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With over 3.5 million Americans currently on the autism spectrum, more and more celebrity parents in our community have come out about having a child with autism. Not only have these dads took action to make a difference in their child’s lives, many of them have started foundations to raise funds and awareness for autism. I’ve met several of these dads in person to actually share about my experiences growing up from nonverbal autism to professional speaker. Here are several that have stood out…

Dan Marino

Highlights: Hall-of-Fame QB in the NFL who played for the Miami Dolphins. Started the Dan Marino Foundation in 1992 after being inspired through his experience of raising his son with autism. Opened The Dan Marino Center in 1998 to pursue his work to advocate for others.

Shawn Stockman

Highlights: One of the members of the multiplatinum R&B group Boys II Men. Shawn’s son Micah was diagnosed with autism at 2. Throughout the years, he has worked with Autism Speaks and later founded the non-profit “Micah’s Voice.”

Gary Cole

Highlights: Actor who is well known for his roles in Office Space and Entourage. Gary’s daughter Mary was diagnosed with autism in 1995.

Doug Flutie

Highlights: Pro-Bowl QB in the NFL who played for several teams including the Bills, Chargers and Patriots. Started the Doug Flutie Foundation to help improve the quality of life for people and families affected by autism.

Joe Mantegna

Highlights: Actor known for his role in shows such as Criminal Minds. Joe’s daughter Mia was diagnosed with autism. Joe’s wife Arlene created the Autism Families Together Network to help spread awareness and education of autism.

Ed Asner

Highlights: Historic actor for his roles in Up, Elf, and several others. Ed has both a son and grandson on the autism spectrum. Today he advocates with his son Matt for individuals with autism with organizations such as Autism Speaks.

Tommy Hilfiger

Highlights: A fashion icon for his Tommy Hilfiger brand. Tommy has both a daughter and son on the autism spectrum. Tommy has worked closely with organizations such as Autism Speaks to help spread awareness and funds for the cause and along with wife Dee are on the Board of Directors for the organization.

Sean Rodriguez

Highlights: Current utility MLB player for the Pittsburgh Pirates who has a young son on the autism spectrum. Has partnered with several organizations including Autism Speaks.

John Schneider

Highlights: Current General Manager of the former NFL Champion Seattle Seahawks. Started the foundation, Ben’s Fund, in honor of their son Ben who was diagnosed with autism at the age of three.

Ernie Els

Highlights: Former PGA Golfer who started the Els for Autism Foundation in 2009 and later broke ground on The Els Center of Excellence. Inspired to get involved with the cause based on their son Ben who was diagnosed with autism.

Kerry Magro, a professional speaker and best-selling author who is also on the autism spectrum started the nonprofit KFM Making a Difference in 2011 to help students with autism receive scholarship aid to pursue a post-secondary education. 

Have Kerry, one of the only professionally accredited speakers on the spectrum in the country, speak at your next event by sending him an inquiry here. If you have a referral for someone who many want him to speak please reach out as well! Kerry speaks with schools, businesses, government agencies, colleges, nonprofit organizations, parent groups and other special events on topics ranging from employment, how to succeed in college with a learning disability, internal communication, living with autism, bullying prevention, social media best practices, innovation, presentation best practices and much more!

If you liked this post you may like 5 Celebrities Who Have Siblings on the Autism Spectrum that you can read here.