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Autism on the Seas - Group Leaders

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Amanda

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Amanda Storer, Physical Therapist Assistant and Professor
Volunteer from Texas

Amanda has been a licensed physical therapist assistant since 2007, having worked primarily in outpatient and home health pediatrics.  She earned her Associate of Applied Science for physical therapist assistant from Kilgore College, her Bachelor of Applied Science for physical therapy from Centenary College of Louisiana, and her Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from The University of Texas at Tyler.  Amanda joined the Tyler Junior College Physical Therapist Assistant program faculty in 2015.  She serves as a mentor through the Mentoring Alliance, president and adapted tricycle liaison for Tyler Area American Business Clubs (AMBUCS), and member of the Disability Review Board for the City of Tyler and the Disability Rights of Texas Board.

 

 
     

 Bailey

Bailey Hersh

Bailey Hersh, Special Edication Teacher
Volunteer from Tennessee

Bailey has been a volunteer with Autism on the Seas since 2015. She is a Special Education Teacher for students at the elementary level. She has also volunteered at summer camps for kids with developmental disabilities as well as chronic and life-threatening illnesses. Bailey has a Bachelor's Degree in Special Education from the University of North Florida as well as a minor in American Sign Language. She also has a Master's Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from Mary Baldwin University.

 
     
 Chris

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Chris Lewis, Supervisor of Educational Programs and Services
Volunteer from Pennsylvania

Chris has been a volunteer with Autism on the Seas since 2018. At The Intermediate Unit 8 in Central PA,  she supervises ABA classrooms, Itinerant Autistic Support Teachers, Life-Skills classrooms, and Multiple-Disability programs. She has a Master's Degree in Education, graduate Certification as a Special Education Supervisor, and has her PA Certification as a Behavior Analyst. She previously worked as an Educational Consultant, Autistic Support Teacher, Learning Support Teacher, and First Grade Teacher.  Chris also volunteers with the Central PA Autism Community (CPAAC).

 
     
Donna

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Donna Edberg, Behavioral Therapist
Volunteer from Massachusetts  

Donna previously worked as a Behavioral Therapist and Lead Behavioral Therapist for Behavioral Development and Educational Services in New Bedford Massachusetts. She worked in a public school setting with students aged pre-K through 5th grade. She also worked as a home therapist for pre-K students with Children Making Strides. Donna holds a BA in Psychology and Sociology from UMASS Amherst and an M.Ed. from the University of Delaware.

 

 
     
Eddie

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Eddie Williams, Special Education Teacher
Volunteer from Pennsylvania   

Eddie works as a 2nd Grade Teacher in Pennsylvania. He also works as a Children and Youth Ministries Director for a church in Springfield, Pennsylvania. Eddie loves to volunteer with Autism on the Seas and has done over 10 cruises. Eddie holds a Bachelors degree from Rowan Univeristy, a Masters degree in Education from Cabrini College, a Masters degree in Special Education from Neumann University and is currently working on his Reading Specialist certification. Eddie is CPR/First Aid qualified.  

 
     
 Hannah
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Hannah Violet, Special Education Case Manager
Volunteer from Maryland

Hannah holds a Bachelor's in Early Childhood and Special Education from Shippensburg University. She also holds a Master's in Special Education with an Autism emphasis from Pennsylvania State University. Hannah has worked in various classrooms supporting students with various developmental disabilities in grades K-2 and 6-8. She is currently living in Maryland where she is the special education case manager for her elementary school. She has volunteered with Autism on the Seas since 2016. 

 
     
Janet
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Janet Bertoni, Professor of Exceptional Education
Volunteer from Pennsylvania   

Janet holds a B.S. in Music Education from New York University, a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education and in Special Education from Hunter College. She completed her a Ph.D. in Special Education from the University of Delaware in 2014. Janet is currently a professor of exceptional education at Millersville University of Pennsylvania. She worked as a special education teacher for nine years in New York City and Philadelphia with students in grades K-8 with various developmental disabilities and challenging behaviors. She is thrilled to be playing a part in the Autism on the Seas magic!.



 
     
Kathi
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Katherine Vaughn - Occupational Therapist
Volunteer from Georgia

Kathi works full time as a school based Occupational Therapist in Woodstock Georgia. She has a passion for working with special needs children and adults, and has been volunteering with Autism on the Seas since February 2022. Kathi has worked in a variety of settings, including Babies Can't Wait, Home Health, School System, Hospitals, and Outpatient clinics. Currently, she holds a BHS in Occupational Therapy from the Medical College of Georgia, and is pursuing her Doctorate in Occupational Therapy through Spalding University. 

 
     
Kim
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Kimberly Michela - Behavior Consultative Teacher
Volunteer from Virginia
 

Kim has been a volunteer with Autism on the Seas since 2017. She currently works as a Behavior Consultative Teacher assisting teachers and classrooms with various developmental disabilities and challenging behaviors near Richmond, Virginia. Kim has previously provided instruction and services to students ages 4-22 in public schools, private day placement schools, and at a clinic-based/in-home based program. She holds a BA in Psychology from St. Andrews University, a M. Ed in Special Education from West Chester University, and is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.

 
     
Lori

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Lori Taylor - Chair, Department of Special Education and Disability Studies
Volunteer from Pennsylvania

Lorie works as a Special Education Professor at Clarion University of PA. She also works part time as a Behavioral Technician. Lorie is on the board of PACEC and is President of the local board of the ARC.  Lorie holds a BS in Speech Pathology from James Madison University and a Masters in Audiology, a Masters in Special Education, and a Doctorate in Special Education from The University of Southern Mississippi.

 
     

Megan

Megan Brown

Megan Brown, Special Education Teacher
Volunteer from Florida
 

Megan is currently a teacher of students with disabilities at the elementary level. She has been an educator for 12 years and loves working in a self-contained classroom. She holds an M.Ed in Elementary Education with a focus on Exceptional Student Education from the University of Central Florida. She has been a volunteer with Autism on the Seas since 2021 and loves getting to help families make lifelong memories.

 
     
Michael

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Michael Marcal, Special Education Advocate
Volunteer from Florida

Michael has been a volunteer with Autism on the Seas since June 2019. When he is not volunteering on cruises, Michael is an advocate for parents of children with disabilities in Orlando, Florida. Previously, he has worked in various special education settings including a PreK Autism class, a K-5 Autism class, and as a special education teacher in a middle school. Michael has experience working with children with Autism, Cognitive Disabilities, Learning Disabilities, Visual and Hearing Impairments, and various other disabilities. Michael also volunteers as a Crisis Counselor to help people during crisis situations. He holds a B.A. in Education from the SUNY College at Brockport and a Master's Degree in Education from the University at Buffalo.  

 
     
Sandy

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Sandy Grizzard, Elementary School Assistant Principal
Volunteer from Georgia


Sandy works as a part time Assistant Principal in Snellville, GA. She has experience and passion for special needs students in many areas (Interrelated, Developmental Disabilities, Preschool, SDD, MI, Autism, EBD, HI, TBI, and medical needs.) Sandy enjoys teaching special needs adults each Sunday and volunteers in a monthly Respite program for adolescents and adults. She also volunteers at the Aurora Theatre that features Autism friendly programs for children and adults. Sandy holds a B.A. and Master’s Degree from Georgia State University and Leadership Degree from West Georgia University.

 

 
     
Sarah

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Sarah Chieffo, Occupational Therapist
Volunteer from New Jersey

Sarah is currently a school based occupational therapist.  She is in her 10th year at a public special ed school that services students in middle school, high school and beyond.  During that time, she has volunteered for a local baseball organization called the Miracle League, coached volleyball for the Special Olympics and received recognition as related service provider of the year within her school district and the state of New Jersey.  Sarah is a former early childhood/special education teacher, and prior to that spent 2 years as a live-in nanny for a family that traveled extensively.   

Sarah holds a master’s degree of Science in Occupational Therapy from Stockton University and received her bachelor’s degree in early childhood/elementary education and special education from Temple University.  She is a registered and license Occupational Therapist in the state of New Jersey.  Sarah is currently certified in CPR/AED, BLS and Safety Care by QBS. 

 
     

Sarah 

Sarah Meyer

Sarah Meyer, Behavior Analyst
Volunteer from New Jersey

Sarah Meyer is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst who works for an inclusive clinic that provides ABA, PT, Speech, Feeding, and Occupational Therapy. Sarah has worked as a special education teacher and BCBA in public school and private school settings. Sarah has a specialty in crisis de-escalation, trauma, and working with a variety of clients who have behavioral, ADL, and communicative needs. Sarah has been a member of AOTS since 2018, and continues to build her love and support for a company that has changed her life.

 
     
 Victoria

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Victoria Nelson, Behavior Therapist
Volunteer from 
Indiana

Victoria is currently a Behavior Therapist for a residential treatment facility and works with children with autism and cerebral palsy. Prior to that, Victoria worked as a Behavior Facilitator for the local school system, a Registered Behavior Technician at an ABA Therapy center, and worked with adults with various disabilities. Victoria holds a Bachelors in Human Services from Grace College and Masters in Applied Behavior Analysis from Ball State University.