About

Mission

To champion efforts to ensure communication
is available to all non-speakers with autism.

An estimated 40% of people with autism are non-speaking—31 million worldwide. Yet only a small fraction of non-speakers have been taught how to communicate.

An estimated 40% of people with autism are non-speaking—31 million worldwide. Yet only a small fraction of non-speakers have been taught how to communicate.

Founded by lyricist, poet, author, and advocate Elizabeth Bonker—who herself is affected by autism and types to communicate—Communication 4 ALL champions efforts to ensure communication is available to all non-speakers.

A 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in formation, C4A recognizes that the key to changing policies and practices begins with shifting mindsets. To do so, we’re launching an 18-month campaign that will leverage the power of film, videos, music, and inspiring personal testimonies to “move hearts and minds.” Our goal: to build awareness—and action—to ensure that non-speakers with autism have access to the communication and education essential to living meaningful lives.

Critical to our movement-building efforts is creating opportunities for non-speakers with autism who type (typers) to advocate for their rights. Through the campaign, C4A will celebrate and uplift the stories of typers, like Elizabeth, who have succeeded against the odds in developing communication skills. These young people have gone on to complete their educations and pursue cherished goals.

C4A recognizes that shifting attitudes and deeply held mindsets is critical to achieving lasting social change. Through the power of story, we seek to transform the narrative of what non-speakers with autism can achieve and underscore the existence of proven solutions to address their communication needs.

Founder’s Story

C4A grew out of the experiences of our Founder and Executive Director Elizabeth Bonker who is affected by autism and types to communicate. Elizabeth has been a passionate advocate for non-speakers with autism for more than a decade.

A poet, lyricist, and co-author of I Am In Here, Elizabeth has been featured in popular media outlets, including PBS and TEDMED, and in the documentary film, In Our Own Hands: How Patients are Reinventing Medicine. Elizabeth’s lyrics, as captured on her new album, speak to the emotional pain non-speaker’s experience and the extraordinary possibilities that are open to them when barriers to communication access are removed.

Team

Elizabeth headshot

Elizabeth Bonker, Founder/Executive Director

Elizabeth has been an advocate for nonspeakers with autism for more than a decade. Her book and album, I Am in Here, seek to change the way the world sees nonspeaking autism. Elizabeth has been a “speaker” at many conferences including Ashoka Changemakers and Autism Society’s Town Hall. Elizabeth graduated as a Valedictorian of Rollins College in 2022. Her Commencement Address went viral with more than 4 billion impressions worldwide.

Steve Michelson, Executive Producer

Steve is the Executive Director of the Fund for Sustainable Tomorrows, a nonprofit that builds social awareness and change campaigns around documentary films. He is the Co-Producer of the documentary that first featured Elizabeth Bonker: In Our Own Hands: How Patients Are Reinventing Medicine. He has 40+ years as a television producer and distribution executive.

Dorian Adams, Creative Director

Dorian brings a rich background steeped in advertising and marketing to the C4A team. He is co-founder of two nonprofits dedicated to helping veterans transition successfully from the military to civilian life and is an expert in new and existing media forms devoted to philanthropy and social change.

Sheila Kinkade, Development Director

Sheila is a writer, producer, and communications strategist with 30 years of experience in helping nonprofit, corporate, and public sector clients tell the human story driving their social change work. She is co-producer of the documentary, Cafeteria Man and co-author of Our Time is Now: Young People Changing the World.

Eric DeBoer, CTO Website Designer

Eric is a seasoned creative with over 30 years of experience; both in-house while at GE and at agencies within the Midwest. After a move to Puerto Rico, he started his own agency with a focus on social change and now supports C4A’s website and design needs.

Board

Elizabeth headshot

Elizabeth Bonker, Founder/Executive Director

Bio above.

Ginnie Breen (Chair)

Ginnie spent her career in venture capital helping start-up companies grow and hopes to use those same skills to help Elizabeth grow C4A. She currently sits on the boards of public and private companies with more than $50 billion of assets under management. Ginnie is also Elizabeth’s mother

Daniel Bergmann (Director)

Dan Bergmann graduated cum laude from Harvard Extension School in 2021, where he spoke to and for his undergraduate class at commencement using a text-to-speech computer. He is working to understand better what kinds of support non speakers need from neurotypical people and what kinds of support can be automated, so that communication by non speakers can spread quickly and easily. In October, 2021 he was invited to record a commentary for CBS Sunday Morning.

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Grace Moskola (Director)

Grace is the Director of the Accessible Education Office at Harvard University. She has held professional roles in student accessibility services since 2010, including work at the University of Central Florida and Rollins College. Grace’s leadership in the field includes presenting at national conferences on social justice issues for students with disabilities. Her interests in this work include the Social Model of Disability, Disability identity development, intersectional identities, and universal design in learning. She is an advocate for the inclusion of non-speaking students in higher education.

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Dosia Paclawskyj (Director)

Dosia is a clinical psychologist who has spent the majority of her career working with children and adults with autism and behavioral challenges in addition to training staff and pre/postdoctoral fellows, consulting to community agencies, and teaching in various graduate programs. Her professional interests include autism and anxiety and the comorbidity of autism and dyspraxia.

Jim Zucco (Director)

Jim has been a leading innovator in the communications and software industries for more than 40 years. He has been a successful CEO of both public and private tech companies. Today, he invests in early-stage companies and mentors promising entrepreneurs.

Founding Partners

Support The Cause

At Communication 4 ALL, we seek nothing less than to ensure that all non-speaking students with autism have the freedom and support to use the communication of their choice in school. Your gift helps us build awareness, distribute much-needed resources, and spark action. Please consider a donation to C4A today.