Valerie Paradiz, PhD, is the Vice President, Services and Supports at Autism Speaks. A person with autism and the parent of an adult son on the spectrum of autism, Valerie is the author of numerous books and articles relating to advocacy, education and services, including Elijah’s Cup (Simon and Schuster), the Integrated Self-Advocacy ISA Series (Center for Integrated Self Advocacy) and Lesson Plan a la Carte (AAPC). Recent publications include Home Truths, a column for the Simons Foundation Autism Research Institute’s (SFARI) Spectrum News and “Essential Self- Advocacy and Transition” in Pediatrics.
In previous roles, Dr. Paradiz has served as Co-Founder and Director of the ASPIE School for middle and high school students with autism, Director of Education of New York University’s Asperger Institute, Director of the Autistic Global Initiative, a division of the Autism Research Institute, and Director of the National Leadership Institute of First Place Arizona.
Valerie’s work in autism and the neurodiversity fields has been featured in the New York Times, The Guardian, NHK Japan, MTV, the PBS NewsHour and National Public Radio. She is the 2015 recipient of the Autism Societyof America’s Adam Heavener Memorial Award for promoting successful employment of individuals with autism.
Dr. Paradiz received her doctoral degree in German Literature from the City University of New York. In addition to her efforts in the autism and neuro-diverse community, Valerie is a literary writer with numerous publications in narrative non-fiction, short fiction, and German literature in translation.
Contact: [email protected]