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Uniquely Qualified

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Meet Lara Schaeffer - Your Autism Coach


     Why choose me?

  • I have autism myself, so I know what it’s like to live as an autistic person. I have gone through school, work, and relationships as an autistic person. I have learned a lot from my successes and failures.


  • I've learned from 30 years of teaching and interacting with students, parents, colleagues, and clients. My experience has led me to be a strong communicator and an empathetic listener.


  • I was promoted three times to different school administrative positions over those years, and I have lots of knowledge about  and advice for navigating the work world while being autistic.

  • My 23-year-old daughter is autistic but was only identified at 15 years old. I know the challenges as well as the joys of raising an autistic child, teen, and young adult. 

What can I do for you?


  • I can guide and mentor you through self-assessment, employment and relationship challenges, and more. I can offer you practical advice, emotional support, and personal insights that only an autistic person can provide.


  • I can help you discover your strengths, interests, and passions and how to use them to achieve your goals and dreams.


  • I can help you overcome your fears, doubts, and insecurities and build your confidence and self-esteem.


  • I can help you connect with other autistic and neurodivergent people and find your place in the world.

  • I can work with family members and loved ones to allow them to better understand your experience as an autistic person, thus helping you improve your relationships.

My Training and Certifications

  • I’m a Certified Autism Specialist endorsed by IBCCES - a renowned authority in autism training and certification.  


  • I'm also certified in the PEERS Program (both Adolescent and Young Adult modules) and Telehealth through the University of California, Los Angeles.


  • I was invited to join the NYC Regional Center for Autism Spectrum Disorder Advisory Board in 2019, part of NYU's Langone Health System. This center serves all five boroughs of New York City and Long Island. 


  • I’m also a member of ASAN (Autistic Self-Advocacy Network) and ION Global (Institute of Neurodiversity). I’m actively involved in advocating for autism awareness, acceptance, and the rights of autistic individuals worldwide. I do this through online publications and a busy schedule of public speaking engagements.


  • My educational background includes an M.Ed. from Harvard University Graduate School of Education and a B.A. in English Language and Literature from Trinity College (United States), where I was inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa honors society.

How can you reach me?

You can contact me by email at

You can also follow me on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram, where I share my thoughts, experiences, and resources on autism.

You can also check out my blog here on the Autism Discovery website, where I write about various autism-related topics.


I look forward to hearing from you and working with you! 

  • I have also navigated the sometimes tumultuous waters of romantic relationships, even tying the knot--and divorcing--twice. Relationships have added layers of challenges when you are autistic, and I can both relate to and support you through your own.

  • I am a late-diagnosed autistic (diagnosed at 47 years old). I fully understand the combination of shock and relief of discovering your true identity. I can help you cope with the changes and embrace your new self.

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