Believing in a new age of autism support

Diagnosed with autism as an adult, Kory Sherland turned lived experience into her life's work

Personal meets professional beginnings

When Kory Sherland was diagnosed with autism at age 35, she recalls an “eye-opening” experience. “I would have preferred to have known earlier, but it’s better late than never,” she says. “It’s very common for women and some gender diverse individuals to be diagnosed later in life. But I found there were no services for that group, including myself. I thought, ‘I'm going to start something’, so I did.”

Her diagnosis was the catalyst for founding Autie Talk, a coaching and consulting business for people with autism. Autie Talk provides work and life strategy coaching for autistic and other neurodivergent adults, plus consultation with service providers, allied health professionals, and support workers. It was quite the career change for Kory, who had spent the past 10 years as an author, editor, and coach after graduating from the University of Wollongong (UOW).

“The demand [from clients] is really there,” she says. “I have clients who say I’m the best service provider they have, and they never want to leave me. That kind of feedback is really nice because I am someone with lived experience who understands it from the inside out.”

Living support

With her innate understanding of the autism spectrum, Kory, 48, provides tailored support strategies. “[From] executive functioning, unmasking, and becoming your true self, finding out who you really are - apart from the ‘who’ we've had to present in public as a way to get along,” she explains. 

“It's finding out what your actual needs are, what your passions are…making meaningful goals that in the process creates a life that works in the long-term, across all things.”

Harnessing the ability to believe in yourself is the simple yet powerful message Kory shares. “What I say to my clients is that infinite possibilities exist, and to believe in yourself. I’m always telling everyone on social media that ‘I believe in you’!” she laughs. “Anything is possible when you give it a go.”


Kory Sherland Kory Sherland is the founder of Autie Talk, a coaching and consulting business for people with autism.

Balancing study and a growing business

Kory credits her organisational skills and the accounting knowledge she acquired during her UOW Bachelor of Commerce with helping her business succeed.  “It’s an awesome degree if you want to be self-employed, which I advocate for people with disability so you can control your own hours and environment.”

Kory returned to study at UOW and completed Graduate Certificate of Autism online and part-time from her home in Brisbane, while running her growing business. “I would encourage anyone who is looking at a career change or going back to study, even after a long time, to look into it. Studying gives you more confidence to have that career change. You might say ‘I want to do this new thing, but I also want the backup of research and knowing that I’m providing the best service.’ I think you should try,” she says. 

“It’s just a matter of being organised, brushing up on your referencing and research skills, and these things come back to you quickly. If you’ve already done a bachelor’s degree and could do it then, why not try something new now?”