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Glancer Magazine

LITERARY LOCAL | Mike Catuara, Contributing Author to For The Love of Autism

by Mindy Kyle


DOWNERS GROVE–Glancer Magazine’s own photographer extraordinaire Mike Catuara was diagnosed with autism when he was three years old. With the help of his family, therapists and his own determination, he has been able to overcome many obstacles that many autistic individuals don’t have the capacity to achieve, including graduating with a bachelor’s degree in graphic design from Illinois State University and pursuing a career in his passion – photography.

“Amazingly enough, some people who are autistic obtain special skills that are considered beyond levels of genius and show skills, such as mathematical, artistic, musical, spatial and mechanical abilities,” says Mike. In high school, when his love for photography blossomed, he found that he already had the skill and knowledge to position the camera correctly, get perfect angles and compose photos by the “rule of thirds” method.

When Tamika Lecheé Morales, President of the Autism Hero Project and mother to an autistic son, decided to create For The Love of Autism, an anthology of life stories from autistic authors, she knew right away she wanted to include Mike.

“He was the first autistic author that I reached out to,” says Tamika. “I had hired him to photograph The Autism Hero Project’s first Gala, and he ended up being one of our speakers. I wanted to include his story.”

Through the book and The Autism Hero Project, Tamika is driven to raise awareness and acceptance of the autism community. “I hope the world will see their strengths and not judge them on how they are different.

For the Love of Autism can currently be purchased on Amazon. The Autism Hero Project’s Gala will this year be on Saturday, September 24th. For more information on the foundation and attending the Gala, please visit


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