Building Bridges Conference

Building Bridges Conference


  • We are bringing you a two-day conference of diverse experts to share evidence-based practices, resources, ideas, and the latest in research for fostering quality early learning experiences for children 0-8 years old.


  • Participants in Nebraska can receive 9 service hours
  • $25 registration fee, but the FIRST 200 participants can register for FREE

Keynote Speaker

Ross A. Thompson, PhD

Ross A. Thompson is Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Davis, where he directs the Social and Emotional Development Lab. Thompson is an internationally-recognized authority on the psychological development of young children, parent-child relationships, and the applications of developmental science to public policy problems such as early childhood mental health, early education, and the development of school readiness. His work integrates understanding of the developing brain with early experiences in both typical and at-risk children, and he lectures extensively to legislative committees, public agencies, and private foundations. He has published five books, several best-selling textbooks, and over 250 papers related to his work. Thompson is President of the Board of Directors of Zero to Three, a national nonprofit devoted to the healthy development of young children and their families. He is on the Executive Committee of the Center for Poverty Research at the University of California, serves on the boards of the National Institute for Early Education Research and the Buffett Early Childhood Institute, and was a founding member of the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child. He received the Ann Brown Award for Excellence in Developmental Research in 2007, and the University of California, Davis Distinguished Scholarly Public Service Award in 2011.

Featured Speakers

Laura Maddox

Laura Maddox, PhD, BCBA

Laura is the Program Director of the Center for the Young Child at the Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence (OCALI).  She has experience as an educator and administrator in her previous roles with Lincoln Public Schools, the Boys Town Institute for Child Health Improvement and at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  Maddox is dedicated to improving the lives of young children and their families and has extensive experience collaborating across state systems and within local communities through her leadership roles with the Nebraska ASD Network, as a faculty consultant on the Nebraska LEND grant and in her current position with OCALI.  She is a past recipient of the Alice B. Hayden Emerging Leader Award from TASH  and the Ruth J. Eichman Early Childhood Educator Award from the Lincoln Public School Foundation.

Title of Presentation: Recognizing Early Signs of ASD and Simple Strategies for Engagement