It is a true honor to have Dame Stephanie Shirley as a Keynote Speaker at the upcoming Autism Conference in Jerusalem, Israel AUTISM: A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE. This outstanding individual first arrived in Britain as an unaccompanied Kindertransport child refugee. A survivor of the Holocaust, she was placed with foster parents and later reunited with her biological parents.
In 1962 Dame Stephanie founded the software company F.I. Group (later Xansa, since quired by Steria). One of her top concerns was employing women. F.I. Group didn’t have any male employees until the Sex Discrimination Act of 1975. She even took on the name “Steve” to make her way in the male-dominated business world.
Since her official retirement at the age of sixty, Dame Stephanie has become quite the philanthropist. In 2003 Dame Stephanie received the Beacon Fellowship Prize for her contribution to countering autism and for her pioneering work in harnessing information technology for the public good. She addresses many conferences and lectures around the world and is in frequent contact with parents and those with autism and the related Asperger’s Syndrome.
Whether discussing Asperger’s Syndrome or the act of giving, Dame Stephanie is an inspiration. Previous lectures she has given at international conferences and Universities reveal her values for simply doing good, and taking positive action. It is the intention behind the giving which is so important to Dame Stephanie. It is through her kind and direct words that we the audience can see how true her values are to her heart and soul. If you cannot attend the upcoming conference in August, Dame Shirley public addresses online are not to be missed. She is a true inspiration.