She works with Big Bird, colleges and companies to raise awareness, acceptance of autism.
When Big Bird met Julia earlier this year, it was an important moment, even if they didn’t hit it off at first.
The iconic yellow bird was dismayed when the new character didn’t make conversation, or return his high five. But soon he was hopping behind her in a special game of tag she created. And so the “Sesame Street” world welcomed its first character with autism.
Among Julia’s most ardent fans was Laura Klinger, a longtime autism researcher and director of the TEACCH Autism Program at UNC-Chapel Hill. She served as a consultant with the program as the character was created.