Current Board Members

Glenn Michael Beigay

President

Glenn Michael Beigay, has been an educator for 25 years working in the field of Special Education and Community Education. He is currently serving in the position of Travel Instructor with Allegheny Intermediate Unit, a regional educational support agency in Allegheny County, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In this role, he is accountable for providing individualized travel instruction services in school, training and work sites in the community, for those students with cognitive disabilities, excluding those with visual impairments, ages 14 through adulthood in order to enhance the individuals’ ability to work toward independence and employment. Prior to his current position, Glenn has worked as an educational coordinator for a private special education school where his responsibilities included overseeing the students’ special education services including the students’ transition program. Glenn currently holds a Bachelor of Science degree in the area of Exceptional Students and is completing his Masters in the area of Special Education and Supervision. 

John Ford

Vice President

John Ford has been a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist since 1997. He has worked at the Berks County (PA) Intermediate Unit providing Travel Instruction and O&M since 2008. He is also an Adjunct Professor for the Salus University Orientation and Mobility graduate program. He served on the Board of Directors for the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals from 2007 - 2012, serving as Chair in 2011 and 2012. He has an M.A. in Orientation and Mobility from Western Michigan University. 

Jay Furlong

Lebanon, PA

Treasurer

Jay Furlong, M.Ed., is a certified special education teacher. Recently retired, Jay had been providing direct instruction to students with intellectual and/or physical disabilities since 1999. Prior to his current position, Jay spent twenty-seven years as a senior operations manager for the fifth largest transit agency in the nation. Jay was a co-author of the chapter “Travel Instruction for Individuals with Non-visual Disabilities” in Foundations of Orientation and Mobility, volume II, 3rd edition, 2010. Currently, Jay is a senior partner with JPF Associates, LLC; specializing in Travel Instruction with an emphasis on professional training and development. 


Arleen Wheat

Pittsburgh, PA

Secretary

Arleen Wheat, Ed.D., is an associate professor of special education for Point Park University's School of Education. Prior to joining Point Park, she was assistant superintendent of special education and pupil services for North Allegheny School District. Before that, Wheat was North Allegheny's supervisor of special education. In addition, she has served in the roles of associate director of special education for Armstrong School District; supervisor of special education programs, Gateways inclusion specialist and special education teacher for Allegheny Intermediate Unit and director of U.S.A.A.C.'s summer program for the Education of Autistic Kids. Wheat has done various media interviews and has expertise in the areas of autism, special education, gifted education, health services, psychological services, student assistance programs, school counseling, social work, ESL, homeschooling and home education. 


Shanie Lininger

Pittsburgh, PA


Shanie Lininger, M.Ed. Is a certified special education teacher and has been an educator for 20 years. She is employed by the Allegheny Intermediate Unit (AIU3) and works at the Pathfinder School in Bethel Park, PA. Throughout her time at Pathfinder, Shanie has taught in a variety of classrooms, including secondary autistic support, elementary life skills, and a pre-vocational skills program. Currently she is an instructor with the PRIDE Program, a community-based life skills class for 18–21-year-old students. Shanie is also working towards becoming a certified travel instructor. She is passionate about meaningful employment opportunities for adults with disabilities and works to create a classroom where students gain the confidence and develop skills to prove to themselves and others the value they contribute to their community. 


Autumn Booths

Juneau, Alaska

Autumn Booths is a certified Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments (TSVI) and a Certified Orientation & Mobility Specialist (COMS). She is a graduate of Kutztown University with bachelor’s degrees in special education: visual impairment (birth – 21) and elementary education (pre-k – 4). She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2020 with her masters of education and in 2021 with her orientation & mobility certificate. 

            She has been teaching for five years (all in Pennsylvania) and is currently transitioning into her first year as a TSVI and COMS for the Juneau School District in Juneau, Alaska. She has attended and presented at various conferences throughout her teaching career. Her Practice Report, “Perceptions of High-Tech Assistive Technology Held by Students with Visual Impairments”, was published in the Journal of Visual Impairment and Blindness (JVIB) in August 2022. She presented at Penn-Del AER’s conference in 2023. She is certified through ACVREP and is an active member of AER.”