5 People With Autism Who Changed the World

In honor of Autism Awareness Month and World Autism Awareness Day on April 2, what better way to celebrate than to recognize people with autism who have changed the world?


Temple Grandin

Temple Grandin was unable to speak until she was almost four years old, but has gone on to reshape the way that livestock are handled so that they are treated more humanely. Grandin is an author, Colorado State University professor, and has been named one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people. She is an advocate for autism and seeks to help others better understand the way that autistic people view the world.


Kim Peek

Kim Peek is the inspiration behind the movie Rain Man. He became famous for being able to perfectly memorize any book he read. Although Peek struggled with social difficulties, he could recall the contents of over 12,000 books.


Daryl Hannah

Daryl Hannah is an actress starring in Splash, Kill Bill and Steel Magnolias. She was diagnosed with Asperger’s at a young age and has since won numerous Saturn awards for her performances. Hannah is an environmental activist and holds a seat on the World Future Council.


Alexis Wineman

Alexis Wineman is the first Miss America contestant with autism to compete in the Miss Montana pageant. She was named Miss Montana in 2012 and has since used her platform to share her story and raise awareness for autism. Wineman has gone on to further her education at Huntingdon College.


Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein, one of the greatest scientific minds, had autism and struggled with social interactions and learning in a school setting. However, more than 300 of his scientific papers were published, as well as 150 non-scientific works. Einstein progressed science as we know it through his explanations of particle theory, the motion of molecules, and much more. His name, “Einstein”, is synonymous with the word “genius” to many people.


While these individuals (and many, many more!) had to overcome numerous obstacles in order to be where they are today, they all challenged the misconceptions of autism and have inspired the world to create, learn and follow your dreams.

If you are interested in learning more about autism, click for here more information.