Meet Our Team

 

Occupational Therapists

Emily Worth, OTD, OTR/L
Company Owner and Occupational Therapist

Emily is a graduate of the Doctor of Occupational Therapy program of Creighton University. She completed her beginning years of practice in Boston, Massachusetts, with focus on pediatrics and sensory integrative therapy. She has received certification in advanced treatment tools in the areas of Therapeutic Listening, Craniosacral Therapy, and Interactive Metronome.  This additional education has increased the quality and efficiency of her deliverance of pediatric therapy.  In 2007, she founded a private practice Stones Worth Stepping, P.C. so that she can share her knowledge and experience with families of special needs children. Her passion for pediatrics and the sensory integration treatment approach is focused toward the progress and development of patients and their goals to achieve the maximum potential for quality of life.

Emily Smith, MOT, OTR/L
Executive Director and Occupational Therapist

Emily is a graduate of the Masters of Occupational Therapy Program from Rockhurst University.  She enjoys working with children in a variety of skill areas including fine motor, gross motor, sensory, and motor planning.  She is certified in multiple areas including Astronaut Training, Advanced Therapeutic Listening, and Myofascial Release Training.  Her love of sports and game activities assist her creative methods to combine therapeutic techniques into fun motivating activities for the kids. Emily has experience working with children with a variety of developmental disabilities and diagnoses such as Autism, ADHD, ADD, Cerebral Palsy, and Down syndrome. She is able to collaborate with peers, parents and teachers in the home and school settings to best carry over therapeutic strategies and goals.  Emily’s goal is for therapy to be like play and challenge kids to achieve their highest potential and level of independence.

Erika Blankenau, MOT, OTR/L
Occupational Therapist

Erika graduated from Rockhurst University, in Kansas City, Missouri, with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology before graduating with a Masters in Occupational Therapy. Erika has experience working with adults with neurological trauma, heart conditions, orthopedic injuries and cognitive impairments. Additionally, Erika advocates for the importance of trauma-informed care and has experience working with young children suffering from neglect, abuse and trauma. Erika enjoys working with children and emerging adults with Autism, Down Syndrome, sensory processing disorders, Cerebral Palsy, ADHD and developmental delays. She is certified in Therapeutic Listening and Interactive Metronome. She is also a Handwriting Without Tears Level 1 Certified Handwriting Specialist. Her greatest joy is helping children find their strengths to enhance their performance and confidence in everyday activities.

Carrie Griffin, OTR/L, MBA
Lead Occupational Therapist

Carrie graduated from Buena Vista University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, but decided to continue her education. She then attended College of Saint Mary where she received her Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy.  She began her career in Liberal, Kansas where she was introduced to all areas of Occupational Therapy but knew her heart was to work with children.  This led her to South Texas where she was able to develop her skills specific to pediatrics.  In 2008, she returned to the Midwest where she has been working with a mixture of both adults and children in the home and in the clinic.  Carrie has specialized in vision skills and enjoys educating others about vision and how it affects our ability to learn.  She is also certified in Handwriting Without Tears®, has experience with Interactive Metronome®, sensory integration therapy and reflex integration.  Carrie’s goal is to facilitate growth and development of all children because she believes every child has potential if we give them the tools to grow. 

Kristen Pearson, MOT, OTR/L

Occupational Therapist

Kristen is a graduate of the Masters of Occupational Therapy program at Loma Linda University. During graduate school, Kristen completed rotations with various populations including inpatient acute care, mental health rehabilitation, and outpatient pediatrics. She has worked in a private outpatient setting in southern California, and now resides in Omaha. She has experience with children of many diagnoses, including Autism, ADHD, Down Syndrome, sensory processing, and Cerebral Palsy. Additionally, Kristen has experience in the area of feeding, including the Sequential Oral Sensory (SOS) Approach to feeding. She loves working with children and enjoys watching them grow to their highest potential and quality of life.

Jordan Flemmington, MOT, OTR/L

Occupational Therapist

Jordan received his bachelor’s degree in Biology at Nebraska Wesleyan University and then continued on to graduate with a Master’s of Occupational Therapy from Nebraska Methodist College. During graduate school, Jordan gained experience in outpatient pediatrics and within the skilled nursing setting. Jordan specializes in working with children that have sensory processing challenges and other diagnoses. He loves working with children, providing them with client-centered interventions to help them grow and achieve the best quality of life. Jordan is excited to continue to grow as an occupational therapist and help children be successful within all environments. Jordan is originally from Grand Junction CO, however has lived in Omaha, NE for the last 15 years. Time outside of the clinic typically includes traveling, working out, and fishing.

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Taylor Volentine, MOT, OTR/L

Occupational Therapist

Taylor received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at University of Nebraska at Omaha then went on to further her education with completing her Master of Occupational Therapy at Nebraska Methodist College in 2020. Taylor has gotten the opportunity to travel while practicing occupational therapy in Salt Lake City Utah, Park City Utah, Phoenix Arizona, and Omaha Nebraska. Taylor has experience in a variety of settings including outpatient pediatrics, school-based pediatrics, geriatrics/home health, and outpatient hand therapy. Taylor specializes in working with children with Autism, Downs’ Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, ADHD, sensory processing disorder, retained primitive reflexes, fine motor/visual motor deficits, and behaviors. Taylor strives to support her clients while making therapy sessions fun, exciting, motivating, and engaging through play-based activities. Taylor is originally from the countryside of Council Bluffs, Iowa but is very familiar with the Omaha area. Outside of her time at the clinic, Taylor spends the majority of her time with her four dogs, family, and friends. Taylor enjoys being outdoors and at the lake, testing her competitive side by playing sports (especially basketball or tennis), and being a foodie by exploring all sorts of restaurants within the Omaha area. When she has time, Taylor loves to be adventurous, travel with her close ones, and try new experiences that one cannot do within the Midwest. 

Maya Douchey, MOT, OTR/L

Occupational Therapist

I was raised in Omaha, Nebraska, but I was born in New York. I graduated with my Master's degree in Occupational Therapy from College of Saint Mary. My clinical experience includes outpatient pediatrics and acute rehab. I have worked in various pediatric settings including a before and after school program. My passion is pediatrics and providing holistic, client-centered care utilizing evidence-based practice. I enjoy collaborating with the child and their families in order to provide the best quality care.

 

Physical Therapists

Sarah Hotovy, PT, DPT

Lead Physical Therapist

Sarah received her Bachelors of Science in Psychology from the University of Nebraska at Omaha before graduating with her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from the University of Nebraska Medical Center. She has prior experience in both pediatrics and outpatient orthopedics. She has always had a passion for working with children, working part time as a dance teacher for children ages 3-18 for 8 years and volunteering for a program that teaches dance to children with special needs. She has worked with children with a variety of diagnoses such as Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Autism, and motor incoordination. She believes in tailoring each therapy session to each child’s unique interests and needs and enjoys seeing them progress as they learn new skills.

Jenny Lewis, PT, DPT

Physical Therapist; Clinical Director- Millard Clinic

Jenny graduated Iowa State University with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology before receiving her Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Des Moines University in Des Moines, IA. She has experience in both acute care and pediatrics. Jenny has a variety of experiences in the pediatric setting including but not limited to developmental delay, autism, ADHD, cerebral palsy, down syndrome, torticollis, and toe walking.  Jenny loves making a difference in the lives of children and is dedicated to doing the most she can to help her patients and their families meet their goals.

Natalie Matuella, PT, DPT

Physical Therapist

Natalie received her Bachelors of Science in Nutrition Science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln before graduating with her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Des Moines University. Natalie has clinical experience in outpatient orthopedics, acute care, sports medicine, and pediatrics. She has always had a passion for working with children, beginning when she was a youth camp counselor and volunteering as a flag football coach throughout high school and college. Natalie strives to provide client-centered care geared towards helping patients and their families meet their individual goals. When Natalie is not in the clinic, she enjoys spending time outdoors, baking, and traveling with her husband

 

Speech-Language Pathologists

Cassie Rose, MS, CCC-SLP

Clinic Director Dodge Clinic and Speech Language Pathologist

Cassie is a graduate from the University of NE-Lincoln with her Bachelor's Degree and received her Master's Degree in Speech Language Pathology from the University of NE-Kearney.  Cassie's clinical experiences range from working with individuals of any age in a variety of settings including home-based, LTC, schools, outpatient clinics, acute rehab, and post-acute rehab.  Her experiences include working with a variety of developmental disabilities, autism, apraxia, stroke, TBI, dementia, dysphagia, articulation, language disorders, and many more.  Cassie focuses on individual needs and strived to provide positive and fun environment during sessions.  Her goals include providing individuals wit the tools necessary to effectively communicate in all environments and to meet hydration and nutritional needs to be successful individuals with the greatest amount of independence.

Tabitha Reuter, MS, CCC-SLP

Speech-Language Pathologist

Tabitha graduated from Minnesota State University-Mankato with a Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology.  She has pediatric experience in both clinical and educational settings.  Within the educational setting, Tabitha worked predominately in early childhood programs, elementary schools, and birth to 3 home intervention, but she has also worked with middle and high school students.  Tabitha treated pediatrics in clinics and hospitals (as outpatients).  She enjoyed collaborating with other healthcare professionals including, but not limited to: OTs, PTs, physicians, nurses, dieticians, social workers, case managers, and counselors.  Tabitha’s special interests are in the areas of: early childhood speech and language development, Autism, and swallowing disorders.  Tabitha completed training in The SOS Approach to Feeding, Beckman Oral Motor Assessment and Intervention, and DIR®/Floortime.  She has completed continuing education courses in Diagnosis and Treatment of Severe Speech Sound Disorders Including Childhood Apraxia of Speech, Autism, swallowing, and more. Tabitha loves working with children to help them reach their highest potential. 

Amy Bowman, MS, CCC-SLP

Speech-Language Pathologist

Amy graduated from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas with her Bachelor’s degree in Child Professional Services and received her Master’s degree in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Texas at Dallas. Her clinical experiences include outpatient pediatrics and adults, school-based pediatrics, and pediatric home health. She has enjoyed gaining experience working with a wide variety of speech and language impairments leading to work targeting articulation, phonology, expressive and receptive language, pragmatic language, augmentative and alternative communication, and complex communication needs. Amy strives to create treatment goals and activities that allow individuals to better participate in their everyday environments by obtaining the ability to effectively interact with those around them. She loves working with children, their families, and other professionals to pursue the ideal course of therapy for each child in order to give them the best opportunity to thrive. 

Leah Arney, CCC-SLP

Speech Pathologist

Leah received her Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences & Disorders from University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from Yeshiva University.  Leah has a wide range of outpatient clinical experience where she gained a thorough knowledge of and exposure to working with those diagnosed with developmental delay, Down syndrome, fluency disorders, autism, articulation/phonological disorders, language disorders, cognitive-linguistic disorders, and more.  She has a particular interest in working with children aged birth to three who have expressive and receptive language disorders.  Leah has a passion for collaborating with patients, families, and other professionals to create individualized therapy programs for each child’s unique needs. 

Kate Mohr, MS, CCC-SLP

Speech Language Pathologist

Kate received her bachelors and masters degrees in speech language pathology from the university of Nebraska at Kearney. She has experience working with children in the clinical and school settings and has treated children with a variety of different speech and language disorders.  Her passion is working with kids on reading, articulation, and language skills and strives to make therapy fun and functional.  The best part of her job is working with children and their families and watching them succeed with their goals.  

Chelsey Haeck, CCC-SLP

Speech - Language Pathologist

Chelsey graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a Bachelor’s degree in Speech Language Pathology. She then earned a Master’s degree in Speech Language Pathology from Saint Louis University. Her clinical experiences include outpatient pediatrics and school-based therapy. Chelsey describes herself as a lifelong learner and is interested in all areas of Speech Language Pathology. She believes that forming relationships with families and collaborating with other therapists is essential for children to make progress and gain confidence. 

 

Administrative Team

Andrea Mach, BA 

Office Manager

Andrea graduated Summa Cum Laude from Bellevue University, with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology.  She has also completed post-graduate work in Special Education at The College of St. Mary.  Andrea has worked with a variety of age groups in school-based, hospital and clinical settings.  Andrea has experience working with children with various diagnoses, including Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Down syndrome.  She has received specialized training in many sensory techniques, SRA Corrective Reading series and Handwriting Without Tears.  Andrea strives to make a positive difference in the life of each child and family she works with.

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LaRene Walker, RN-BSN, Paramedic

Benefits Coordinator

LaRene is a Registered Nurse who graduated with her Bachelor’s Degree of Science from College of St. Mary.  She worked previously as an Emergency and Pre Auth Nurse.  She has been a CPR instructor for over 30 years.  She is a volunteer firefighter and paramedic with Gretna Fire and Rescue.  She is married and has 3 children, 8 grandchildren, and 2 great-grandchildren.  She is proud to be a part of her new family at Stones Worth Stepping, processing pre-authorizations for the patient’s insurance and checking on the patient’s benefits.

Jodi Swirczek 

Communications Coordinator

Jodi has extensive experience in administrative healthcare and she has found Stones Worth Stepping to be an excellent fit. She enjoys her role as Communications Coordinator and finds the ever changing dynamics of the clinic a welcome challenge. In her spare time, she loves to cook, travel and spend time with family and friends.

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Becky Aden, MS, BA, Ed.

Receptionist-Millard Clinic

Becky graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Rockhurst University and a Masters of Science in Curriculum Development and Instruction from Peru State College. She is a “retired” teacher who spent twenty years in the classroom teaching fourth graders. Becky is always ready to take your phone calls, answer your questions, and get you checked in for your appointments. She will do all she can to make you feel comfortable and welcome in our office! She truly enjoys greeting the patients each day!

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Techs

Monica Barajas, B.S. Ed

Rehab Tech

I am a senior at UNO majoring in Exercise Science, with a minor in psychology and nonprofit management. I conduct research at UNO with the Biomechanics Department as an undergraduate research assistant, my team focuses on the gait effects on total knee replacement in older adults and I am currently leading a study on how people adjust their walking pattern when using a single point cane in relationship to post-stroke rehabilitation. My career goal is to become a pediatric physical therapist. I previously worked in a daycare setting for three years and I had the opportunity work with children from varying ages. I have also taught swimming and biking lessons to children with disabilities as a volunteer of different community programs. I am bilingual in Spanish, and on my free time I practice martial arts and enjoy going out for walks. 

Emily Schmit

Rehab Tech

Emily is a senior at Creighton University. She is double majoring in English and Psychology. She plans to begin an Occupational Therapy Doctorate program in Fall 2021. Emily is no stranger to working with children; she the oldest child with four younger siblings, has worked at Creighton’s pediatric developmental center (the James R. Russell Child Development Center), has volunteered both as a summer camp counselor and at the North Omaha Boys and Girls Club, and has previously assisted at another Pediatric Occupational Therapy center as a rehabilitation assistant. Emily is grateful for the opportunity to work with the amazing people at Stones Worth Stepping and she is excited to meet and assist each child and family member who walks though the Stones Worth Stepping door!