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Dr. Stanley Greenspan Has Passed Away

Stanley-Greenspan-MD From the International Council on Developmental and Learning Disorders.

It is with great sorrow that we share with you the news that Stanley I. Greenspan, M.D. died on April 27, 2010. Dr. Greenspan was the Founder and Chairman of the Interdisciplinary Council on Developmental and Learning Disorders (ICDL), founding member and past board president of Zero To Three: National Center for Infants,Toddlers, and Families and former director of the National Institute of Mental Health’s Clinical Infant Developmental Program and Mental Health Study Center. As the world's foremost authority on clinical work with infants and young children with developmental and emotional problems, his work continues to guide parents, professionals and researchers all over the world.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Stanley Greenspan Memorial Scholarship fund, established by the Greenspan family to support future leaders in the field of infant mental health and developmental disorders, currently enrolled or applying to the ICDL Graduate School. Applications for this scholarship will be made available online soon.


Patty Seidl

I am so very saddened to just learn of Dr. Greenspan’s passing. Not a day goes by that I don’t say a prayer of Thanksgiving for this dear man! We met Dr. Greenspan when our son, Matt, was 2. He is now a successful 20 year old who is a sophomore at Purdue University studying psychology.
Matt was diagnosed with autism at the age of 2. We were blessed to hear of Dr. Greenspan and flew out to meet with him right away. I had been told by the doctor we initially received the diagnosis from that Matt would be ” a nerd, social outcast, and never fit in today’s society”. Matt had no language and was very violent at times. He also had no eye contact. The story of Matt is so long, but I can say that by the time Matt was in kindergarden he was with out any special needs! Dr. Greenspan had told us to treat Matt’s case like it was a medical emergency and do everything he told us to do, including floor time and Tomatis Auditory Training.
Because of this wonderful man’s expertise, we have a wonderful successful son with a bright, beautiful future. Matt loves sports and has played every sport possible throughout his school years. He was the captain of his high school soccer team and earned the prestigious award for leadership at his school.
He is now attending Purdue University with the goal of helping others as Dr. Greenspan has. How can I ever express my gratitude to him and his family. It is overwhelming to think of just how many lives have been touched by this wonderful man!! He will never be forgotten by our son Matt and the whole Seidl family! God bless you Dr. Greenspan!!


It was about this time I learned about my 2 year old not being where she should be. Dr Greenspan gave me so much hope and helped me get thru one of my most difficult times in my life. Thank you!

Diane Linder

I was full of desperation when I picked up Dr. Greenspan's books. My 3 year old boy was regressing and falling away from everyone especially his therapists. I was told he was autistic and retarded. We made a family commitment to Floortime and saw amazing and immediate results. All I wanted was a child who would not be isolated completely. What I have, because of Floortime, is so much more. He is an 8 year old with friends, fully conversational and keeping up with his peers in a general education classroom. It is remarkable that his methods could be followed so well from a book. I am most grateful.

Carol Mannion

Dr. Greenspan's ongoing contributions to our understanding of childhood developmental delay will be sadly missed


Dr.Greenspan's floortime DVD'S, which I bought all of, were what I used to diagnose my daughters autism. That was the first time that I knew, as her father, that she was autistic despite what all others had incorrectly diagnosed. I will remember his floortime DVD'S and that night for the rest of my life however I also want to remember the day she is completely normal again too.


Thank you Dr. Greenspan - your work was very influential and laid the path away from Lovaas (thank god).

My deepest sympathies to your family (and all of us)

Geoff Dubrowsky

When I first met Dr. Greenspan he sent me on an errand to Gallaudet
University for the Deaf in DC. The errand was a waste of time or so I thought. When I returned he didn't care about what I returned with but what I had seen. He wanted to know what I observed being around people communicating with sign and abstract facial expressions. That interaction was affect and that is what he wanted me to understand as I prepared for working with my young son and later produce his Floortime Video Series.

He was the the smartest person I have ever had the honor to know and I he will be missed.

If you were ever lucky enough to sit working with your child in front of him you understand. He would say nothing for 20 minutes and you would wonder what am I paying this guy for.
Then he would stop you and open his mouth and bring you right to the point of what you were missing in relating to your own child.

We Have Lost Greatness!

Kate Ross, MS, CCC-SLP

My condolences to Dr. Greenspan's family and friends. He was a remarkable man, with so much life and play presented to so many children and to the teachers. I will always remember him. He will always be by my side, as he has been since I first learned from him perhaps ten years ago, as I work with young children with significant communication and social/emotional differences. Thank you Dr. Greenspan.

Scott Bono

My condolences to Dr. Greenspan's family, to the families helped, and to the families he will never have the chance to help. He was a brilliant doctor, and a delightful person. He was a great man, who did so many good things. Good bye Stanley, we will miss you.


As one of the first specialists we took our son to many years ago Dr. Greenspan was rather special to us. He helped us get into Ryan's space and thereby helped Ryan move closer to ours. He also helped, albeit indirectly, diagnose Ryan's severe allergy to dairy. RIP Dr. Greenspan, your legacy will live on longer than we will.


I, too, was shocked and saddened by this news. His model is one that I rely heavily on when working with my clients. It is the most respectful, least expensive, and easiest model to follow--for ALL parents, not just parents with ASD children.


Dr. Greenspan's book "Engaging Autism" gave me great insight into aspects of my son's development, and put me on the path to seeking his recovery. It gave me hope, when other "professionals" did not. I am thankful for his work...May he Rest in Peace.

Jacqueline Gauthier

Though I only knew him through his writing, and on-line teaching, I am deeply saddened by his passing. I am eternally grateful for Dr. Greenspan for providing a framework (DIR/Floortime) that is respectful of the child and family -- placing relationships at the heart of learning. His work has made the world a better place for children. We are eternally grateful for the foundation he has laid for a paradigm of understanding children on the spectrum...and he has taught so many... the work goes on.

Managing Editor

The man has passed away. Let's keep the comments respectful and not use them to denigrate his work. It's just not the place for that. Thank you.

Lisa Giebink

What a huge loss for Dr. Greenspan's family, and the community at large. I am shocked and so saddened by his passing. His legacy of kindness, determination, and wisdom will live on. Dr. Greenspan's life's work positively touched so many lives. My condolences to his family and close friends.


Change his tune? The Child With Special Needs was also the first book I read while my son was in the process of his evaluation and diagnosis. That book was NOT awful. It gave me hope. That book and the DIR methodology helped me and my family learn to connect and develop a close and loving relationship with my son who once upon a time would not even look at me. I learned a great deal from Dr. Greenspan.


R.I.P. Dr. Greenspan

Thank you for providing my son's therapists with the tools they needed to reach him. (Floortime)


Actually "The Child with Special Needs" is not full of blame. Rather, it outlines how parents can be an integral part in a child's development, especially when children have special needs. It's a shame to see that some didn't interpret Dr. Greenspan correctly.

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