Tabitha Belhorn has a bachelor of arts from Heidelberg University, where she studied psychology and vocal performance. She has three children, the oldest of whom is deaf. Belhorn is currently the executive director of Ohio Hands & Voices and has worked with families of children who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf plus, or deaf-blind for over 10 years. She has been a member of the State Advisory Panel for Exceptional Children and is currently serving as the co-chair for the Universal Newborn Hearing Screening Subcommittee.
Tracey has had over 30 years serving individuals with disabilities which began by providing direct care in residential settings while in college. She continues to provide supported living services to young adults in Pickaway County. She has taught special education at elementary, middle school, high school and summer program classrooms in Pickaway County. She has also been Special Education Director at Logan Elm and Vocational Special Education Coordinator at Pickaway-Ross Career & Technology Center and has worked at State Support Team 11 serving career-tech centers in central and southeastern Ohio. She currently oversees special education services at Eastland-Fairfield Career & Technical Schools.
Tracey earned her bachelor of science in business management from Franklin University and her master of education in special education and educational administration. She enjoys church, hiking, reading, cooking, music and spending time with friends and family.
Ray Blevins, M.Ed., is a Special Education Consultant with the State Support Team Region 15. His primary responsibilities include providing support and resources to districts and parents regarding Post-Secondary Transition and topics related to the Individuals with Disabilities Act. Prior to joining the State Support Team, Ray served in various leadership roles serving students with disabilities in public and private schools. As a parent of a student with a disability, Ray is committed to ensuring that all students have equal and appropriate educational opportunities.
Sarah Buoni, M.Ed., is an Education Program Specialist with the Ohio Department of Education, Office for Exceptional Children. Her primary responsibilities include providing support and resources to districts and parents in regards to low incidence disabilities. Prior to joining the Ohio Department of Education, Sarah worked as a supervisor and an itinerant teacher for the deaf and hard of hearing at the Arizona School for the Deaf and Blind for nine years. She is committed to ensuring that all students have equal educational opportunities.
Erica Chambers is a licensed Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments. She graduated with her Bachelor’s Degree in Special Education with a focus in Mild/Moderate Disabilities and Visual Impairments in 2004 from The University of Toledo. She then returned to UT and completed her Master’s Degree in Special Education in 2009.
Erica is the Special Education Coordinator for the Visual Impairment Program in Columbus City Schools. She has been a Teacher of Students with Visual Impairments in Columbus City Schools since 2005. She taught for 8 years as a TVI in a middle school resource room and then spent 2 years as an itinerant TVI. This is her 4th year as coordinator of the Visual Impairment Program. As program coordinator, Erica works closely with staff, students and families to ensure students are receiving the supports and services needed in order for the students to experience success in school and life.
Shannon Clancy recently completed her doctoral studies at The Ohio State University, earning her PhD in Teaching and Learning. Shannon's research is focused on the language and learning of children who are deaf, particularly in content areas with specialized language, such as science and mathematics. She was an elementary school teacher of deaf students for ten years, has given multiple workshop presentations on the use of content-area and specialized vocabulary for educational interpreters, and currently works as a sign language interpreter.
MaryAnn Cluse has a Masters in Special Education K-12 and Early Childhood Special Education from Ohio University. She is the Director of Education Services for Muskingum County Board of Developmental Disabilities. She started her career as an Early Intervention Specialist in Hocking County. Then she moved to teaching Special Needs Preschool for Fairfield County Educational Service Center.
Bobbi A. Colatruglio, CCC-SLP is a speech language pathologist at Nationwide Children's Hospital. Prior to joining Nationwide Children's in 2015, Bobbi was a speech language pathologist at the Ohio School for the Deaf. She worked there for five years, providing evaluations, intervention and collaboration for the preschool and elementary. Bobbi also served on the multi-factored evaluation team in the Ohio School for the Deaf Outreach Department, providing evaluations for deaf and hard of hearing students across the state of Ohio. Bobbi is fluent in American Sign Language. She has completed the FIRST YEARS program through the University of North Carolina in order to receive a Certificate in Auditory Learning in Young Children with Hearing Loss.
Carrie Davenport is a doctoral candidate in the special education program at the Ohio State University. Prior to entering the PhD program at OSU she was the Early Childhood Consultant for the Center for Outreach Services at the Ohio School for the Deaf. As a consultant, Carrie provided statewide support to Local Education Agencies serving young children who are deaf/hard of hearing and coordinated professional development for educators, specialists, and administrators. Carrie is a founding Board member of Ohio Hands & Voices. She has served on Ohio's Universal Newborn Hearing Screening subcommittee, the Gallaudet University Regional Center advisory board, and the American Society for Deaf Children.
Nathan DeDino joined the Ohio Department of Health in July of 2011 as a Researcher in the then- Bureau of Early Intervention Services, after working for a number of years in the Defense intelligence industry. As a Researcher at ODH, he worked primarily with the data system. In November of 2013, he became the Research and Data Administrator and began supervising the research team responsible for data needs for the Help Me Grow and Regional Infant Hearing programs. In December of 2014, he took on responsibility for Early Intervention monitoring and, in April of 2015, he became the Part C coordinator.
Nathan obtained his bachelor of arts from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. He also holds a law degree, with honors, from the Moritz College of Law at the Ohio State University.
Christy Donnelly, Ph.D. currently serves as the Director of the Miami Valley Regional Center in Dayton, Ohio. The center provides a variety of services to school districts in a six county area and vision and hearing services to school districts in 12 counties and over fifty school districts. Prior to joining the Regional Center, Christy worked for thirteen years as Superintendent with the Vandalia-Butler City Schools. She worked in the field of pupil services for Vandalia-Butler City Schools, Tipp City Schools, and the Miami County ESC. Christy also has a background in gifted education.
Molly Estes is a native American Sign Language (ASL) signer, who works at the Statewide Services at the Ohio School for the Deaf as an ASL Specialist. For over 15 years, she has been teaching and evaluating ASL. She is genuinely dedicated to ensuring that each and every student and staff gain knowledge and fluency in ASL. Molly evaluates the sign language skills of Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing students from all over Ohio as part of the Student Assessment Center team. She was involved with developing a K-12 curriculum for learning ASL as a first language. She is a Sign Language Proficiency Interview:ASL (SLPI:ASL) Coordinator/Trainer and on National SLPI:ASL Leadership Board (NSLB).
Molly also holds Professional American Sign Language Teacher Association (ASLTA) certification. Molly obtains a Master's Degree in Sign Language Teaching in December 2012. She was asked to review the ASL Standards for America Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) book for K-12 and postsecondary by the national ASL Standards committee.
Danene Fast is a scholar with the National Leadership Consortium for Sensory Disabilities (NLCSD) who is currently in her 2nd year of studies at The Ohio State University, pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy degree within the College of Education, Department of Teaching and Learning. Her background includes a dual undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and Special Education for Children with Visual Impairments from Kutztown University and a Master of Arts Degree in Orientation and Mobility (O&M) from Western Michigan University.
Danene has over 20 years of experience in the field of visual impairments. She is the recipient of the Judy Cernkovich Excellence in Education Award from the Ohio Chapter of AER, the Joyce Mae Ogburn Education Award from AER International Educational Division, and the Orientation and Mobility Citation of Excellence for Direct Service Criteria from the AER International O&M Division. Currently, she is employed as a part-time manager for the programs in visual impairments, hearing impairments and O&M at The Ohio State University.
Danene is active with the Ohio Chapter of AER, where she currently serves as Treasurer of the organization, Division Nine of AER International, where she serves as the Blasch Scholarship Committee Chairperson, the Council for Exceptional Children, where she is a board member of the DVIDB Division, and several local committees with a focus on services for children with visual impairments.
Lynne joined the Ohio Center for Deafblind Education in April of 2016 after serving as a supervisor and director of special education for twenty-six years and preschool coordinator for three years. During her career in special education, she was responsible for providing educational services to students with disabilities, including those with vision and hearing loss. At OCDBE Lynne supports Tier I dissemination and outreach efforts and provides consultation and technical assistance to families of children with combined hearing-vision loss. She coordinates the annual parent retreat and works in collaboration with the project’s deafblind education consultant to plan and deliver training and professional development to families, school district and agency personnel, and others.
Brynn Hoffman is the Special Education Director at Westfall Local Schools in Pickaway County. Her primary responsibilities are providing the best services for students with a wide range of disabilities, empowering intervention specialists and paraprofessionals, and supporting best practices in the district. She was previously the Special Education & Curriculum Director at Amanda-Clearcreek and an ED Intervention Specialist through the Fairfield County ESC. Brynn holds a Bachelor of Science in Education from Ohio University and a Masters of Science in Educational Leadership through the University of Dayton. Brynn serves on Ohio University's Society of Alumni for Teacher Education's Board of Directors.
Derek M. Houston, PhD, joined the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at The Ohio State University College of Medicine July 2015. He received his doctorate in psychology from Johns Hopkins University in 2000. His graduate training research focused on how normal hearing, typically developing infants segment words from fluent speech and recognize words across different talkers. After graduating, he moved to Indiana University School of Medicine and constructed the world's first laboratory to investigate the speech perception and language skills of deaf infants who receive cochlear implants. Since then, his work has investigated the effects of early auditory deprivation and subsequent cochlear implantation on speech discrimination, attention to speech, sensitivity to language-specific properties of speech, word learning, and general cognitive skills in deaf infants and toddlers. His research in Columbus, OH represents a collaborative effort between OSU and Nationwide Children's Hospital. His work is currently funded by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.
Since 2003, Lauri Kaplan has shared her unique knowledge of parenting a child who is visually impaired while serving as Parent Mentor, at the Ohio State School for the Blind. Lauri is a parent of a child with different abilities; her adult son is blind and has additional medical challenges. Ms. Kaplan guides other Ohio parents of students who are visually impaired through the special education process, helping them to understand their rights and responsibilities. She listens, gathers information and provides resources and support to families and school districts. Lauri attends Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings, Evaluation Team Meetings (ETR) and additional meetings at the request of school districts or parents.
Lauri has served on Parent Mentor Council (2006-2008, and 2009-2011) Parent Mentor Care and Support Committee (2007-present), Family Advisory Council of the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (2005-present) Braille Excellence for Students and Teachers (BEST) Advisory Board (2008-present), and The Ohio State University Sensory Advisory Board (2013-present). Since 2006, she has edited and produced a print and web edition of OSSB's quarterly newsletter, connecting families and the OSSB community. Ms. Kaplan has worked with the Center for Instructional Supports and Accessible Materials (CISAM now known as the AT&AEM Center) on various advisory boards, and they have collaborated to plan and execute an annual Assistive Technology Family Conference since 2010. She received her bachelor of fine arts from The Ohio State University.
Sarah Kelly is the Program Manager for the Bureau of Services for the Visually Impaired at Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities. She has worked in the field of vocational rehabilitation, serving individuals with disabilities for 6 years. During that time she has served as a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor, Vocational Rehabilitation Supervisor, and now as the Program Manager.
She is also a certified Orientation and Mobility Instructor, having obtained certification to better understand how to help her son with multiple disabilities. Sarah has a bachelor of arts in sociology, a master of arts on psychology, and a graduate certificate in orientation and mobility. She is currently pursuing a graduate certificate in assistive technology for the blind and visually impaired.
Sarah lives in Pickaway County with her husband and twin sons.
Karen Koehler, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor at Shawnee State University and the Program Director of the TVI Consortium, an educator preparation program for teachers of the visually impaired. Karen is a certified science educator and teacher of the visually impaired and spent over 25 years teaching science at The Ohio State School for the Blind. After completing her Ph.D. at The Ohio State University in 2017, she embarked on a new career as the lead faculty for the TVI Consortium. Her current position allows her to connect with teachers and agencies across Ohio and the nation who are engaged in the work of the education and rehabilitation of individuals with visual impairments and blindness. She is an active member of AER Ohio (AERO) and serves on the board as a co-chair of the AERO’s technology division and its webmaster. She is also a member of the Ohio Deans Compact on Exceptional Children and a director on the board of the Council for Exceptional Children’s Division on Visual Impairments and Deafblindness. She has presented at state, regional and national conferences regarding students with visual impairments and low incidence sensory disabilities and has co-authored two book chapters.
Alison B. LaBarre, Ed.D. is the Director of Auxiliary Services for the Ohio State School for the Blind and the Ohio School for the Deaf. She has presented at state and national conferences on topics related to middle level education and the educational needs of the exceptional child.
Prashant Solanki Malhotra, MD, FAAP, is a surgeon in the Department of Otolaryngology and the Hearing Program at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. Prior to joining Nationwide Children’s, Dr. Malhotra was an associate physician staff member of the Head and Neck Institute and the Pediatric Institute at The Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. He is an instructor of ENT and Pediatric resident and fellow trainees and medical students.
Dr. Malhotra received his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. He completed his residency in Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Delaware. He spent an additional year as a fellow and clinical instructor of Pediatric Otolaryngology at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. He is board certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology.
Dr. Malhotra’s academic and clinical interests primarily focus on problems relating to pediatric hearing loss and pediatric cochlear implantation, but also in all other aspects of pediatric otolaryngology and head and neck surgery. He passionately advocates for the needs of children with hearing loss at the state and national level.
Shelley McCoy is an Education Consultant at the Ohio State School for the Blind (OSSB). In this role, Shelley provides support and recommendations for educational resources and strategies to school-aged students who are blind or visually impaired and their education teams in school districts throughout the state of Ohio. In addition, Shelley serves as the Education Clinic Coordinator, facilitating evaluations of students throughout the state performed by the interdisciplinary team of related services professionals. At OSSB, Shelley also provides orientation and mobility instruction to a caseload of students. Previous to her role at OSSB, Shelley served for four years as an itinerant teacher of students with visual impairments and orientation and mobility specialist serving students throughout multiple regions of the state. Shelley's lifelong passion for service to persons with special needs spans the age spectrum, as evidenced by her 20+ years of work with individuals affected by dementia, including Alzheimer's disease.
Shelley earned her bachelor's degree in elementary education from The Ohio State University in 1994. She then attained her licensure in teaching students with visual impairments in 2008, and ACVREP certification in orientation and mobility in 2012. Shelley is currently enrolled in the graduate program at The Ohio State University in pursuit of her MA in sensory disabilities and inclusion.
Shelley has been an active member of the Association of Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired, and currently serves on the board, as chairperson of the education division. She has been nominated for participation in educational conferences and programs, including the Josephine L. Taylor Leadership Institute through the American Foundation for the Blind, and the Teachers of Tomorrow program through the National Federation of the Blind. Shelley serves as an adjunct faculty member for the Orientation and Mobility program through The Ohio State University.
Peter (Pete) Moore joined Mount Aloysius Corp. as Administrator, in November of 2017. Prior to that he was Chief of Staff at the Ohio Association of County Boards Serving People with Developmental Disabilities (OACB). He was with OACB from 2009 t0 2017. During his time at OACB he was Chief of Staff, Service Initiatives Director and Project Manager for the Bridges to Transition. He is a cofounder of The Good Life Network, a project that is designed to provide training and technical assistance to OACB members and organizations across Ohio and the United States as they strive to develop positive cultures for the people they serve. Pete has 20 years of experience in working with people with developmental disabilities. He has had many roles during his career including: Recreation Director for the Salvation Army in Pittsburgh, PA; Teacher's Aid for Tiffin City Schools; Activities Therapist, QMRP, and Director of Vocational Services at Tiffin Developmental Center; Director of Residential Services for the Hancock County Board of DD; Behavior Support Consultant for the State of Ohio's Department of DD; and, as an independent consultant. Throughout his career, Moore has been respected for his common sense approach and insight. He has provided training and technical support for many different programs and professionals across the State of Ohio and across the United States. Pete is a graduate of The University of Pittsburgh and received his Masters in Counseling from Heidelberg University in Tiffin, Ohio, where he was also a football coach for 10 years. He is married to Deb and has three kids, Warren, Rilee, and Ava.
Kim Moritz, M.Ed., is the Family and Community Engagement Consultant and a member of the Special Education Team for State Support Team 6. Prior to working for SST6, Kim taught high school and college level science for sixteen years. Kim has two children, Matthew, 16, and Emma, 13. As a result of a traumatic brain injury at the age of ten, Matthew is deafblind and non-verbal. Through Kim's personal and professional experiences, she has worked to assist the public school that Matthew attends and other districts in the region in supporting families and students with multiple disabilities. She is honored and excited to be a part of the advisory council to assist in meeting a need for the state of Ohio and to better serve families.
Karen Burk Paull, Ph.D., is a pediatric neuropsychologist working in a private practice setting in the east side suburbs of Cleveland. She completes comprehensive learning evaluations with children who are D/deaf and hard of hearing. She earned her doctorate in Clinical Psychology, with a child and family subspecialty, from Loyola University Chicago in 1998. Both her masters and dissertation theses were studies of the development of deaf children and their siblings. Dr. Paull completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in Pediatric Neuropsychology at Boston Children's Hospital/Harvard Medical School, where half of her time was devoted to training at the Boston Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children (BCDC). She remained on staff at BCDC until moving to Cleveland, where she joined the staff of Cleveland Hearing & Speech Center and worked there until 2018. Dr. Paull lives in the suburbs of Cleveland, with her husband and two children. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, running, and spending time with family.
Dr. Megan Reister—a former hearing itinerant and special education teacher for 8 years in Delaware and Pennsylvania—was responsible for deaf education, transition services, and early intervention services prior to becoming a college professor in North Carolina. Dr. Reister—now an Ohio resident—enjoys conducting research, writing, and teaching as a Professor in the Education Department at Franciscan University of Steubenville, which is 45 minutes west of Pittsburgh. Her primary areas of research include self-advocacy and identity in students with hearing loss; itinerant teaching; and fostering collaboration among parents, general education, and special education teachers. She is passionate about working with preservice teachers to help them be the best advocates they can be for the children they will serve as they fulfill their vocations as teachers. Her other passion lies within her family of husband, Adam, 2.5 year-old daughter, Charlotte, and their two pups.
Shannon Seger is currently the Director of Interlink, the Deaf Services Center of Northwest Ohio. Language delay is an epidemic among the deaf and hard of hearing in elementary and secondary education in the United States. Shannon currently combats this on many fronts. First, by introducing Language Facilitators into the educational system to fill in the "gap" in language and attempt to help students meet and exceed their educational goals through mentoring. Secondly, presenting workshops and presentations to various agencies, educational institutes and newfound parents of Deaf and Hard of Hearing children, placing an emphasis on acquiring American Sign Language along with spoken English while the children are still young and able to compete with their peers in terms of language and comprehension.
Dr. Carrie Spangler has over 17 years of experience as a professional in the field of audiology and has a lifetime of personal experience living successfully with hearing loss. Dr. Spangler is the 2012 recipient of a national award, the Cheryl DeConde-Johnson Award for Best Practices in Educational/ Pediatric Audiology. She has presented locally, nationally, and internationally on topics related to educational and pediatric audiology. She has publications in peer reviewed journals and has co-authored 3 chapters.
Currently employed at Summit Educational Service Center, Ohio where she provides educational audiology outreach services. Her areas of interest include educational audiology for all students with hearing loss, teens and support groups, advocacy, and humanitarian audiology. Dr. Spangler initiated the TALK (Teaching Auditory Learning in Kids) listening and spoken language preschool program in Summit County. She also created the Hit It! program (Hearing Impaired Teens Interacting Together) which is a support group for teens with hearing loss. She currently serves as a Governor appointed audiology board member for the Ohio Board of Speech Pathology and Audiology. Dr. Spangler is the past chairperson and current member of the Ohio Department of Health's Universal Newborn Hearing Screening committee.
Wendy began her career as an educational audiologist at Heartland Area Education Agency in Iowa before moving to Ohio. She has been with the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) since August 1998 initially as a special education mediator, complaint investigator then autism consultant from 1999-2004. In 2004 she moved to OCALI, a new statewide technical assistance and training project focused on students with autism spectrum disorders. In 2005 Wendy returned to ODE in the Office of Assessment to develop the Ohio Graduation Test for Writing, coordinate the OGT Fairness and Sensitivity Committee, and assume responsibilities as project director for a federal grant to develop an Alternate Assessment based on Modified Achievement Standards or 2% assessment.
Since returning to the Office for Exceptional Children within ODE in 2011, Wendy supervises the Diverse Learner team focused on functional and academic content standards, assessment accommodations, alternate assessment, multi-tiered systems of support, early literacy, secondary transition, and school culture and climate to meet the needs of students with disabilities, students who are gifted and English learners.
Leah Subak resides in Northeastern Ohio, Cuyahoga Falls, and lived in the metropolitan Washington D.C. area. Current interpreting venues include post-secondary and Video Relay. Credentials include; MA from Gallaudet University and Ph.D. from Kent State University. Professional certifications held include CI/CT, NAD, and EIPA.
She is on staff with Kent State University as co-coordinator of interpreting services, and adjunct faculty. She has held offices in professional interpreting organizations and chaired various conferences.
Teresa Thomas is a licensed Teacher for the Visually Impaired and a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist. She received a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Ohio University in 2002. Upon graduation, Teresa entered the field of special education teaching students with multiple disabilities for four years. One of those students had a visual impairment which led her to the graduate programs for VI and O&M at the Ohio State University. Teresa has been a teacher for the visually impaired for Lancaster City Schools for 11 years and O&M specialist for 6 years. Currently, she serves on the Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) for Lancaster Public Transit.
Abbey Weaver began working with Southern Ohio Educational Service Center/Hopewell Center Region 14 in 2003 as an itinerant teacher for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. She is also the Team Leader for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing department. She supervises itinerant teachers, educational interpreters, language facilitators, and an audiologist. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Deaf Education from Kent State University. In addition, she has a master's degree in reading from Xavier University.
Abbey is also currently National Board Certified in Deaf Education. She works with a variety of individuals in various schools located in Adams, Brown, Clinton, Fayette and Highland Counties.
Abby White is a licensed Teacher for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students in the southern region of Ohio. She has a Master's of Education from The Ohio State University and a bachelor's degree in Speech and Hearing Science. Abby started Hands to Learn, an educational service business, to provide direct instruction, curriculum modification, and consultative services for students with hearing loss in Ross and Pike Counties. She is now employed by the Ross County Board of Developmental Disabilities and provides itinerate teaching services to students in mainstream schools. Abby is a board member of Ohio Hands and Voices and also a trainer in Visual Phonics, a tool to promote access to English phonemes for decoding, spelling, and articulation. Abby has an Advanced Plus rating on the SLPI and over ten years of experience working with individuals that are deaf or hard of hearing using a variety of communication modalities.
Susan Wiley is a developmental pediatrician at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center within the Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. She has a long-standing interest in children who are D/HH Plus, and children who are Deaf-Blind through efforts in clinical care, research and advocacy. She has collaborated with the Ohio Center for Deaf-Blind Education through workshops, development of tools to guide earlier identification of children with deaf-blindness and as a member of their advisory committee. She is a member of the Leadership Team for Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) at the American Academy of Pediatrics and has focused on advocacy for newborn hearing screening at a state level as the Ohio American Academy of Pediatrics Chapter Champion for EHDI and as the co-chair of the Ohio Department of Health Advisory Committee on Newborn Hearing Screening.