Ronit Molko, PhD, BCBA-D

Name: Ronit Molko
Role / Credential: PhD, BCBA-D
Special Learning’s Designation: Panelist for Ethics Code in Action: Ethics of Medicaid Fraud
Company Name: Empowering Synergy
Company URL:  ronitmolko.com
Ability to Contribute: Dr. Ronit Molko is the founder and principal of Empowering Synergy. Recognized as a 

thought leader and subject matter expert in autism spectrum disorder, developmental disabilities and behavioral healthcare, she is a dynamic senior executive, entrepreneur and strategist.developmental disabilities and behavioral healthcare, she is a dynamic senior executive, entrepreneur and strategist. In 2001, Dr. Molko cofounded Autism Spectrum Therapies Inc. (AST), which grew into a highly respected, multi-state provider of services for individuals on the autism spectrum. In 2014, she sold her company to Learn It Systems, a private equity backed strategic buyer, and then served as President of Autism Services for the combined family of companies until early 2016.

Today, as CEO and Principal of Empowering Synergy, Dr. Molko conducts due diligence for investors. She also consults as an expert in the field of service delivery for healthcare, with a special focus on behavioral healthcare and companies that provide services to families affected by autism and developmental disabilities.

In 2018, she released her latest work, “Autism Matters: Empowering Investors, Providers and the Autism Community to Advance Autism Services,” published by ForbesBooks, in which she takes a critical look at the autism services industry and identifies opportunities for advancement of services and business.

Over the course of her career, Dr. Molko has developed and maintained strong working relationships with regulators and third party payers, among whom she is known for protecting her client’s services in the face of significant regulatory change. She has driven strategies to diversify revenue streams, increase profitability and improve efficiency while driving excellence in client programming and service delivery. Through AST, she and her team empowered thousands of individuals on the autism spectrum, helping them to gain the skills they need to live more independent lives and fulfill their dreams. For her, it is a true passion, and a personal mission.

A graduate of Harvard Business School’s three-year Owner/President Management program, Dr. Molko holds a Ph.D. in Applied Behavioral Science and Family Life from the University of Kansas and a master’s degree in Psychology from Claremont Graduate University. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the UCLA Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences and is a licensed clinical psychologist in both California and Washington, and a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst.

Dr. Molko is currently a board member of the Los Angeles Chapter of the Autism Society of America and the Galt Foundation, which places individuals with disabilities in the workforce, and a member of Women’s President Organization. She has been actively involved in many healthcare-based committees and organizations throughout her career.

In recognition of her achievements in business as well as her leadership abilities, Dr. Molko has received several awards, including the Mickey Weiss Award for Outstanding Alumni from the American Jewish University, the World of Difference 100 Award in Education from the International Alliance for Women, an Enterprising Woman of the Year Award from Enterprising Women Magazine, and the Smart Leader Award from Orange County’s Smart Leaders. Most recently, she was recognized with a 2017 Woman of Influence Award by the Los Angeles Business Journal.

Dr. Molko currently serves on the board of the Galt Foundation and the Los Angeles chapter of the Autism Society of America, and is a member of the Women Presidents’ Organization at the local and platinum levels.

Being an RBT for me was extremely fun because where were you going to find a place where you can be completely silly without having to worry what people thought about you? This was the only job that made me feel like I could make a dramatic difference while being myself.

I also liked to be surrounded by people that had the same goals of wanting to help kids and the teamwork made the job much easier and more enjoyable.

Change and progress was the ultimate goal for our kiddos. The early intervention program was seriously only a miracle because I saw changes in the kiddos that from day one, you wouldn’t even recognize who they were.

Changes from being able to utter 3-4 words where they can only make a syllable from when they started, the behavior decreases in which kiddo that used to engage in 30-40 0 self-harm to only half, learning how to wait during games, table work where they use to swipe and drop to the floor if they had to.

My favorite was when the parents would tell us what amazing progress they were making at home. I used to tear up and felt for these parents so much because it was already difficult for them and now, they can trust and rely on ABA and the therapists knowing their goal was ours.

By Emma Rogers, BA, RBT

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