Nonprofit Insider

The Birchtree Center Welcomes New Board Members

Newington - The Birchtree Center, a Newington-based nonprofit serving children and youth with autism, announced the election of board members for 2012-2013.  The newest board members are Allison Bussiere, MaryLiz (ML) Geffert, Bob Gross, Richard Guare, Ann Tarlton, and Mike Teixeira.

Bussiere is an occupational therapist with experience in adult rehabilitation, home care services, and school-based therapy.  While at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, the Boston Public Schools, and the Timberlane School District, she worked with many students on the autism spectrum.

Geffert, an associate in the corporate department at the McLane Law Firm, has experience in the public education, life science, bio-tech, alternative energy, defense, insurance, and industrial sectors.  She serves as an alternate member on the City of Portsmouth Planning Board and has also served on the City of Portsmouth Arts and Culture Commission and on the governing board of Seacoast Local.

Gross serves as Parent Representative to the board.  He is an Engineering Support Manager at QA Technology in Hampton, where he designs products and assembly equipment using 2D and 3D solid modeling software.  He lives in Sanford, Maine, with his wife Lisa and their fourteen-year-old son Steven, who has attended Birchtree since 2006.

Guare is a neuropsychologist and board-certified behavior analyst who serves as Director of the Center for Learning and Attention Disorders at Seacoast Mental Health Center in Portsmouth. He serves as a consultant to schools and agencies in programs for autism, learning, attention and behavior disorders and acquired brain injuries.
Tarlton has experience as a hospital chaplain, hospice chaplain, small business owner, nonprofit board member, and community volunteer.  She has worked with children with special needs through the Junior League and served as president of the Stamford, Connecticut, branch of Planned Parenthood.

In his role as VP & Creative Director at Calypso Communications, Teixeira is responsible for resolving advertising, branding, collateral, and multimedia needs of numerous clients.  He specializes in layered marketing campaigns that combine traditional as well as new media.  His experience also includes work at The Gillette Company, Creative Branding Group, and Paramount Pictures. 

The Birchtree Center is governed by a 14-member board that includes local entrepreneurs, professionals, and community leaders, as well as non-voting representatives from Birchtree’s families and staff.  Board officers elected for 2012-13 are: Bruce Dicker, President; Richard Guare, Vice President; Carol McClard, Secretary; Albert P. Stowe, Treasurer; and Glicka Kaplan, Past President.  For more information about The Birchtree Center’s autism programs, visit or call the center at 603-433-4192.

About The Birchtree Center
Since 2002, The Birchtree Center has been promoting independence, engaging relationships, and productive lives for children and youth with autism at home, at school, and in the community.  Twenty-one public school districts in New Hampshire, Maine, and Massachusetts send students to attend Birchtree’s year-round special-educational day-school program in Newington, which serves students with autism aged 2-21 years. Through the organization’s Outreach Program, Birchtree’s autism specialists travel over 24,000 miles per year to offer consultation, assessments, teacher training, and direct services in family homes and public schools. The organization is named after the New Hampshire state tree, the white birch.  This shallow-rooted tree often grows in clusters to survive—like a birch tree, a child with autism needs to be supported by family and community to grow and flourish. 

Posted on: December 20, 2012
Topics: board

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