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President: Jan Monroe

Jan Monroe earned her B.A. in Communication Disorders from Radford University. She earned her M. S. Ed. in Speech-Language Pathology from Old Dominion University. Jan has over 23 years of direct care experience, working with children and adults. She has served in long term care, inpatient, outpatient, home health, and acute care settings in Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Hawaii. Currently she is exclusively a pediatric therapist employed by Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU-Fredericksburg Therapy Center. Jan has prior experience serving as a board member for Center for Children La Plata, MD and Parent Advocates for Challenged Children of Charles County, Inc. (P.A.C.C.) White Plains, MD. While residing in Hawaii, she served a term as President of the Hawaii Speech and Hearing Association (HASHA). Jan is thrilled to be a part of STEP VA, Inc. She resides in Fredericksburg with her husband Mike and their 3 children. Jan enjoys traveling, yoga, networking opportunities, and socializing with her family, and friends.

Vice President: Katie DeWeerd Brown

Katie DeWeerd, OT/L graduated with a Master’s of Science in Occupational Therapy and with an undergraduate focus of Psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University. Currently, she works as a pediatric occupational therapist for Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU-Fredericksburg Therapy Center. She holds certifications in Therapeutic Listening and Interactive Metronome. Her specialty area is in sensory integration and sensory processing disorders. Her treatment approach is further defined in her chapter titled “Understanding How Sensory Input Effects Children and Helps Them Cope,” published in the textbook Social Skills Deficits in Students with Disabilities: Successful Strategies from the Disability Field, edited by Helen Nicole Frye Myers. Katie has over 10 years of theatre experience, and has enjoyed adapting theatre techniques for person’s with special needs. She currently resides in the Fredericksburg area with her husband and three children.

Treasurer: Carolyn McKinney

Carolyn McKinney earned B.A. degrees in Exercise and Sport Science and Biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She earned a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from East Carolina University. Carolyn has worked as a physical therapist at Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU-Fredericksburg Therapy Center since moving to the area. She has prior experience working with an arts organization for children with special needs as well as teaching swim lessons to children with special needs, adapted PE, and volunteering with Special Olympics. She is proud to be a founding member of STEP VA, Inc. She lives in Fredericksburg with her husband and enjoys cooking, sewing, working out, and spending time with her husband, kitties, family, and friends.

Secretary/Dance Instructor: Corey Holmes

Corey Holmes is a native of South Florida and has been teaching dance since 2000.  Corey received her Bachelor of Arts in Acting and Directing at Florida Atlantic University, where most of her experience was in musical theatre. Corey then earned her Masters of Letters and a Masters of Fine Arts in Shakespearian and Renaissance Literature and Performance with a focus in Acting from Mary Baldwin College in conjunction with The American Shakespeare Center. Corey has taught theatre and movement at St. Anne’s Belfield School in Charlottesville, VA. She choreographed many productions, including A Midsummer’s Nights DreamThe Winter’s Tale, and The Music Man. Corey directed The Taming of the Shrew for The American Shakespeare Center’s Young Company Theatre Camp as well as instructed dance for the camps. In 2009, she choreographed a “flash dance mob” for the city of Staunton, VA. Corey currently teaches ballet, musical theatre, and coaches the Junior and Junior Elite teams at Amyclae Dance Academy, and acts as their Assistant Artistic director. She is very excited to learn from the staff and participants at STEP VA.

Marketing: Brandi Pemberton 

Brandi Pemberton is an insurance specialist at Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU-Fredericksburg Therapy Center. She enjoys sharing her organization and creativity during theme weeks, creating bulletin boards, sharing information, and orchestrating special projects at CHoR. She previously worked with the Natural Environment program at CHoR and was formerly a preschool teacher. Brandi’s passion for working with children with special needs stemmed from an experience during a baton twirling demonstration she performed for children with special needs at a young age. She enjoys helping each child reach their highest potential and shine! She resides in Fredericksburg with her husband and 4 children. Brandi enjoys spending time with her pig, Pinteresting, cheering on the Nats, and hanging out with her family and friends.

Music Therapy: Sarah Griffin

Sarah has over ten years of experience in Music and the Performing Arts in a wide range of artistic disciplines, with years of professional teaching and performing in the music and theater realms! She is a board certified Music Therapist with a heart for others, and a passion for the therapeutic arts. Sarah is an alumni of Shenandoah Conservatory, completing her internship at “A Place to Be” in Middleburg, VA in 2017. She is currently a Music Therapist with Goldschmidt Music Services. Sarah loves to play the piano, guitar, and bass guitar. When she is not doing Music Therapy or performing in the Pit, she loves to teach piano and musical theater classes to people of all abilities and talents! Sarah believes that music belongs to everyone, and she has seen it change lives!

 

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