Carrie Alvarado, PhD, OTR
Chief Operating Officer
Dr. Carrie Alvarado serves as the Chief Operating Officer for Autism Community Network (ACN). Carrie has a PhD in Infant and Early Childhood Development with an emphasis on Infant Mental Health and Developmental Disorders. Dr. Alvarado is the creator and director of the Earliest Connections Clinic, our diagnostic program geared toward early identification and therapeutic intervention for high-risk infants and toddlers. Additionally, Carrie leads the DIRFloortime and PACT therapy/teletherapy programs- intensive intervention programs supporting families impacted by autism through dyadic coaching using both in-vivo and reflective video feedback modalities.
Dr. Alvarado's primary research interests are in Sensoriaffective Integration and attachment, clinical use of reflective video feedback, and in optimizing parent-mediated interventions via the modality of telepractice. She completed her dissertation on establishing preliminary validity of a new clinical assessment and coaching tool, the Sensoriaffective Interactional Attunement Scale (SAIAS), geared toward promoting enhanced use of sensoriaffective signaling between caregivers and their children. Carrie is also currently engaged in development of another scale, the Emotional Intelligence and Praxis in Play Scale (EIPPS), focused on evaluating the presence, sophistication, flexibility and organization of themes of emotional intelligence in child-led, symbolic, dyadic play.
Dr. Alvarado was the first in the United States to become a Pediatric Autism Communication Therapy (PACT) Accredited Practitioner and she serves as an Associate with PACT UK. Carrie is a DIR®Floortime™ Certified Expert Clinician, and she serves as an Assistant Faculty for the Profectum™ foundation. Dr. Alvarado has also served as the lead for the Clinical Advisory Committee for STAR Institute, in Colorado. She is Core Faculty for the Fielding Graduate School of Psychology and Adjunct Faculty for the UT Health OTD Program. Dr. Alvarado is passionate about building bridges where none yet exist, about innovating and expanding the boundaries of our knowledge, and about meeting families and fellow clinicians where they are and empowering them to find the gifts they all have to give.
Carrie is the proud mother of three young women and wife to her compassionate husband for 24 years. She enjoys time at the lake, snuggling with her many beloved pets, and listening to Huberman Lab podcast on repeat.
Carrie is also a proud niece, cousin and first cousin once removed of beautifully inspiring, neurodiverse humans who made and make the world a better place to be a part of.