What do you do?
I am the director of the Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) program at The Children’s Center. I oversee the operations of our Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention (EIBI) clinic and our consultation services, as well as provide clinical supervision and oversight to behavior analysts, clinicians and behavior technicians. I also assist my fellow clinical directors in developing strategies, based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis that will impact the culture of The Children’s Center.
What’s your background?
I received my master’s degree in social work from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and then obtained my BCBA certification through the Florida Institute of Technology. Before working at The Children’s Center, I had experience as an in-home social worker, working with parents who were on the verge of losing their parental rights. My role was to help them set behavioral and developmental expectations for their children and teach them ways to utilize more positive approaches to parenting.
After that, I began working in a shelter for women and children, providing clinical therapy for the children who had witnessed domestic violence or had been sexually abused. I started at The Children’s Center in August 2009 as a clinician, excited that the Center truly encompassed everything I was passionate about, including supporting families who experienced trauma, foster care/adoption services, behavioral services, and mental health treatment.
What accomplishment are you most proud at The Children’s Center?
I would say expanding our ABA services to serve more families. I am constantly amazed at our staff and how we have been able to grow into the behavior analysts that we are today. Without our ability to train and retain our staff, we would not be where we are today.
What is your favorite part of your day?
Seeing the progress that the children make every single day. Hearing about how a child masters the skills to level out of an ABA program, which helps them be more independent, is so rewarding. Especially potty training days — those are the most fun — and we constantly hear cheers and parties going on. But above all, when a parent tells me about how thankful they are for our services or how they cried when they heard their child’s first word (at age 3, 4 or 5) — that absolutely makes everything worth it.