NAPA Staff

Administrative Staff

arrow

Lynette LaScala

Founder/CEO
close
info:

BS Special Education, University of Iowa

Lynette LaScala grew up in Iowa and moved to California to fulfill her lifelong dream of living a life by the beach with lots of sunshine and outdoor fun. While preparing to celebrate her son's first birthday, her life changed forever. Cody and his nanny were playing in his bedroom when she thought he crawled back to her. However, he crawled out the sliding door into the newly added family pool. Doctors gave Cody a very poor diagnosis and told Lynette and her husband they should leave the hospital and go on with their lives. Lynette was pregnant with their second child Bryan. Cody was still alive and leaving him was never an option.

After hearing time and time agin that there was no hope for Cody, Lynette researched to find an intensive home therapy program.  As a parent of child with special needs and challenges, you will try anything to give your child or loved one the best life possible. It became her passion to teach children with disabilities while traveling around the world to find the best therapies to help her son with Cerebral Palsy.

Lynette became the US Parent Representative for the Euromed Rehabilitation Center in Mielno, Poland.  She traveled from city to city spreading the word to doctors, parents, caregivers, etc on what intensive therapy entailed and how it changed her son's life.  

As the founder and CEO of NAPA Center, Lynette shares her knowledge and experience with other families, while giving back to community. NAPA Center's therapists travel around the world to be trained in the best therapies one can find.   Lynette's dream of sharing all the therapies she found for Cody has become a reality.   When you walk inside the doors you know….you have arrived to the place you were looking for.  Welcome to our NAPA Family…..

arrow

Bryan LaScala

Director of Marketing
close
info:

BBA Marketing, University of Iowa

Growing up as the brother of Cody LaScala, now 28 with cerebral palsy, Bryan has developed a strong passion for serving children with disabilities. Tagging along to Cody’s therapy sessions (PT, OT, ST, HBOT, Hippo, Aqua, Vision, etc.), doctors appointments, surgeries, emergency room visits, and many of the out of state/country programs Cody attended, Bryan was exposed to the healthcare industry and special needs community at a very young age.

During his high school years, Bryan began working in respite care, and had intentions of going to college to pursue his degree in physical therapy.  After entering college at The University of Iowa, Bryan switched his major to business and graduated with his Bachelor's of Business Administration degree in Marketing.  Promptly after graduation, Bryan joined the NAPA team, and also devotes his time to the NAPA Center Kids Foundation.

arrow

Lisa Hickey

Director of Rehabilitation
close
info:

OTD, OTR/L, SWC

Lisa is a Doctor of Occupational Therapy and the Director of Rehabilitation at the NAPA Center. She received her Occupational Therapy Doctorate and Master of Arts in Occupational Therapy degrees from the University of Southern California in 2007 and 2008 and has been practicing in pediatrics in a variety of settings since then.

Lisa's dedicated work in occupational therapy has enabled her to travel worldwide from Ghana to Singapore to Australia aiding children with disabilities. Lisa has a strong passion for working with children and enjoys the help and support the NAPA Center Kids Foundation offers.

arrow

Jessica Hernandez

Director of Intensive Therapy Services
close
info:

Office Staff

arrow

Cecelia “Cece” De La O

Patient Coordinator
close
info:

Cecilia, also known as Cece, is the friendly face you first see when you walk into NAPA Center. When she is not answering phones, scheduling appointments, or working with insurance, you can find her completing one of her many home improvement projects. CeCe amazes us daily with her incredible ability to multitask.

Note to Parents: Cece is now accepting donuts, chips, or candy for anyone who wishes to reschedule for a same day appointment.

arrow

Xochilth Gharibeh

Administrative Assistant
close
info:

Xochilth started out as a parent at NAPA Center and now helps with all aspects of day to day business. Knowing what it’s like for a child to need therapy makes her truly compassionate and an excellent source of knowledge for NAPA parents. Nothing makes Xochilth happier than seeing a child reach their milestones. “I know how difficult it is for the child to reach the goals we set for them, even something as simple as reaching out to grab a toy.”

Xochilth is a true family gal who will take any opportunity to spend quality time with her loved ones. Going to the beach and relaxing at the lake are on the top of her list for favorite family activities. She also enjoys watching her kids play sports and coaching softball.

arrow

Barbara Lee

HBOT Technician
close
info:

Hyperbaric Medicine Certified, Long Beach Memorial Medical Center

Barbara came to NAPA in 2010 and is a true jack-of-all-trades. From martial arts to brewing the best cup of coffee, Barbara truly does it all. She is well known making hyperbaric oxygen experience a comfortable one for both patients and parents. Coined as the Mother Bear of NAPA, you can most likely find her running around, making sure everything is in order and that everyone is happy and content. Barbara explains, “It’s all about the children getting better.”

Her current projects include remodeling her home and helping with her autistic great grandson. They are working on saying simple words because It’s her dream for him to speak.

arrow

Cenny Jauregui

Billing Specialist
close
info:

Cenny is one of the first faces you see coming into NAPA Center. Cenny handles billing and acts as CeCe’s right hand woman. Between this dynamic duo, there isn’t a question that can’t be answered. Cennys favorite thing about working for NAPA is seeing the kids improve. “I love seeing each child grow from their first day of the intensive to the last. It makes me so happy seeing their hard work pay off.”

Cenny has always wanted to work with kids. In her family she is the go to babysitter. On her days off, Cenny enjoys cooking her famous spaghetti for her nephews, having spa days, and going to watch her favorite team play the Los Angeles Dodgers.

arrow

Ellen Seder

Marketing & Intensive Coordinator
close
info:

BS Marketing & BA Media Arts, The University of Montana

Ellen always knew she would work in marketing, but never imagined getting to help families along the way. With a true passion for all things creative, she enjoys designing visuals that pull people in. Although most of her day is spent behind a desk, she will never turn down an opportunity to interact the cute kids that come into NAPA.

When Ellen is not creating, she most likely can be found hiking, putting IKEA furniture together, or watching really bad reality T.V. shows. Still new to California, she loves tourist attractions of any kind and exploring all LA has to offer.

arrow

Sean Martinez

Billing Manager
close
info:

CPC American Academy of Professional Coders

Sean grew up in Ohio, and moved to sunny California to pursue his passion in business administration. Always wanting to give back, Sean found working in finance makes a huge impact in the growth of a business. His dedication to helping families with the mysteries of insurance has also allowed him to do what he loves. Being a father and sports enthusiast, Sean enjoys spending time with his children and watching his beloved Buckeyes, Lakers, and Cowboys. He claims he only works here for the free coffee and donuts, but we know Sean’s favorite thing about NAPA is seeing the reward of helping other families and their children.

arrow

Belle Gonzalez

Medical Billing Specialist
close
info:

MBIC, UEI College

Belle chose the administrative side of healthcare because she wanted to help families get the care that they needed. Working with different insurance parties can be quite the daunting task but Belle loves when the kids stop by the billing department just to say hello. When Belle is not crunching numbers, you can find her cozy at home watching Disney movies with her daughter. She also enjoys going to classic car shows on the weekends. If it screams retro, smells vintage, and sounds rock and roll, Belle is your gal!

arrow

Jessie Perez

Medical Billing Specialist
close
info:

MBIC, American Career College

Behind the scenes at NAPA, Jessie is working hard to help insurance cover as much therapy as possible! Like all parents, Jessie has been trying to teach her daughter the value of a dollar. Despite her efforts, she let us know “Toddlers don’t care about your budget.” Jessie gets the best of both worlds working in billing. She can say hi to all of the cute kids but retreat to her desk if they happen to have a meltdown. Ultimately, her favorite part about coming to work each day is getting to help families navigate the tricky world of insurance.

Physical Therapy

arrow

Rebecca Weiss

Physical Therapist
close
info:

Rebecca Weiss has worked at NAPA Center as a physical therapist since interning here in 2008. She graduated with a Bachelors degree in Social Welfare from UC Berkeley and a Masters of Physical Therapy from Cal State University Northridge. Rebecca has had an interest in pediatrics since volunteering at the Children's Hospital of Oakland while in undergrad.

Rebecca has dedicated her practice to Cuevas Medek Exercises (CME) since studying under Ramon Cuevas in Santiago, Chile three times since November 2011. She believes that CME has enabled her to facilitate countless improvements in the lives of children and families at NAPA Center, and is so grateful she discovered CME.

When not working, Rebecca and her husband are busy running around with three small children - Aviv, Benjamin, and Talia. Never a dull moment in the Weiss household!

arrow

Yumi Sugiyama

Physical Therapist
close
info:
arrow

Elizabeth "Liz" Farsi

Physical Therapist
close
info:

DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy, Idaho State University

Liz relocated to Los Angeles from Idaho specifically to work at NAPA Center. Liz has always loved being around children, especially when she began coaching youth soccer as a teenager. She still enjoys coaching, and even spent a winter as a youth ski instructor. In her spare time, she likes to spend time with her family and friends, ski, and snowboard. Liz was introduced to physical therapy when she was injured playing soccer in her senior year of high school. Soon after learning more about the profession, she shadowed a pediatric physical therapist, and knew immediately that she wanted to pursue it as a career. After graduating with her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Idaho State University in 2010, she spent her first two years working at the Infant-Toddler Program in Idaho in early intervention. She then spent two years in Utah working for The Learning Center for Families, as well as teaching Sports Medicine and Anatomy, before moving to Los Angeles with her husband, Adam.

Liz is a member of the Pediatric section of the American Physical Therapy Association, has completed her CME Level 1 training, has attended numerous continuing education conferences and courses, and has had formal training with children's orthotics. One of Liz's ambitions is to organize and run a soccer camp for children with special needs.

arrow

Jennifer Brazil

Physical Therapist
close
info:

DPT

Doctorate of Physical Therapy, Samuel Merritt University

Jennifer chose the field of physical therapy because she wanted to work directly with patients to help them gain or regain movement and independence. Jennifer has passion for pediatrics and has worked with children for the past 11 years. In addition to treating patients with traditional physical therapy, Jennifer has a post professional certificate in Cuevas Medek Exercises, and has been trained in NeuroSuit therapy.

arrow

Kristy Lambert

Physical Therapy Aide
close
info:

BS Kinesiotherapy, California State University of Long Beach - Kinesiotherapy Certified

Kristy was first introduced to Suit Therapy in 2001, and has been working in the field since. She loves making therapy both fun and challenging for the children. She enjoys helping the children reach their physical potential. After doing this for 13 years, she knows she has found her calling and loves it!

arrow

Geoffrey Cruz

Physical Therapy Aide
close
info:

BS Sports Rehab Therapy, Fremont College

Geoff feels that being a therapist for kids with special needs gives him a sense of accomplishment. "Hard work pays off!" It is also a very rewarding job that keeps him grounded. He enjoys weight lifting and watching Greenbay football games with friends and family.

arrow

Arthur Bronisz

Physical Therapy Aide
close
info:

MS Physiotherapy, Physical Education Academy, Poland

If you know one thing about Arthur, it’s that he absolutely loves being around kids. Arthur is full of jokes and is always seems to be in an excellent mood. He has a way of making difficult tasks and exercises seem like less of a chore for his patients. Although his true passion is helping kids get stronger, Arthur enjoys a good long hike, listening to music, or simply relaxing. He also is a huge current affairs buff.
arrow

Emily Norlock

Physical Therapist
close
info:

DPT

Doctor of Physical Therapy, Western University of Health Sciences

Emily graduated with a Doctorate of Physical Therapy in 2015 from Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, CA. She is originally from Minnesota (brr!) and became interested in pediatric physical therapy at a young age thanks to her mom, who is also a pediatric physical therapist. Emily started working with kids as a teenager doing everything from nannying, working as a special education teacher’s assistant, and volunteering as a special needs soccer coach. During her physical therapy school internships, Emily spent three months at NAPA Center and fell in love with all the cute kids and fun, supportive, atmosphere.

When she is not at NAPA, Emily enjoys running or biking at the beach, watching re-runs of Friends, spending time with her husband and friends, and traveling home to “Minne-snow-ta” visit her family.

arrow

Katie Hedden

Physical Therapist
close
info:

Doctor of Physical Therapy, University of St. Augustine

After interning in a pediatric setting during graduate school, Katie found working with children to be the most rewarding! We admire her go for it attitude, adventurous sprit, and superhuman ability to turn down anything with sugar in the therapist lounge. Katie is a diligent worker and notoriously the first one into the clinic to prepare for the day ahead. Along with completing CME training, she continues to enroll in education courses to stay current in the world of PT.

arrow

Lauren Sobotik

Physical Therapy Assistant
close
info:

BS Human Development and Family Sciences, The University of Texas

AAS Physical Therapy, Houston Community College

From coaching little league cheerleaders to volunteering at pediatric therapy clinics throughout her undergrad, Lauren knew she wanted to pursue a career focused on helping children become strong and independent. Lauren moved from Houston, Texas to become part of the NAPA family after seeing the substantial gains a fellow patient of hers received after attending our intensive program. And yes, “ya'll” is a permanent part of her vocabulary. It only takes one conversation to learn that Lauren is dedicated to three things: The Texas Longhorns, helping kids, and brunch.

arrow

Larissa Perry

Physical Therapist
close
info:

Doctor of Physical Therapy, Loma Linda University

After growing up primarily in Idaho, Larissa attended college in Washington, and then Graduate school here in Southern California at Loma Linda University. Larissa loves to utilize her knowledge of the human body to help children grow. She gets her inspiration for both original and creative PT activities from her favorite pastimes such as camping, hiking, hanging out with friends and family, and traveling. Her most recent travels have led her to The Dominican Republic, Hawaii, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, and Ireland. In fact, she lived almost a year in Micronesia teaching 4th grade before going into graduate school. Larissa is excited to be working at NAPA as she knows that she will be able to help children from all over the world progress in their gross motor goals.

Occupational Therapy

arrow

Erin Stranahan

Occupational Therapist
close
info:

Erin graduated from Whittier College with her bachelor’s degree in child development. She then attended the University of Southern California, where she received her Master’s degree in occupational therapy. She has worked with children in a variety of settings, and knew she wanted to become an occupational therapist while in high school after volunteering in the NICU of a hospital. She enjoys working with both neuromotor and sensory populations and is trained in the Astronaut program, and Cuevas Medek Exercise.

arrow

Lauren Friedman

Occupational Therapist
close
info:

Masters of Science degree in Occupational Therapy, Boston University

Lauren chose the field of occupational therapy because of interests in helping others while being creative. Lauren completed internships in the area of physical dysfunction in a hospital setting such as, Cedars- Sinai Medical Center inpatient rehabilitation unit and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center acute care. Lauren developed a passion for working with children while volunteering on a service trip in Ecuador in 2012. While in Ecuador, she observed and assisted occupational therapists to provide intervention for children with severe physical and cognitive disabilities. She has diverse experience working with the pediatric population. Prior to working at NAPA, Lauren was a member of the interdisciplinary team in a sensory integration clinic. She enjoyed working closely with many different professionals to provide services in developmental playgroups, clinics, and in schools.

arrow

Kristen Stevens

Occupational Therapy Assistant
close
info:

BA Psychology, Cal State University Channel Islands

Associates of Occupational Science in Occupational Therapy, Stanbridge College

Kristen has always known that she wanted to work with kids. From her first job as a special needs babysitter to working at NAPA, children have always been a focuses point for her. She wants to make a difference in their lives while helping families along the way. Kristen has TONS of energy! When she is not in the therapy gym, she can be found going on adventures, hiking, or reading. New to the LA area from the OC, Kristen enjoys exploring the city and is excited to take advantage of all the musicals LA has to offer.

arrow

Jenny Lee

Occupational Therapist
close
info:

MA, OTR/L

Jenny graduated with a Masters in Occupational Therapy from the University of Southern California where she was born and raised. She has always wanted to work with kids, but wasn’t sure what field to go into until she found occupational therapy. Jenny started at NAPA as a student and decided to never leave! Jenny is a total foodie and makes all the other therapists jealous of the gourmet feasts she brings in for lunch. When she is not cooking, she spends her free time practicing martial arts, going dancing, and eating good food.

arrow

Tiffany Brown

Occupational Therapist
close
info:

MOT, OTR/L, University of St. Augustine

Tiffany has been passionate about working with children from a young age. While teaching special education, Tiffany discovered the effectiveness of occupational therapy for students with sensory processing difficulties. This inspired her to move across the country to receive her degree in OT and work in both school and clinic-based settings.

In her spare time, Tiffany enjoys spending time with friends, traveling, and cheering on The Ohio State University Buckeyes!

arrow

Sharon Kim

Occupational Therapist
close
info:

MA Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California

Sharon graduated from USC with a bachelor's and master's in occupational therapy. She spent the first two years of her career working in a Dallas children's hospital, with neuro and trauma patients. She also worked in Boston, Chicago, and southern Oregon with a wide range of adult and pediatric patients during her year as a traveling therapist. She ultimately decided to settle in beautiful and sunny southern California! She would like parents to know that she spends her free time wisely, doing things like rollerblading around Santa Monica, traveling to see her friends, or eating carne asada burritos.

arrow

Alison Kielty

Occupational Therapist
close
info:

MSOT, OTR/L

Ali graduated with a Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy from CSU Dominguez Hills in 2013. Her passion for working in the pediatric setting started when she was an assistant in an early intervention program where she embraced the unpredictable, yet rewarding nature of working with children. Prior to joining the NAPA team, Ali gained experience as a school based therapist, working closely with children, families, and interdisciplinary teams. Born and raised in the South Bay, Ali loves going to the beach, running, watching sports, and spending time with family and friends. During college football season you can catch her cheering for her Arizona State Sun Devils!

arrow

Katharine Gill-Garcia

Occupational Therapist
close
info:
Katharine graduated with a masters in occupational therapy from San Jose State University, but really we think she has a masters in flattery. She loves to tell us “NAPA is a clinic unlike any other” and a welcome surprise in her career. Katharine pursues areas of intervention and is continually seeking opportunities to learn and grow as a therapist. She does a fantastic job sharing this information and helping the NAPA team navigate tricky and unique patient goals. She believes her journey as a therapist enriches her life, both personally and professionally, and she is privileged to be a part of a network that cares for and serves amazing families. Her work experiences in multiple settings (clinics, homes, schools) and personal experience as a caregiver, have expanded her capacity and increased her empathy, which she hopes is evident in her work as a therapist and in her life.
arrow

Allyson Connelly

Occupational Therapist
close
info:

MA OTR/L

Allyson has had the opportunity to work with the pediatric population in a variety of settings including public and non-public schools, the children’s hospital hand clinic, and child development centers. Allyson graduated from Wake Forest University with a bachelor’s degree in education, and taught in Washington D.C. for three years before becoming an occupational therapist. After moving across the country and graduating from the University of Southern California with a masters in occupational therapy, she is currently working towards completing her doctorate. You can find her in two places, at the beach playing sports, or studying for her next test. She let us know her passion and devotion to learning is fueled by getting to help children participate in everyday meaningful activities.

Speech Therapy

arrow

Julie Knight

Speech Language Pathologist Assistant
close
info:

AA, Cerritos College

Julie comes from an elementary school based environment. She works predominately with children who have Autism. Her background includes Applied Behavior Analysis Therapy and Picture Exchange Communications Systems. She is passionate about working in Early Intervention and celebrating success big or small with parents.

Everyone at NAPA loves being around Julie. She brings a fun and vibrant energy with her wherever she goes. Sometimes we catch her on the the trampoline or in the ball pit after all of the kids leave.

arrow

Alexis Macias

Speech Language Pathologist
close
info:
MA Communication Disorders, California State University

Alexis chose the field of speech language pathology because of interests in helping others, human development, and lifelong learning. Prior to becoming a speech therapist, she worked as a behavior therapist providing services to support both behavioral and communicative needs of children with autism. During this time, Alexis saw the immense connection between behavior and communication skills. This inspired her to expand her knowledge and attain her education in the field of speech-language pathology. Alexis enjoys the opportunity to collaborate with families to best support the needs of clients. Her areas of special interest include Alternative Augmentative Communication, pragmatic/social language skills, apraxia, early language development, and collaboration with parents.
arrow

Katrina Sanchez

Speech Language Pathologist
close
info:

M.S., CCC-SLP

Master of Science in Communication Science and Disorders, Florida State University

Katrina is a bilingual speech language pathologist who was born and raised in Miami, Florida. She was interested in speech language pathology from a young age growing up with a friend with cerebral palsy. While she has worked with a variety of patients ranging from pediatric to geriatric populations, her greatest passion lies in collaborating with children and their families. Katrina works to facilitate functional communication through speech and language intervention, as well as healthy and safe relationships with food through feeding and swallowing intervention.

Areas of interest and training include early intervention, multiculturalism and severe disabilities, feeding and swallowing, voice and fluency, and augmentative and alternative communication. She loves to stay active with activities such as hiking and exploring all Los Angeles has to offer.

arrow

Jamie Lacroix

Speech Language Pathologist Assistant
close
info:

BS Communication Disorders, California State University Long Beach

Jamie is a board game playing, amusement park going, cooking, and exercising queen, who also happens to be a mom of two! While researching different ways to help her children, both of whom needed speech services, Jamie discovered a love for the world of speech and language. Like many moms, she relies on and appreciates how her kid’s therapists have transformed her family’s life and overall wellbeing. It’s absolutely apparent to us that Jamie loves getting to give back. She continues to research and find different ways to reach each child. “There is no better feeling than working with a child and seeing them grow with their speech, language and communication.”

arrow

Lisa Nakano

Speech Language Pathology Assistant
close
info:

B.S. Biology, University of California, Irvine

B.A. Communicative Disorders, Utah State

Lisa is our hiking, biking, baking, beach loving, California native with a huge appetite for great food and helping others. Growing up with an aunt who has Down syndrome introduced Lisa to the world of speech and language pathology. Lisa explained to us this career path is “ a great way to make a positive impact on an individual’s life and the lives of their families.” Lisa has worked in pretty much every pediatric setting, from early intervention to special education preschool, all the way up through high school. She enjoys collaborating with parents to help their child grow in their speech and language skills and has a whole lot of fun doing it!

arrow

Miki Fukusumi

Speech Language Pathologist
close
info:

MA Speech-Language Pathology, California State University, Long Beach

The extensive impact that communication and feeding have on a child's everyday quality of life are deep passions that drew Miki to the field of speech-language pathology. Miki loves working together with parents to support a child’s gains in therapy. Her prior clinical experience includes ABA therapy, feeding therapy in a pediatric hospital setting, early intervention, and in school-based settings. Miki’s areas of special interest involve feeding/swallowing disorders, language disorders, early language acquisition, and intervention with severe/medically complex diagnoses. This outdoors enthusiast loves to travel and explore new places, read, and eat delicious food!

arrow

Amanda Reyes

Speech Language Pathology Assistant
close
info:

B.S. Speech Language Pathology and Audiology, CSU Sacramento

Amanda is one of our bilingual SLPA’s, fluent in both English and Tagalog. Born and raised in the Philippines until the age of 9, she learned both languages simultaneously. Amanda knows first hand the impact speech and language contributes to different cultures. She was introduced to the field of speech language pathology while researching career paths that would combine her interest in multicultural communication differences with her passion for working with children. Amanda has experience with pre-school and school aged children in small groups, as well as a structured ABA socialization program for school aged children with Autism.

When not striking up a conversation with her patients at NAPA, Amanda enjoys spending as much time as she can with her friends and family, playing tennis, or museum hopping up and down the coast.

arrow

Niloofar Yaghmai

Speech Language Pathologist
close
info:

MS Communicative Sciences and Disorders, New York University

Niloo found her way into the world of speech language pathology through a love of languages and cultures. Niloo grew up in Dubai and moved to America where she experienced life in both New York and Los Angeles. She completed her undergraduate career at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she received her bachelor’s in linguistics and psychology. From there, she attended New York University for her master’s degree in Communicative Sciences and Disorders. Niloo finds motivation and passion in the multiple opportunities within this field to give someone a voice and the chance to be heard. Niloo loves to spend her evenings with her family at home, cuddling with her dog Watson. On weekends, you can find her hiking, at the beach, snowboarding, or discovering the endless amount of cuisine LA has to offer.

NAPA Center Kidz Academy

arrow

Glenda Rhea

Kidz Academy Director
close
info:

M.A. of Education specialization in Early Childhood Education from National University

Glenda has been working in the field of Early Intervention and special education for over 10 years. As a child, Glenda worked alongside her great aunt who owned a family daycare. She would call Glenda her “little teacher,” which inspired Glenda to eventually become an educator.

Glenda enjoys helping everyone in the Kidz Academy reach their developmental goals in an environment that is both creative and structural. She continues to be a great resource for both parents and staff as she has taught preschool for five years and has 13 years experience working as a behavioral therapist implementing ABA practices.

Glenda is active participant in her sons travel basketball team and is well known as ‘the loudest mom on the court.’ Along with perfecting her game day cheers, she has also mastered play therapy, with over three years of experience using a floor-time therapy approach.

arrow

Ally Alba

Assistant Teacher
close
info:

Assistant Teacher

Ally first came to us because helping kids is always on her mind. She loves to give big bear hugs and help her kiddos complete beautiful arts and crafts. The kids love getting to play with Ally because she has a way of making each little individual feel special. Ally tells us “Nothing makes me happier than getting to play and sing with the kids at NAPA.” When she isn’t busy helping her little guys in the classroom she loves to bake and play sports.
arrow

Alexandria Phillips

Assistant Teacher
close
info:
Alexandria has worked in childcare for over five years as a one-to-one and specialized aid. She loves encouraging your little ones to participate in circle time and play outside as much as possible. Alexandria is encouraging, kind, and most importantly a ton of fun! She has a special way of getting kids to smile and to try new things. Playing a major role in setting kids up to be successful is her biggest motivator. In short, she is a natural with kids.
arrow

Natalie Portillo

Preschool Teacher
close
info:

M.A. Learning and Technology, B.A. Special Education

U.S. Army Veteran

After working with autistic kids in an elementary setting, Natalie knew she had found her calling. Natalie is amazing at designing individualized curriculums for her students. She draws her inspiration from exploring the world around her with her daughter Caiti and her husky pup Bella. Natalie fits in perfectly in with our preschool setting because she is creative, patient, and persistent to a fault. It’s incredible to see how her kids transform after spending time with Natalie. She makes a point to form a special bond with each and every student. We are pretty positive she would adopt them all if she could.

arrow

Sarah Crosthwait

Assistant Teacher
close
info:

Current Student at Los Angeles Valley College

Ms. Sarah adores children so much that decided to make it her lifelong career path. She is currently wrapping up some prerequisites before transferring to CSU to earn her degree in child and adolescent development. Right now, we are keeping her mind sharp by putting her to work in both the billing department and preschool. Her favorite part of the day is reading to her preschoolers. It takes no time to notice everything Sarah does is with great enthusiasm and spirit. In fact, Sarah is so passionate about a good read she once traveled all the way to Oregon to check out one of the top 10 bookstores in the country. Talk about commitment!

arrow

Daisy Saldana

Assistant Teacher
close
info:

Current Student at Santa Monica Community College

Meet Daisy, a woman who truly doesn’t hesitate when it comes to helping others. This super sweet mom stood by her nephew’s side everyday of his intensive therapy program, as well as during traditional therapy before she took on a job at NAPA. She quickly developed a way of drawing out just what kids need and are trying to express. With over three years of special needs experience, Daisy is never short on great advice. She inspires her tiny tots to try something new everyday and lives by the mantra: “A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” -Albert Einstein.

arrow

Jesus Plascencia

Assistant Teacher
close
info:

BS Human Development, California State University, Long Beach

Our kids use him as a human jungle gym, but Jesus continues to show the NAPA team how to bring a little more patience into our day. Jesus began his work with special needs children while volunteering during college. Through this experience working with children diagnosed with autism, Jesus formed a special connection and understanding with the struggles that special needs children and their families undergo. This inspired him to work in a research lab where he assisted with the implementation of an experimental educational program for Latino families of children with autism. Jesus now plans on attending graduate school and focusing his research on mental health issues within the Latino community.

arrow

Denise Montenegro

Early Intervention Associate Teacher
close
info:

Denise always knew she had a passion for helping kids grow and learn, so she chose a field she would be able to do so in everyday! Before NAPA, she worked as a behavioral specialist providing support to children with autism. It is because of this work that she plans on becoming a speech therapist.

When Denise isn’t trying to make the kiddos laugh, she’s at home being the best dog mom possible. She loves to take them on hikes and play in streams in nearby Los Angeles mountains. If they are really good, she let’s them binge watch Netflix with her.

arrow

Diana Nuno

Assistant Teacher
close
info:
This Harry Potter fan hopes to work some magic on your kids.Diana can be described as sweet, fair, and most of all fun! Working with kids who have special needs hits close to home as she has and aunt with Downs Syndrome and a cousin recently diagnosed with Autism. She let us know “They are near and dear to my heart and it has taught me to see people for who they are.” Diana is currently working towards her Early Childhood Credential and plans on transfering to CalState LA.

Call 888-711-NAPA or   Request a Tour



STAY UPDATED

Stay up to date with NAPA news, join our mailing list:



  • CONTACT

    11840 S La Cienega Blvd
    Los Angeles/Hawthorne,
    California, 90250



  •  

    Phone: 888-711 NAPA (6272)
    Local: 424-269-3400
    Fax: 310-882–5451



  • SOCIAL MEDIA

    FOLLOW US: