Kathryn Nicholson, OTR
Kathy began practicing as an occupational therapist in Canada, in 1974. She moved to Austin in 1989 with her husband and 3 children and has loved living here and raising her children in this wonderful city. Her professional experience has included working with emotionally disturbed and juvenile delinquent children who were institutionalized, adults with mental retardation in a group home setting, children, adolescents and adults with neurological deficits in a hospital setting and in a specialized Care Center, adult home care and geriatrics in nursing homes, as well as working with children within the school system and in private practice in an outpatient setting. She has focused her area of expertise on adults and children with sensory processing disorders, learning disabilities and children on the Autistic Spectrum, but also has expanded her knowledge with hands on body work, using Craniosacral techniques, myofascial release and kinesiotaping. Kathy also completed a degree in Psychology and has done postgraduate work in Neuropsychology and in Sensory Integration, for part of a Masters degree. She participated in several research projects for the Canadian government on Sensory Processing Treatment and in the S.H.E. Project (Stay Healthy Early) for young single mothers. She is certified to administer The Sensory Integration and Praxis Tests, certified in the Therapeutic Listening Program and is certified in Kinesio Taping. She previously was an Instructor for the foundation developed by Jean Ayres, Sensory Integration International. Kathy loves to educate others on Sensory Processing and it’s impact on behavior, self-regulation and learning, teaching other therapists, parents, preschool teachers and teachers from Kindergarten to college level across the country.
Robyn Wiley, OTR
Robyn graduated from the University of Texas Health Science at San Antonio with a degree in Occupational Therapy. In 1997, she co-founded From the Heart Therapy where she continues to serve as a director and provides occupational therapy to children and young adults. Her work with children encompasses a variety of challenges including sensory processing, autism spectrum, attachment, anxiety, self- regulation /self -coping, ADHD, developmental delays, genetic/chromosome differences, cerebral palsy, handwriting/dysgraphia, fine and gross motor coordination. She is certified to administer and interpret the Sensory Integration and Praxis test. This includes planning and implementation of appropriate treatment of Sensory Processing Disorder. She has advanced training in courses that emphasize self- regulation, anxiety, social skills, attachment, adoption/foster care, self-coping and behavioral issues. Robyn develops positive relationships with both the child and the parents while helping the family achieve a balanced and organized life. As a single mother whose two children were adopted as toddlers from Cambodia and Guatemala, she understands the challenges that come with raising a family with unique experiences and abilities. Whether it’s learning to ride a bike, pump on a swing, cross the monkey bars or tie their shoes, Robyn celebrates each milestone with the family. Her greatest moments as a therapist come with the increased pride and self-confidence demonstrated by the children as they reach their goals and beyond.
Robyn and her teenagers enjoy camping, hiking and going to movies. Her cat and dogs complete the family.
Tammy Santoro, OTR
Tammy has worked as an occupational therapist for 34 years. She views her profession as a calling. Her greatest desire and hope is for The Lord to pour out His love and power through her to bring healing and wholeness to the lives of others.
During her career, she has worked in various settings throughout the Austin area with children and adults presenting with a wide range of diagnoses and needs. She is certified as a Neurodevelopmental Treatment Therapist and as a Kinesio taping Practitioner. She is also certified to administer and interpret the Sensory Integration and Praxis Tests. She has specialized in working with pediatrics, but also works with adolescents/adults with sensory processing difficulties. She has specialized training in the MNRI (Masgutova Neurosensorimotor Reflex Integration) approach, Advanced Therapeutic Listening, Myofascial Release/pain management, torticollis/plagiocephaly treatment, vision therapy, cerebral palsy and other neurological conditions, sensory processing/autism spectrum disorders, attachment disorders/trauma (Trust-Based Relational Intervention), and oral motor/eating disorders/food aversion. In addition, she has experience in working with adults and children with genetic disorders, mental retardation/cognitive deficits, blindness/low vision, and those recovering from head injuries, strokes, and amputations. She has had the privilege of working with many children who were adopted domestically and from other parts of the world.
Tammy has been happily married for 27 years and has two precious children: a 15-year old biological daughter and an 8-year old adopted daughter. She enjoys the privilege of homeschooling her daughters part-time as they participate in a University-model school in Austin. She is actively involved in the prayer ministry of her local church. In her free time, Tammy enjoys spending time with her family, visiting state/national parks and museums, and playing the flute and piano.
Susan Montgomery, OTR
Susan graduated in December 1988 with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy from Florida International University in Miami, Florida. She began her career at Brackenridge Hospital in Austin, where she spent two years. During this time, she worked with patients with a variety of conditions including hand injuries, spinal cord injuries, strokes, and cardiovascular disease. She also worked with premature infants and pediatric patients. In the summer of 1990, she took a job at Capital Area Easter Seals where her career became more focused on the pediatric population. During her five years at Easter Seals, she evaluated and treated children with disabilities and conditions such as cerebral palsy, spina bifuda, congenital disabilities, autism, and developmental delays. She also worked in an outpatient clinic with children with sensory integration dysfunction. In 1995, she began working with children at Pflugerville ISD, and then took a part-time job at From the Heart Therapy Services in 1997 after the birth of her second child. She has been SIPT certified since May 2001. Susan has completed many continuing education courses to further develop her knowledge base. She has advanced training in Theraoeutic Listening. She is also completing additional training towards mentorship. She has training MNRI (Masgutova Neurosensorimotor Reflex Integration) approach. She has recently taken an interest in leaning more about the effects of Developmental Trauma, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder on regulation. She is in the process of completing her certification to teach TRE (tension release exercises) developed by David Barcelli. Susan has 3 sons and enjoys spending all the time she can with them.
Sarah Sweeney, OTR
Sarah received her Bachelor of Science degree at The University of Texas at Austin and her Master's in Occupational Therapy at Texas Women's University. She has worked at From the Heart Therapy since 2000 and is currently working toward her SIPT (Sensory Integration Praxis Test) certification. Sarah has also worked at the Rise School of Austin, a preschool providing education services to children 14 months to six years of age with developmental disabilities, since 2003.
Jill Moeller, OTR
Jill graduated from Texas Women’s University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Occupational Therapy in 1999. She started her career in pediatrics with From the Heart Therapy in 1999 and has practiced in the Austin and Dallas areas since that time. Jill has worked in both school based and clinic based therapy settings and has a passion for kiddos on the autism spectrum and believes there is a world of possibility for all children. She holds Level One Certification through the Handwriting Without Tears Program and is certified to administer the Sensory Integration and Praxis Tests. Jill understands this journey as a therapist but also as a mom, as she has two boys that receive speech and occupational therapy. In her spare time she enjoys cooking, puzzles, laughing with her family and enjoys a healthy lifestyle and exercising with her husband.
Melanie Timberlake, OTA
Melanie attended Austin Community College, and in 2012 received her B.S. in Home Economics, with an emphasis in Child Development, Texas A&M Kingsville, 1987. She spent most of her adult life as a professional in the early childhood education field and loved seeing children blossom; however, she longed to make more of a difference in the lives of children who struggled in their daily lives. Now as an occupational therapy assistant she gets to make a difference everyday – the highlight of her day is when she sees the delighted surprise and pride in the face of a child who has mastered a skill that they never thought they could do! Her role as an OTA means that she work under, and collaborates with, the Occupational Therapists to help each child meet their goals. Special training and experience include: The Size Matters handwriting program; dysgraphia; and the social-emotional development of young children. When not at work Melanie and her husband enjoy long walks, spending time with their terrier mix Princess and aging Siamese cat Zorro, and cultivating succulent plants.
Lauren Devall, OTA
Lauren is originally from Long Beach, California and recently moved to Austin from Salt Lake City, Utah. She received a degree in Occupational Therapy Assisting with High Honors from Salt Lake Community College. While in Utah, she worked with Ballet West in their Education and Outreach department, providing dance classes and movement therapy to public school students of various ages. The meeting of therapy and dance is an area for which Lauren feels particularly passionate and possesses significant experience. She has experience working with children with conditions including Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Processing Disorder, Downs Syndrome, and Developmental Delay and is committed to continuing her education in order to best serve these populations. As a sign of this commitment, she maintains her membership with the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA). She enjoys cooking, traveling, and doing anything that involves being outside with her husband and their dog, Pluto.