our team

recent volunteers

In addition to our Board (see below) and training volunteers, our work has been supported by many volunteers who assisted with translation and support for this newly updated website.


Peter Angelos
Michelle Badhwar
Eric Barnes
Robert Delaney
Susan Klein, Treasurer
Helen McCabe, Executive Director & Co-Founder
Karen McCabe, President & Co-Founder
Peter Angelos

Peter Angelos has been a board member since FIVE was founded and he was also one of FIVE’s first volunteers. Peter worked as a Clinical Manager for the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families where he oversaw clinical operations. Prior to that he was employed as a Site Director for the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health where he oversaw a mental health service network. His experience includes program development for children and adults with a variety of mental health needs. Additionally, Peter brings experience with budgeting, contract and quality management, and service monitoring. He has also worked as a private practitioner providing individual counseling services. With his background in Mental Health Social Work, Peter brings knowledge and enthusiasm for helping families to successfully teach and help their children. Peter has a B.S. in Psychology and Business Management from Providence College and an M.S.W. from Salem State University. His education, combined with 35 years of experience in the field of mental health and child welfare, makes him a valuable asset to The Five Project. As a volunteer he has traveled to China and met with individuals with major mental health issues and their family members, providing guidance and information. In China he has also given lectures to parents and teachers at autism programs on topics related to family support and coping.

Michelle Badhwar

Michelle Badhwar brings a wealth of much-needed knowledge and experience to The Five Project. After graduating from Hamilton College with a BA in Linguistics, Michelle spent a year in Beijing, China on a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship She also spent three years at the Johns Hopkins University-Nanjing University Center for Chinese and American Studies in Nanjing, China where she worked and then received a certificate in the year-long graduate program in China Studies, conducted in Mandarin Chinese. Her background and experience include these years of study in and about China as well as coordinating and fundraising experience for other nonprofits related to China. Because Michelle is both fluent in Mandarin Chinese and well-versed in Chinese culture given her years of living in China, she is able to assist FIVE with background research, provide translations and provide culturally relevant feedback and guidance. Because of her experience with nonprofits, Michelle assists with coordinating the work and strategic planning of the organization. In addition to her fluency in Chinese, she also speaks Spanish.

Dr. Eric Barnes

Dr. Eric Barnes is a founding board member who serves as both an advisor and a volunteer. As a philosophy professor with an interest in biomedical ethics, he has written about autism and family issues. With previous experience in developing a small not-for-profit debate program, he has provided important administrative guidance since FIVE was initiated. He also gives his time as a volunteer for FIVE training and support group events when he is in China, including serving as photographer, videographer, and peer mentor at events for young adults in FIVE’s support group. Eric has a B.A. from Hampshire College, and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He is a Professor of Philosophy at Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

Robert Delaney

Robert Delaney, U.S. bureau chief for the South China Morning Post, lived for many years in China as a student and journalist. He spent a year at the Johns Hopkins University-Nanjing University Center for Chinese and American Studies in Nanjing, China, where he became friends with Zhang Ge, the woman with autism who inspired the founding of The Five Project, and her family. As a journalist, he had several postings in Asia, including a three-year stint as Bloomberg’s Beijing bureau chief, before moving back to North America. Robert received his Master’s degree from Ryerson University, where his research focused on the limit of rhetoric and communication across Western and Chinese professional environments. 

Dr. Susan Klein

Dr. Susan Klein, FIVE’s Board Treasurer, is Professor Emerita at Indiana University, where she joined the special education faculty in 1969 and retired in 2004.  Her research and teaching interests focused on families of persons with disabilities with a special emphasis on young children. She has worked with Indiana policy makers and college faculty throughout Indiana to create training programs for teachers and medical personnel that addressed family needs. After retiring, Susan has continued to remain active in the profession doing research, teaching an occasional doctoral seminar in special education at Indiana University, serving on doctoral dissertation committees, and mentoring newly-minted Ph.D. graduates and classroom teachers.  A passion for parents of children with disabilities, which arose out of summer camp experiences while still in college, redirected her from studying music to pursuing a teaching career in special education. Susan taught special education in the public schools of Brookline, Massachusetts, before completing her Ph.D. at the University of Illinois. 

Dr. Helen McCabe

Dr. Helen McCabe is the co-Founder and Executive Director of The Five Project. With a Ph.D. in Special Education and International and Comparative Education from Indiana University, she is currently an Associate Professor of Special Education (Childhood and Early Childhood) at Daemen University in Amherst, NY. Helen is also a BCBA and she leads our capacity-building efforts for parents and teachers of individuals with autism in China. In addition to developing and participating in onsite training, she also works with training volunteers to prepare them before they begin working with our partner organizations. Recently described by a teacher at a famous autism intervention organization in Beijing as “the (foreign) autism educator who most understands China,” Helen leads training (entirely in Chinese) both based on best practices in special education, and grounded in a deep understanding of Chinese society and culture. She first became interested in autism in China in 1992, when she met Zhang Ge, a young girl with autism in Nanjing. She has conducted numerous research studies about autism in China, and continues to research and publish, in both English and Chinese. Her work has been cited by both Chinese and English-speaking scholars and, given her more than 20 years of experience in this field, she receives frequent requests from scholars, students, and practitioners who seek to learn more about autism in China. In addition to her Ph.D., other education includes a B.A. from Middlebury College and an M.A. from Washington University in St. Louis, both in East Asian Studies, and a graduate certificate in Chinese studies from the Johns Hopkins University-Nanjing University Center for Chinese and American Studies in Nanjing, China.

Karen McCabe

Karen McCabe is the co-Founder and Board President of The Five Project. Karen has an Ed.M. in International Education Policy from Harvard Graduate School of Education and an M.S. in Adult Education from Indiana University. She has worked as a teacher, advisor, and administrator at local adult education programs for many years, including recently at International Institute of New England (Manchester, NH) and currently at Mount Wachusett Community College in Massachusetts. Her connection with China began as a student and she also was inspired by Zhang Ge during her first trip to China in 1992. Given her professional background in nonprofit management and administration, Karen provides most of the administrative and logistical management of The Five Project. With her background in Chinese and education, she has also volunteered frequently for FIVE in China, including serving as a translator for training events, and organizing and participating in many support group activities. In addition to her degrees in Education, Karen also earned a B.A. in Chinese and Spanish (Hamilton College) and an M.A. in Chinese (Indiana University).