In the News

AANE December 2021 Newsletter: Expectations

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AANE December 2021 Newsletter: Expectations Voices on Expectations From holiday gatherings to life choices, our own expectations and the expectations of others have a large impact. This month we share... more

Upcoming Events for Adults & Teens

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Support Groups, Activities, and Events for Adults & Teens with Asperger's or Similar Autism Spectrum and Neurodiverse Profiles December 7, 2021 All AANE programming is currently online (with the exception of some LifeNet programs, local MeetUp programs, and special events listed) and... more

Upcoming Events for Families

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Support Groups, Workshops, and Events for Families of Adults, Teens, and Children with Asperger's or Similar Autism Spectrum and Neurodiverse Profiles December 7, 2021 All AANE programming is currently online (with the exception of some LifeNet programs) and registration is required. Blue... more

AANE November 2021 Newsletter: Transitions

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   AANE November 2021 Newsletter: Transitions   Voices on Transitions This month, we feature stories and advice from the AANE community and staff on some of the many life transitions we all face. Looking for upcoming events? Buttons in sections below link to listings for each group in... more

Press Release: AANE Announces Brenda Dater as New Executive Director

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Watertown, MA - October 28, 2021 -  The Asperger/Autism Network (AANE), a national nonprofit based in Watertown, MA that serves the Asperger/autism community, is thrilled to announce that Brenda Dater will take over as the organization’s Executive Director beginning November 1, 2021 following the retirement of AANE founder and Executive... more

AANE October 2021 Newsletter: Relationships

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   AANE October 2021 Newsletter: Relationships   Voices on Relationships AANE community members share their personal perspectives on neurodiverse relationships in which one or both partners have an Asperger/autism profile. Looking for upcoming events? Buttons in sections below link to listings for... more

What I Learned From a Class by and for Autistic People

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Caroline Reilly l Rewire News Group l Sep 6, 2021, 8:35am AANE's "Healthy Relationships" class brings an exceptional perspective by having an autistic course leader. Read... more

Press Release: AANE Conference Highlights the Importance of Authentic Autistic Representation in TV and Film

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Watertown, MA - June 30, 2021 - The Asperger/Autism Network (AANE), a national nonprofit based in Watertown, MA that serves the Asperger/autism community, recently held its summer conference on Autistic Representation in Television & Film. Co-hosted by autistic actor Lillian Carrier from the hit Freeform series Everything’s Gonna Be Okay,... more

Press Release: PLAN of MA & RI and Asperger/Autism Network (AANE) Announce Strategic Partnership

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Plan of MA & RI shows support of organization with $25,000 donation. NEEDHAM and WATERTOWN, MA, and PROVIDENCE, RI, ISSUED APRIL 28, 2021… Planned Lifetime Assistance Network of Massachusetts and Rhode Island, Inc. (PLAN of MA & RI; www.planofma-ri.org/), announced today a new strategic partnership with Asperger/Autism Network... more

AANE Executive Director Dania Jekel quoted in TMZ article

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TMZ l May 10, 2021 5:50 PM PT l Elon Musk's big reveal on "Saturday Night Live" -- AANE Executive Director Dania Jekel comments on the impact of Elon Musk reveling he has Asperger's while hosting SNL.  Read... more

A Message from the AANE Board of Directors

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A Message from the AANE Board of Directors Dear AANE Community, As AANE founder and Executive Director... more

A Message from Dania Jekel, Executive Director

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  A Message from Dania Jekel, Executive Director Dear Community,   It is with mixed emotions that I am announcing my retirement from the Asperger/Autism Network at the end of October of this year. I will be 70 years old, and after 25... more

Press Release: AANE Awarded 10-Year Cummings Grant

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Watertown-based nonprofit shares in $20 million in funding Watertown, MA - October 21, 2020 - The Asperger/Autism Network (AANE) is one of 30 local nonprofits to share $10 million in expanded funding from the Cummings Foundation. The Watertown-based organization will receive $33,333 per year over 10 years to fund initiatives that provide... more

AANE Awarded Cummings Foundation Grant

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Press Release: AANE Awarded Cummings Foundation Grant Watertown, MA - May 27, 2020 - The Asperger/Autism Network (AANE) is thrilled to announce the receipt of a grant from the Cummings Foundation to fund initiatives that bring community, education, and support to parents of children, teens, and adults with Asperger/autism and similar... more

Press Release: AANE Awarded Foundation for MetroWest Grant for Parent Support

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Watertown, MA - January 30, 2020 - The Asperger/Autism Network (AANE) is thrilled to announce the receipt of a grant from the Foundation for MetroWest to fund two support groups and additional education for parents of children and teens on the autism spectrum who question or know they have a non-traditional gender identity.   With this grant,... more

AANE’s Online Training for Therapists Gives Hope to Neurodiverse Couples

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Grace Myhill l Autism Spectrum News l January 1, 2020 l winter 2020 issue     In 2018, AANE launched our NEUROLOGY MATTERS IN COUPLES THERAPY online training. Since then, 27 therapists have completed both TRAINING 101: Fundamentals of Working with Neurodiverse Couples in Therapy, and CERTIFICATION 201: Case Presentations and... more

The Enduring Power of Asperger’s, Even as a Non-Diagnosis Six years after it ceased to…

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Michele Cohen Marill l Wired l 11/7/1   Sixteen-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg is the symbol of a climate change generation gap, a girl rebuking adults for their inaction in preventing a future apocalypse. Thunberg’s riveting speech at the UN's Climate Action Summit has... more

Government’s $1.8 Billion Funding Of Autism Research Does Not Do Enough To Address The Diagnosis Gender Gap, Say Experts

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Rosie McCall  l Newsweek l 10/4/19 at 12:06 PM EDT President Donald Trump signed the "Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research, Education, and Support Act of 2019" (or the "Autism CARES Act of 2019") on Monday. In addition to re-authorizing the Autism CARES Act of 2014, the Autism CARES Act of 2019 will see $1.8 billion in funding go... more

How Climate Activist and Nobel Peace Prize Nominee Greta Thunberg ‘Destroys’ Asperger’s Stigma

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Rachel DeSantis | People | September 25, 2019 04:54 PM   Teen climate change activist Greta Thunberg has Asperger’s, a diagnosis that an estimated 1 in 250 people will receive, according to the Asperger/Autism Network. But the way she’s broken the mold surrounding the disorder is rare. The Swedish 16-year-old, whose... more

Climate activist Greta Thunberg’s even more inspiring message: Asperger’s is her ‘superpower’

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Jorge L. Ortiz | USA TODAY | Published 6:51 a.m. ET Sept. 27, 2019 | Updated 9:36 a.m. ET Sept. 27, 2019 STORY HIGHLIGHTS 16-year-old Greta Thunberg has become internationally famous for taking on world leaders over climate change. The teen began by skipping school on Fridays to protest in front of the Swedish parliament,... more

Fox News Won’t Book Guest Again After “Disgraceful” Comments About Greta Thunberg

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Jeremy Barr | The Hollywood Reporter | 8:16 PM PDT 9/23/2019 Autism advocate groups spoke out in statements to The Hollywood Reporter after Michael Knowles called the teen activist a "mentally ill Swedish child." A Fox News spokesperson told The Hollywood Reporter on Monday night that the network has "no plans" to book conservative podcast... more

For people with Asperger’s, a role model emerges in Greta Thunberg

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Elizabeth Chuck | NBC News | Sept. 24, 2019, 4:07 PM EDT "For somebody who has Asperger's or is on the autism spectrum, her ability to be honest and disclose it in such an empowering way is what's inspirational." Alexander Burke was in high school when he received an explanation for his lifetime of difficulty making social... more

AANE Dedicates The Elsa Abele Training Center

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As the culmination of an effort that began in early 2019, more than 75 people gathered at AANE on Saturday, July 13 to officially dedicate the newly updated Elsa Abele Training Center. The ceremony featured testimonials from friends, students, colleagues, and loved ones of Elsa, in addition to AANE leadership and those whose lives she touched... more

Press Release: New York’s Asperger Syndrome & High Functioning Autism Association (AHA) Joins Forces with the Asperger/Autism Network (AANE)

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Watertown, MA - June 7, 2019 -  The Asperger/Autism Network (AANE), an organization based in Watertown, MA serving the Asperger/autism community, is thrilled to announce that the Asperger Syndrome & High Functioning Autism Association (AHA), an organization with offices in New York City and Long Island, is now affiliated with AANE.  The... more

Watertown non-profit to host autism-friendly gala

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By Angela Thoma Posted Apr 17, 2019 at 2:00 PM A gala may present many challenges for someone on the autism spectrum. It may be loud and crowded, which can be uncomfortable and overwhelming. For someone with autism spectrum disorder, a gala’s unpredictable nature of meeting new people and having spontaneous conversation can also cause... more

Disability curriculum encourages Milton students to ‘celebrate differences’

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By Mary Whitfill The Patriot Ledger Posted Apr 7, 2019 at 2:52 PM Updated Apr 8, 2019 at 7:50 AM     MILTON — When Elizabeth Avery was a student in the 1970s, she said she was picked on, chosen last for sports and often looked at strangely by both adults and children her own age. She didn’t know how to fit in,... more

Wellesley man sees first-ever autism-friendly gala as a step forward

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By Cathy Brauner The Wellesley Townsman, Wellesley, MA, April 9, 2019 Aaron Levinger knew from a very early age that he was different from the kids around him. Daily routines that didn’t bother other students posed challenges for him. “The cafeteria was really hard for me,” he remembers. When lunch was over, a staff member would... more

“On the spectrum: WPI prof urges neurodiversity in tech hiring” Worcester Telegram & Gazette

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By Scott O’Connell, Telegram & Gazette Staff Feb 26, 2019 at 7:05 PM - WORCESTER – Jay Cahill, co-founder of Bluefin Technology Partners in Worcester, wouldn’t say no to a job applicant who might be a little different. “We’re looking for folks who have the right experience,” he said, including neurodiverse people. “I’ve... more

Press Release: AANE to Host First-of-Its-Kind Autism-Friendly Gala

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Watertown, MA - March 5, 2019 - The Asperger/Autism Network (AANE), a non-profit organization that works with individuals, families, and professionals to improve the lives of those with Asperger/autism profiles, is proud to announce it will be holding the first-of-its-kind autism-friendly gala. The event, titled the AANE Uncommon... more