Text and images have been reproduced from https://www2.calstate.edu/csu-system/faculty-staff/wang-award/awardees/Pages/dr-ivor-weiner.aspx.
Under Dr. Weiner’s leadership, the Center — which employs a number of student assistants and a full-time staff of 12 professionals — has grown from serving 300 families to almost 1,500 families each year, helping minimize the barriers low-income and historically underrepresented families experience when accessing services for their children. His most recent project, Family Empowerment Team in Action (FETA) funded by the North Los Angeles County Regional Center, is using master candidates in social work to assist families experiencing barriers in accessing services become engaged consumers on behalf of their children with special needs.
Dr. Weiner’s research focuses on autism, including social skills for individuals with autism, screenings and barriers faced by Latina mothers when accessing services for their children with autism. His research led to a $50,000 CVS Care Foundation award to purchase a mobile autism screening van to address the disparities in services for Latino families.
"I am most passionate about providing hope to a parent who has a child with autism," says Dr. Weiner. "Hope and focusing on a child’s strengths while acknowledging his or her challenges is the key to a deeply fulfilling relationship with the child."
He goes on to say that "when both child and parent are in sync, great progress is made. Both the child and the parent feel nurtured, loved, and less stressed."
Dr. Weiner’s grant fundraising has secured more than $6 million, which has benefitted the CSUN Family Focus Resource Center, the CSUN Family Empowerment Center, the Mobile Van Screening Project, Parent Support Circles Grant, Head Start and Early Head Start as well as the North Los Angeles County Regional Center and the Santa Clarita and Antelope Valley Family Focus Resource Centers. In addition to grants, Dr. Weiner has raised more than $129,000 by organizing large autism walks and through the annual Family Focus Special Needs Resource Fair, which provides over 1,000 attendees with access to special needs agencies and workshops.
Dr. Weiner received his Ph.D. from Texas Woman’s University-University of North Texas Federation and his master’s and bachelor’s from University of North Texas.