Our Team

Our team of compassionate, dedicated, and skilled professionals strive to ensure that every interaction, each and every day, is done in a way to further engage the minds of the clients we serve.

Our Training

Each of our team members is certified as a Registered Behaviour Technician or is in the process of being certified. Our team members are cross-trained in numerous teaching and intervention models that act as tools for them to utilize while guiding each child to their fullest potential. We believe that the work that we do cannot be done without consistent approaches, which is why parent involvement and parent training are an integral part of each and every child's service plan. With over 20 years experience and training in the field, our goal is to continue to be recognized as a industry leader providing quality programming that creates lasting positive change in the lives of the clients and families we are privileged to work alongside.

Our team represents a wide variety of backgrounds, including:

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Valinda Vincent

DIRECTOR OF CLINICAL SERVICES

Valinda’s journey in this field began in 1998 when she began working with an incredible young boy with Autism as a member of his ABA team.  She continued her formal training to include a BA in Educational Psychology and is currently pursuing her Masters in Speech Pathology.  Valinda has spent the last 20 years as a Behaviour Consultant working with thousands of families across Ontario.  With extensive training and hands on experience in wide variety of methods including but not limited to ABA/ Verbal Behaviour, Direct Instruction, Precision and Fluency Training, Pivotal Response Training (PRT), Sensory Integration Disorders and Treatment, American Sign Language, Child Welfare, Trauma, Suicide Intervention, Risk Assessment for Suicide and Self-Harm, Advanced Level Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) Theraplay and Play Therapy.  Valinda is a certified trainer in Non-Violent Crisis Prevention Training and Brain Gym and is in process of completing her advanced level of Oral Placement Therapy with Talk Tools. 

She has worked with community agencies, schools in both Private, Catholic and Public settings, daycare settings, summer camp programs and community partners such as Speech and Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, Early Intervention Services, Children’s Aid Societies, residential treatment facilities, Hospital for Sick Children, and Children’s Treatment Network.  Valinda has worked closely with the regional providers in charge of managing the Ontario Autism Program in numerous areas across Ontario and other private funding agencies to assist families in accessing funds for their children’s treatment.  Valinda’s passion and dedication to see each child succeed is what has driven Valinda to continue to do this valuable work each day for that last 22 years.

Jennifer Childs, BCBA

OAP CLINICAL SUPERVISOR

Jennifer is a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst who has been working with children and youth with autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities since 2004 in group home, community, therapy and school settings. She has completed a Masters in Disability Studies with a specialization in Applied Behaviour Analysis through Brock University. She has been employed full time with the Simcoe County District School Board as an ABA Coordinator since 2009. Jennifer is passionate about using evidence-based practices to promote skill development and independence with children with a variety of needs, and enjoys working with families and other stakeholders to help children achieve generalized growth and learning.

Amy Domitrovic, MSc, BCBA

OAP CLINICAL SUPERVISOR

Amy is a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst who has been working with children, youth and adults in a variety of roles since 2008. Amy attended the University of Waterloo for her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, St. Lawrence College for her Advanced Diploma in Behaviour Science Technology and Purdue Global University for her Masters of Science in Psychology with a concentration in Applied Behaviour Analysis, where she wrote and published her thesis on teaching foundational skills. Amy has training in and experience using the principles of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT). Amy has experience working in private therapy, group homes, schools and hospital settings. Amy takes great pride in advocating for people who cannot advocate for themselves, and thoroughly enjoys teaching others skills to help them succeed. Her ultimate life goal is to make a serious impact on the way people treat others and to spread positivity.

Stacy King, BCBA

OAP CLINICAL SUPERVISOR

Stacy is a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst who has been working with individuals with Autism and other developmental disabilities for over ten years. Stacy attended Nipissing University (Schulich School of Education) for teachers college and obtained a Masters in Counselling Psychology with specialization in Advanced Applied Behaviour Analysis form Nova Southeastern University. Stacy is a current member of the Ontario College of Teachers and employed with the Upper Grand District School Board. She has experience working with a wide range of individuals within a variety of settings; including centre based, home, community, and schools. Her experience extends across public and private agencies in Ontario and Ohio. Stacy is passionate about supporting individuals reach their full potential by developing holistic programming through examination of the uniqueness of each person.

Katrina Starecky, BCBA

OAP CLINICAL SUPERVISOR

Katrina is a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst who has been working with individuals with autism spectrum disorders since 2010. She has a Masters in Education from Western University with a specialization in Applied Behaviour Analysis. With her extensive experience in a variety of settings (centre, schools, community, and home), Katrina helps create meaningful goals for her clients, with a focus on improving their quality of life. She is devoted to providing the best care possible by working closely with the family team to achieve those goals. In her spare time, Katrina enjoys hikes with her dog, snowboarding, live music, and spending time with family and friends.

Jessica Caley

REGISTERED BEHAVIOR TECHNICIAN (RBT)

Jessica is a Registered Behaviour Technician and an Ontario Certified Teacher specializing in Primary/Junior education. Prior to attending the Bachelor of Education program at Lakehead University, Jessica worked as Intervention Support Worker (ISW) with the York Region District School Board’s Regional Complex Needs Team. She also has a Developmental Service Worker (DSW) diploma from Georgian College and a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) degree from Laurentian University. Jessica began her journey in the field of special education as a IBI therapist, implementing treatment for children with neurodevelopmental disorders, before moving on to expand her experience at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Autism Ontario, Simcoe Community Services and licensed foster homes. Jessica’s goal is to one day have her own Special Education classroom with the public board where she can utilize her experience and training to further make a difference in the lives of children.

James Applewhaite

ABA THERAPIST

Greetings prospective clients, parents, and colleagues! My name is James Applewhaite and I am excited to join the team at Engaging Minds Learning Group. While I may be new to the world of ABA Therapy, I am certainly no stranger to the world of education. I studied at York University, obtaining honours degrees in both Education and Professional Writing. I am certified as a primary/junior level educator and have experience teaching children from kindergarten age all the way up to grade 6. After graduating from York University in 2017, I immediately moved to London, England to begin practising and refining my skills as an educator. I lived in England for 3 years, teaching full time in primary school classrooms across south London. My educational philosophy is simple: I believe that students need trust, engagement, and excitement in order to achieve their goals in any educational setting. Learning should be active and interesting for both the student and the teacher.

Mackenzie Ball

ABA THERAPIST

Mackenzie is a graduate of Humber College’s Bachelor of Behavioural Science Program with honours. Mackenzie has 5 years of experience supporting individuals 1:1 both in-home and in community-based settings. She has a passion for working with individuals with varying disabilities and helping them reach their full potential. Mackenzie fell in love with ABA when she saw the positive impact it had on the individual and the people who surround them. Mackenzie’s goal is to grow her skills in the field of ABA and one day become a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst

Kristen David

REGISTERED SOCIAL WORKER (RSW) & ABA THERAPIST

Kristen comes to Engaging Minds Learning Group from a holistic health background, holding degrees in Kinesiology and Social Work. She has worked with children and adults with dual-diagnosis and chronic illness in clinical, education and home based settings. Her approach to supporting children and families is rooted in respect and inclusion and draws on her training in both kinesiology and social work in every interaction she has with children and their families. With a whole person-centred approach, she strives to help children exceed their goals and foster ongoing learning and mastery of new skills while nurturing a love for learning with growing independence. Kristen’s work with children and their family’s encompasses her belief that with a positive learning environment and ongoing support, every child can achieve success on their learning and development journey.

Maryam Amijee

Ontario Certified Teacher

I am Maryam Amijee and I am an Ontario Certified Teacher with over ten years of experience in working with children. I have completed my Bachelors in Education and Bachelors in Environmental Science from York University and I am currently working towards attaining my Registered Behaviour Technician certification – RBT.
 Becoming a teacher has been my lifelong dream and I thrive on helping children reach their fullest potential in all aspects of life.
 Over the years, I have had the opportunity to initiate a library program and work as a librarian at a private school, be a first grade homeroom teacher,  and tutor students at the elementary level. I truly believe that every child can be successful if  they are taught using strategies that are individualized based on their needs.
 I have always aspired to work with students with special needs and I am excited and humbled  to have the opportunity to work with your children.

Kathy Green

EDUCATIONAL CONSULTANT

Kathy is a retired Special Education Consultant and Elementary Teacher with over 28 years of experience supporting children with Autism and other exceptionalities.  Kathy attended the University of Guelph and received her Bachelor of Applied Science majoring in Child Studies and specializing in Exceptional Children in the Family.  She went on to complete her Primary/Junior Bachelor of Education at York University.  Over the years, Kathy has provided leadership in the area of programming for students with special education needs by working closely with teachers, school administrators, and parents.  She collaborates with community agencies, school boards, and the Ministry of Education.  Having received extensive training in the area of Autism Spectrum Disorder, Behaviour, and Learning Disabilities, she utilizes her knowledge and experience in these areas to provide support.  In her free time, Kathy enjoys spending time with family, reading, hiking, and sailing the waters in Georgian Bay.

Franca Impastato

OPERATIONS COORDINATOR

Franca is the Operations Administrator at Engaging Minds Learning Group, where she oversees the day to day operations. She spent the early part of her career in the childcare field before transitioning into this role. She loves to help people and learn new things.

Danielle Lazaris

REGISTERED BEHAVIOR TECHNICIAN (RBT) IN PROCESS

Danielle is a dedicated childcare professional with over 15 years of experience working with children in various settings and is currently in the process of completing her Registered Behavioural Technician (RBT) certification. Throughout her time in the childcare profession, Danielle has worked in private households, daycare centers, Ontario Early Years Centers, and Kindergarten classrooms with a diverse array of children of varying ages, needs, and abilities. She previously studied under the Child & Youth Worker program at Centennial College and the Assaulted Women & Children’s Counselor/Advocate (AWCCA) program at George Brown College. It was during her work placements with the AWCCA program that she realized that her true passion was working with children directly and making a positive impact in their lives. Danielle is committed to expanding and honing her skills with the incredible team at Engaging Minds.

Chris Lewis

REGISTERED BEHAVIOR TECHNICIAN (RBT)

Chris has long been enthusiastic about working with individuals with special needs. Chris graduated from St. Lawrence College with his Honours Bachelor of Behavioural Psychology and recently completed his RBT (Registered Behaviour Technician) certification. Chris has experience working with school aged children by creating and implementing interventions to decrease undesirable behaviours with very favourable results. Chris now comes to EMLG to gain even more experience working with this population and wishes to help as many different people as he can. Chris derives great joy and satisfaction while seeing his clients respond favourably and succeed and looks forward to doing the same through EMLG.

Emma Whelpley

REGISTERED BEHAVIOR TECHNICIAN (RBT), BCBA IN PROCESS

Emma is a dedicated and compassionate service provider who has long been invested in working with children and families impacted by autism. She began her educational journey with a Honours Bachelor of Behavioural Psychology at St. Lawrence college, followed by a graduate certificate in Autism and Behavioural Science. Throughout her education and time in the field Emma has supported children and adults diagnosed with autism and developmental disabilities across clinical, community, and home-based environments. Emma is currently working on her Masters of Applied Disability Studies and her BCBA certification. She is eager to expand her professional growth and share her passion for providing caring and socially significant programming as part of the Engaging Minds team.

Kayla Nokes

REGISTERED BEHAVIOR TECHNICIAN (RBT), BCBA IN PROCESS

Kayla is a passionate behavioural therapist with 3 years experience working with children with various exceptionalities. She has worked in a variety of settings, including IBI centres, home therapy, and community settings. She also recently traveled to Bangalore, India with the Global Autism Project to educate teachers in the best practices for their children on the autism spectrum. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a specialization in Developmental Psychology, as well as a Post-Graduate Certificate in Autism and Behavioural Sciences. She will be beginning her Master’s of Applied Disability Studies this fall and will be working towards her BCBA.

Katie Quick

BOARD CERTIFIED BEHAVIOR ANALYST (BCBA), RBT SUPERVISOR

Katie is a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst who has been with working with children with ASD and other related disorders in a variety of roles since 2013. She graduated from the University of Illinois- Urbana-Champaign with her B.S. in Speech and Hearing Science with a concentration in Speech-Language Pathology and from Ball State University with her M.A. in Applied Behavior Analysis with a concentration in Autism Spectrum Disorders. Katie is a compassionate BCBA with 6 years of ABA experience across in-home, clinic, and community environments who values collaborative action to foster meaningful and generalized behavior change for the individuals and client stakeholders she serves. Katie has a passion for teaching and disseminating behavior analysis to future BCBAs. Recently, she has been developing a computer application to aide ABA practitioners in virtual ABA service delivery and training. She is very excited to be a part of the Engaging Minds Learning Group team!

Felcia Smith

REGISTERED BEHAVIOR TECHNICIAN (RBT)

For the last 5 years, Felicia has been dedicated towards to career of becoming a Clinical Child Psychologist. Felicia is in her final year of her undergraduate degree in psychology, specializing in health and well-being along with minoring in philosophy. Felicia has worked with children in various settings and is currently in the process of becoming a Registered Behaviour Technician (RBT). She is passionate about making a difference in children’s lives and is excited to be a part of an amazing team.