Introduction
Welcome!

The autism community is filled with caring parents, grandparents and caregivers all with one goal: Helping your child be the best they can be.

Here are some words from those who have been there:

“Remember to take care of yourself too, because it’s only then that we can give our families the best of ourselves.”

“Get plugged-in to the autism community as soon as possible. You’re not alone, and sometimes our greatest strength lies in what we draw from each other.”

“You’re about to find out just how joyful the simple things in life truly are. We do have some difficult days, but we laugh a lot too… and we celebrate much. Welcome!”

get started



Events

Scrabble Run for Autism – May 28, 2017

About Us

Who we are: What we do (and what we don't)

Navigating Autism, Inc. was created in February of 2009 as a central place where the families of those recently diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders can come for unbiased information in easily-understandable terms about treatment options, school expectations, Wisconsin insurance mandates, funding opportunities for uncovered treatments, and more.

We do not endorse or recommend any particular therapy or provider, and we do not diagnose.

We've gone to great lengths to do our best to ensure that the contents of this website are free from bias. To that end, by policy, Navigating Autism, Inc. does not accept donations or financial contributions from any autism service provider.

All families are encouraged to use these resources, as well as others, to do their own research, ask their own questions, and make their own decisions… with the guidance of a physician.

In March of 2011, Navigating Autism received confirmation of their 501(c)3 Federal tax exempt status.



Our Founders

As tends to be the case for many, our founding family started to have concerns regarding their son’s development around age two.

At three, he was diagnosed as having a 'significant generalized developmental delay', and later they discovered he had epilepsy, which is not uncommon for children on the spectrum.

Kindergarten presented more new challenges. As a result, a new evaluation was requested. This time he was diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder - Not Otherwise Specified (PDD- NOS).

“We knew this diagnosis enabled him to have access to resources, but we didn't know where those resources were or how to access them,” shared Danielle Tolzmann, current President and Founder of Navigating Autism, Inc. “We spent years determining our first steps.”

“Resources for impacted families are frequently hidden, and not usually obvious. More than once, we completely gave up looking for help. Looking back, it’s scary to think that we came just one obstacle away from accepting less than we knew was possible. It was out of that experience that we identified the need for a clear roadmap to services and resources for families impacted by an autism diagnosis in Wisconsin.”

Navigating Autism, Inc. is the vehicle that was created to fill that need. Working to provide families what they wish they'd have had – Navigating Autism offers a central, unbiased resource to identify available services and provide plain-language information to families of the recently diagnosed, statewide.

If there is information you think is missing, please contact us so we may consider it.

Ms. Tolzmann concludes, “We don't have all of the answers, but we do hope this website provides a meaningful place to start.”



Board of Directors

Any legitimate nonprofit needs the oversight of a well-rounded Board of Directors in order to be successful, trustworthy and purposeful. Navigating Autism, Inc. is no different.

All Board Members and Officers volunteer their time and expertise to our mission.

Our Board of Directors currently consists of parents, a physician, a public school para- professional services provider, and two Graduate students (one focused on neurological research, and the other, speech therapy).



Our Officers

President: Danielle Tolzmann

As one of the founders of Navigating Autism, Inc, she identified the information overload that many families experience.

In 2014, Danielle was elected President of the Autism Society of South Central Wisconsin, and also serves as a Board Member for the Autism Society of Wisconsin. Danielle has further served the autism community on the Steering Team for Wisconsin’s Community of Practice on Autism Spectrum Disorders and other Development Disabilities.

Danielle worked for the State of Wisconsin for fifteen years, and has a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University.

She has a fourteen year old son who is currently undergoing a course of biomedical therapy including supplements and diet modification. She is married, with two adult daughters, and a grandson.

Treasurer: Kimberly Wells – Muniz

‘Kitzi’ is a small business owner, and is active in the autism community in her county. She organized Columbia County’s very first Walk for Autism, and assisted in the local development of ‘Project Lifesaver’, a partnership with the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, to provide GPS locators to eligible children on the spectrum.

Kimberly is the parent of a child with classic autism who is receiving post-intensive therapy with an in-home provider. She is married, and also has a typically-developing daughter.

Secretary: Ralph Tolzmann

Ralph has experience as a volunteer Teacher’s Assistant at a local Elementary School, and prior to that worked for thirteen years in purchasing for a small manufacturing firm.

He has a son with sensory processing difficulties, seizure disorder and Asperger’s Syndrome. His son is currently undergoing a course of therapy including supplements and diet modification.