Job Boards for the Neurodiverse & How to Use Them

Stanford University is seeking autistic individuals, family members, and providers for autistic people, to participate in a working group on Sleep and Autism. Details below.


Image shamelessly borrowed from Butte.edu

The May 6 AASCEND Job Club takes a deep dive into Job Boards for the Neurodiverse Community. There is a growing number of job boards specializing in jobs for adults with autism and related neurodiverse conditions. Dan Middleton and Keith Halperin, facilitators of AASCEND’s Monday evening job club sessions, have compiled a list of 20 of these specialized job boards, and will discuss how to effectively use them. In addition, Dan and Keith will discuss effective use of the more general job boards, such as Indeed, and job boards specialized by occupations and sectors. Come with your questions.  The discussion will be led by Job Club facilitators Dan Middleton and Keith Halperin.

Dan Middleton & Keith Halperin

The Zoom meeting URL and password will be sent to people on our email list as the date approaches. If you are not on our email list, click here to sign up. No registration is necessary.

As usual at AASCEND meetings, attendees on the autism spectrum will offer their experience and perspectives throughout the program.

Who: Adults on the autism spectrum, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat May 6, 10am – 11am (approx.)
Where: Online via Zoom. URL and password will be emailed.


Autism in Prison

Here is the link to the video of Joseph Krauter’s inspiring presentation.

AASCEND wishes all a happy and healthy Autism Advancement Month! /// If you are autistic and have ever been pregnant, consider participating in the (paid) online survey below. /// If you haven’t already, check out this Forbes magazine article about the recent AASCEND Job Club focus on older autistics in the workforce. Also, see the latest about Love on the Spectrum, on AASCEND TV. /// Shupin House in San Francisco is inviting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and their family and friends, to a Passover Seder on April 9, 5-8pm. For details and to RSVP contact alizah@jfcs.org . You do NOT need to be Jewish to attend.


Sometimes autistic people end up in prison—too often because autistic traits led to their incarceration in the first place. The next AASCEND regular meeting will address the problem and challenges of autism, and neurogdivergence generally, in prison. Speaking with first-hand experience on the subject will be Joseph Krauter, an autistic former San Quentin inmate, and a writer.

The Zoom meeting URL and password will be sent to people on our email list as the date approaches. If you are not on our email list, click here to sign up. No registration is necessary.

Please come with your thoughtful questions for Joseph. As usual at AASCEND meetings, attendees on the autism spectrum will offer their experience and perspectives.

Who: Autistic people, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Apr 15, 10am – 11am
Where: Online via Zoom, URL and password will be emailed


Autism Pregnancy Study Flyer

Reasonable Accommodations & How to Request Them

On April 1 (no fooling!) the AASCEND Job Club tackles accommodations. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 requires employers to make reasonable accommodations in the workplace for workers with developmental differences, including autism and related conditions. At the April 1 Job Club meeting we will discuss who is covered by the requirement, what are examples of reasonable accommodations, and best practices for requesting such accommodations. The discussion will be led by Job Club facilitators Dan Middleton and Keith Halperin. Attendees are encouraged to bring examples of reasonable accommodations they have obtained or are interested in obtaining.

Dan Middleton & Keith Halperin

The Zoom meeting URL and password will be sent to people on our email list as the date approaches. If you are not on our email list, click here to sign up. No registration is necessary.

In the second half of the meeting there will be opportunity to role-play with Dan and Keith, in requesting accommodations. As usual at AASCEND meetings, attendees on the autism spectrum will offer their experience and perspectives throughout the program.

Who: Adults on the autism spectrum, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Apr 1, 10am – 11am (approx.)
Where: Online via Zoom. URL and password will be emailed.

Join us at the Resource Fair!

The Central Valley Autism Support Group invites people in the Modesto area to attend their meetings. They are open to all people on the autism spectrum 18+ years old. Younger welcome with a guardian. Meetings are 5 – 7 PM on the 1st Monday of the month. The meeting is at 422 McHenry Ave, behind the McHenry Building Offices. Contact here for more information.


After a smashing Job Club program on adult autistic employment, AASCEND continues its decades-long support for San Francisco’s Support For Families Information and Resource Conference, FREE and in-person on March 18. (location below) In place of our usual general meeting, come join AASCEND at our booth. This is a great chance to shake off pandemic isolation, and to learn about many of the autism resources available in the area—from actual humans! There is a whole smorgasbord of exhibitors, so it’s really worth checking out. The fair is particularly useful for families of young adults. There will be plenty of workshops, also free. For more information, and because it helps the organizers, please register here.

Typical resource fair scene image

Who: Autistic people, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Mar 18, 9am – 4pm (any time in this period)
Where: John O’Connell High School, 2355 Folsom St, San Francisco

What We’ve Learned: Older autistics speak on employment

The Feb 25 SF Bayfront walk was beautiful. Light rain was planned but instead we got sun with puffy white clouds. Our profound thanks to the universe! AASCEND really showed its mettle as many of us showed up despite the dour weather prognostications. What a great team, and great conviviality! See pix below.


On March 4 the AASCEND Job Club takes on the subject of employment for older autistics. What happens as adults on the autism spectrum age in the work world? At the March 4 Job Club, AASCEND members on the autism spectrum who have been in the work world for ten years or more discuss their experiences and what they’ve learned.

Among the members who will describe their work journeys are Mark Romoser and Sarah Howard. Additionally, Keith Halperin and Dan Middleton of the Monday night job group, along with AASCEND board member Michael Bernick, will offer advice on the challenges of aging in the work world.

The Zoom meeting URL and password will be sent to people on our email list as the date approaches. If you are not on our email list, click here to sign up. No registration is necessary.

Clockwise: Sarah Howard, Mark Romoser, Keith Halperin, Mike Bernick, Dan Middleton

As usual at AASCEND meetings, attendees on the autism spectrum will offer their experience and perspectives throughout the program. Come with your own questions, and stories of employment challenges and successes as you have aged.

Who: Adults on the autism spectrum, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Mar 4, 10am – 11am (approx.)
Where: Online via Zoom. URL and password will be emailed.

(Click for bigger image. It might take a few seconds to load.)

Sociable Walk, from Marina Green to Aquatic Park in SF

AASCEND is planning a fresh social adventure, a friendly walk from San Francisco’s Marina Green to Aquatic Park and possibly on to the new Francisco Park near Ghirardelli Square. Our route will take us through ever-interesting Fort Mason. We’ll meet at 11am on Saturday, February 25, at the Marina Green parking lot (X on the map), by the Phil’s Coffee truck, near the corner of Marina Blvd and Scott St. Click map for detail. There is usually plenty of parking in the Marina Green lot. NOTE: The walk is on the 4th Saturday of the month, not the usual 3rd Saturday of AASCEND meetings, and at 11am, not the usual 10am. We plan to sit down together to eat along the way, so bring a lunch. It’s San Francisco, so dress accordingly!

It will be fun to walk and talk together again. See you there!

Who: Adults on the spectrum, family, professionals and friends all welcome!

When: Saturday, Feb 25 2023 at 11:00 AM

Where: Marina Green, San Francisco, Meet at the Philz Coffee Truck (X on map above) near the corner of Marina Blvd. and Scott St.

Job Opportunities with California’s Disability Service Providers

Chase Bank is offering a FREE online class on finance fundamentals for neurodivergent people! It will be held from 3-4pm Pacific Time on Thursdays Feb 2, 9, 16 and 23. Click here for details and to register.


On February 4 the AASCEND Job Club presents Barry Jardini, Executive Director of the California Disability Services Association (CDSA), the association of major providers of services for our autism community. Barry will talk about the need for workers in this field, and the job opportunities available, for all workers including workers in our autism community. He also will address how our community in 2023 can more effectively access the employment-placement, housing and mental health services available.

The Zoom meeting URL and password will be sent to people on our email list as the date approaches. If you are not on our email list, click here to sign up. No registration is necessary.

Barry Jardini headshot

As Executive Director for CDSA, Barry leads the association’s lobbying and public policy, as well as CDSA and CDS Institute operations. He cultivates strong relationships with Administration officials, legislators and relevant staff members, and colleagues at stakeholder organizations to ensure CDSA members are well represented in Sacramento. Barry previously served as the in-house counsel to a regional human rights and fair housing commission. A native Southern Californian, Barry has developed Northern California bona fides as an alumnus of UC Davis and the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law.

As usual at AASCEND meetings, attendees on the autism spectrum will offer their experience and perspectives throughout the program.

Who: Adults on the autism spectrum, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Feb 4, 10am – 11am (approx.)
Where: Online via Zoom. URL and password will be emailed.

“Love on the Spectrum” TV Comes to AASCEND, Seeking Participants!

When it rains it pours! (a little weather joke there) We have been flooded with opportunities from film and research this month. Be sure to scroll all the way down to see them all!


Love On The Spectrum US, an Emmy-Award winning documentary series on Netflix about dating and relationships, featuring people on the autism spectrum, is seeking participants for its second season. At the January 21 AASCEND meeting online, Dani Bowman, a first-year participant in the show, (also familiar to many as the autistic founder of Danimation Entertainment) and Sean Bowman, casting and field producer for the program, will join us to talk about the show. Please come with your questions and your own experience of romance and autism.

Dani Bowman with Emmy Award
Sean Bowman, casting and field producer

The aim of the series is to send a positive message, that people on the spectrum can and do find love, while helping educate the audience about ASD by breaking down some of the myths, misconceptions and stereotypical views, and celebrating difference. It’s important to them to tell the diverse stories of real people, in their own voices. Here is a Netflix trailer for the show.

The show is currently in pre-production for the 2nd US Season and they are looking to hear from ANYONE 18+ on the autism spectrum, who might be interested in being a part the series! 

(Flyer below)

The Zoom meeting URL and password for the AASCEND meeting will be sent as the date approaches. If you are not on our email list, click here. No registration is necessary.

Who: Adults on the autism spectrum, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Jan 21 10am – 11am (approx.) Pacific Time
Where: Online via Zoom. URL and password will be emailed.


Inclusion Films will be filming a documentary about friendship and young adults on the autism spectrum. It will be filmed at a weeklong workshop to be held February 3-9 in Lodi, California. If you are single, on the spectrum, 21-30 years old and interested in meeting new people and exploring the community surrounded by supportive friends, then you can apply at https://lightscamerafriendship.com . They ask you to submit a 3-4 minute video of yourself. Contact info@aascend.org if you need help making the video.

(Flyer below)


A research project at the University of Pittsburg is looking for participants, and there is an $80 Amazon gift card in it for qualified participants. The purpose of the study is to develop a new survey tool, known as the Relationships Employment Autonomy and Life Satisfaction (REALS) scale. This scale is designed to measure aspects of adult life in autistic adults and adults with other intellectual and developmental disabilities. REALS was developed in partnership with autistic adults. The study is enrolling both individuals aged 18 and older who are autistic or have an intellectual or developmental disability and also parents/caregivers of adults on the autism spectrum.  Individuals must be current United States residents to participate.  This study should take 1-2 hours to complete (they may take breaks), and they will be compensated with a $80 Amazon e-gift card for their time and efforts within 5 business days of completing the surveys. See the flyer below for details.

(Flyer below)

NOTE: Clicking on a flyer will activate the contact link in the flyer.




Holiday Party Saturday Dec 17 2pm!

On Saturday December 17 at 2pm AASCEND will have the yearly holiday party online via Zoom —our new tradition we still hope will someday become a fond memory! (Hope, hope! Unfortunately, Covid is still affecting some of our membership.)The Zoom link will be sent in an email to all newsletter subscribers a day before the party. There is no need to register. 

The party will use Zoom breakout rooms, but first we will all meet in the “Main Room” or “Hub”, where a Welcome Party will continue throughout the day. We’ll all start there, and do a “holiday check-in” like our usual check-ins at AASCEND meetings, but with a focus on your holiday doings.

Next, the breakout rooms will be opened, and you get to choose which one you want to go to first. To see the list of breakout rooms when you are on Zoom you need to click or tap the icon of four little squares at the bottom of your screen. (If you don’t see it, then try putting the window in Full Screen mode.) Then click near the name of the room you want until the word “Join” appears. (You may have to move your mouse pointer to the right a bit to see the word “Join”.) Click that and in some seconds you’ll be in the room! You can move freely between breakout rooms, too.

After check-in, the Main Room will become a DISCUSSION ROOM, on Life with Autism, or on any subject of interest. 

The breakout rooms so far are:  Main Room Discussion, Whiteboard Games (back by popular demand!) and Quiet Meditation. Feel free to suggest another room!

There will also be “Spare Rooms”. Using the chat feature, people can arrange to meet each other in any unoccupied Spare Room (there will be a few of them) in order to have personal conversations.

At 3:15 in the Main Room there will be musical offerings by AASCEND members. Contact AASCEND (see below) if you want to sing or perform for 3 1/2 minutes or so at that time.

That’s about it! This worked well last year, and we expect it to go even better this year now that everybody really knows how to use Zoom. We invite you to dress up or decorate a little if you like. It should be a fun adventure, and remember that whatever happens AASCEND is very glad that you are here and wishes you the very best of holiday seasons!

Who: Adults on the autism spectrum, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Dec 17, 2pm – 3:30pm (or later, depending on activity. We’re keeping it low-key this year.)
Where: Online via Zoom. URL and password will be emailed.

Who’s Hiring in 2023: Perspective from Bay Area Council Expert

The November 19 Ft Funston walk was spectacular, with perfect sunny weather and perfect company. After a scenic tour of the verdant bluffs overlooking the Pacific we circled back and settled in for lunch and stimulating conversation on a sheltered platform overlooking the sea. Canine friends Timber and Lucy had the most fun of all! The wind was offshore, so no hang gliders were to be seen. See below for pix.


On December 3 the AASCEND Job Club presents Matt Regan, Vice President of Public Policy at the Bay Area Council. Matt will discuss hiring in the Bay Area as we go into 2023. The Council is an organization of over 300 major companies in the Bay Area. Matt has lead responsibility for the Council’s federal, state and local government relations as well as workforce development.

Matt is a native of Ireland. He attended the Middlesex University School of Law in London where he earned his LLB and the University of Ulster School of Business where he graduated with a Post Graduate Degree in Marketing.   Matt lives in Pleasant Hill with his family, where he serves as a Commissioner on the Contra Costa First Five Commission

The Zoom meeting URL and password will be sent to people on our email list as the date approaches. If you are not on our email list, click here to sign up. No registration is necessary.

Matt Regan headshot

As usual at AASCEND meetings, attendees on the autism spectrum will offer their experience and perspectives throughout the program.

Who: Adults on the autism spectrum, families, mentors and professionals all welcome. For more information, please contact: info@aascend.org
When: Sat Dec 3, 10am – 11am (approx.)
Where: Online via Zoom. URL and password will be emailed.


Pictures of hike at Ft. Funston in San Francisco.