Occupational Therapists

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Teresa Hans OT

Ms. Teresa, MOT, OTR/L

Operations Manager

Master of Occupational Therapy

Early Steps Provider

Teresa graduated with her Masters degree in 2013 from Nova Southeastern University. Since graduating, she has worked in pediatrics primarily within the private practice setting. Her experience includes working with children with developmental delay, ASD, sensory processing disorder, fine/gross motor delays and handwriting difficulties. She uses a variety of treatment approaches including Sensory Integration, DIR/Floortime and Neurodevelopmental Treatment. She also has experience with the Handwriting Without Tears and the Size Matters handwriting programs.

Teresa seeks additional professional development opportunities to expand her clinical knowledge and enjoys working within a multi-disciplinary team for family centered care.

Cristina Rojo OT

Ms. Cristina, MSOT, OTR/L, SIPT

Clinical Manager of West Palm Beach

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Early Steps Provider, Bilingual- Spanish, PAMS Certification, SIPT Certification

Cristina Rojo-Sirico graduated with a Bachelor’s in Occupational Therapy in 2005, and worked as an occupational therapist while earning her Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy in 2009 from Florida International University. She has worked with children in school and charter school settings as well as in the home and private clinical practice settings. She holds training and certification in Therapeutic Listening, Interactive Metronome, the Handwriting without Tears program, and the SOS feeding approach. Cristina has been a member of the Florida Occupational Therapy Association as well as the American Occupational Therapy Association.

Cristina is SIPT (Sensory Integration and Praxis Test) certified and enjoys treating sensory integration and processing disorders as well as working with children with autism spectrum disorders. Additionally, she has worked with children with a variety of other diagnoses including developmental delay, neurological impairment, visual motor delay, hypotonia, Down syndrome, and Cerebral Palsy.

Gabriela Alvarez OT

Ms. Gabriela, MOT, OTR/L

Clinical Manager of Boca Clinic

Master of Occupational Therapy

Bilingual- Spanish

Gaby graduated with her Masters in Occupational Therapy from the University of Florida in December 2016. Through her undergraduate and graduate career she gained valuable experience as caregiver to a special needs individual and volunteer for several Gainesville organizations. Helping in the community fostered a passion for helping children and their families. She enjoys working in a multidisciplinary team, helping children develop skills for the present and future. She has developed skills in treating a variety of diagnosis including developmental delays, autism, Down’s syndrome, and handwriting delays. Her professional goal is to gain experience and expand her treatment interventions to best fit the needs of her patients.

Calley Rock OT

Ms. Calley, MSOT, OTR/L

Aquatic Lead

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Early Steps Provider, DIR Floortime Practitioner

Calley graduated with her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy from the University of New England in 2017, where she previously earned her Bachelor of Science in Health, Wellness, and Occupational Studies with a Minor in Psychology. Her experience working at a summer camp and in social skills groups for children with autism prompted her to pursue a career in occupational therapy. Calley’s OT experience has predominantly been in pediatric private practice and she has also worked with adults in psychiatric, physical rehabilitative, and home health settings. Calley holds certifications in DIR Floortime and Interactive Metronome and has special training in reflex integration. She believes that a strong therapeutic relationship is essential to facilitate positive outcomes and she is passionate about connecting with children of all abilities and their families to help promote age appropriate development.

Dana Schooley OT

Ms. Dana, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy

Early Steps Provider

Dana graduated from Stony Brook University in New York in June of 2001. She has 20 years of experience working as a pediatric Occupational Therapist in New York and sunny South Florida, joining the PPT team. Dana loves working with children and always knew she would be a pediatric therapist. She has worked with a variety of patients with Autism, CP, fragile X, IDD, Downs’s syndrome, and developmental delays in outpatient, school, home, and residential school settings. Dana has attended numerous continuing education courses ranging from Neuro reflex integration & NDT to Beckman Oral Motor Assessment and Intervention and sensory integration.

Ms Desirae

Ms. Desirae, MSOT, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Desirae graduated with her Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy from Misericordia University located in Dallas, Pennsylvania. She has experience working with children across many settings including home health, school-based, and outpatient clinics. Desirae has a passion for working with patients with autism, sensory processing disorders, cerebral palsy, developmental delays, genetic disorders, and many others. She is eager to continue researching and specializing in areas such as feeding, DIR/floortime, and primitive reflexes. Desirae is excited to continue her career at PPT providing child-centered interventions and working with families to maximize her client’s participation in their daily occupations. 

Eva Patel OT

Ms. Eva, MOT, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Occupational Therapy

Eva Patel graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from The Ohio State University in 2012 and a Master of Occupational Degree from Nova Southeastern University in 2014. Since graduating, she began her career in geriatrics realizing quickly her passion resided in pediatrics. Fortunately, she has been exposed to numerous settings. Prior to moving to sunny Florida in September 2016, she worked for Ohio’s Early Intervention Services, schools involving students with mild-moderate-severe disabilities, and a hospital based outpatient pediatric clinic in Ohio for several years. Her experience includes working with children with ASD, developmental delays, Sensory Processing disorder, Cerebral Palsy, fine/gross motor delays, handwriting difficulties. She is excited to continue growing with Progressive Pediatric Therapy and serves children and families with a client centered and creative approach.

Holly Seipt OT

Ms. Holly, MOT, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Occupational Therapy

Holly moved to south Florida from the Philadelphia area to complete her Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy at the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences in Coral Gables, FL. She quickly discovered her heart for the pediatric population and has been exposed to, but not limited to, sensory processing deficits, hemiplegia, oculo-motor dysfunction, ASD, and ADHD.  She has continued to pursue private practice in pediatrics for the last year, with experience in multiple clinic locations in South Florida, private schools, and home based intervention. Holly is passionate about using multisensory approaches to target the goals of each individual child, with strong experience in reflex integration, visual-motor skills, and parent education programs. 

Karla Pierre-Louis OT

Ms. Karla, MOT, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Occupational Therapy

Early Steps Provider

Karla graduated from the Master of Occupational Therapy Program at the University of Florida in December 2010. Since then, she has worked as a pediatric occupational therapist in various settings, performing evaluation and treatment of children from birth to age 21 in the home, school, and clinical environment. She has treated children with varying diagnoses and conditions including Attention-Deficit /Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Brachial Plexus Injury, Cerebral Palsy, Down’s Syndrome, developmental delay, feeding difficulties, and seizures. Karla has a special interest in sensory processing difficulties and pursues ongoing continuing education addressing children with these difficulties. She is also currently an Early Steps provider. Her professional goal is to communicate and work closely with families and other disciplines in order to ensure carryover and improve functional outcomes for the involved child. She recognizes the uniqueness of each child and strives to identify the priorities and strengths of each family unit in order to develop and achieve desired outcomes.

Kirsten OT

Ms. Kirsten, MOT, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Occupational Therapy 

Kirsten completed her 3-month OT fieldwork rotation at Progressive Pediatric Therapy in the fall and graduated with her Master’s degree in 2021 from Radford University. Her experience working in the recreational therapy field with children with developmental delay and ASD in a clinic/home setting guided her to expand her education in occupational therapy. She also has previous fieldwork experience working with adults in the community and a neurorehabilitative department of an inpatient hospital. Kirsten continues to enhance her clinical knowledge by researching, collaborating with other therapists, and facilitating client-centered sessions to ensure she provides quality treatment. She is excited to continue learning and growing as a clinician at Progressive Pediatric Therapy.

Kynsie OT

Ms. Kynsie, MSOT, OTR/L

Mental Health Clinic Coordinator

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy 

Kynsie graduated with her Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy at Barry University. She received her Bachelor’s of Science in Kinesiology in 2019 from Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis. Kynsie first fell in love with Occupational Therapy while interning at a children’s hospital and watching the impact the OTs made with their patient’s and their families. Kynsie’s experience involves adult inpatient rehabilitation, hand therapy, hippotherapy, and pediatric inpatient rehabilitation. She has worked with patients with autism, cerebral palsy, genetic disorders, ADHD, developmental delays, and sensory processing disorder. Kynsie is passionate about using client-centered treatments that achieve the best outcomes for her patients and their families to promote engagement in meaningful occupations.

Lauren Merchant COTA

Ms. Lauren, MSOT, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Masters of Science in Occupational Therapy

Lauren joined the Progressive Pediatric Therapy team in 2016 as an Occupational Therapy Assistant. In 2019 she returned to  Keiser University to further her career in Occupational Therapy,  receiving a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Occupational Health and has since earned her Masters degree as an Occupational Therapist. She brings a wealth of experience and passion for children and has developed skills in treating a broad range of pediatric disorders including Sensory Processing Disorder, ASD, ADHD, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy and developmental delay. She understands that each child is unique and strives to find a way to connect with each one in a fun and goal directed environment. Lauren enjoys working on a multi-disciplinary team and guiding families for skill development in their child.

Lukas Roesch OT

Mr. Lukas, OTD, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Doctor of Occupational Therapy

Lukas graduated with his Doctorate in Occupational Therapy from Kettering College, Ohio in 2019. He previously earned his Bachelor of Science in Exercise and Sports Science with a Minor in Business at Nova Southeastern University, where he also played collegiate basketball for 4 years for the sharks. His experience working as a teacher and summer camp counselor for basketball camps and YMCA camps prompted him to pursue a career in occupational therapy. Lukas’s Occupational Therapy experience has predominantly been in pediatric outpatient clinics while also working inpatient at Dayton Children’s hospital. He has worked with a variety of patients with Autism, CP, Wolf-Hirschhorn, IDD, Downs’s syndrome, and developmental delays in outpatient and inpatient settings. Lukas continues to attend numerous continuing education courses on topics including fine motor skills, sensory integration, and Motor Assessment and Intervention to continue to give his patients the best skills to live a happy, independent life. 
Nicole Moes OT

Ms. Nicole, MSOT, OTR

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Nicole joined Progressive Pediatric Therapy in 2014 after transitioning from running her own practice in the Lake Worth Area. She graduated with Bachelors degree in OT from University of Florida in 1999, and obtained her Masters degree from Florida International University in 2002. She is certified in sensory integration, therapeutic listening, kinesiotaping, Beckman oral Motor intervention, electrical stimulation, and ultrasound. She has worked with a variety of diagnoses including developmental delay, autism, neurological impairment, hypotonia, chromosomal disorders, cerebral palsy, disorders of sensory processing, and ADHD.

Ms. Nikki OT

Ms. Nikki, MOT, OTR/L

Master of Occupational Therapy

Nikki completed her Masters in Occupational Therapy degree at Barry University.  She has a passion for helping children achieve developmental milestones and increasing independence in all areas of their lives. Nikki is consistently inspired by seeing her patients and their families accomplish desired goals.  She has experience in handwriting without tears, feeding, emotional regulation, sensory processing disorder, attention deficit disorder, autism, developmental delay, and cerebral palsy. In her free time Nikki enjoys learning the Italian language, taking care of her pet rabbit Charlie, and participating in triathlons. 

Raquel OT

Ms. Raquel, MSOT, OTR

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Raquel graduated with her Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy from Stony Brook University in Long Island, New York (2019). She previously attended and graduated from the University of South Carolina with her Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and concentration in Chemistry (2013). Raquel has worked in various pediatric settings over the past few years with children ranging from ages 2-21 years old. She is excited to join the PPT team and continue to service the pediatric population. Raquel has recently relocated to South Florida from New Jersey. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing sports, attending concerts, reading books, exploring the beaches and going to farmers markets.

Sara

Ms. Sara, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Occupational Therapy

Sara received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Florida Gulf Coast University and her master’s degree in occupational therapy from the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences. She is passionate about helping kids reach their maximum potential by tackling challenges in creative and innovative ways. Sara has experience working with a variety of childhood and developmental diagnoses including Autism Spectrum Disorders, ADHD/ADD, Sensory Processing Disorder, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, and other developmental delays that impact daily function. She is an advocate for diversity and inclusion, and enjoys volunteering with special needs organizations that empower individuals and families within the community. Sara loves the outdoors and can usually be found by the water or hanging out with friends and family.

Ms. Vanessa OT

Ms. Vanessa, MSOT, OTR/L

Staff Occupational Therapist

Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Vanessa graduated with an Associate of Science degree in Occupational Therapy in 2011. After practicing as a pediatric occupational therapy assistant, her passion for the profession grew immensely which prompted her to further her education. Vanessa then graduated with a Master of Science degree in Occupational Therapy from Keiser University in 2021.  She has practiced as a pediatric occupational therapy assistant for a total of 9 years and has now carried over her acquired skills and knowledge to her most recent role as an OT. Throughout her professional career she has had the opportunity to provide services in a variety of pediatric settings including outpatient practices, medically complex settings, home health as well as daycare settings. She has experience treating various diagnoses including but not limited to ASD, Sensory Processing Disorder, Down Syndrome, ADHD, Cerebral Palsy, Developmental Delay and more. Vanessa utilizes various intervention strategies and approaches to promote goal attainment such as sensory integration, NDT and more. She is passionate about the role she plays in the lives of her patients and their families. She strongly believes to provide the best services she can, is through the use of evidence based approaches, client centered care and most importantly compassion.

Chakari COTA

Mr. Chakari, COTA/L

Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant

Associate of Science in Occupational Therapy Assistance

Chakari graduated from South University with an Associates of Science degree as an Occupational Therapist Assistant in 2016. She has experience with various child and developmental diagnosis including Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Processing Disorder, and Developmental Delray. Her first job out of school was at a pediatric clinic working alongside other disciplines including ABA, Physical Therapy, and Speech Therapy. She has learned to incorporate parts of other disciplines within her treatment in order to create a holistic and well rounded experience for each child and their families.

Justin COTA

Mr. Justin, COTA/L

Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant

Associate of Science in Occupational Therapy Assistance

Justin graduated from Keiser University in 2021 with an Associate’s of Science degree as an Occupational Therapy Assistant. Justin has experience working with children with Down Syndrome, autism, ADHD, cerebral palsy, as well as motor and developmental delays. Justin loves to implement his experience with athletics into his therapy. Justin is excited to be a part of, and continue to grow alongside his Progressive Pediatric Therapy family!

Lidia COTA

Ms. Lidia, COTA/L

Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant

Associate of Science in Occupational Therapy Assistance

Lidia graduated with an Associate of Science degree in Occupational Therapy from Daytona State College in 2017. She has worked with kids who had medically complex conditions and Disabilities from ages 1 to 13 in PPEC and clinic settings. Lidia has experience with a variety childhood and developmental diagnosis including: Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory processing disorder, Down Syndrome, ADHD, Cerebral Palsy, seizures, and Osteogenesis Imperfecta. She is passionate to work with parents, caregivers, and other disciplines to provide the most client centered intervention approach to reach a child’s potential. Her professional goals include expanding her education to provide evidence-based practice and to educate parents to carryover treatment at home.

Marlon COTA

Mr. Marlon, COTA/L

Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant

Associate of Science in Occupational Therapy Assistance

Marlon graduated from Keiser University in 2022 for his Associates of Science degree in Occupational Therapy at the top of his class. Marlon became interested in Occupational Therapy when he was searching for a career that can impact the lives of those he helps. Marlon is excited to absorb and implement all that he learns at Progressive Pediatrics in order to provide the best quality care for those he treats.

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