Media Contact: Barbara Fornasiero, EAFocus Communications;; 248.260.8466; Erika Jones, Judson Center;; 248.837.2052

Royal Oak, Mich. — June 4, 2019— Judson Center, a multi-county human service agency that provides autism programs, behavioral health services, child and family services including foster care and adoption in tandem with its affiliate, Child Safe Michigan, employment services for the disabled, and primary care for all ages, is pleased to announce that CEO and President Lenora Hardy-Foster has been named to Crain’s Detroit Business prestigious Health Care Heroes list for 2019 for her efforts in expanding Judson Center’s autism programming.  She is among eleven honorees recognized for their impact on healthcare in Michigan. Hardy-Foster’s profile for Health Care Heroes, which is included in the June 3, 2019 issue of Crain’s Detroit Business, can be viewed here.

Hardy-Foster has been CEO since 2016. Under her direction, Judson Center’s Autism Connections has seen targeted growth and strategic purpose, providing a continuum of care to individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). From pre-education skills (communication, play behaviors) to community and daily living skills, and soft skills training for jobs, Judson Center serves hundreds of individuals from 18 months to early adulthood, including individuals in its annual summer autism camp. Approximately 25% of the individuals in Judson Center’s vocational training services also have an ASD diagnosis. 

In addition to evidence-based, staff-intensive Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) services, Judson Center’s comprehensive approach includes family counseling, parent training, Sibshops, occupational therapy, and speech services, minimizing a family’s need to drive around town to obtain services. Judson Center also doesn’t turn anyone away for inability to pay, offering funding to help defray deductibles. In 2018, Judson Center introduced Bridges to Success, a non-residential program on the Royal Oak campus using ABA therapy to help teens with autism develop relationships, independent living and pre-vocational skills as a gateway to successful adulthood. In May 2019, Judson Center opened a new 4,000 square foot Autism Connections program in its Warren location.

“Today, one in every 59 children is diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder,” Hardy Foster said. “Judson Center’s aim is to be responsive to the needs of the communities we serve by providing a broad range of innovative and quality services to enhance the lives of children, teens and young adults with ASD and their families.”

Under Hardy-Foster’s leadership, Judson Center also opened the Judson Center Family Health Clinic in February 2019 at the Warren location. The integrated care model clinic offers primary care and behavioral health services to Judson Center consumers and the community at large and is experienced in treating children with an autism spectrum disorder and childhood trauma.

Prior to joining Judson Center, Hardy-Foster was Executive Director/CFO at Southwest Solutions, where she was employed for 36 years. Hardy-Foster holds an MBA and B.A. in business administration from the University of Detroit Mercy, which awarded her a lifetime achievement award in 2018. She serves on the Board of Directors as Treasurer of the Michigan Federation for Children and Families, Chair of the Finance Committee of the Hannan Center, and is a former president of the Financial Executives International Detroit-Chapter. In addition, she serves on the Advisory Boards of the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities, University of Detroit Mercy College of Business Administration and Lawrence Technological University College of Management. Hardy-Foster was recognized as Crain’s Detroit Business 2008 “CFO of the Year” in the nonprofit category. She is a graduate of Leadership Detroit XXIII and was selected to attend the Harvard Business School executive education program for non-profit executives, Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management, in 2018.

About Judson Center

Judson Center, trusted by Michigan families for 95 years, is a non-profit human service agency that provides expert, comprehensive services in Southeast Michigan that strengthen children, adults and families impacted by abuse and neglect, autism, developmental disabilities, and behavioral health and primary care challenges so they are successful in their communities.  Since opening its doors in 1924, Judson Center has grown to change the lives of over 10,000 children, adults, and families each year. Judson Center has five regional offices in Genesee, Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties. Headquarters are located at 4410 W. 13 Mile Road, Royal Oak, MI 48073.  Learn more at