From Riverton, NJ, Becky and her family arrived in Surfside Beach in 2012. A marketing and business consultant, she has a child with high-functioning autism. After relocating, it was apparent there were organizations that supported the child with autism, but no real support for the families. Champion Autism Network was born from that realization. Becky is driven to provide families dealing with autism a “traditional” family experience—whether that be a movie, meal at a restaurant or family vacation–modified for those with autism. Becky is married to Michael Large, has two sons and a precious puppy named Pepper.
Born and raised in Baltimore, Don Stevens graduated from Friends school and then U of Richmond. He worked in jewelry management with corporations before owning his own store for 24 years in Richmond. While in Richmond Don served on the board of directors with the Richmond ARC which serves autistic and developmentally challenged individuals. He also served on the board of Northstar Academy for autistic children K-12 and post-grad vocation. Don was impacted by
Becky Large when she spoke to the Chicora Rotary Club and decided to lend a hand. Don is interested in the growth of CAN to better serve the families dealing with autism. The awareness of the community can lead to a more friendly and helpful lifestyle for these families.
Michael Large is originally from a sleepy little ski town in the Appalachian Mountains of northern New Jersey. He eventually went to law school in Philadelphia and met his future wife, Becky, while working in the city as an attorney. After getting married, Mike and Becky had two sons. In 2012, they moved to South Carolina where Mike is the elder law unit head at South Carolina Legal Services—a non-profit law firm representing low-income South Carolina residents in a wide range of civil legal matters. He works collaboratively with local community, state, and national aging organizations to protect the rights of vulnerable adults. Mike is a member of the South Carolina Bar Elder Law Committee and serves as Co-Chair of the Guardianship/Conservatorship sub-committee. He is also a member of the Vulnerable Adult Task Force and serves on the Board of Directors for the Champion Autism Network.
Originally from Ballston Spa NY, Kevin moved to Myrtle Beach in 1995 to attend Coastal Carolina University and works in Financial Aid & Scholarships at the University. He has two nephews on the spectrum with whom he spends a lot of time. When asked what made him want to work with CAN he said, “I loved that CAN was doing something different for families with autistic children. Their projects and events have a direct impact on families and I was excited to be involved in that.”
I am from Hanahan, SC but have lived longer in Myrtle Beach than anywhere else. It is home.
I change lives through professional training and personal development. My company is Bee Sharp Professional Training. I assist the Champion Autism Network with training employees in Autism friendly businesses.
The day I heard Becky speak with passion for helping families with Autism I was hooked. Being able to make a big impact by leading with love made sense to me!
Thank you for supporting the families and mission of CAN.
Originally a Jersey girl, Sherrie got married and raised her family in the suburbs of Philadelphia and claims Philly as her home. She is a reformed CPA and currently reviews restaurants as the Food Correspondent for South Carolina Woman Magazine in the monthly Food for Thought section. Sherrie has a 29-year old son with Asperger’s and was actively involved with educating herself on the syndrome and advocating for him for services. She feels lucky that the school system was
very progressive and that her son got many of the services he needed as well as nurturing teachers. Active in school, Sherrie’s son ran cross county, ran track and was on the swim team in high school. He was also active with Boy Scouts and attained the rank of Eagle Scout before his 18th birthday. What made Sherrie want to work with CAN? She states, “Their mission to make the world a better
place for those with autism through education and understanding. I know what I went through when there was not a lot known about autism and the frustration in not knowing what to do. I am also a huge fan and supporter of Becky Large and amazed in what she has accomplished in our community.”
My goal in Helping with CAN is to let parents and families of children with autism know they are not alone. They have a place where they will be accepted and understood in our CAN activities. I am a nurse by trade but currently not practicing to be home with my children. My goal is to make transitions for People in the same situation as me, smoother and less of a struggle. Our lives as parents of autistic children have plenty of ups and downs. I prefer to try to help take some of the struggles off the shoulders of other parents so the ups far outweigh the downs.
My name is Michele Boyer. We have been in Myrtle Beach for since 2015. We have moved around a lot for David’s career, living in Savannah GA, Fort Worth TX and South Florida prior to South Carolina. I am one of the few who was born in Las Vegas NV, but spent most of my life in Phoenix AZ, so I am quite familiar with heat! I am fortunate to work from home for a hotel training company, which allows me time to be the mother of 4 children; Connor 21 years, Kelsey 18 years, Carson 14 years and Brady 7 years. Brady was diagnosed with ASD at the age of 2. he was nonverbal until 3-1/2 years, which you would never expect if you listen to him now naming every country, capital, and flag of the world. Even without many moves, I have never experienced a community like CAN has provided us here. We enjoy and appreciate all the sensory friendly activities and awareness events and am looking forward to helping the organization grow.
My name is David Boyer. I have worked in the hospitality industry for over 25 years. I have always been obsessed with providing great customer service and creating incredible vacation memories. Once Brady came into our lives, we looked at things differently. A lot of the things we did as a family was taken for granted. Just going to the store, yet alone on vacation was more of a challenge. It was more difficult to do things as a family. Once we moved to Myrtle Beach we heard about the many activities that were offered for kids with Autism. Brady had a chance to go see things and do activities that he had never done before. I also learned about the training CAN does for resorts and hotels to offer the chance for other families to visit Myrtle Beach. This was the same time I was trying to educate my own company on how we can better serve families and children in the autism community. I believe it is so important for the family bonding and togetherness. CAN provides that opportunity by working with businesses and resorts. There is so much that can be done in our area and we have the opportunity to assist other communities to help them learn and develop their own programs with businesses. CAN can truly make a big difference in so many lives.
The events are wonderful and have done a lot to foster socialization within the Autism community.
- Mariellen Lashoones