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Ask and Tell
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About the Author

Ruth Elaine Joyner Hane, lives with her husband, Jay, in Minneapolis. Their lives are enriched by four grown children, a daughter-in-law, son-in-law, two baby grandsons, three cats and many goldfish. Ruth Elaine is midwest director for the Autism Society of America's board of directors and serves on various ASA committees. In addition to consulting with individuals who are challenged with issues of physical and emotional health and well-being, she leads Serenity Circles for developing emotional intelligence, presents workshops on Chi Energy, Avoiding Burnout in the Age of Anxiety, Finding Joy at the Holidays, and Energy Boundaries. Ruth Elaine coaches people within the spectrum of autism, teaching them what she has learned, and facilitates two social groups. She is a contributing author to Sharing Our Wisdom, a collection of public presentations.

Kassiane Alexandra Sibley is an independent young adult, tumbling coach, special education major, tutor to children on the autism spectrum, and co-teacher of a ballet class for autistic and Asperger children. She has spoken locally and nationally and has also published articles in several publications, and never misses a chance to spread public awareness. Like many Aspies her age, Kassiane was improperly diagnosed before discovering the autism spectrum at the age of 18. In addition to her autism activities, Kassiane competes in power tumbling, for which she recently won the Amanda Howe Sunshine Memorial Award for Sportsmanship. Diagnosed with 'atypical development with strong autistic tendencies,'.

Stephen Shore was viewed as 'too sick' to be treated on an outpatient basis and recommended for institutionalization. Nonverbal until the age of 4, with much help from his parents, teachers, and others, Stephen is now completing his doctoral degree in special education at Boston University with a focus on helping people on the autism spectrum develop their capacities to the fullest extent possible. In addition to working with children and talking about life on the autism spectrum, Stephen presents and consults nationally and internationally on adult issues pertinent to advocacy and disclosure, education, relationships, and employment. He also serves on the board of the Autism Society of America, as board president of the Asperger's Association of New England, and is on the Board of Directors for Unlocking Autism, the Autism Services Association of Massachusetts, and MAAP services. Stephen is executive director of Autism Spectrum Disorder Consulting and adjunct faculty at Salem State College and Emerson College.

Roger Meyer lives in Gresham, Oregon, a Portland suburb. During his 26-year career as a union cabinetmaker, he volunteered evenings and weekends as a young-adult counselor, community organizer, apprentice instructor and community mediator. At the age of 56 he left cabinetmaking to work full time with people. Author of Asperger Syndrome Employment Workbook, he is owner of a comprehensive disability case management consulting and advocacy firm Of A Different Mind. Roger facilitates the Portland Asperger Syndrome adult support group and co-facilitates the Portland AS Partners group. He meets monthly with clinicians from multiple disciplines to develop best practices in counseling children, adolescents and adults with AS. Roger is also involved in nondisability community politics. He is a member of the Multnomah County Community Housing and Development Commission and chair of the Rockwood Neighborhood Association.

Phil Schwarz is vice president of the Asperger's Association of New England (AANE), and has been a member of Autism Network International (ANI) since 1994.

Reviews

As soon as I opened the first pages of this book, I knew that it was going to be a great contribution for people on the autism spectrum. Of course, I was biased since I had read papers by many of its authors. I find admirable the wisdom of the answers provided in the various chapters to Phil Schwarz's question 'What mix of change in the society, as well as change in the individual, should we strive for?' Indeed, society as a whole must become more aware of autism and Asperger Syndrome, but individuals who live with these syndromes must be allowed to acquire the potential to become self-advocates too. I hope that this book will be translated into many languages." - Paul Trehin, Vice President Autism Europe, Cagnes sur Mer, France

"Self-disclosure is inherently personal - and so is this book. Written by six people on the autism spectrum, it reveals the complex perceptions and behaviors that often limit access to educational opportunities, social groups, and employment for individuals with these disorders. This remarkable text enlightens theory and gives clear instruction on the necessity for self-knowledge in achieving a better life in matters of everyday living." - Gerald S. Fain, Ph.D., Professor, School of Education, Boston University

"Finally, a book with concrete 'how-to' and 'what-to-say' advice. Here are the answers to 'what to say to other people,' written by mentors with personal experience. I like the way the authors stress how people with autism have abilities that make them different (and encourage them to be able to identify and explain their differences) from the vast majority of people they interact with. That is so much more positive than saying, 'I have autism or I have Asperger Syndrome.'" - Angela Collins, President, Autism Society of America-Greater Georgia

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