Monday, November 21, 2011

Dr. Bernard Rimland

Autism Light #90 is Dr. Bernard Rimland.

Photo of Dr. Bernard Rimland

Dr. Bernard Rimland passed away on November 21, 2006. He lived most of his life in San Diego, California. Dr. Rimland was a parent of a child with autism and was one of autism's great heroes of the 20th century. Dr. Bernard Rimland is being named an Autism Light posthumously on this the 5th anniversary of his death. He will also be the third individual to be placed on the Autism Light Memorial Roll.  Dr. Bernard Rimland is an Autism Light because of his contribution to autism through his prolific writing, leadership, speaking, and relentless research. He was specifically a leader in promoting the benefits of biomedical treatments for autism.

Family: Dr. Bernard Rimland was survived by his wife Gloria, and three children (Mark, Paul, and Helen Landalf). Mark Rimland is his oldest son who had one of the earliest diagnosis of early infantile autism and his condition inspired Dr. Bernard Rimland's work with autism.

Katie Burns wrote this documentary on the far reaching effects of Dr. Bernard Rimland's work, particularly as he challenged Bettelheim's theory of Refrigerator Moms causing autism and changed the approach to autism forever.

Leader of Autism Organizations:  Dr. Bernard Rimland was the founder of the Autism Society of America, and he also served as the Executive Director of the Autism Research Institute. Both of these organizations continue to play an important role in the autism community.  On September 28, 2011 Dr. Stephen M. Edelson was named an Autism Light for his work in succeeding Dr. Bernard Rimland as Executive Director of the Autism Research Institute.

Author: Dr. Bernard Rimland was a prolific writer and penned the following books.
  • Infantile Autism (1964)
  • Modern Therapies (1976)
  • Biological Treatments for Autism and PDD (1998)
  • Tired - so Tired!: And the "Yeast Connection" (2001)
  • Vaccines, Autism and Childhood Disorders (2003)
  • Treating Autism (2003) - Written with Dr. Stephen M. Edelson
  • Recovering Autistic Children (2006) Second Edition
Quote: One of Dr. Rimland's famous quotes is the following statement.  For years we have heard the experts say that autism is a lifelong disability,...This simply is not true anymore (Source).

Hollywood:  Dr. Bernard Rimland served as a consultant to the 1998 movie Rain Man.  He helped Dustin Hoffman clarify the traits of autism. See for more information on that role.

You can find out additional information on Dr. Bernard Rimland at the following websites.
Special thanks to Dr. Bernard Rimland for being an Autism Light. Your work was not in vain and its impact continues to this day by those in the autism community.

Autism Light honors diverse heroes to the world of autism.

Photo: The Photo in this post was given for this purpose by a representative of the Autism Research Institute.

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