Armenian Autism Outreach Project Inc. is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization of professionals and parents formed in 2006. AAOP’s goal is to raise awareness about autism in the Armenian-American community in Greater Los Angeles by informing parents, teachers & administrators about what autism is & how it is diagnosed, best practices in autism education & treatment, and resource guide built by our families.
AAOP’s outreach activities include school outreach, teacher seminars, parent informational meetings, television shows; newspaper articles, parent & sibling support groups, family social events, a network of families, and warm line where we are able to respond to individual needs of our newly diagnosed and current families.
Phone: (661)523-2267 (AAOP)
Our mission is to support the efforts of individuals and families affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD); to empower them in self-advocacy by way of education, camaraderie and support; and to educate the Armenian Community for a full and meaningful integration of all individuals.
Our vision is for an Armenian Community where those members affected by developmental disabilities, particularly those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), are equal participants in the daily life of the community at large.
Current Board Members:
Dr. Sonia Konialian Aller, a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist, obtained a Ph.D. degree in Cognitive/Developmental Psychology from Indiana University, Bloomington, with a specialty in language development, and a Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology, after receiving her B.A. degree in Psychology from the Beirut College for Women. Since 1983, after completing an interdisciplinary Clinical Fellowship at UCLA’s Neuropsychiatric Institute, she has provided services to children with special needs and their families, with a focus on autism, serving diverse populations, particularly Armenian and Arabic speaking families.
Over the past 30 years at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Dr. Konialian Aller has served as Supervisor in the Division of Hearing and Speech, Communication Disorders Discipline Director at the USC University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, and faculty of its Interdisciplinary Leadership Training in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities Program (CA-LEND). There, she has developed training programs, including assistive technology for infants and young children, and parent IEP coaching. She is also an Adjunct Professor in Communication Disorders at California State University Los Angeles, where she teaches and provides clinical supervision in the Master’s program.
Dr. Konialian Aller is a founding member of the Foothill Autism Alliance, a parent-professional volunteer organization founded in 1998, and has served on its Board of Directors until 2016. In the Spring of 2007 she was elected the Director-Elect of CSHA’s (California Speech and Hearing Association) Division 7. In March of 2017, she was the recipient of CSHA’s Diversity Award in recognition of her work with diverse cultures, diverse professional endeavors, as well as community outreach. As a founding member of the AAOP, Dr. Konialian Aller is excited about developing and providing culturally responsive informational programs and resources, and family- centered parent empowerment supports to assist parents, educators, and service providers in their efforts to identify, advocate for, and meet the developmental needs of Armenian children with autism and related neurodevelopmental challenges so they can be full participants in their communities.
Nora is a Licensed Marriage and Family therapist in Private Practice in Glendale and an independent contractor for Glendale Unified School District. She is also a school based therapist at various Armenian Schools.
She has earned a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Psychology and a Master’s of Science degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and Counseling both degrees from California State University Northridge. She has been working in the field of education and mental health since 1996 and is very passionate in her line of work.
During her undergraduate and graduate studies she has worked as a teacher both in regular and special education. She has facilitated court ordered domestic violence classes with male perpetrators. She’s been a social worker working with kids with autism and intellectual disabilities and facilitated parent-support groups for their parents. She has also worked at the Armenian Relief Society’s psychological center as a therapist.
Nora is a board member at Richard Tufenkian Armenian Preschool (since 2007). She is one of the founding members of the Armenian Autism Outreach Project and co-founder and social skills teacher at Camp Zavarian in Montrose.
Nora’s thesis project titled “Parenting Workshop: The Armenian Perspective” completed and published in 2001.
Nora conducts workshops and seminars on parenting, anxiety, stress management, classroom management, relationships, marital challenges, social skills, and teacher trainings for various organizations, schools and at educational institutions including being a guest at various TV shows.
Nora believes that social and emotional well-being of a child is very important and empowers, students, parents and teachers to become aware of their children’s and students’ needs.
Taleen Khatchadourian attended Rose & Alex Pilibos Armenian School and Immaculate Heart High School. She later received a BA in Business Administration from the University of Southern California. After graduation, Taleen spent 12 years working within the precious metals industry and another 10 in education, running a successful tutoring company in Glendale where she contracted with school districts for specialized programs for their students.
From a very young age, Taleen has been an active member of her communities, volunteering and fundraising for many organizations such as Alex Pilibos, AGBU, Homenetmen, USC Institute of Armenian Studies – Innovate Armenia Festival, Armenian Bone Marrow Donor Registry (Current Board Advisor), Los Angeles Shushi Friendship Association (current Board Member), and, of course, the Armenian Autism Outreach Project (current Board Member).
Taleen and her husband, Hagop, have 3 children. Their son, Raffi, was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 2 1/2. Since then, Taleen has been motivated to learn and share all she can with families about resources available to give individuals with disabilities a better life. She has sat on the board of the Frank D. Lanterman Regional Center and currently serves as a Peer Support Partner and an active member of the Armenian Parent Support Group for Lanterman. She works to advocate for individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in education, therapy, vocational training and life skills. She is an Client Coach & Independent Facilitator for the Guidelight Group LLC and assists teens and adults who are in the Self Determination Program within the state of California to create their Person Centered Plans, find their individual budget and create a spending plan that will empower them toward a more rewarding future.
Taleen is honored to be a part of the Board of Directors of AAOP where she hopes to reach families that may otherwise feel isolated and support them throughout their journey. She also believes strongly in its mission to educate the Armenian Community on how best to integrate individuals with ASD into the daily life of the community.
Kristine P. Aslanyan received BS and MS Degrees in Counseling (Vocational Rehab and Career Counseling) from California State University, Los Angeles. She also is a certified Specialist for Adults with Learning Disabilities. Kristine has been working in California Community College system for the past 20 years and has devoted her career to informing and empowering students from all walks of life to pursue higher education and achieve career success.
Being a parent with children on ASD, she has joined the AAOP to provide perspective of the experiences of families dealing first hand with the disorder, highlight the importance of family and social support, and invest her time to promote AAOP’s mission and vision.
Allison Phillips is a licensed Occupational Therapist. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Southern California and her Masters of Science degree in Occupational Therapy from Tufts University. She has earned an additional School-Based Occupational Therapy certificate from Tufts. She has completed her Doctorate of Occupational Therapy (OTD) from the University of Southern California & is now an Assistant Professor of Clinical Occupational Therapy at USC.
Allison has been working with children with various disabilities since 2005. Her background encompasses working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities, Down Syndrome, and William’s Syndrome. She has interned and worked at a variety of pediatric settings of which include The Help Group, Glendale Unified School District, Adventist Health Glendale Play to Learn Pediatric Therapy Center, and the Medford Boys and Girls Club.
She has traveled to Armenia every summer for 6 years providing medical care in Yerevan, Vanatzor, and Stepanavan. She has worked closely alongside the doctors to provide education, strategies, and preventive measures to families of children with disabilities.
During her graduate studies, Allison’s research focuses included investigating the impact of an after school gardening, nutrition and cooking intervention on food preferences, attitudes, and behaviors in 4-6th grade students as well as current research in Sensory Integration (SI) intervention with children with Autism. She helped to create a scoping review on Gravitational Insecurity (GI) that will be used to explore its impact on children with sensory processing difficulties.
Ultimately, Allison strives to cultivate an environment of respect, honesty, and collaboration between professionals and parents and caregivers. She believes in the importance of client-centered and holistic care, where the child’s interests and likes are placed at the center. She strives to provide services with a strengths-based approach, focusing on the child’s strengths and successes in therapy and highlighting ability rather than the child’s disability.
Holly graduated from Hollywood High School with honors. She went on to receive a BA in Business Administration from the University of Southern California.
For the next 25 years, Holly worked hard to develop a respectable career in Post Production, working on multiple TV shows such as “Scrubs” and big block buster and theatrical titles like Hustle & Flow and Four Brothers as well as the Fast and Furious franchise. She has held positions as a Producer, Account Manager and Mastering Specialist and worked closely with network and fil executives as well as the talent and their crews.
As exciting as her day job ay be, Holly has a passion in helping, supporting and educating young Armenian families affected by Autism and other disabilities. Holly and her husband, Armen, have 3 children. Their son, Mher was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 3.
Since then, Holly has been motivated to educate herself about ASD, learning the special education process and everything it offers children in Special Education. Throughout the years, Holly has helped many families, sharing her experience with Mher and all she had to overcome to help him. It brings her great joy to share what she has learned with families and give them a sense of hope. As she puts it, “there is no greater joy than to know your advice may have made a big difference in these families lives”.
Holly is honored to join Armenian Autism Outreach Project. She hopes to represent AAOP in the San Fernando Valley and help with creating much needed support groups.
Taline K. Boyamian is a family law attorney and the founding partner of Boyamian Law, Inc. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Irvine and her law degree from Loyola Law School, Los Angeles. Taline’s private practice is dedicated to the practice of family law with a concentration of matters impacted by a child’s special needs. She has an exceptional acumen for handling custody matters and affords specific detail to cases involving children with special needs.
Taline represents business executives, entertainers, medical professionals and business owners. Since 2007, Taline has represented hundreds of individuals in a variety of family law proceedings from inception to trial or settlement.
Taline and her husband Michael have two children. Their son, Charlie, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) at the age of 3. Being a business owner and working mother to a young family with a child on the spectrum has its challenges, but allows Taline to focus most on her children’s needs.
In recent years, Taline has taken a proactive role in educating herself about ASD, navigating IEPs and the resources available to parents and children. It is important for Taline to share her experience with other families to help families get the best care for their children with special needs. The stigma associated with Autism diagnoses often causes families to feel isolation and a lack of support from their community.
Taline is honored to join the Armenian Autism Outreach Project (AAOP) as a Board Member. She hopes to bring support and knowledge to families of children with special needs and help improve the community response to increasing Autism diagnoses in children.
- Carmen Arakelian
- Helen Arsen Griecci
- Gayane Kadzhikyan