Profile Category: Occupational Therapist

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Paulina Pei, MS, OTR/L
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Paulina Pei, MS, OTR/L

Paulina received her Bachelor of Science degree from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and her Master of Occupational Therapy degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Paulina’s training and experience in the DIR/Floortime model began internationally at AZ+A’s sister clinic in Naples, Italy. She continued in Chicago as a student leading summer camp...

Kasey Kotsiris, MS, OTR/L
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Kasey Kotsiris, MS, OTR/L

Kasey received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Carthage College and received her Masters of Science degree in Occupational Therapy from Rush University.  As an occupational therapist, Kasey has experience working in early intervention, acute rehabilitation, and hospital settings. Inspired to become an occupational therapy through her personal experiences growing up with a sister with...

Karen Dilfer, MS, OTR/L
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Karen Dilfer, MS, OTR/L

Karen has a bachelor of science degree from Calvin College and a masters of science degree from Washington University in St. Louis. She is Neurodevelopmental Treatment (NDT) trained and has completed post-graduate education in Ayres Sensory Integration. Karen is a feeding specialist who trained with Marsha Dunn Klein, the founder and creator of the Get...

Emily Garcia, OTD OTR/L
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Emily Garcia, OTD OTR/L

Emily received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Northeastern Illinois University and her doctorate in occupational therapy from Creighton University. Having the opportunity to work internationally with Amy Zier & Associates in Italy to learn more about the DIR model, her passion and desire to work with children grew. Emily says that “being able to...

Jessie Simkins, MOT, OTR/L
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Jessie Simkins, MOT, OTR/L

Jessie attended the University of Iowa, majoring in Health and Human Physiology with minors in Psychology and Spanish and a Certificate in Disability Studies. While she was in Iowa City, she was the Morale Captain & Sponsorship Chair for Dance Marathon (an organization supporting pediatric cancer patients). Student mentor for young adults with intellectual disabilities...

Sophia Mendoza MS, OTR/L
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Sophia Mendoza MS, OTR/L

Sophia received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology/Gender Studies from Grinnell College and later continued her education to pursue her Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy at the University of Illinois at Chicago. In the interim, Sophia completed a three-year Waldorf Teacher Program, and was both an assistant and then lead kindergarten teacher in a Waldorf school....

Hayley Younkin, OTD, OTR/L
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Hayley Younkin, OTD, OTR/L

Hayley graduated from Wheaton College with a major in Applied Health Science. She also completed a 6-month internship in Quito, Ecuador at a school and orphanage for kids with developmental disabilities run by an Ecuadorian occupational therapist. She then received her OTD at MGH Institute of Health Professions in Boston, MA, where she was a...

Vasilios Niphoratos, MOT, OTR/L
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Vasilios Niphoratos, MOT, OTR/L

Vasilios received his bachelor’s degree in Psychology/Sociology from the University of Michigan-Dearborn and received his Master of Occupational Therapy degree from the University of Wayne State in Detroit. He has experience working with children of various ages and settings, including schools, outpatient clinics, and traumatic brain injury centers. Vasilios values developing strong relationships with both...

Emma Fricke, MS, OTR/L
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Emma Fricke, MS, OTR/L

Emma graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and received her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy from Rush University. In addition to working at AZA Chicago, Emma has experience with private practice and school settings in Rome and Naples, Italy. She has been working with kids with developmental differences in the home, school, and...

Karen Bailey
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Karen Bailey, MS, OTR/L

Karen received her first Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Michigan State University and continued her education at University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, earning a second Bachelor’s in Occupational Sciences and a Master’s in Occupational Therapy. She has experience working with kids of all ages in a variety of settings, including a clinic setting, school-based setting...