Alix Generous is a professional speaker, neuroscientist, author, tech consultant, and observational comedian. From 2013 to September 2016, she was the co-founder for Podium (formerly AutismSees), a social impact company that creates technology to help high functioning autistic millennials improve their presentation skills. In her 2015 TED talk, she comedically shares how tech improved her public speaking skills. This week she shared some of her personal experiences growing up on the autism spectrum and the current state of autism-related technology.
Ada Hoffmann is a writer and computer science PhD student who has authored over 60 published speculative short stories and poems and six papers that she has presented at conferences around the world. Ada was diagnosed with Asperger syndrome at the age of 13, and is passionate about autistic self-advocacy. Her Autistic Book Party review series is devoted to in-depth discussions of autism representation in speculative fiction. This week she shared some of her experience reading and writing about autistic characters and advocating for individuals on the spectrum.
Kirsten Lindsmith is an author, artist, consultant, and autism advocate from New York City. After receiving an ASD diagnosis at the age of 19, she began co-hosting the online television show Autism Talk TV and speaking at conferences and events about her experience as a young woman on the spectrum. Kirsten has written columns for Wrong Planet and Autism After 16, and was profiled in The New York Times. Kirsten graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a degree in Vertebrate Ontogeny and Phylogeny. She currently works as a therapist in partnership with Melody of Autism, and as a consultant for behavioral and sensory needs.
This week Kirsten discussed the oversimplification in autism advocacy (classifying it as too positive or too negative), some common misconceptions, sensory sensitivities, and how families can become better allies to people on the spectrum.
Savannah Logsdon-Breakstone has led advocacy campaigns at national, state, and local levels. Savannah is an active member of and social media coordinator for ASAN (Autistic Self Advocacy Network) and board member and current vice president of the PA based SAU1 (Self Advocates United as 1). She blogs at Cracked Mirror in Shalott and writes for many other multi-contributor blogs. This week she shared some of her experience advocating for herself and others on the spectrum, offering practical ideas for parents and educators who want to support their children.
Vera Didenko is an autistic blogger recognized for contributions in both radio broadcasting, from 2001 to 2008, and federal government defense accounting, from 2008 to 2013. Vera blogs about a variety of life issues relevant to individuals on the spectrum and the neurotypicals in their lives at This, That, and Vera.
Jay Avery is a 22-year-old, nonbinary autistic from England. Jay is currently pursuing a degree in Math and Physics while self-teaching Java programming and wildlife photography. Jay blogs about their experience on the spectrum at https://autisticality.com/. This week Jay Avery Rowe shared with us their experience growing up on the autism spectrum and how they developed a positive autistic identity.
Last week Jesse Saperstein shared a little about his work with the College Experience, a program that helps students with disabilities succeed in college and learn to live independently. This week he discusses his idea for a specialized autism graduate program and offers advocacy advice for parents.
Jesse Saperstein is a best-selling author, autism advocate, and motivational speaker. He currently serves as the Activities & Media Liaison for the College Experience, a program helping students with disabilities attend adaptive college programs and learn to live independently. The College Experience is currently trying to raise money by the end of the month to earn a permanent partnership with the Global Giving Foundation. You can read more about the campaign (and help them reach their fundraising goal!) by visiting the Global Giving website.
This is the first part of a 2-part blog post covering Jesse’s opinions and experience regarding a variety of issues affecting individuals on the spectrum. This week he shared how his college experience differed from the one he currently advocates for as well as some general misconceptions about autism he has encountered.
Parent Interview: “It’s Not About Turning Him Into Someone Else.” Jim Hines on Supporting His Autistic Son
Jim C. Hines is the author of twelve fantasy novels, including the Magic ex Libris series, the Princess series of fairy tale retellings, the humorous Goblin Quest trilogy, and the Fable Legends tie-in Blood of Heroes. He’s an active blogger, and won the 2012 Hugo Award for Best Fan Writer. This week he shared his experience as a parent of an 11-year-old on the autism spectrum.Jim reveals some of the ways he has learned to help his son develop his own unique identity.