TWIN 2012 Honoree Spotlight

28 Aug

The YWCA’s Tribute to Women of Influence (TWIN) event honors women who have made significant contributions to their fields, and recognizes those organizations that support such achievements. 2012 marks the 21th anniversary of TWIN. Leading up to this year’s September 20th event at Pack Place & Diana Wortham Theatre, we will highlight each of our 20 incredible TWIN Honorees. If you would like more information about the TWIN event, or to reserve a ticket, please visit

Catherine Faherty

Catherine has spent the past 28 years developing strategies that facilitate a better understanding between people with Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and the world around them. The strategies Catherine has developed are based in the understanding that people with an autistic learning style think, learn, and communicate differently than those with a “nuerotypical” learning style.  Catherine empowers children and adults with ASD by teaching them self-advocacy, helping them understand the importance of identifying their own experiences, and giving them tools with which to effectively communicate with others. In addition, she has taught thousands of teachers, parents, speech therapists, psychologists and other professionals about how to understand the nature of ASD communication.

Catherine has published multiple books and articles on various topics affecting people with ASD, and has developed training models and manuals used by Autism programs nationally and internationally. She also created the widely-used Understanding Friends programs to raise children’s awareness of the differences in their ASD peers, and started social groups for adults with ASD that have been ongoing for over twenty years. Since 1990, Catherine has been with the Asheville TEACCH Center where she works as a consultant, trainer, and clinician. She has been instrumental in providing effective diagnoses and treatments for people with ASD, and leads support groups in Spanish and English.

2 Responses to “TWIN 2012 Honoree Spotlight”

  1. Deb Criss August 30, 2012 at 2:41 am #

    Catherine is one of the most amazing women i have ever known. She has so much love in her heart, and gives so much love and gifts in anything she does. What is also wonderful, is that she is full of surprises! She is a one of a kind healer ( and plays great music too)

  2. YWCA of Asheville September 4, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

    Thanks for the comment, Deb. We are very happy to be able to honor her!

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