nunnery, M.Ed., Special Education Administrator
Advancing the Care of Autism and Developmental Disorders for Almost Two Decades
Governor John Baldacci, Maine parents of youth with autism and developmental disorders and Spring Harbor Hospital leadership open the Development Disorders Unit of Spring Harbor Hospital. The program:
- Treats over 1000 youth in its first 15 years
- Becomes nationally recognized for excellence
- Hosts visiting clinical teams from across the country.
The Developmental Disorders Unit excels in advanced, integrated services.
- Matthew Siegel, M.D. is recruited as Director of Developmental Disorders.
- Spring Harbor Academy opens as a model special purpose school for the inpatient youth.
- Best practices are seeded across the state as youth are transitioned back to local Maine schools.
Dr. Siegel founds The Autism and Developmental Disorders Research Collaborative following a National Summit on Inpatient Care hosted by Maine Medical Center Research Institute. In the following seven years, the Collaborative:
- Is awarded over $8 million in research grants and publishes more than 25 research papers
- Creates a reference collection of genetic and phenotypic data from over 1500 youth with autism accessible to investigators worldwide
- Develops best practice standards for specialized inpatient units that fuels growth nationwide
Maine Behavioral Healthcare (MBH) recognizes the need to provide coordinated outpatient care for youth with developmental disorders experiencing emotional and behavioral challenges. With community backing and generous leadership gifts,* MBH:
- Establishes the Center for Autism and Developmental Disorders (CADD) in South Portland, Maine
- Creates a new model of multi-disciplinary outpatient treatment for over 250 Maine families per year
*Generous leadership gifts received from Judith Glickman Lauder in memory of Albert B. Glickman and the Harold Alfond Foundation in memory of Dorothy “Bibby” Alfond
- The MaineHealth and MBH Boards, organizational leaders and community volunteers combine efforts to raise over $7 million to build the Center of Excellence in Autism and Developmental Disorders in Portland, Maine.
- The center provides the first lifespan-oriented, integrated, treatment, research and professional training center for people with autism and developmental disorders in Northern New England.
All of our buildings and areas have been carefully designed to provide environments oriented to the needs of people with autism and developmental disorders and their families. The hospital unit includes a sensory room and outdoor playground with adaptive equipment. Our outpatient center, designed specifically for our population, provides the best experience to facilitate growth and improvement.
Classrooms are designed to provide:
- Individual and group spaces
- Natural lighting to optimize alertness
- Sound control to minimize distractions
- Materials and visual elements that support communication and orientation
Outpatient clinics feature:
- A separate relaxation room as part of the waiting area to provide a quiet space for those who need it
- Thoughtful flow from the waiting room to gathering vital signs and into the provider’s office to minimize challenges
- Visual cues to orient our visitors
- Dedicated behavioral treatment rooms with observation windows to facilitate learning and progress
One of the Greenest Health Care Facilities in Maine
We are proud that our outpatient care center, built in 2021, is one of the greenest health care facilities in Maine. The entire building is electric, utilizing ultra-efficient heat pumps for heating and cooling, with a dedicated outdoor air source for ventilation, and upgraded insulation and building envelope elements.
Solar panels meet a portion of the building’s energy needs, and the savings on our electric bill are put right back into our programs. Natural materials, large windows and nature graphics bring the outdoors inside. The grounds feature four electric vehicle charging stations, extensive woods and a sophisticated storm water management system buried beneath the parking areas.
Our Community Advisory Council provides valuable insight and guidance for COEADD priorities, challenges and opportunities, with a focus on remaining responsive and engaged with our community. The Council functions as an advisory body in support of the mission of the Center of Excellence.
The Council includes parents and grandparents of adults and children with developmental disorders, individuals with a developmental disorder, and representatives of state and national advocacy organizations, nationally recognized treatment centers, Maine state agencies, the boards of Maine Behavioral Healthcare and MaineHealth, and Center of Excellence program leadership.
Committee members include:
- Kelly Barton, MPH, FACHE, President, Maine Behavioral Healthcare
- Katherine Coster, Board Member, MaineHealth
- Jay Collins, Self-advocate, Maine community member
- Cathy Dionne, Executive Director, Autism Society of Maine
- Colleen Foley-Ingersoll, Senior Director, Developmental Disorders Service, MBH
- Erin Frazier, State Director of Special Services Birth to 20, Maine Department of Education
- Tami Goldsmith, Parent, Maine community member
- Cathy Honeycomb, Parent, Maine community member
- Elizabeth Hopkins, Associate Director, Maine Office of Aging and Disability Services
- Bryan King, MD, Vice Chair for Child Psychiatry, University of California San Francisco
- Donna Murray, PhD, Vice President, Head of Clinical Programs, Autism Speaks
- Wendi O’Donovan, Parent, Maine community member, Co-Chair of COE Capital Campaign
- Sarah Paulsen, liason to Behavioral Health Advisory Committee, MBH board
- Nancy Pond, Grandparent, Maine community member, Co-Chair of COE Capital Campaign
- Matthew Siegel, MD, Vice President of Medical Affairs, Developmental Disorders Service, MBH
- Erin Soucy, Parent, Maine community member
- Lucy Tucker, Board Member, Maine Behavioral Healthcare
- Lori Whittemore, Site Director, Maine Child Development Services