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avatar for Bill Lemmond

Bill Lemmond

[Currently out of work]
Janitor
Richmond, VA

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Because of my disabilities, and now long they went undiagnosed, I don't know what to say or not say, to other attendees of the Spectrum of Opportunity online conference series. I expect hardly anyone, if anyone, will read this. But decades of harsh experience have taught me to get out in front of others' assumptions and interpretations about me.

My disabilities went undiagnosed for decades. I was in my twenties before I was finally correctly diagnosed with clinical depression, and my diagnosis of non=hyper attention deficit came a few years later. I didn't hear my autism diagnosis until my early 50s. I didn't have a motor vehicle until I was 26. That seriously limited my employment and social life.

I've never received social skills training, and still struggle with social situations. In the late 1980s, in my late twenties, I lost both my jobs to autistic moments, a few months apart. Somehow, I served in the Virginia Army National Guard for 17 years, reaching the rank of Sergeant. I've been working for Rock Solid Janitorial for a little over 3 years, which is my longest and by far best civilian job. I had to wait 40 years, finally to get paid what minimum wage would be, had it not lost half its value to inflation.

I hope my experiences will be helpful to parents of mildly autistic kids, if only as a cautionary tale of what can go wrong, from lack of intervention.


Feel free to disregard the following paragraph. Sched kept my info related to the annual RVA Sec computer security conference at VCU, and I don't want to have to write it, again. It's bad enough that some fool programmer wrote this interface so poorly that when I linked my Twitter account, it erased all I wrote for this upcoming conference.

I guess for most of you, I'm as close as you'll get to talking your father or grandfather into joining Capture the Flag. I've limped through some of the 100-level challenges, and think I actually completed one of the 200-level challenges. Mostly, my involvement is as a Hack RVA member, tweezing tiny electronic bits onto your badges, in our assembly round table. I still manage to have fun, and even learn something.
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