Our Story

Welcome to Partners In Excellence (Partners), a center-based autism treatment center that has served the Twin Cities Autism community since 2001 and the La Crosse, Wisconsin community since 2010. Our mission is to positively impact the life of each child through our unparalleled commitment and desire to see our clients reach their greatest potential.

Partners was founded in 2001 by Deb Thomas and is co-operated by her husband, Bruce. Together their mission is to restore hope for the future for children and their families whose lives have been touched by autism.

“In the beginning we weren’t expecting to design the multi-faceted program that we have today,” says Deb. As parents of three children, they found themselves emerged in the special education community when their son, Matthew, was diagnosed with a physical disability at a very young age. Before launching Partners, Deb founded the Minnesota Center for Conductive Education in 1997 to help Matthew and others with similar diagnoses get the help and therapy they needed to increase their quality of life.  Through this program Deb and Bruce encountered an entire community of parents desperately searching for services for their children with autism. Partners has evolved by hearing and seeing the needs of families in the community and responding to them.

Over the years Partners has expanded to four outpatient mental health clinics in the Midwest—Burnsville, Minnetonka, North Saint Paul, Winona and La Crosse, WI serving children with autism by providing Applied Behavior Analysis and Applied Verbal Behavior Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech Therapy.

Partners is recognized in the autism community for their measurable progress and results. We strive to maximize each child’s potential, continually monitoring progress to allow each child to become as independent and successful as they possibly can.