Anita’s comprehensive experience includes screening, evaluating and working with individuals with a wide range of communication, social and learning challenges. She has experience working with children through young adults in a variety of settings, including schools, outpatient hospital facilities, homes, and private practice. As Director of Pediatric Speech and Language Specialists, she encourages her staff to take pride in tailoring therapy to best fit the learning style of all of their clients. She is dedicated to providing treatment that is individualized, dynamic and grounded in evidence- based practice. Anita’s work reflects a high degree of expertise, professionalism and commitment to your child. She believes in forming a therapy partnership with families. Anita derives a fulfillment from helping children learn to become successful communicators and learners.
Anita is well known for her work in providing comprehensive evaluations. She believes that this evaluation is critical to your child’s treatment plan. The evaluation results help determine your child’s needs and areas of strength. A thorough evaluation allows the therapist to precisely target a child’s weaknesses for intervention. Anita also runs social communication groups at PSLS. She also regularly consults with other professionals and schools working with children with social challenges.
Additionally, Anita is Co-Director (along with Raun Melmed, MD) of Lexis Preparatory School www.lexisprep.com in Scottsdale, Arizona. Lexis provides an exceptional, college-preparatory curriculum for students with ADHD, dyslexia, anxiety, communication disorders and other mild to moderate learning disabilities. The focus is on executive function skills and social communication. At Lexis, we meet each child where they are at and tailor our approach to different learning styles, creating an environment in which each child can achieve success
Anita holds degrees from Arizona State University and Southern Methodist University, and has always been passionate about pursuing hands-on continuing education opportunities with some of the leading experts in the field. In 2008, she participated in the mentoring program conducted by Michelle Garcia Winner, an international expert and author of numerous publications about Social Thinking® and related social skills. During this mentoring program at the Social Thinking® Clinic, in San Jose, California, she worked with Michelle Garcia Winner, Stephanie Madrigal and Pamela Crooke. In addition, by attending the yearly Social Thinking® Providers Conference held in California, Anita brings back the most up-to-date information, current trends and treatment in the area of Social Thinking®. Anita presented at the International Social Thinking® Providers Conference about Kamp Talkalot in June 2010 and about Color Me Social®, a social communication program she has developed (2015).
Understanding the importance of technology as a tool for intervention, in 1997, Anita became one of the first certified providers of the Scientific Learning Corp.’s Fast ForWord programs. She has attended numerous Visionary Conferences, led by Michael Merzenich, PhD, and Martha Burns, SLP-PhD, as well as many others, in order to stay abreast of the latest updates in neuroscience research as it relates to speech, language and learning.
She has presented many workshops to preschools, school districts, private schools, speech-language pathologists, pediatricians and parent groups in Arizona. A frequent lecturer and consultant, she has extensive experience diagnosing and providing speech therapy for children, working to better educate parents, supporting teachers and interfacing with pediatricians.
Anita is the recipient of many Awards for Continuing Education granted by the Continuing Education Board of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She received the Top Provider Award in 2008 and 2012 from Scientific Learning Programs. Additionally, she received the Leadership award for Innovative Practices from Scientific Learning Corp in 2016.
Anita is a member of American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), and the American Academy of Private Practice in Speech Pathology and Audiology (AAPPSPA). She is licensed by the Arizona State Board of Examiners in Speech-Language Pathology.
When Anita is not working with clients, spending time at Lexis Preparatory, running Kamp Talkalot, or speaking in the community, she is at home with her husband, Alan. They have 3 grown children. She is too tired to have any hobbies!