Rita has served on national and international task forces and working parties set up by governments or professional bodies to review evidence and offer advice in relation to autism spectrum disorders e.g. Irish Task Force, BPS Guidelines, DfES Best Practice Guidelines, National Initiative for Screening, Assessment, Education and Training in Autism; Northern Ireland Care Pathways in Autism, Review.
She has given key note lectures at every European Autism Congress and World Autism Congress (bar one) from 1988 to 2014 as well as being a key note speaker at national conferences all over the world (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Denmark, Dubai, England, France, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Japan, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Portugal, Romania, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and Wales).
Rita served (on a voluntary basis) as Chair of the Children’s Services Committee of the Autism network National Accreditation Programme for 10 years.
The University of Calgary, Canada sponsored her to train psychologists and teachers in SEN in refugee camps in Palestine
The British Council has sponsored her for training ‘tours’ in India and South Africa.
The NHS UK sponsored training in Hungary through a medical exchange programme.
From 2003 to 2006 she served as a consultant for the Expert Committee on the Education of Children and Young People with autism for the Council of Europe.
She is on reviewer and rapporteur panels for the ESRC and regularly reviews research proposals for this and other grant awarding bodies (e.g. MRC, WORM, Scottish Department of Health, Human Frontier for Science, Inge Wakehurst Trust).
She edited a research journal (Autism: the International Journal of Research & Practice) for 11 years and has served on the editorial board of 3 other journals. She regularly reviews papers for 4 journals and reviews book proposals for publishers.
Rita has been consulted by Oxfordshire County Council to review provision for 14 to 25 year olds with autism spectrum disorders in Oxfordshire and to make recommendations for future development
She is consultant to the Autism & Education Centre at Griffiths University, Australia and also the Hong Kong Spastics Society
She is a trustee of the Inge Wakehurst Trust (charity foundation in Autism) and ESPA (European Services for People with Autism)
Rita has been an expert witness in tribunals on the effect of wind farms on individuals with autism spectrum disorders and in cases involving the educational needs of children with autism
She featured in Madisons Who's Who in the World in 1999 and 2000 and in 2008 she was their member of the year
In 2002 she featured in the Who's Who list of professionals in the world and in 2004 she featured in the Cambridge Blue Book of International Biographies. In 2006 she featured in the European Who's Who