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DICP Staff

Development is Child’s Play prides itself in the quality of our staff. We recruit the best possible candidates who are professionally trained and skilled in engaging children in the therapeutic process. Then, we provide extensive supervision and mentoring to further develop the skills of our therapists and support therapy student interns. All clinical staff members have degrees in occupational therapy, physical therapy, or speech and language pathology, have passed a national exam, and are licensed in California to provide therapy.

Development is Child’s Play staff members have advanced coursework in the area of sensory processing. Occupational Therapists have extensive training in evaluation and Ayres Sensory Integration. Our therapists have additional training in feeding/swallowing issues, language and communication, AAC, motor development, orthotics and splinting, neurodevelopmental treatment, reflex integration, auditory interventions (e.g. therapeutic listening), fine motor issues (e.g. handwriting programs), and other techniques.

DICP Therapists and Staff

Sena Felt

Sena Felt Occupational TherapistDICP Co-Owner

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Sena Felt

Sena Felt OTR/L

Position:
Occupational Therapist Owner

Biography:
Sena received her BA in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a BS in Occupational Therapy from the University of Puget Sound. Before joining the therapy staff at DICP, Sena worked in acute care rehab at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, at a skilled nursing facility and private school based setting in the Greater DC area, as well as a multi-disciplinary pediatric facility in Egypt. Sena became a co-owner of Development is Child’s Play in 2017. Sena is certified in the administration and interpretation of the Sensory Integration and Praxis Test (SIPT) and is trained in reflex integration, feeding, animal-assisted therapy and several forms of therapeutic listening including iLS, The Listening Program, and Therapeutic Listening. She enjoys mentoring therapists and is inspired to create a practice that not only empowers children and their families but also empowers the amazing staff and team of therapists at Development is Child’s Play to be their best and sparks their own growth and development.

Sena says:
I became an OT because it was important to me to have a career where I made a positive impact and contributed to the overall well-being of others. I became a business owner because I wanted to guide the practice towards a more holistic approach of meeting the needs of our families in a way that is much greater than I could ever do as an individual therapist, while still maintaining the same high quality services that have been part of Development is Child’s Play for decades.”

Dr.Sahana Baker-Malone

Dr. Sahana Baker-Malone Occupational TherapistDICP Co-Owner

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Sahana Baker-Malone

Dr. Sahana Baker-MaloneOTD, OTR/L, PRPC

Position:
Occupational Therapist Owner

Biography:
Sahana grew up and homeschooled in rural Maui, Hawaii. Sahana majored in Psychology at Scripps College in Claremont, California before receiving an MA in Occupational Therapy at the University of Southern California. Before joining DICP, Sahana worked in the only hospital on Maui, helping patients in acute and rehabilitation care, hand splinting, and performing modified barium swallow studies. Sahana became a co-owner of Development is Child’s Play in 2017. Sahana has advanced certifications in the Sensory Integration and SIPT, swallowing and feeding, Therapeutic Listening, pediatric pelvic floor rehabilitation, and the Masgutova Method.

Sahana says:
I love this clinic and the professional and personal camaraderie I have with my fellow therapists. I love working with children and families to help make life more fun and successful. I hope that we can help support our clients and families in new and creative ways. We are always happy to hear from our families and colleagues about how we can best meet your needs!”

Evelyn Lechner

Evelyn Lechner Occupational Therapist

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Evelyn Lechner

Evelyn Lechner MS, OTR/L

Position
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Evelyn graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor’s Degree in Athletic Training. She received her Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from San Jose State University. She has received training in Zones of Regulation, The Alert Program, Handwriting Without Tears, and Beckman Oral Motor Protocol. She has special interests in gross and fine motor development, sports skills, and therapy groups. Evelyn was born and raised in Fremont. She enjoys crafting, baking, and being active outdoors.

Evelyn says:
“After completing my fieldwork internship here, I am very excited to join DICP! Everyone is so supportive and caring, and I have enjoyed getting to work and learning from an incredible team. I am passionate about working in pediatrics and love the holistic emphasis and creative nature of occupational therapy. As an OT, I look forward to helping kids reach their highest potential all while having fun!”

Hannah Rutland

Hannah Rutland Occupational Therapist

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Hannah Rutland

Hannah Rutland MS, OTR/L

Position:
Occupational Therapist
Biography:
Hannah graduated from the University of South Carolina with a BS in exercise science and a minor in psychology. She received a Master’s of Science degree in the Occupational Therapy program at Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC). Hannah has special interests and certifications in sensory integration and feeding therapy. Hannah has advanced training in the Beckman feeding protocol, the Talk Tools sensory motor approach and the SOS feeding approach. Hannah also has therapeutic experience with working on the foundational skills for handwriting, coordination and motor planning, core strength and postural stability, and visual motor integration. Hannah moved to the Bay Area from South Carolina with her husband and golden retriever. When she’s not at DICP, Hannah enjoys exploring the outdoors, traveling, painting, and spending the day on the beach with her family.

Hannah says:
I enjoy working at DICP because of their supportive and positive environment that fosters growth and collaboration. This team offers a wealth of knowledge, client-centered approaches, and nurtures development for not only their clients, but also their therapists. I know I am coming into work everyday into an environment that feels like home, where our freedom to use our creative ideas and specialized training is met with an abundance of resources, tools, and a welcoming atmosphere that allows our clients to thrive. I feel privileged to work with such an incredible team of professionals that has a shared passion for working with kids and helping them succeed, having fun (even while working), and seeing the good in everyone. “

Karen Swinehart

Karen Swinehart Occupational Therapist

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Karen Swinehart

Karen Swinehart MS, OTR/L

Position:
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Karen received her undergraduate degree from UC Davis with a BS in Human Development and a minor in Psychology. Karen has worked as a therapist at Development is Child’s Play since graduating from San Jose State with a Master’s in Occupational Therapy. Karen is trained in Therapeutic Listening, The Astronaut Training Protocol, Social Thinking, The S.O.S. feeding approach, Handwriting Without Tears, The Learn, Play, Thrive Approach, has completed two SIPT Courses, and has taken multiple courses in Sensory Integration through TheraPeeds. Karen enjoys working closely in collaboration with her DICP colleagues.

Karen Says:
“I have always been drawn to working with children. After college, and during the tech boom, I spent six years working in HR at Sun Microsystems. I realized, after a few years and too many long meetings, that it was time to make a career change and get back to my roots. The moment I walked through the office door at DICP I knew I was where I needed to be. The one-on-one client relationships, the play, the interesting and fun equipment, and the ability to have a more direct impact with my work was so exciting. I feel so fortunate to have found a wonderful place with such fantastic friends and amazing support from our Aides, Volunteers, and Office Manager. I don’t know what other clinics are like, but this is the most collaborative, kind, caring, open, knowledgeable, willing, helpful, smart, and funny group of people that I have ever worked with and I can’t imagine being a therapist with any other group.”

Kerry Bunger

Kerry Bunger Occupational Therapist

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Kerry Bunger

Kerry Bunger MA, OTR/L

Position:
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Kerry was born and raised in San Jose, CA, where she still resides. Kerry attended the University of California, Davis where she completed her BS in Physiology. She then received an MA in Occupational Therapy at the University of Southern California. Kerry is SIPT certified and is our Volunteer Coordinator.

Kerry says:
I became a pediatric occupational therapist because of my older sister, Tara B. Tara reacted to her DPT shot in April of 1973 when she was 3 months old. She has right sided hemiparesis, cortical blindness, and has seizures due to her injury. I used to attend Tara’s therapy sessions where I watched these amazing people who would help my sister to stand and walk and use her hands, all while playing! I was amazed at how easy it looked, so I would go home and try to copy what they did in their sessions to help my sister. I knew then and there what I wanted to do for my career! Having been the younger sister of a person with special needs, I know the family side of OT. I know the special needs child changes the family dynamic because even though Tara is my older sister, I will always help to care for her, even if that means listening to Christmas music in July. “

Leah Huang

Leah Huang Speech-Language Pathologist

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Leah Huang

Leah Huang SLP

Position:
Speech-Language Pathologist

Biography:
Leah attended Biola University, where she graduated with a BS in Communicative Sciences and a minor in Psychology. She went on to graduate from the CSU East Bay’s SLP Master’s Program. Before joining DICP, Leah worked at CSU East Bay as a Clinical Supervisor/Educator, in private practice, at Kaiser, and in the schools as an SLP and Clinical Supervisor. Leah has certifications in ASHA Certification of Clinical Competence (CCC), Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA), the Hanen It Takes Two To Talk and More Than Words programs, PECS Picture Exchange Communication System -Level II, ADOS-Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule, PRT-Pivotal Response Treatment Certification, and the Lidcombe Treatment Program for Stuttering. Leah is a Bay Area native and married to her college sweetheart. They have a young son and love traveling and trying new foods.

Leah says:
“My greatest drive in working with children and their families is partnership. I strongly believe not only in following your child’s lead to enhance functional communication, but also in walking alongside you as the caregivers to empower the family as a whole. Therapy together might take the form of rolling cars on the floor, pointing to picture symbols to make requests, role playing tricky social scenarios with peers, or practicing speech sounds while looking at a book. I welcome the process of identifying the most effective pathways to optimal communication for your child!”

Mark Schwartz

Mark SchwartzOccupational Therapist

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Mark Schwartz

Mark Schwartz

Position:
Occupational Therapist
Biography:
Mark graduated from the University of California, Davis, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. He received his Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from Touro University Nevada. He has received training in sensory processing and behavior, self-regulation (Zones of Regulation, Alert Program), play-based approaches, feeding interventions, interventions for children with cognitive and motor impairments, handwriting interventions (Handwriting Without Tears, Size Matters, and Construct, Draw, Write), and visual-motor integration. Furthermore, he has special interests in sensory processing, reflex integration, play-based approaches, and feeding. Mark shares his life with his wife and two rescue kitties, Cappuccino and Jameson. Outside of work, Mark’s hobbies include martial arts, archery, reading, cooking, videogames, and hiking.

Mark Says:
“The first time I saw a child with severe barriers overcoming everything to engage in play, I knew pediatric occupational therapy was to be my life’s work. Both children and adults learn naturally and seemingly effortlessly when lost in play, and that is what I strive to bring to my sessions. DICP not only shares this ethos, but also invests in its therapists to provide the best care possible. Working with such a talented group of professionals is a privilege and I am excited each day to learn something new. I look forward to being a part of your child’s and family’s success!”

Sam Ichikawa

Sam Ichikawa Occupational Therapist

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Sam Ichikawa

Sam Ichikawa MS, OTR/L

Position:
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Sam received her Bachelor’s degree in psychology from Pepperdine University and her Master’s degree in occupational therapy from Stanbridge University. Sam has completed certifications for Astronaut Training, ILS Focus System, the Safe and Sound protocol, the Beckman Oral Motor Protocol, and the SOS approach to feeding.

Sam says:
“I always knew I wanted to be in the helping profession and once I found occupational therapy, I knew it was the right fit for me! I love being able to help children learn, grow and reach their full potential through the power of play. DICP offers such a wonderful environment to nurture that growth with a beautiful treatment space, fun equipment, and an amazing, caring, and supportive staff!”

Sarah

Sarah Coon Occupational Therapist

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Sarah

Sarah Coon MS, OTR/L

Position:
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Sarah Attended San Jose State University receiving her BS in Occupational Therapy and a MS in Occupational Therapy.

Working with children to build their overall gross motor skills including core strength, upper body strength, ball skills, balance, bilateral coordination, motor planning, body awareness, and endurance is her speciality here at DICP.

Sarah Says:
“I have been working with children of all ages for a total of 14 years and in that time I have learned that children are resilient, forgiving, and want to learn despite differing abilities, resources, and/or situations. As an occupational therapist, I feel extremely fortunate to be able to provide kids with strategies, tools, just right challenges, and opportunities to help them learn, grow, and become more comfortable with who they are as individuals.”

Shawn

Shawn AminiradOccupational Therapist

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Shawn

Shawn Aminirad

Position:
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Shawn attended UC Berkeley where he graduated with a double major in English and Social Welfare. He went on to receive his Master’s Degree in Occupational Therapy from USC. Before joining DICP, Shawn worked with kids at Axiom Learning in Los Altos and Menlo Park. Shawn and his wife have a young son and daughter and Shawn loves Batman, video games, and exploring fun places in the Bay Area. We are thrilled to have Shawn working with us at DICP!

Shawn says:
“I love OT because OT activities can make things like playing and having fun have functional benefits!”

Stephanie

Stephanie ShimizuPhysical Therapist

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Stephanie

Stephanie Shimizu

Position:
Physical Therapist

Biography:
Stephanie graduated from the University of California, Davis, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Evolutionary Anthropology. She received her Doctorate from Florida International University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy Program. She completed two of her graduate school clinical rotations in pediatrics, gaining experience in hospital and outpatient settings. Stephanie was born and raised in Saratoga and is happy to be back in the South Bay Area working. She loves traveling and learning about new cultures, as well as animals, baking, hiking, scuba diving, and anything Disney!

Stephanie says:
“I grew up in a family of healthcare professionals and always knew I wanted to have a career where I could help others. After having two knee surgeries of my own, I fell in love with physical therapy. I love being able to help kids build confidence and work toward achieving their full potential while making therapy an enjoyable experience.”

Veerali Juthani

Veerali JuthaniOccupational Therapist

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Veerali Juthani

Veerali Juthani

Position:
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Veerali graduated from the University of Southern California (USC) with a BS and MA in Occupational Therapy and a minor in Business Administration. She received her doctorate (OTD) in occupational therapy at USC as well and completed her doctoral residency in pediatric mental health along with a fellowship in neurodevelopmental disabilities and maternal/child health. Through her residency, Veerali developed an expertise in infant and childhood mental health, with specific interests in developmental trauma and attachment. Prior to joining the DICP team, she practiced at an outpatient pediatric mental health clinic where she worked with children between the ages of 0-20 with a variety of developmental/medical/mental health diagnoses and enjoyed working with each unique child and family to best support their needs. She strongly believes that mental health is an integral part of treating a child and family holistically and is excited to utilize her background at DICP! Veerali has a certification in Sensory Integration and additional training in feeding and DIR/Floortime. Her special areas of interest are in infant and pediatric mental health, sensory processing, and trauma-informed care. She is dedicated to providing holistic, child/family-centered, relationship-based, and culturally-relevant care to all the children and families she works with to help them reach their highest potential! In her free time, Veerali enjoys exploring the outdoors, reading, spending time with her family/friends, and traveling.

Veerali has certifications in Sensory Integration, additional training in DIR/Floortime, feeding, and ACE’s, and her special areas of interest are in infant and pediatric mental health, sensory processing, and trauma-informed care.

Regine Saldovar

Regine Saldovar Occupational Therapist

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Regine Saldovar

Regine Saldovar MS, OTR/L

Position:
Occupational Therapist

Biography:
Regine grew up in and around San Diego, CA. She graduated from University of California, Irvine with a BA Psychology and a BS Public Health Sciences. She received her Masters in Occupational Therapy from Dominican University of California, and has recently moved back to the Bay Area to work with us at DICP! Regine enjoys working with kids of all ages from young children to teens. Regine loves listening to music, exploring new sunset views, and spending quality time with cherished family & friends.

Regine says:
“Occupational therapy is such a wholesome profession – I love how it utilizes a compassionate, holistic, and intentional approach to: build meaningful connections/experiences, facilitate a safe space for healing & growth, cultivate resilience, and inspire others to see the light in themselves!”

Rumba

Rumba CCI® Facility Dog

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Rumba

Rumba Canine Companions for Independence® Facility Dog

Position:
CCI® Facility Dog

Biography:

Rumba was born January 10, 2018 and has been working with DICP since October 2020. Rumba lives with DICP therapist/owner Sena, and comes to work with her almost every day.

Rumba is DICP’s Canine Companions for Independence® Facility Dog. This means she is trained to work in a health care setting. Her trained skills can be utilized to enhance therapies, promote participation, and reduce anxiety for clients in professional environments. She was bred to be calm, reliable, and affectionate in order to best help the pediatric population.

Rumba Says:

“I love playing, belly rubs, holding hands (paws), and snoozing on one of my clinic dog beds. I also love helping kids in their sessions by playing balloon volleyball, Honey Bee Tree, and fetch. Kids love petting, walking, and cuddling with me and even kids who are a little frightened of dogs end up loving to pet me as I walk by.”

DICP team

Are you interested in finding out more about our staff or our services? Please feel free to give us a call at 408-865-1365.