At AV we view our community's neuro-differences through a strengths based lens.
Our autistic minds have a different way of operating that is different to the nerve-normative model used by our medical community. Often our community are diagnosed through the deficit lens of the medical model where challenges and issues are highlighted more than our strengths.
A key aim for our organisation is to help our autistics realise we are not defective, just different. And discover our individual strengths- often beyond a neurotypical mind. With many of our challenges being due to the lack of a suitable environment we are in, or the individual communication challenges of our neurology or trauma. However we see in our peer groups and activities how our challenges melt away with peer to peer in the right environment where stressors are managed.
Critical to empowering our autistics is understanding and acceptance with a strengths based view of each individual and their way of living.
Famous autistic people
The autistic community is widely represented in a range of fields, including sport, media, science, and entertainment.
Alexis Wineman - American model and pageant contestant
Alix Generous - American behaviour scientist, activist, and consultant
Bill Gross - American investor and fund manager.
Chloe Hayden - Australian actor, disability advocate, and speaker
Chris Packham - British naturalist, environmental activist and TV presenter
Clay Marzo - American surfer
Cody Ware - American NASCAR driver
Courtney Love - American singer and songwriter, lead singer of grunge band Hole.
Dan Aykroyd – American actor and comedian
Dan Harmon - writer, producer and actor. Creator of "Community"
Daniel Tammet - English writer
Daryl Hannah – American actor and environmental activist
David Campion - Australian Special Olympics snowboarder
Dawn Prince-Hughes - American primate anthropologist, ethologist, and author of Songs for the Gorilla Nation
Donna Williams - Australian author, autism advocate and consultant
Dr. Vernon Smith - American Nobel Prize-winning economist and academic
Em Rusciano - Australian comedian, writer, singer and presenter
Gary Numan - British singer and songwriter
Grace Tame - Australian activist, advocate, and author
Greta Thunberg - Swedish climate activist
Hannah Gadsby - Australian comedian, author, and presenter
Heather Zumich - American model
James Durbin - American musician
Jerry Newport - American author and public speaker, and inspiration for the movie Mozart and the Whale
John Elder Robison - American author of Look Me in the Eye
Jon Rosenberg - American webcomic creator
Judy Singer - Australian sociologist and disability rights activist, creator of the term "neurodiversity"
Liane Holliday Willey - American author, educator and consultant.
Lionel Messi - Argentinian world champion footballer
Lizzy Clark - British actress and campaigner
Michael Burry - American physician, investor and hedge fund manager, and inspiration for the movie The Big Short.
Stephen Fry – British actor, presenter, and comedian
Susan Boyle – British singer and Britain's Got Talent contestant
Temple Grandin - American scientist and animal behaviourist
Tim Burton – American filmmaker, director, animator, and artist
Travis Meeks - American singer and songwriter. Lead singer of band Days of the New.
Ulysse Delsaux - American NASCAR driver
Wentworth Miller - Australian actor
There are many historical figures who are believed to have been autistic or to have met the criteria for autism.
Hans Christian Andersen – Danish children’s author
Benjamin Banneker – American almanac author, surveyor, naturalist, and farmerSir Isaac Newton – British mathematician, astronomer and physicist
Henry Cavendish – British scientist
Michelangelo – Italian sculptor, painter, and architect
Charles Darwin – British naturalist, geologist, and biologist
Paul Dirac – English theoretical physicist
Emily Dickinson – English poet
Lewis Carroll – English author
Thomas Jefferson – American politician
James Joyce – Irish author
Alfred Kinsey – American sexologist & biologist