Our advocates are specially trained to connect families with information, resources and funding opportunities.
*Please note that with the exception of attorneys Mira Posner and Jamie Aten, WAAA’s Health Law Advocates and Parent Partners are not attorneys and any information they provide is not a substitute for specific legal advice.*
Members of the WAAA advocacy team come from a variety of educational backgrounds and have deep roots in the autism community of Washington. They have experience with multiple insurance systems, education and social services.
WAAA’s Advocate Team is waiting to assist you with Insurance discovery, letter writing assistance, appeals assistance and will connect you with a low cost or pro-bono attorneys at WAAA when the appeals process has been exhausted.
Please read their full bio’s to learn more about them.
Mira Posner, J.D. – Staff Attorney
Ms. Posner has been working with Washington Autism Alliance and Advocacy since the fall of 2013 to provide free legal advice to families appealing insurance denials of coverage for treatments for autism. Ms. Posner’s legal background includes her work as a staff attorney at Teamchild, where her focus was on special education and school discipline appeals, and the Northwest Justice Project, where she worked on public benefits, housing, mental health, education, and seniors’ law.
Ms. Posner earned her Juris Doctor from the Seattle University School of Law, and a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Idaho. She lives in Seattle with her husband, their two children, and three cats.
Jamie Aten, J.D. – Health Law Advocate
Ms. Aten serves as a point of contact in helping families experiencing unreasonable caps and denials of medically necessary treatments for autism. She is a graduate of the Ohio State University Moritz School of Law and her legal background includes work with Legal Aid of Western Ohio and Social Security Disability law. Ms. Aten is very passionate about working with the autism community to help obtain insurance coverage for those who have been denied.
Ms. Aten has an academic background that includes a Master’s Degree in philosophy from Claremont Graduate University and a Bachelor of Arts in English and philosophy from Calvin College. She was born and raised in the Seattle area and currently resides in Kirkland.
Trish Thrush – Health Law Advocate; Region 1 Family Support and Advocacy Coordinator; Statewide Family Support and Advocacy Coordinator Team Leader
Trish serves as a point of contact in helping parents with emotional support, guidance for complex autism needs, assistance to access services, providers and connects families to WAAA family supports network of other caring mentors. READ TRISH’S FULL BIO
Jessica Edwards – Region 2 Family Support & Advocacy Coordinator
Jessica has a background in insurance billing and coding and has been on the administrative side of the healthcare industry for over fifteen years. Jessica is dedicated to those who were not insured, underinsured, or denied coverage. She has found alternative ways of funding for care through State and Federal Programs,… READ JESSICA’S FULL BIO
Jodie Hommer – Region 4 Family Support & Advocacy Coordinator; Membership Services Coordinator
Jodie has a master’s degree in clinical psychology, with emphasis in marriage and family therapy and mental health counseling and has her mental health professional designation. She has been working for several years in public mental health with under-served minority populations.
Amy Schley – King County Parent Partner
Amy serves as a point of contact in helping parents navigating all autism related systems of care. She offers emotional support, guidance for complex autism needs, assistance to access services, providers and connects families to WAAA family supports network of other caring mentors.
Amy is a parent of two, and has personal experience with health care and education advocacy on behalf of her daughter.
Melodie Savaria – King County Parent Partner
Melodie holds a master’s degree in educational psychology, and has worked with children with autism for 7 years. She is passionate about helping families navigate autism resources and services as well as providing emotional support. She lives in Redmond, WA with her husband.